When it comes to fashion news, the focus is often on women’s clothing. That’s great for women, but not so much for men that frequent big & tall men’s clothing stores. That’s because media attention provides brands with an impetus to cater to growing demands. Models such as Ashley Graham achieve renown and popularity, and now larger women have more options when they need outfits in plus sizes.
That’s not how it works for men, though. It’s a fact that a lot of men these days are plus-sized. The CDC has reported for several years now that about two thirds of all adults are overweight or obese. But the percentage is even higher among men, with 74 percent considered overweight or obese.
It’s also a fact that men, in general, are spending more money on their clothes than ever before. So for men’s fashion brands, it seems evident that there should be a rush to cater to this obvious demand for bigger clothes. Yet the truth is that there are still too few that cater to this need.
Women’s fashion does about $20 billion or so of business a year. For men, it’s a comparatively minuscule $1 billion industry. So why isn’t men’s fashion growing accordingly? Here are some unfortunate truths that can still be noted for men’s fashion:
- Brands aren’t making clothes for bigger men. This is true for the most part. Don’t ask why, as it’s a mystery. Shouldn’t they make clothes for bigger men because most guys are bigger these days? Why are they focusing on making medium-sized outfits for smaller guys when they’re obviously the smaller market?
It’s true that some companies are trying to change, and there are a handful of brands that offer larger sizes. But they represent a very small minority of men’s brands and stores. What’s more, they aren’t marketing much to larger men, so guys aren’t always aware that they have these options from these brands.
- The media keeps telling bigger guys that they’re not as good. This seems to be the subtext from what we get from men’s fashion magazines, TV shows, movies, and news outlets. They’re saying that bigger guys are second-class citizens and that they shouldn’t be happy with their body shape.
It’s a bit disconcerting to note how much praise and adulation guys get when they’re slim and sport “6-pack” abs. It’s also rather disgusting when paparazzi pictures of male celebrities vacationing on beaches are published and they’re derided because they have love handles and larger guts. It’s this kind of attitude that’s preventing many large men from making a bigger fuss about their problems.
- There’s no male Ashley Graham yet. There’s a guy named Zach Miko who is making waves a plus-sized male model, and that’s a good thing. The bad news is that he really isn’t all that famous yet, and there’s really no other guy like him around. Most models in men’s magazines are still slim and medium-sized.
It’s a serious problem, because men’s fashion needs their own Ashley Graham. Having a famous model that is also big and tall can help those other brands to finally realize that they’re ignoring a substantial segment of their customer base.
You can start helping yourself by realizing that it’s okay to accept your size and you deserve to be happy too. You deserve clothes that fit. So take note of all the big & tall men’s clothing stores that cater to your needs—at least these stores are aware of the fact that big men can be stylish too!