The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

The rise of menswear

Menswear is an ever-evolving sector of the fashion industry, and in recent years it has truly asserted itself as valid moneymaker

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As with most things created in the human history of ever, fashion started for men. Heels would be a prime example of a trend that men began and women merely imitated; however, in today’s modern world fashion has long been considered a female territory. But a little gap in the fashion framework is just beginning to open.

This is largely thanks to one of Manchester’s most famous associates (don’t fret I know he isn’t actually Manc), Mr David Beckham. Although it was many moons ago that we took delight in his meterosexual stylings he very publicly made it acceptable for men to take pride in their appearance. From his dabbling in frosted tips, to his underwear campaigns, David Beckham is the face that relaunched men’s style.

In more recent years the London’s Men’s Collection’s has become a growing event in the fashion calendar, famous face like our reverend Mr Beckham, along with Tinie Tempah, Oliver Cheshire, David Gandy or Nick Grimshaw have made fashion cool. They have showcased that men’s style can vary greatly from a simple jeans and shirt combo. And oh how the fashion industry has rallied to cry of men seeking new looks.

Many of the old powerhouses of fashion have long shown menswear collections: Gucci, Burberry, Armani and Ralph Lauren; however, new up-and-coming brands are finding a space for themselves in the market: Sibling, House of Holland and Vetements all create overtly ‘fashion’ pieces. There are seemingly no rules to mens fashion anymore — just think of Rick Owens AW15 collection, seemingly a swing of the schlong is an acceptable fashion statement post-Beckham.

As the men’s fashion show’s become a bigger event, even merging in with womenswear collection (but that is an entirely different conversation) designers are looking to models to be the face of their collections. So, the ever increasing menswear industry is creating supermodels of its own, models no longer limited to spreading their legs in an underwear billboard. The ‘it’ male model of the moment is Lucky Blue Smith, he walked pretty much every major catwalk and became a member of Olivier Rousteing’s infamous Balmain army, and he is set to be the tip of the male model iceberg.

All in all the growing menswear collection can only be seen positively, mainly because it means it is becoming less and less acceptable to see men in fleeces, which frankly can only be a blessing from the fashion gods.