Let me tell you about the (bloody) worst day of my life.
Spoiler alert: it was exhausting, and my boyfriend was genuinely confused.
Be still, our beating hearts.
With the US Open just around the corner, the world’s tennis elite have flocked to New York City to for the final grand slam of the year. However, amidst the frantic last-minute training sessions and nervous pre-tournament press conferences, one tennista is attracting more attention than the others. Former world number 1, Rafael Nadal, has recently been announced as the brand ambassador for Tommy Hilfiger, and the promotion has been a little…interesting.
RELATED: Would You Buy Your Man Sexy Male Lingerie?
Although Rafa promotes the snappy suits and the new Tommy Hilfiger Bold fragrance, the focus is (of course) on the underwear range. When visualising sports stars and their generic underwear campaigns, the mind goes straight to the likes of David Beckham. He’s usually photographed in black and white, posing semi-seductively, face and body shrouded in shadow. The photos, while somewhat sexualised, do not come close to the almost pornographic imagery of female swimsuit and lingerie models. Don’t even start on the objectification of actresses when they promote anything and everything; right down to the last tube of foundation.
However, Tommy Hilfiger has well and truly flipped this sexist double standard on its head. This particular underwear promotion involves a three pronged attack. Firstly; the photo-shoot. It’s done in mostly bold colour, it’s very suggestive, and has a keen focus on Rafa’s extraordinary legs and booty, rather than the more conventional abs/biceps shot (although they certainly get a look in!).
Curious yet? It gets even more fascinating. The second prong was featured yesterday in Bryant Park; a promo event with a twist. Rafa and a number of Hilfiger models (both male and female) took to a red, white, and blue court (Tommy Hilfiger’s signature colours) to play a game of strip-tennis. The rules were simple (and obvious); lose a point…lose an item of clothing. The idea was to eventually reveal the entirety of the Tommy Hilfiger range, bit by tantalising bit. Although Rafa fared better than the models, he lost the jacket, shirt, and tie of his new elastic suit; just enough to keep the fans happy, but still leaving something to the imagination.
Finally, the third tier that has everybody talking. Earlier this week, Tommy Hilfiger released a 30 second TV commercial featuring Rafa, his undies, and a locker room. It can only be described as a striptease worthy of Gypsy Rose Lee. Slowly, Rafa pulls off his shirt, jeans, and eventually his underwear, tosses his briefs at the camera, and saunters out of the room wearing nothing but a thin white towel. Just before he uncovers ‘everything’, the camera cuts to his face. He throws us a truly smouldering look, shakes his head, and turns away. That shake of the head must have broken a million hearts. What a tease.
Although this commercial is clearly a health hazard because it induces breathlessness and chronic fits of the giggles, it shines a new and surprisingly feminist light on the industry of underwear. Rather than the coy, casual imagery of every other undies campaign, Rafael Nadal, in all his Spanish glory, is teased, stripped, and objectified at the very same standard that women are held to.
There is nothing macho about it; no attempt to preserve the reserved/uptight masculine sexuality we are so used to. This is Rafa plus underwear plus raw sex appeal. As Glee star Jane Lynch put it, while hosting the strip-tennis match, it is “reverse sexism”.
But wait; there’s more! In addition, to showing off Rafa’s body in the same way a woman’s would be, Tommy Hilfiger has also moved a step closer to eliminating the standard of hetero-normativity in advertising. Obviously, the ad is aimed at straight men; they all (hopefully) wear undies. However, the overtly sexualised aspect; the portrayal of a male wearing very little clothing is clearly not aimed at women…they don’t wear men’s Tommy Hilfiger briefs (although some of them might after seeing the commercial).
If the global standard of heterosexuality were observed, Rafa would be in the usual Beckham-esque pouty poses. However, the seductive music accompanying the exposure of Rafa’s stunning body plus the steamy glance at the camera is also aimed at homosexual men. Rather than ignoring gay sexuality, this commercial takes it by the horns and uses it as an advertising tool. It’s the same as using women’s sexualised bodies to lure straight men into buying pretty much any product.
Maybe Tommy Hilfiger has dared to be so raunchy because of the European thing; the Spanish are, after all, a bit more comfortable with sexuality than North Americans and Australians. Maybe he subverted the idea of male sexualisation in this way simply to grab our attention. Hey; maybe it was Rafa’s idea. Either way, with or without realising it, Hilfiger has made quite possibly some of the most heartening progress in terms of eliminating the screaming double standard in male vs. female sexualisation. It even has its own hashtag; #tommyxnadal. So thank you, Tommy, for this (quite honestly) ground-breaking campaign. You and Rafa have given us all hope. And speaking of Rafa; it’s fairly certain that his support for the US Open has exploded spectacularly. Let’s hope he wins. As they say in Spain; vamos!
