Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Mantyhose in the Orient

China Global Times reports on men's pantyhose trendChina's national newspaper, The Global Times, published an article today on the men's pantyhose trend. Entitled "Sheer Ridiculousness", the headline betrays a certain lack of objectivity, wouldn't you say? The article is not a hatchet job, but it does include statements such as, "Mantyhose is a trend for which we can, predictably, blame Europe. (emphasis mine)...

The article opens with one of Chan Kraemer's latest images from e-MANcipate, which shows a man wearing a pair of the new Emilio Cavallini unisex tights (the ones with skulls on them... not too sure I like this design, but anyways...), and notes that there are as yet only a small number of men wearing pantyhose or tights in China. Yet, the numbers appear to be growing, especially in the larger urban areas like Beijing, Shanghai and Zinjiang. This mirrors observations we've made from ACTIVSKIN web traffic data.

I recently reviewed our data and found that, after the U.S. and Canada, China is responsible for the largest share of web traffic to the website. While only averaging about 550 visits per month, this is still significant since most Chinese would be limited by the fact that the website is in English. Overall, Asia is responsible for 13.2% of ACTIVSKIN's web traffic (and 8.7% of traffic here at The Nylon Gene).

The article makes brief reference to Comfilon (aka ACTIVSKIN) as a result of information I provided for the article. In addition to the three cities named above, we have also seen considerable amounts of interest from Guangzhou and Dongguan, and more than 200 other cities across the country. Chinese interest in ACTIVSKIN has risen steadily since June, and we observed a sharp spike in web traffic following several postings on the online answers site,

The article also talks about Doyeah, a Chinese hosiery producer that's new to the male pantyhose scene. Their men's hosiery has been selling steadily, as well as those sold by an online Shanghai distributor, Comfimay. There is even a 'brick and mortar' retailer selling men's hosiery in China. Beijing's Chun Shui Tang retail chain store sells a "couple hundred pairs" of black- or beige-colored mantyhose per month.

That certainly sounds like the beginnings of a real trend. Most new things start this way. First, those near the fringe try out the things everyone else is afraid to do. Soon after, other early adopters begin to show up on the street with those same items, and before long they start to enter the 'realm of the cool'. From there, trends that succeed follow a somewhat predictable path to eventually attain commercial viability. The Chinese market looms large if Oriental men continue to brave the potential disapproval of their peers to try men's legwear for themselves.

The article quotes Beijing designer and fashion consultant Wu Jintao as saying that "mantyhose will soon have its time to shine" as interest from the in-crowd continues to grow.


  1. It's time to launch mandarin version of ;-)


  2. thehehh, Lee your comment actually made me laugh :), nice way to start a day. Wonderful news btw, I wonder how many different visits from Estonia, Steve?

  3. It's time to have a real 2.0 website with cool professionnals pictures.

  4. I find it hilarious,the need to justify men wearing "legwear"....WHO CARES? Why do you have to prove anything to anyone? approval or disapproval?

  5. I agree that there's no real need to 'prove' anything. Men can wear what they want w/o fear of arrest or anything. However, all you have to do is peruse some of the blogs out there to see there's some real nastiness going on when it comes to what some people write about the prospect of men wearing hosiery--for whatever reason. I don't know why people get so worked up about it. It's not like anyone is trying to force THEM to wear it. So, for that reason, there is still a 'need' to demonstrate that men's legwear is a legitimate male garment, with practical benefits attached to it.

  6. Too bad you won't see this even in Northern India despite the benefits of such legwear to protect us from bug bites.

  7. Good for men
    But mostly men afraid other people saying that they are dressed in lady's hose.


  9. Hello, Steve Newman! Russia has opened its first and only shop pantyhose for men. Wants you to pay attention to this event in your blog. Its address is: Regards, Boris


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