Five Great Celebrity Endorsements - Biography.com
After all these years, Joe Namath's famous pantyhose commercial still holds sway. Among the five shown here, it definitely gets my vote for favorite by paving the way for the mantyhose trend. Broadway Joe probably predated ActivSkin by more than 20 years, I think. Then again, it's not hard to top the Richard Simmons and Johnny Rotten ads, and that Hulk Hogan one for Bigelow air conditioners is just plain odd. Follow the link to see the article and vote for your favorite...
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Five Great Celebrity Endorsements - Biography.com
Sunday, June 26, 2011
As for the photo, I took it with the help of my wife (who snapped the photo of me as I was running), and modified it with PhotoShop to give the impression of movement with the blurring. It is one of my more favorite ones I did while still actively employed by ActivSkin, and I don't mind it being used elsewhere. As for the legwear, I was wearing ActivSkin A677s in black. These are full-compression, sheer hosiery with a fly opening in the front. They're very comfortable and provide good leg support.
BTW, the article linked above is a good one also. Alexis Mabury pretty much nails the reasons/benefits of compression tights for runners, cyclists, etc. She also includes references to scientific studies to lend credence to the discussion. Make sure to check it out...
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Sunday, March 27, 2011
The 9tailors article begs the question: If ManSpanx are such a great thing, why would full-length tights or hose for men be so very bad? Let's compare the two.
While not all styles of mantyhose have a fly opening, those that do have a very similar design to that used for SFM. And, those styles that don't feature a fly, typically have some sort of stretchy 'comfort panel' sewn in to avoid the problem of too much compression in 'sensitive areas'. Not much more need be said here.
Probably the most significant difference between ManSpanx and mantyhose is whether they have feet in them. Obviously, ManSpanx do not. For some reason, this seems to be the biggest sticking point many people have with male legwear. It can be nearly indistinguishable at a distance from women's footless tights--but if they have feet in them, some have difficulty getting past this. For those who would draw an absolute line in the sand at wearing any sort of footed legwear, there are quite a few styles of mantyhose offered by ActivSkin, et al, that are footless. In addition, an overlooked benefit of footed hosiery is that it can make socks unneccessary, which also helps avoid feeling too hot. If footed legwear is worn with socks in cold weather or workplaces, they can provide supplemental warmth beyond what socks alone provide.
Another difference is that some forms of hose for men are sheer, like the pantyhose with which many are familiar. Yet, before rejecting sheer legwear for men out of hand, consider this. Sheer fabric is much lighter weight, and therefore cooler, than the material ManSpanx--or runner's tight--are made from. If you wear them under your pants, you'll be less likely to feel overheated throughout your day. Some of the 'early adopters' have already come to the realization that they can also be worn with shorts in settings where short pants are appropriate. The vast majority of people don't even notice sheer hosiery worn with shorts if a skintone-matching color is worn. For the time being--until more men gain enough confidence that societal perceptions have changed greatly--those wearing mantyhose with shorts remain in the minority.
So, I welcome the proliferation of Spanx For Men. I hope it will further the continual evolution of the public mindset, and cause that segment that is still ignorant of the realities surrounding the men's legwear trend to further educate themselves and therefore open their minds just a bit more. This will result in fewer being quick to reject this emerging phenomenon.
As I say in the tagline for The Nylon Gene: we continue to, "change hearts & minds: from pantyhose... to mantyhose."
Sunday, February 27, 2011
Recently, a member of the Legwear As Unisex Fashion (LAUF) forum posted the following:
As we continue to point out here on The Nylon Gene, things continue to improve when it comes to society's views on men wearing pantyhose.
When we arrived at the ski resort, the kids began getting dressed in their gear. Several of the guys pulled out packages of pantyhose and began to put them on. Some were with girlfriends and some were not. One girl even helped one of the guys by telling him how to put them on. One guy's girlfriend commented how wished her legs looked as good in pantyhose as his.
In all, there were seven or eight guys who wore pantyhose as a base layer for warmth, yet it was as if it was second nature to everyone concerned. None of the other skiers had anything negative to say, and even the jocks in the back of the bus had no disparaging remarks.
