Menswear Not Just for Men?

Menswear on the runway, with a femme twist.

Menswear on the runway, with a femme twist. (Photo by: Elle)

Fashion trends mean different things for women and men. Some women see fashion as their life, while others see it as an unnecessary expensive world. This is similar with men, fashion differs based on the person. Women and men show diversity in the trends they accept and decline, and how they choose to follow and perceive them. Trends mean different things to different types of people, but especially differ in the minds of men and women.

The trend of menswear has found its way in and out of the fashion world for years. Parts of menswear have become a staple for business and career women today. Blazers, trouser pants, constructed blouses or dress shirts, and tuxedo shoes have been adapted from menswear styles that women currently use for their jobs to look professional.

This is an example of how women have progressed with their rights and freedom. At one point in history, but still prevalent in some countries, men were the head of household and their families depended on them to provide and work for a living. Today, women have established their rights and now share the responsibility to provide for their families. Some women earn more than their husbands or partners, proving their role in society and how their roles have evolved. With the evolution of women entering the workforce, it seems like the adaptation of men’s jobs coincide with the adaptation of their work clothes.

Today’s menswear trends are structured blazers, long trouser type pants (starting mid-rise to a straight leg, to hit the ankle), vests, and oxfords according to an Elle’s “Menswear Inspired Fashion Trend” article. The prints include pinstripes, black and white, and dark sleek colors.

When women dress to this standard of dark colors and matching pieces, they are often called power suits, because of the sensibility and power of the structured outfit. Some fashion forward women combine these trends with patterns to spice them up. Some women believe the dark blocked colors is too one toned, which in turn looks boring and flat. When paired with patterns and prints, then it becomes brighter and easier on the eyes, in addition to more fashionable. I, personally, love the adaptation of menswear into everyday fashion. Blazers and trouser pants, to me, are so easy to transform. Blazers can be transformed into an everyday piece or an office piece. For an everyday look, a blazer can be paired with a graphic top and skinny jeans. A business look would be a blazer over a blouse, pencil skirt, or black pants. Trouser pants are the same. If you want to wear trouser pants everyday, pair them with a cute tank or embellished top, and ankle boots. For a business look, pair it with a simple cami or tank top and a blazer with stilettoes. Vests are a little trickier, but if it is not black and paired with a simple white top, it would work with a pencil skirt or black dress pants. You can always wear a black vest and just switch out black bottoms for something patterned or colored. Oxfords are simple to make casual. They are inspired from men’s dress shoes, but aren’t as dressy as an office setting is. I would suggest skipping the office with them, but pairing them with shorts or a skirt.

Women have always used blazers for the office. Today’s blazers are more structured and different than the typical cut office blazers. I believe that they can still be used in everyday fashion. I think blazers are the easiest for women to integrate into their fashion style. Oxfords have come and gone as a trend, but there are those who still wear them. Vests are not worn in the menswear fashion often; they seem more difficult to wear everyday. I believe the trouser pants are something that more women should take advantage of.  I believe if women were shown ways to wear them, it would be much easier. Trouser pants are a great way for women to appear like they have longer legs since they are higher up on the waist and run all the way to the ankle.

From the men’s perspective, they are used to the business attire, since they work with women in offices. The dress pants, pencil skirts, blouses, and heels are all too familiar. With the integration of these pieces in everyday fashion, not much has changed. Some men do like to see more skin, but blazers are typical, seeing them in everyday outfits does not differ to them, With vests, men are questioning them, just because the everyday vests that are seen are winter vests and as means for warmth. They are more constricting, but some women do wear just vests, with no top underneath, if they want to be more revealing. In the past, movies had characters that would wear just a vest alone, and men staring because her breasts would be pushed up and so much skin was shown. As for trouser pants, men see no difference. The trouser pants do give the allusion of longer legs because they sit higher on the waist and hit the ankle. Men like legs, even if they aren’t seen they are looking long. Oxford shoes look best on women with tiny feet. In the past, Chinese women would bind their feet so they would look smaller and delicate. The oxfords appeal to men, not that they really ever pay attention to footwear, because tiny feet are delicate. Men like women who are small, so they hold power over them. Overall, men appreciate the menswear trend. Office settings thrive on the fact that men and women are together. The atmosphere works well because they balance each other. Instead of men surrounded by other men in suits, women are in their dainty, curve hugging outfits that men cannot help but enjoy.

The trend of menswear does not appeal to all, but there are some fans. The women who adapt it into their everyday lives show versatility for pieces that are typically meant for the office. I am personally a fan of them and own trouser pants and blazers. Men generally do not have an opinion with fashion trends, but with this trend, they are used to it. Business wear is something people see in the office daily, so seeing pieces now and then are easy on the eye.

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