How all things tight and beautiful took giant strides

Model Nathan Waring shows off the latest fashion statement – meggings, or leggings for men. Even pop star Justin Bieber is said to be in on the meggings craze. Photo: Steven Siewert Nathan Waring
Nanjing Night Net

Luke Sales likes his trousers bright and tight. “I often wear leggings because I don’t like wearing pants,” he says.

The co-designer of the fashion label Romance Was Born is known for wearing boldly printed leggings, which he teams with shorts, worn over them, to preserve his modesty.

“It’s not for me to go the whole hog, and it’s definitely not a look for everyone,” Sales says.

But leggings for men are definitely on the rise. Justin Bieber wears them, Russell Brand performs in them, and international labels ranging from Givenchy – whose leggings cost up to $US595 ($680) – to Asos and Uniqlo are now manufacturing dedicated “meggings”, as what began as a fad moves closer to the mainstream.

“This time last year we had no jersey bottoms for men, today we have over 40 styles, and we will have 150 jersey styles next year,” said Asos’ head of design, John Mooney.

“We have everything from true meggings and skinny jogging bottoms to tailored shorts with built-in meggings.”

Americans Adam Freck and Andrew Volk went one step further when they launched an entire company devoted to meggings, named Meggings Man, in December. In Australia, Jac+Jack, Bassike and Zanerobe are among the brands that now manufacture drop-crotch style meggings for men. “There is a really strong sportswear influence taking place in menswear,” said David Jones’ general manager of menswear and childrenswear, Deborah Foreman. “A few years ago men were quite staid, but now they are really experimenting and we are seeing a lot more drop-crotch and softer-style trousers.”

Asos sells meggings from $20.27, for its own brand, to $91.23 for the Bjorn Borg brand.

Businessman Paul Connor sees meggings as the evolution of black skinny jeans.

“The meggings I wear now have that skinny-jean look, but because they are stretchy they have a brilliant comfort factor,” Connor said.

“I buy mine from Uniqlo and I would wear them twice a week.”

Men were wearing leggings long before women turned them into a fashion trend in the 1980s. Shakespeare practically lived in them, although they were called stockings then, and Henry VIII wore silk knitted versions.

Mooney believes the beauty of the megging is versatility. “There is so much variety that the appeal is broad,” he said. “Everything from a true megging for a late teen or early 20s fashionista, through to more detailed styles you can dress up with shirts and more.”

But Foreman says the look is not for everyone. “You have to have a bit of confidence about you and you have to know how to put it together,” she said.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.