Too Much Girl On Guy Action For My Taste | Will The Real Men Please Stand Up?


menswear fashion scarfmenswear fashion scarf 

Call me old-fashioned if you will, but I am so over the whole skinny jean, silly scarf, everything super-tight & femme look.  I for one, have never succumbed to wearing one of those gauzy chick scarves, and it goes without saying that I’ll never even consider wearing women’s jeans– especially if some so-called “rock hipsters” say they fit better.  Dude, what fit are you going for– “tweener at the mall” fit?  Seriously– grow a set, get a tailor and stay out of the Junior’s department.  

I’m so bad, I even have a hard time with wearing clothes by women designers. Yeah, I’m old school, but my admittedly rigid train of thought is as follows–

generally speaking, a guy inherently knows guy’s stuff better than women do.  

Like I’d rather have a guy cut my hair than a girl, but it works conversely too– I’d rather have a woman help me if I’m shopping for my wife.  I know the world is more sophisticated than that, but that’s just how I roll– and honestly, it has served me pretty well.


menswear girl fashionmenswear girl inspired fashion 

Obviously, a lot of people disagree given this article in WWD–

Recently, a confident contingent of guys has been making strides into the girls’ arena, seeking everything from basic T-shirts to trendy pieces, jewelry and accessories — all the while retaining masculinity. And with the support of a growing group of retailers and designers, they are making a case for raiding the women’s department.

For some among their ranks, the primary motivation is a question of fit. “I’m a rather small person, so a lot of the time, if I can’t find something that I would buy in a men’s section of a store…and if I want something and it’s cool enough and it doesn’t have too much darting, I’ll totally buy it [from the women’s side],” explains jewelry designer Eddie Borgo. He frequently mixes Alexander Wang cardigans and women’s blazers from thrift stores with white Hanes T-shirts and vintage Wranglers and Levis 517s. A recent purchase: a pair of Camilla Staerk black moccasins.

Borgo has a kindred spirit in a fashion executive who, as a result of his petite stature, gets creative in honing his simple, slim silhouette (though he prefers to remain anonymous about his girly clothing excursions). Though he likes lean men’s sweaters and blazers from Jil Sander and Prada, baggy, too-big men’s jeans don’t cut it. And so he has no problem looking to girls’ denim for his fit solution, specifically Helmut Lang’s cropped boyfriend style and the skinny cut from Uniqlo.

“I’m 5-foot-4…and there are limited collections I can buy,” he says. Denim wasn’t his first such foray: He also owns a light blue Uniqlo Windbreaker. “It has a very minimal design, the color was beautiful and I think that’s why I bought it,” he explains. “There’s no specific feminine design that makes me feel awkward.” 

Size is not the only drive behind many of these intrepid male customers. A judicious mix of women’s clothes can lend a sleek, androgynous line often unattainable with exclusively men’s items.

“All my rock ’n’ roll friends, we’re all wearing girls’ jeans. They fit better,” says stylist Keegan Singh, who achieves his skinny-leg look with Rock & Republic and Cheap Monday cuts.

I say– Get new friends.

38 thoughts on “Too Much Girl On Guy Action For My Taste | Will The Real Men Please Stand Up?

  1. Thank you for this post, it was needed. I too get so tired of seeing this and hearing guys explain how girls clothes are just cut better….yeah, cut for a woman! It seems like this androgynous trend will never pass…

  2. I just don’t see how those pants are comfortable. I thought there was a reason women’s and mens’ pants were cut differently…

  3. If you can’t feel the flo, jus let ’em go..

    A real man isn’t bothered by either women or other men’s choices..

    Plus, someone’s gotta do that early Bowie/NY Dolls thing. And remember that, until, well, yesterday, having a blog about fashion/caring about certain work boot details/talking about what you wear would be the most effeminate thing anyone could think of. “Oh John, what will the neighbors think.”

    We all free and ain’t no love like a splendiforous array of deeversite. Without hipsterisme and metrosexuality, the ubersexual pool would be more crowded. And then those Eastern European models would require more labor.. I’ll admit that these fashion photos look lame, but when a guy here in the Chi can pull off some freakishly flaming hetero fashions like he means it, it’s a welcome respite from the Dockers and black square toe Aldos. It’s all about sex, different climates/microclimates requiring different forms of cockery/peacockery.

