Will 'mantyhose' take off in the US?

One European fashion company wants American men to start wearing $40 hosiery. Will anyone go for it?

By Aimee Picchi Jan 28, 2013 1:49PM

B-Skinz Meggings Psychedelic Jungle style (B-Skinz)European fashion tends to be slightly edgier than what most Americans would wear, and that's certainly the case in the latest continental fad that's heading to our shores: "mantyhose," or tights for men.

Also called "brosiery" or "guylons," tights for guys have seen a spike in popularity in Europe. The fashion company Emilio Cavallini has seen sales of mantyhose jump to 30% of its online sales last year, up from just 1% in 2011, according to a report in MediaPost, citing the trade magazine Women's Wear Daily. 

Now, Cavallini is placing its sights on American men. With growing interest from guys in the U.S., the company has added a large size, targeted for men as tall as 6 feet and weighing 200 pounds. 

So what's behind the new take on hosiery? The company started designing the he-tards in 2009 because it noticed "a lot of tights sized medium-large were being purchased by men," executive Francesco Cavallini told the Daily Mail last year. "So I did a search on the Internet and discovered there is a cult following for mantyhose."

The tights come in patterns of black, grey and white, and don't have a fly. Men are buying them to stay warm, or wearing them under pants or with shorts. They cost about $40 per pair.

"It’s definitely become a trend for men in Europe," an executive at Cavallini told WWD. "It’s fun for them to wear, and you can see the color and patterns standing out [from] their shoes."

Mantyhose isn't the only female-oriented article of clothing now aimed at men: "Meggings," or leggings for men, are also asking guys to open their man-purses. 

Meggings have graced the legs of male celebrities including Justin Bieber and Russell Brand. While similar to running tights, meggings sometimes sport "fashion" patterns, such as jungle stripes or stars. Of course, that might not convince American men to pony up their cash to stretch lycra-based tights over their calves. 

That isn't holding back fashion companies and retailers from trying: Uniqlo, Barneys and Nordstrom (JWN) are all selling tights for men, according to the U.K.'s Telegraph. Like skinny jeans, the trend may appeal to men who want to flash a bit of their gams. 

"Male tights are so much more comfortable than skinny jeans," one man who wears meggings told the publication. "I've always had good legs and it's nice to show them off all year round."

More on moneyNOW

Tags: Retail
Mar 9, 2013 8:46AM
Men have been sneaking into sheer hosiery for decades... it's just now that someone has figured out a way to maybe, perhaps, make guys feel "manly" about it.  What's less manly than needing someone to re-package a thing so you can feel manly about doing it?   I regularly blend elements of the masculine and feminine in my personal style, including sheer tights: http://www.paulduane.net/style
Feb 17, 2013 2:47AM
I have been wearing pantyhose for about 15 years now.
Recently I bought an Emilio Cavallini mantyhose and I love these !
They are the best I ever had. They feel wonderful, are tall enough.
And finally a manufacturer of mantyhose who dares to go beyond dull black without pattern.

Jan 29, 2013 5:44PM
They look just like long johns with color added and flyless
Jan 29, 2013 2:23PM

I like a Man who looks and Dresses like a MAN.


Just more of the feminizing of American men.


I agree with another poster who said, "If I wanted to date someone in pantyhose, I'd be a lesbian"

Jan 29, 2013 12:58PM
We already wear these. The Starter brand at Wal-mart is fairly good compression shirts and bottoms for an affordable price though the bottoms made in Egypt tend to be lower quality than the shirts made in Mexico. They make a good slippery second skin under your clothes as well as sleepwear. 
Jan 28, 2013 6:52PM
We're men, we're men in tights.
We roam around the forest looking for fights.
We're men, we're men in tights.
We rob from the rich and give to the poor, that's right!
We may look like sissies, but watch what you say or else we'll put out your lights!
We're men, we're men in tights,
Always on guard defending the people's rights.

[The Can-Can Chorus Line]

We're men, MANLY men, we're men in tights.
[Gay voice] Yes!
We roam around the forest looking for fights.
We're men, we're men in tights.
We rob from the rich and give to the poor, that's right!
We may look like pansies, but don't get us wrong or else we'll put out your lights.
We're men, we're men in tights
[High Voice] TIGHT Tights
Always on guard defending the people's rights.
When you're in a fix just call for the men in tights!


Mel Brooks is a comedy genius!!!!
Jan 28, 2013 5:39PM
I thought "man up" and "bromance" were horrendous, but "meggings"!?   I'm ok with gays, but enough of their influence on straight mens' fashions.  As the late GOP icon senator Goldwater said about gays in the military, "I don't care if our troops are gay or straight---what counts is whether they can seek out, close in and shoot straight to kill our enemies."
Jan 28, 2013 4:59PM

First there were Speedos....Now THIS !!!


Geezus Christ........Wouldn't you call them SHE or It-Tards instead...??


I can't believe I even read this shidt...Miss Lilly wanted me to click on it..That's my excuse.

Jan 28, 2013 4:44PM
"He-tards"... a clever name that doubles as a garment title and derogatory description of the men who wear them!
Jan 28, 2013 4:16PM

Bieber wears them... Exactly.


Right now I am wearing under armour like long johns under my suit, but only because it's -15* F outside...  Base layer or compression tights for sports are about the only two reasons to wear anything resembling pantyhose.

Jan 28, 2013 4:01PM

If I wanted to date someone who wore pantyhose, I would be a lesbian. This whole thing with mantyhose and meggings (correction: pantyhose and leggins) is a bit ridiculous. Its bad enough men are wearing skinny jeans, which is totally unattractive. I want a man that looks like a man. Not someone who looks like we will have to fight over the Louboutin's.

Jan 28, 2013 3:56PM
I'm surprised they haven't started selling  "Manties" yet   :)

No thanks.  I like my balls to hang naturally.


And, I'm not gay.

Jan 28, 2013 3:42PM
What man would want to wear something like this??  What is the point of them?
Jan 28, 2013 3:38PM
Well it is starting to come full circle; men definitely do not wear the pants in the house anymore.  As far as the tights the best thing that comes to mind is a fool and his money are soon separated.  That is what they make long underwear or base layer for at a fraction of the cost.
Jan 28, 2013 3:37PM
If it's popular in Europe I ain't buy'n it.  Probably started in France.  I got more important things to spend my dwindling money on!
Jan 28, 2013 3:33PM
Oferchrisake!  This is a ****-only gimmick sure to die a quick death in the marketplace.  Long underwear has been around for centuries.  Dolling it up with lively colors just ain't happening for actual men.
Jan 28, 2013 2:36PM
whats wrong with just buying an under armor base layer that is meant to relace the old long underwear.  Or better yet go to Khols and get their inhouse brand base layer for $20 
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