When they finished sking for the day at least two of the guys made comments about how warm they were and noted that, "from now on, the hell with long underwear. It's pantyhose for me."
Thursday, February 24, 2011
|Soldier being treated by medic for blisters|
The article's author readily admits his days of long marches are well past, so he can't speak with firsthand authority on this. So he consulted Army Lt. Colonel Christopher Garver, among others, to see how widespread wearing of nylon hosiery is in the military, and whether it works.
Col. Garver, a 10-year infantry veteran, reported “There were guys I know who wore nylons because it worked for their feet.” Currently serving as a spokesman for the Army, he notes that some wear pantyhose and others wear specialized socks that also wick away sweat. The choice depends primarily on individual preference.
Dr. Stephen Pribut, a podiatrist in Washington DC, recommends the socks over pantyhose because the Coolmax socks can keep the moisture away from the feet--which can also contribute to blisters. Of course, in hot climates, pantyhose are going to be cooler than socks.
Pribut stressed that servicemembers should use whatever solution works best for them. “If someone has successfully used pantyhose, it's OK with me. The main thing is it's really important to go with what’s worked well in the past.”
The takeaway from the article is that if wearing pantyhose under socks keeps soldier's blister free, the author says to 'go for it.' He suggests we call them "Freedom Stockings."
Of course, they may not be aware there are options available that are more specifically designed for men than off-the-shelf pantyhose. ActivSkin has long been a supporter of the military, and tries to offer discounts to servicemen and their families sending care packages to them. If you have a male member of the military stationed overseas, consider sending them a pair of ActivSkin to try out. When a father living in my neighborhood shipped out to Iraq last year, I donated two pair of A677s and they seemed to be well received.
An additional item of note: the value of nylon legwear to soldiers on long marches is directly transferable to outdoorsmen as well. A hunter or camper hiking over rough terrain into a distant campsite or deer stand can benefit in the same way. Not only will pantyhose protect from blisters while hiking, they are also effective at keeping ticks off the lower body, and horseback riders report beneficial effects at avoiding or minimizing saddle sores, as well.
So, the rumors are true. Some of our military men have been wearing pantyhose, and they're seeing benefits from it. If you are one who thinks pantyhose equals feminine, I wouldn't recommend saying it out loud to the next Marine you meet... at least until you make sure his M16 is unloaded.
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
One of the fascinating aspects of this story is that Mr. Opinionated--the pseudonym used on @stuckinhose's Twitter account--did not take on this mission out of a desire to promulgate the male legwear trend, with which faithful Nylon Gene readers have long been well-acquainted. According to Twitter conversations with him, this arose not from a desire to wear hosiery, but instead to encourage more women to do so. He wanted to prove that their complaints about the discomforts and annoyances of pantyhose are a gross exaggeration.
Over the course of time since he began wearing pantyhose to work, Mr. Opionated began tweeting his thoughts on pantyhose to anyone willing to engage in debate with him. As of this writing, he's posted more than 5,200 tweets. They run the gamut from curious coworkers to far-off strangers who've heard of his situation and are curious to learn more about him or his motivations. He has sent 140-character missives to many a female celebrity to compliment them on their choice of legwear, or chastize those who swear by the bare-legged hose-haters party platform.
Feb. 17 Fashion Finder video blog, Kelly takes pains to point out she's wearing, "hosiery... HOSIERY--not tights" as she previews the day's outfit backstage. Then, while sharing the story with viewers, she blew a kiss to StuckInHose. He posted later that he would've never expected to have been mentioned on air, much less have Kelly blow him a kiss.
Since then, his Twitter followers have grown by leaps and bounds, from a handful of insiders to about 250 in less than a week. His profile reads, "I have been challenged by a female friend to wear hose to work under my pants..looking for females who want to help/have ideas/find it funny/etc."
As I've not had the opportunity to interview him directly and get more details, my observations are based on recent Twitter correspondence and review of his public Twitter timeline of previous conversations with other followers, as well as the spate of recent news items that have popped up. It appears the original agreement between Mr. Opionated and a female coworker dates back at least to September 2010. He agreed to wear pantyhose under his trousers each day to work for 90 days, ostensibly to prove that they're not nearly as bad as women make them sound.