    • Thanks for the awakening and congratulations on being a real man. The Bowie/NY Dolls reference is way too far removed to be applicable or taken seriously. In fact, the looks pictured above are closer to your square toe Aldos than you think– it’s just the next rung up on the ladder, and has nothing to do with diversity and everything to do with unoriginality.

  4. As a guy who has witnessed men purchasing women’s items I often wonder how and why? Like, seriously dude, where did you find room in thos jeans? Then they answer in their high pitched voice…
    Seriously, if you are a small guys and MENS clothes don’t fit you just right, get a tailor!

    I know that there are those out in the (fashion)world who are chasing trends because it’s “cool”. This hopefully, is just a trend and soon we will only see women’s clothing on those whom they are intended for, WOMEN.

    As for the ALDO’s … can they please go down in this economic crisis and help us all?

    Sorry I have to go, my jumper is riding up.

  5. Well, the ill-fitting super baggy look is just as bad. I’d take a 100 hipsters in skinny jeans and scarves over a khaki pants and billowing tucked-in blue shirt middle manager type.

    Kinda weird, I am skinny and Levi’s “slim” jeans fit me pretty well. So I bought a pair of “skinny” Levi’s thinking they were the same. Nope, Skinny jeans are positively pornographic.

  6. I had a post about the same thing, just slightly different take on the idea but saw yours and decided to leave it to the better of the two. Yet as someone who is 6″0 and 130 lbs I wear skinny jeans, but am very particular about the fit of my clothing in the first place. I make sure there is room in all my pants and that my shirts fall properly at my sides not stick to them, and that my scarves are used to keep my neck warm.

    And most of all you would never catch me in the women’s section of any store. I bought a deep v-neck shirt once and I took it off and sold it to Buffalo Exchange after it was in my dresser for over a year. I bought it to wear under my dress shirts but it fit horribly.

    So, I have found other alternatives to buying womens clothing. I have learned to tailor my own. It is not hard and works magic for those of my size. That is usually done only when buying items at thrift stores where buying an alternative properly fitting size is not an option.

    Nevertheless, there are men’s clothes out there for every size. Stop being lazy and do some research. I think it is a sign of laziness and ignorance to not find clothing that fits you or altering it to a respectable size.

    And last, this is exactly why I canceled my subscription to WWD. They called this the “Men’s 2009 Fashion Trend”. This is not a new trend in fact it is quite old and getting a little mundane. For being a Style/Fashion editorial, it is a little behind the times.

  7. I believe it’s all a matter of taste… Androgeny is supposedly a theme on the runway these days haha… Or so they say… Somewhere along the way real men’s clothing caught the way of mainstream homosexual style and taste and now our mens fashion and lifestyle magazines are run in that same fashion and order with pretty little boys on the cover and in the editorial spreads… Which to me does not relate to the average male reader… There’s a good read on this in “Men’s Fashion Reader 2009 edition”… I believe nowadays people are learning and especially in retail that most men and people do not relate to that… Maybe like 1% of the population… Hence the reason magazines such as “Free & Easy” are so enjoyable to read here in the states and there is a reason for it’s growing popularity. Being straight and working in the fashion industry I have always found that most women tend to enjoy men who are manly and dress accordingly… Now being a dandy is “all fine and dandy” however a tailor and a proper fit is what many men need to learn indeed… Also I have been saying for a while that it’s annoying seeing certain people in super skinny jeans especially when their body type does not complement such a fit… I’ve noticed it amongst many of these so called “trad” wave riders as well… Super tight raw jeans and suspenders that do not fit… I have on a pair of relaxed fit reds today and I can’t say how comfortable they are… Comfort is key and needs to become more of a standard… Thanks for this post… You’re not the only one feeling this way!

  8. Tight (not really my style) doesn’t bother me as much as low-rise jeans for men…you shouldn’t have to do manscaping so you can wear a pair of pants.

  9. amen, brother. this post crystallized for me why it’s one of my go-to blogs for men’s interests and style. bravo.

