Why You Need Pink in Your Wardrobe This Season

June 22, 2017

It's time to break the outrageous stigma of pink only being a colour for women. Especially now that its spreading like wildfire in menswear this season. We only have our top fashion influencers to thank for that with Sacai unveiling their Spring 2017 collection at Paris Fashion Week featuring bright pink windbreakers and toggle coats. Salmon and baby pinks are also taking over Acne's new menswear collection, as well as their packaging. Let's not forget about Gucci's Spring 2017 Runway show where models walked flauntingly down the catwalk in different shades and tones of pink, and the 'Pink Sartorial Suit Blazer' that appeared in Zara's 2017 menswear collection.

Not only are designers honouring this trend, but mainstream celebrities are catching on as well. Actor Dev Patel was spotted wearing a pastel pink Giorgio Armani 'Double-Breasted Cotton Jacket' at the SXSW festival this March. However, a more widespread household name is British TV personality, James Cordon who made an appearance at the Grammy Awards in February wearing a light rose coloured Tom Ford jacket. His stylist Michael Fisher voiced his opinion regarding the issue, stating that "Real men wear pink, especially now. It was a classic 'Old Hollywood' look, but the colour made it modern."

The New Jersey born colour intelligence system, Pantone, also announced in 2016 that 'Rose Quartz' was to be the colour of the year. In 2017, although 'Greenery' is the colour of choice, it is paired with a number of pinks in a variety of neutrals, brights, pastels and metallics, including the 2016 colour of the year. Their Spring 2017 Fashion Colour Report also features a pastel pink in 'Pale Dogwood' and fuchsia in 'Pink Yarrow'.
So how is it still such a stigma for men to be seen wearing this colour? Stereotypical masculine colours have been associated with blues, greens, greys and taupes. In todays culture, if a man was to go beyond this colour palette and sport fuchsia pink slim fitting pants for example, then it would raise questions regarding his sexuality. Its interesting to note that Nazi concentration camps gave badges with pink detailing to homosexuals. This colour divide between sexes was quite the opposite in the early 19th century with blue being associated with girls and pink with boys to symbolise masculinity and strength. This is clarified by an article in Ladies Home Journal which states "The generally accepted rule is pink for the boys, and blue for the girls. The reason is that pink, being a more decided and stronger color, is more suitable for the boy, while blue, which is more delicate and dainty, is prettier for the girl."

Within more recent times, this divide has caused a series of protests and backlash, especially in the sixties and seventies with the Women's Liberation Movement. It wasn't until the seventies that clothing began to become more gender neutral. However, the eighties has been regarded as a step back for protestors as this colour divide was not only in clothing, but spread elsewhere with the development of prenatal testing.

The question in mind is, will this gender stereotype continue throughout the 21st century or will we finally break the stigma?

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