Assuming a 5-day work week (18 weeks), StuckInHose would've ended his 'nylon captivity' sometime around New Year's Day. Yet here it is almost March, and he's still going strong--even going out to buy a $50 pair of Wolford hosiery in recognition of the brand Kelly wore the day she introduced his saga to her national TV audience. It seems that there have been quite a few 'side bets', etc. that have added the occasional 5 extra days here and there (Geez, I hate it when that happens), which is why he's still got at least quite a few days to go before being 'set free' from being a 'hostage to hosiery'.
While Mr. Opinionated insists he has no interest in the men's legwear trend, it's hard to avoid a couple of questions that spring to mind with respect to this story. First, for a guy who isn't at all interested in the idea of men wearing pantyhose, or 'mantyhose', he seems to have taken on this 'chore' of demonstrating the hollowness of female complaints against hosiery with little resistance.
Add this to how readily he was required to add days and weeks to his original 90-day ordeal, and the picture that emerges hearkens back to that old Shakespeare line, "Methinks he dost protest too much."
This should not be taken as criticism, though. If anyone should appreciate how wearing of hosiery out of necessity for any length of time tends to cause one to discover a whole range of beneficial aspects, it would be me. It was only after wearing support-style hosiery at a doctor's suggestion for relief from poor leg circulation that I discovered how several secondary benefits and how energized they make ones legs feel.
Although he could be reluctant to admit it, for fear of the reaction of friends or family, Mr. Opinionated shouldn't fear the public fallout were he to acknowledge that he's learned to like the idea of wearing pantyhose during the past six months. He would be among the very good company of thousands of 'regular guys' across the country who have made the same discovery. Secondly, even if he truly remains fully committed only to promoting more frequent wearing of pantyhose by women, his exploits and the publicity surrounding it have the unavoidable consequence of furthering the public acceptance of sheer legwear as a male, or more properly a unisex, garment. Each time a man who is by all appearances an otherwise average, ordinary guy--lacking effeminate or 'odd' personality traits--comes into the public eye while unapologetically wearing tights or pantyhose, it continues the erosion of those outdated misconceptions once held in the public perception. That was the idea behind my work in developing this blog, and previous work as a public spokesman in support of this emerging trend.
Consequently, the old notions associating men and nylon legwear with sexual deviations, etc. have all but disappeared. I can't tell you how many people who have noticed my hosiery have commented that they assumed I must be wearing them for medical reasons, etc. That seems to have become the new default assumption when it comes to a man wearing pantyhose.
I wish Mr. Opinionated luck with the remainder of his time "stuck in hose." It will be interesting to see whether he ever reaches the end of his 90 days.
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
The article links to clinical testing results on the SKIN KISS website, which provide further details for those interested. According to the blog author (and the test results), the caffeine in the hosiery also have the effect that most of us are accustomed to when we drink coffee--"resistance to fatigue". Who would've thought you could keep yourself awake with a pair of pantyhose? But, apparently that's the case.
I noted with some interest that the author apparently had few if any qualms about trying out pantyhose while researching this article. As a guy who's been wearing them for better leg circulation for years, I can attest to how much they can benefit guys who don't suffer from stereotypical hangups that can close us off from things that could be helpful to us. I suspect his willingness to give them a try is a product of the big shift in public perception of the men's legwear concept (aka, mantyhose) in recent years.
Ten years ago, hardly any male would dare admit having even TRIED wearing pantyhose--even if researching an article--let alone actually consider taking it up. Today, however, if a guy walks down a busy downtown street wearing hose with a pair of shorts, hardly anyone gives so much as a second glance. I can attest to this from firsthand experience, as anyone who's read this blog for any length of time is aware. Men's legwear may not have become commonplace yet, but it's certainly lost those misinformed association as for women only. If people pay any attention at all, they typically assume there must be some sort of medical/leg health reason behind it.
He seemed to be somewhat taken with the concept, but wished for some caffeine mantyhose that were designed for the male body (fly opening, more room in front, etc.). He may not be aware how many sources now sell tights and hose that ARE made specifically for men--although none are caffeine-infused (yet). Who knows, maybe that'll be the next big idea from ActivSkin?...