  10. You know you leave yourself wide open on that one, lol. Plenty of women say that men who design women’s clothing, must hate women. ALL of the designers I know who are designing this hyper skinny men’s look are all men. Yep, not a single female in the lot. Professionally, most of my experience is with men’s wear. Perhaps I flatter myself but I feel more aligned to men’s preferences than women’s. The same things that annoy them about fit, also annoy me. I get it. Men are pickier in ways women are not. Women think they’re pickier about fit but they’re willing to sacrifice fit if the color is just right or it matches their shoes or eyes or if it’s on sale or something. Guys don’t and they’ll pay full retail for stuff that works. Men may not be able to articulate why something doesn’t work for them but they will pay for what does work. That’s what I shoot for.

    I definitely would not take a woman with me to buy women’s clothes. No way. I take a guy. Women dress to impress other women. I’m not trying to be attract other women so I dress to appeal to men.

    Re: Jeans. Jeans across the board fit lousy these days, there is continual entropy of fit. I am so sick of the mono-butt look.

  11. not all jeans fit lousy, kathleen. it just seems like it takes $250 just to get into the game to find a pair of classic jeans that are comparable to iconic ones. no bells. no whistles. just a good cut and quality material. i think that jeanmakers have gone crazy micromanaging their cuts to a point where now they have cuts that only look good on a small percentage of the people who try them on, yet everyone wants to where them. wwii era levi’s never seemed to have that problem.

  12. @warwick: He might not wanna look like Duran Duran but I wonder if Steve McQueen would wear $300 fetishized jeans.

    I find this drive for men to have a tailor and buy these finely made goods a bit priestly class and a similar form of dandy to the Duran Duran look above. Flounce your scarf or roll up your fancy Japanese cuff and walk your turtle the sidewalk – whats the diff? He’s the tweener at the mall you you think you are Morrissey? You sure ain’t your grandfather or your father. Mine are both gone, sadly, but I dare y’all to call up yours and tell ’em that you just spent $350 on jeans (instead of $60, because they just didn’t fit quite right and they were made on a machine, dad) and what do they happen to think about that?

    Cool blog, btw, I’m learning much and enjoy it. I’m cranky partly because of lack of bread. Mostly I’m with Eben above.

  13. Hosenpants–

    Oh, I could tell you were with Eben alright… you both have a strange, concocted handle on the English language… you think you’re pretty hip, that’s cool too.

    You don’t have to be a fetishist to appreciate quality, and there is nothing wrong with admiring great fabrics and workmanship… and it doesn’t always cost a fortune either, btw. At least if I spend a few bucks on RRL I know I’m getting great Japanese denim woven from African cotton on selvedge looms, and not some cheap crap like they use in those fancy pants sissy vanity fake denim brands out there that are laughing all the way to the bank.

    The fact that you have an issue with a guy utilizing the services of a proper tailor tells me that you’re probably not all that astute when it comes to the details that really make the difference.

    ‘Nuff said.

    Cheers and come back anytime.

    • JP,

      Spot on re: the tailor. I’m tall and skinny and I don’t think I’ve had anything fit well until I bought a suit to for my wedding a few years back. I’m 42 and have a Paul Smith suit that FITS. I spent some money at Barney’s and had a tailor finish it off – which wasn’t much work for him he said – it was made for my build. It is one tall suit for a slim dude and it is great. I was intimidated going in to buy it but the salesman that helped me was excellent. Thought I had an idea, but like children before I had one, I really had no idea. No issue with tailors.

      Looking to appreciate quality more – thus TSY on the current reading list. Asking questions will be better than dishing opinions. Thanks for the reply and have a great holiday weekend.

  14. “You sure ain’t your grandfather or your father. Mine are both gone, sadly, but I dare y’all to call up yours and tell ‘em that you just spent $350 on jeans (instead of $60, because they just didn’t fit quite right and they were made on a machine, dad) and what do they happen to think about that?”

    I have 4 pairs of Levi 520 low tapered that I alternate and they fit perfectly. They cost me around $50 a piece. No one has to spend $350 to find a good pair of jeans that fit, and I don’t.

    • Speak for yourself Chaise, you don’t need to quote that attention-seeker.

      I’ve got plenty of off-the-shelf Levis that I paid 40 bucks for, right alongside some LVC and RRL. It’s all about what’s important to you. I appreciate the quality and beauty of a great pair of Japanese or Cone Mills jeans, and I also love the honest goodness of a stock pair of no frills 501s. I’m in the business, so luckily I’ve never had to pay crazy money for goods, so I can be more selective than most.

