Man-trends. They don’t emerge as frequently as lady-trends (otherwise known as fashion trends) but they tend to stick around for longer.
As we know, men are less adaptable to change than women and can’t concentrate on as many things at once. Consequently, while dozens of lady-trends can exist at the same time, with all of them evolving rapidly, a man-trend will slowly emerge as a thing, gradually take hold as blokes wrap their heads around it, then hang around for a good while.
Example: I sit here writing this at my opulent dark oak desk (yeah, right) wearing a beard. Ten years ago this would have marked me out as a Christian guitarist or a man ‘wanted for questioning’ by the police (or both), but these days every second chap sports a lumberjack beard, or at least some Ben Affleck-style face fuzz. Why? It’s not because of all the extra testosterone they are putting in our beef (note to editor: idea for next week—an article on how hormones in chicken are making women grow bigger breasts). It’s because beards are a man-trend.
Since women’s styles are far more flitting, it is easier to define an era by the one or two man-trends which dominated it. In Oscar Wilde’s day, your average fellow would wear a red rose in his lapel and carry a nice walking cane. In the Sugar Ray/early Justin Timberlake epoch of the late ‘90s, it was quite common to highlight one’s hair with frosted tips in the most dandy manner.
For a while chaps wore Mohawks, or faux-hawks, inspired by the likes of Spice Boy and erstwhile-footballer David Beckham. There was a period in the early ‘90s when satin boxers were the undergarment of choice, enjoying nearly 100 per cent market share. They would usually feature pictures of Tweety Bird saying ‘Baby Light My Fire’ or Bugs Bunny saying ‘Hop on This’ or some other wonderful amusement. It was a dark time for womankind. (Side note: Tweety Bird, male or female? Discuss)
A more recent development is the man-bun, which gives male model-types a kind of wandering Ronin look, and makes non-model-types look like absolute numpties. Due to modern media saturation there are also more and more questionable man-trends that are simply invented to fill blog space.
I point to Exhibit A, ‘Normcore’ and Exhibit B, the ‘dad-bod’. Neither of these things are actual things. Normcore is allegedly a movement where people wear normal-looking clothes. That’s not a movement, THAT’S WHAT THEY WERE ALREADY DOING. I don’t read fashion blogs but I imagine they say something like: ‘Despite the fact that Jay-Z wore a suit made completely out of rubber tyres and a 4 ft Kevlar top hat when he went to the Met Gala, many men are bucking the trend by wearing T-shirts and jeans when they go grocery shopping: welcome to Normcore.’ I don’t even know where to start with dad-bod. Whatever, sign me up.
Anyway, as a special treat to TUL readers, I’m going to accurately predict the next man-trend so you can get your look happening before it’s even featured on the Today Show and the Weekend lift-out of your favourite newspaper.
I feel like beards are already slightly passé and the really cool kids now have moved on to dirty porn-star looking moustaches. This is what’s happening NOW, lads, so copy that look if you want to be another sheep. If you want to be AHEAD of the curve, the natural progression would seem to indicate that facial hair is gradually receding. Since we also just keep rehashing fashion trends of the past, I’m thinking the next big thing will be well-cropped 1930s-style moustaches that sit daintily just below the nose, as worn by the likes of Charlie Chaplin and Adolf Hitler. You could pair it with a fancy bowler hat or perhaps a neat side part.
This look will be HOT, I am telling you. Get on board now. Thank me later.
Image credit: The Student Room