4 Male Fashion Fads

June 29, 2015

Clothes make the man. This stuff made men look like buffoons.

Male Fashion Trends

Parachute pants

These oversized pants were popular for a while in the ‘80s. They had lots of zippers and were made out of a type of synthetic nylon that’s similar to the material typically found in parachutes (hence the name). Breakdancers loved them because they made spinning around on the ground a lot easier. They popularized them, but became a trend when Bugle Boy started cranking them out in the mid-‘80s started cranking them out like crazy in the mid ‘80s. The company even attempted to market a line for women but it totally flopped. The high-flying fad finally fell to earth by 1990.

Harem pants

These trousers are even more baggy than parachute pants. Originally marketed to women in the 1910s, they enjoyed limited popularity in Europe before being resurrected by rapper MC Hammer nearly 80 years later. Despite his best efforts, Hammer couldn’t quite turn the pants into a huge fashion phenomenon but plenty of people bought pairs in the early ‘90s. They may even be making a comeback—entertainers like Justin Bieber and Psy have recently worn them on stage.

One-strap overalls

For a while, it was popular for people, especially young men, to wear overalls with one strap hanging loose. Others preferred to leave both straps unchained, thus allowing both the front flap and back straps to hang down past their legs (which makes the overalls just a pair of pants). It’s difficult to pinpoint who came up with the idea but hip hop stars like Jodeci, Bell Biv DeVoe, the Fresh Prince couldn’t quite seem to button them properly during the Bush’s administration.

Shutter shades

These “sunglasses” have been around since the ‘50s but their heyday was the ‘80s when bands like Simple Minds and Animotion wore them in music videos. After that, they were pretty much everywhere. Even “Macho Man” Randy Savage owned a few pairs and he often wore them while he was stomping his way through the WWF. Shutter shades soared back into pop culture in the 2000s when rapper and fashion plate Kanye West made them part of his signature look. In the years that followed, famous people ranging from Hugh Hefner to President Barack Obama were photographed in shutter shades.

Some more short-lived male fashions: trucker hats, man purses, sideways visors, carpenter jeans, wallet chains, and “utilikilts.”