      And none of y’all know my Dad or Grandfather, so don’t even go there. But I’ll tell you this, they weren’t wearing chick clothes.

  15. I’m firmly on the side of those saying to men of small stature, “Skip the women’s section and do the research to find clothes that fit, or a tailor,” but I think it’s important to note that clothes cut for smaller frames are almost uniformly at the higher end of the market, given Hedi Slimane’s residual influence. (Not to mention the apparent legions of tiny, rich men in New York who somehow snap up all 3-or-so of the smalls/x-smalls of any given piece as soon as they’re on the racks… bastards.) So for style-seeking guys of modest size AND means, it’s really crucial to make not just purchases but investments — pieces that will last and that you can wear frequently without looking repetitive. I know that echoes a lot of general men’s style advice, but it’s especially applicable to small guys.

    I’ve learned this lesson due to being short, skinny and [relatively] poor: I’m 5’7″, weigh 125 lbs. and work for a non-profit. In addition to having every pair of pants I buy hemmed, many times I even have to have “extra small” jackets and shirts taken in by my terrific tailor — which means I can’t buy a lot of anything. But it’s clearly better to have a sparse wardrobe of well-tailored stuff than a closet overflowing with clothes that look like a big brother’s hand-me-downs.

    @Derrick re: jeans — I think uniqlo’s “skinny” cut are sold as unisex, a la A.P.C. Both of these brands’ denim fits nicely (even me!) and A.P.C.’s raw denim jeans rarely go over $160.

  16. Thanks for the kind words JP. I also think its absurd that someone would spend a fortune on frilly, poor made jeans. But on the other hand, like you, I appreciate well made products, and sometimes splurge on pricier goods every once in a while, but I make sure they are classics and worth the money. I always laugh when I walk into barneys and see some of the un-worthy high prices on poorly made pieces by big designers like Prada and such. As for my grandfather, his wardrobe consists of Dickie jumpsuits. He has them color coordinated for different occasions. He only pulls out the baby blue for the real special occasions..haha

  17. I have a couple of remarks to make about this skinny jean, skinny look.

    First of all, some of it is a reaction to the 15-year trend of the king sized hip-hop look that overwhelmed the US in the 1990s. Fashion always reacts to what came before.

    Secondly, the sedentary lifestyle of the under 30 crowd produces some guys who still have fast metabolisms, but because they never get off their ass, have no glute muscles. So they fit quite well into pencil thin, no leg or ass muscle jeans.

    The androgyny is confined to some urban areas, but in general, the red state still abhors anything that looks like these types of waifs.

    I am sick of this already tired look, but ironically, it was only last year that the NY Times’ Bill Cunningham wrote about it with lots of praise.

  18. @AKN: i should have mentioned that i have the build of an NFL linebacker so APC’s and uniqlo’s cuts are a no-go. i start with rrl and levi’s LVC and go from there. PRPS’s are cut benevolently also.

  19. I think what is important to keep in mind is proportion, not chick clothes vs guy clothes. I don’t own any women’s clothing, but I wish some of my jeans fit more like women’s from the knees down. The problem I always get into when I try on jeans like that is the rise is way too low. I have a pair of Nudie jeans that I really like because they are quite slim in the legs, but the rise is more reasonable. The thing is, the proportion of my legs in those Nudie jeans is no different from another guy in 501’s.
    PS- I own and love 501’s.

  20. JP: Good post. I have a question for you though. Which cut do you prefer for RRL’s? I have the slim boot and the straight leg. If pressed I’d have to say I enjoy the straight leg more but both are great.


  21. Is it just me — or do I hear a hint of a “rigid” gender binary here? Why can’t someone who is male be a “man” if he wears tighter jeans? How does your ‘more manly’ bodytype dictate the fashion sense of those who don’t fulfill your normative standard of what a male body should be and what clothes should swath that body?

    I know you preface this article with a disclaimer that you are old-fashioned, but I can’t help to think that your views go beyond merely reasserting dominant notions of masculinity and what it means to be a “man.” Sorry — posts like these really piss me off sometimes, because they suggest an underlying narrative of ignorance that is all too prevalent in today’s culture.