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
This is a good retrospective to remind us that tights were traditionally associated with men's wear (click link below to see blog post). The idea that tights are strictly a female garment is actually a very recent historical development. The blog, called, "Men's Tights Fashion" is relatively new. I'm not sure exactly when it appeared, since the blog posts aren't dated, but I don't think it's been around longer than this past fall. Although only a few articles are posted so far, they seem to provide a well-reasoned approach to the concept of male legwear--similar to what we try to provide here at The Nylon Gene.
I'm not acquainted with the blogger, but would invite him or her to share some background information below, or even write a guest post if so inclined?...
Tights for Men: A History from 1510 to 2010 | Men's Tights Fashion
Monday, January 17, 2011
The vast majority of TightsPlease readers are women, so the article and accompanying survey are primarily directed at guaging the attitude of the female customers towards the 'mantyhose' trend. However, it's also evident from the article that they have a great many male customers, and they ask the question, "what are your men buying tights for?"
I hope that some TightsPlease readers have made their way here to The Nylon Gene, where we can certainly shed some light on that question...
Having spent some time as director of marketing for the original seller of tights/pantyhose made especially for men (http://www.activskin.com/), I am very familiar with the reasons men are buying tights (BTW, 'tights' in British usage is synonomous with what we in the U.S. refer to as pantyhose, as well as opaque tights). First, one needs to answer why men are buying so many pairs of tights/pantyhose from a website that sells women's tights/pantyhose? The simple answer is that there are a great many men who wear them for mainstream, legitimate reasons (see below) who aren't aware that there are readily available brands of hosiery made especially for men--and what the differences from women's hosiery are. This is most true when talking about mail-order hosiery, since there is no difference from ordering from ActivSkin or a website selling only women's hosiery. Even the question of overseas shipping becomes moot, because there are British-based distributors of male tights such as Legwear4Men, and several European-based companies. As awareness of existence of these companies has increased over the past 5-10 years, sales have also grown rapidly. This trend will continue away from women's tights to men's as awareness continues to grow.
There will continue to be a certain percentage of male tights wearers who stick with those brands they've become accustomed to and loyal. There are also a good deal of men who prefer to buy their legwear at retail outlets instead of mail-order. Male legwear has not become pervasive enough yet to enter the retail market, so these men must either buy women's brands or spend the postage money and order from the web. I mentioned the differences between men's and women's hosiery above. These include sizing according to male body proportions, somewhat more durable material (men aren't tolerant of the wispy-thin styles that run/tear at the drop of a hat), etc. However, those men who have not tried any of the men's brands before may not realize what they're missing by settling for women's brands. They may think there's no real difference because they've never worn anything else.
So what ARE the primary reasons men are buying tights (aka, mantyhose) in the first place? They can be summed up in a few categories:
Leg support: Women have known for years of the benefits of support hosiery when they're bothered by the subtle effects of poor leg circulation. One need not have gnarled up knots of varicose veins to benefit from a good pair of support pantyhose. They mildly massage the legs and help move blood through the veins to keep it from pooling during the day when on your feet for extended periods or being sedentary for hours on end. Somehow, 50% of the population has been left out when it comes to providing relief. Men are as likely as women to suffer from this complaint. A woman can wear a pair of sheer hose that keeps her legs feeling good at the end of the day and no one thinks a thing of it. It's now becoming more acceptable and commonplace for men to recognize the value of support hosiery. And, they need not wear thick black opaque tights--under long trousers--that are too hot in spring/summer, either. As men's legwear becomes more commonplace in the public perception, men are wearing them with shorts when the weather permits.
Warmth-Without-Bulk: In colder settings, hosiery provides a thin base layer under outer clothing that is much more comfortable than the long johns that were traditionally the only option available to men. Thin tights trap a layer of air next to the skin that adds insulation. When wind is blocked by an outer layer, hosiery is very effective at adding additional warmth without constricting movement. This is usefule for hunters and fishermen, construction workers, and even office workers. How many desk jockeys complain that their employer can't seem to find a way to regulate the climate control and sit shivering throughout the day?