    I would argue that NO, the hipsters wearing the girls jeans out there aren’t in the majority, you and your old-school views are. Perhaps challenging your conception of some monolithic, singular masculinity is healthy and needed.

    • George,

      I don’t appreciate you insinuating there is more to it than what I clearly stated. That pisses ME off.

      I am not railing against tight jeans or sexual preference– I’m commenting on what I see as a totally absurd trend. In today’s day and age, anyone can find clothing that fits in their respective department, so using fit as an excuse to dress in women’s clothing is ridiculous. If that’s what you like, fine. Go for it.

      That’s my opinion, and you’re welcome to yours. It’s a free country, don’t try to sensationalize it to justify your own insecurity. Your twisting my words, and I don’t appreciate it.

  22. I totally agree with you guys but I think you’re being to lenient. The movement is totally faggotish (no pun intended). No need for sugar coating. I just turned 19 and im not much taller than the 5’4″ guy. A women’s opinion is cool but you leave it up to women and you have arched eye brows and smell like jasmine. That’s a no go. Girls jeans are a Never. I’m a man and I’m from Staten Island and honestly outside of the village or below 14th, the skinny shit isnt considered cool. I wear my Ralph and some A.P.C. products, mainly New Standards. A.P.C. also has alot of femme fits. I fell in love the Rugby khaki and cord pants. Those gauzy scarves are trash, I like the Paul Stuart paisleys and foulard. Most brands you have to dip and dab into, you cant depend on them to much. Good post.

    • I guess one trade rag was too much to ask. WWD Men’s is not a proper substitute. It feels like a red-headed stepchild– and I should know.


  23. OK – I want that blazer in the last photo – but I don’t think my husband would. Last winter I saw Robert Plant in a 1970’s Led Zepplin Concert Video on VH1 w/ the light blue pornographic jeans and blouse/shirt with the shirred sleeves… This look comes and goes. Hopefully it will go again soon. My current favorite men’s fashion jeans are the John Varvatos low (but not too low) jeans that our NY fit model wears when he comes up.

  24. Nicely put JP! I’ve been trying to fight against the skin tight pant thing since it started creeping into the mainstream a few years back and now it feels like it’s everywhere! I currently design for a company that is very much at the forefront of this movement and I don’t know if I’ve had too much of the Koolaid or what but recently I actually found myself starting to feel awkward in my straight leg jeans. I was getting dressed and the leg opening seemed huge to me and I wear APC New Standards – not exactly a wide leg pant.

    I think in the end it all comes down to body type though. I played soccer and Rugby throughout my childhood so I have huge quads and pretty defined glutes. Skinny jeans make me look like I’m wearing jodphurs! But I work with a bunch of early 20-somethings with legs thinner than my arms and they look good in skinny jeans.

    I draw the line at the skin tight, super-hero-suit looking stretch denim that the more extreme guys are rocking. Sorry, hipsters, tights are for girls.

  25. AS a vehement naysayer of skinny jeans, I say kudos for taking the time to write something that goes against the grain. I thought low rise jeans were bad, but this skinny craze needs to go back to the realms of hell… where it came from. Of course we will be spared a generation of “hipseter children” since, let’s face it super tight jeans on guys warms the family jewels enough to kill their swimmers. Easy way of sterilization?
    Interestingly enough guys buying women’s clothes isn’t something new. I work in retail and had SEVERAL men coming in buying ladies cashmere cardigans. Sure, maybe once on you wouldn’t be able to tell it was a woman’s sweater, but I would know. Like a fake Fendi.

  26. Totally agree with the article and as other people have commented IT NEEDED SAYING . In saying that of course women can often look fabulous in men’s cut clothing .

    I find it worrying that the lines between men and women are being blurred and it isn’t a good thing at all and please don’t give me UNISEX because as I’m sure we all know UNISEX is feminine .

  27. Pingback: Will The Real Men Please Stand Up? | Ludiwg Clothing

  28. I agree with you, but women have to deal with wearing gay men’s fashions all the time. It seems they design with young, twinky boys in mind when making both women’s AND men’s clothes. The skinny jeans, the slim-hipped figures – it all reeks of fetishization of young, teenage boys.

    I was watching “Send Me No Flowers” today. Boy, could men look like men back then.

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