This benefit is also valuable to outdoor athletes. For instance, runners or cyclists who exercise or comete on chilly mornings need to keep the chill off their legs to avoid cramping. Hosiery provides just enough insulation to do that. Yet, since most types of athletic tights are thicker than sheer pantyhose, they tend to cause the athlete to feel overheated after body temperature rises during exertion. Some cycling tights have zip off legs, which is good, but zippers add expense and you still have to stop to remove them and find someplace to store them.
Performance Enhancement: It's fairly well known in athletic circles that muscle compression helps improve stamina/endurance by holding the muscles in place better and minimizing bouncing against each other. Support hosiery provides that same sort of muscle compression. So in addition to the aforementioned warmth-without-bulk benefit mentioned above, they can also enhance a runner or cyclists ability to stay the course longer. Also, since sheer hosiery wicks perspiration it's insulating effect transforms to cooling when this moisture evaporates from the legs. Thus, they can also be worn in warmer weather if the benefit being sought is performance enhancement.
Anti-chafing: When worn under trousers, tights or pantyhose are a great means of preventing chafing of the inner thighs in many circumstances. It's been an open secret for many years that horsemen often wear women's pantyhose while riding to avoid 'saddle sores'. Likewise, this same benefit applied for hikers on long marches. An added benefit is protection against ticks. They can't get attached to your legs when you're wearing nylon against your skin. That's also why the military have used them overseas to help ward off sand fleas, etc.
I've posted the text from the TightsPlease blog, along with a few inline comments that I think will help clarify a few misconceptions inherent in the article:
Does your man wear tights?
It’s come to our attention that more and more men are choosing to wear our tights!
They’re being worn for whole host of purposes, from meeting a basic need like our boys in Afghanistan – wearing tights to protect their legs from desert flies, or wearing tights to make a bold statement, like our cross dressing shoppers, who get a lot of enjoyment from wearing stylish, women’s tights! [As men become more comfortable with the idea of wearing tights, they will add them to their wardrobe for aesthetic, as well as practical, reasons. However, cross dressing is a very small proportion of the number of guys wearing tights.]
Traditionally, men wearing tights has always been a taboo subject. The only time men in tights is acceptable, is at the pantomime or on our favourite superhero! With the sheer volume of male shoppers that we’ve seen visit the site, it’s unlikely that they’re all shopping for either of these purposes. [As I've detailed above, men wearing tights is fast losing any of the former taboo. They're wearing them for very practical reasons, and the public is recognizing that fact by taking the sight of a guy wearing hosiery very much in stride]
[Nylon Gene readers: Make sure to visit the blog or follow this link, and offer your input for the survey]
Saturday, January 8, 2011
Although I can't personally vouch for that last mental image, for the purposes of our Nylon Gene blog and it's loyal readers, I can share with you what the article has to say about the mantyhose trend...
And if you thought men in tights went out with bows and arrows, think again. Givenchy's spring 2010 collection featured mantyhose and the trend has been embraced for their warmth and the circulation boost they provide.
The online men's fashion magazine e-MANcipate.net even includes detailed photographic instructions to help men get into their mantyhose and avoid ladders ('runs' in U.S. lingo --SN.).
How about guy girdles to hold in the beer belly?
The designers at Australian company Equmen prefer to call it male compression wear; briefs and undershirts designed to lift, flatten and shape a bloke's body.
The range has been embraced internationally and is sold at outlets such as Saks Fifth Avenue in the US and Selfridges in the UK..."
[Follow link to read the full article.]
We've not seen a great deal of publicity about the male legwear trend for a few months, so reading this reference in the Herald Sun article was refreshing and reassuring that our previous efforts to increase awareness among the public and media outlets in the past has not been in vain.
Spring/Summer 2011 Collection (with a
little kilt action thrown in)
As with just about everything in the 'fashion industry' it's far removed from what the average 'bloke' on the street is going to be wearing. But it's also an indicator of the general shape of things in years to come. What starts out on the runway generally morphs into something similar, but realistic, before showing up here and there in general circulation. Obviously, since legwear has been showing up in men's fashion collections on more and more occasions, the idea that they aren't for men is evaporating.
And, as the Herald Sun article cited above asserts, that doesn't go hand in hand with guys becoming more feminine, either. One of the basic precepts of The Nylon Gene's message is that legwear (tights, sheer hose) have a legit place in male attire. Real men can, and do, wear hose.