Images via Ilovefashionnews.nl and Mallorcaadiario.com
When it comes to wearing scantily clad outfits in the bedroom, it’s usually the female that gets to have all the fun. That was, until now – because apparently male lingerie is a growing trend!
No, we’re not talking about fancy boxer shorts or cut-out jocks, we’re reffering to the real deal – silk lined bras, racy G-strings and coloured lace briefs. So the question is: Would you be happy for your man to dress-up in the bedroom?
Well, according to Australian lingerie brand HommeMystere, the demand for male garments has increased so much in recent years that they’re expanding their business online just to keep up. What’s even more interesting is that 90 per cent of their customers are actually in heterosexual relationships, revealed an independent survey.
“A growing number of guys are discovering the comfort of lightweight lingerie style underwear,” the brand’s website reads. “HommeMystere understand that you want quality undergarments made with care, attention to detail and fits the male body perfectly.”
So, why exactly would men want to wear bras? “I think bras are just something they like the feel of,” the founder of the company Brent Krause told The Huffington Post. “I don’t know whether it’s the tightness around the chest or what it is, but it’s definitely the feeling that they’re after.”
The company, which launched back in 2008, told The Daily Mail that the concept came from a gap in the market. They wanted to give males the option to buy sexy underwear that was tailored to their shape, so that they didn’t have to continue buying female undergarments from women’s stores.
While some consumers argue that the collection is targeted at the gay community – despite featuring a man and women in their campaign images – the brand insists that they’re “not concerned if you are gay, straight, vegetarian, republican, anglican, martian or any other persuasion,” They simply “just design and manufacture attractive luxury underwear for men.”
So, what do you think? Will you be buying your man silk bras anytime soon?
Image via The Daily Mail
There are so many types of bras on the market. You need the basic styles that will support you through every occasion. Going on a hot date? Perhaps you’ll want to bust out the black lace. Going for a run? Sports bra – all the way! Sweetheart neckline? Strapless! Follow this list to ensure you have a bra for every occasion.
Your breasts can bounce up to an inch and a half when you run! Therefore, it is vital to have a good quality sports bra to preserve your breast tissue and keep the ladies in tact. Have a look at our guide for finding the best sports bra.
Putting on some sexy lingerie that you love is a sure way to get you in the mood. Some powerhouse lingerie can empower you in the day-to-day as well as in the bedroom. So head to Agent Provocateur and bag yourself some goodies.
Now at the opposite end of the spectrum – it may not be the sexiest bra, but just like seamless underwear, it is sometimes necessary. A tshirt bra should keep you discreetly covered and supported under form-fitting clothing. Try this Victoria’s Secret bra.
For those singlets and bandeaus that just can’t deal with visible straps. Getting the right fit is key to a strapless bra. Too tight means bulges, too loose means, well… you’ll be pulling it up all night. Try this Calvin Klein Tailored Strapless Push-Up Bra.
Images via Berlei, Agent Provocateur, outblush.com, ASOS.
One of Australia’s most interesting swimwear and apparel designers, Mosmann Underwear is seriously making waves (in all senses of the word) on both a domestic and international level. The Australian swimwear and apparel brand is known best for their trendy swim shorts which offer maximum relaxation and practicality – while still looking good.
Boasting a large selection of both mens and womens swimsuits and apparel, Mosmann Australia has gained a strong audience for it’s innovation and trendy designs.
Mosmann Australia started off with four friends carrying a special selection of mens underwear, which looks good, feels good, and most importantly reflects the relaxed yet sophisticated Australian lifestyle.
As a result of their ongoing success, the crew introduced a large selection of mens and womens underwear and apparel, which followed the same design ethos. With offices popping up in the United Kingdom, France, Brazil, USA, and Japan just to name a few, Mosmann Australia has become well known for their quality design and the ability to look and feel good in any garment.
You can shop the collection exclusively online, and enjoy free worldwide shipping on purchases over AU$49.
Carrie Bradshaw started it, now stars like Miranda Kerr, Rihanna, even Jennifer Lawrence are embracing the underwear as outerwear look. Corsets and crop tops are becoming the center-piece of red carpet looks, and having your bra peaking out the side of your singlet is the ultimate way to sex-up your street wear.
Leading lingerie brands are becoming increasingly risqué with the visibility of their racy and lacy products. Luxury brands like Agent Provocateur and Dita Von Teese, are designing their delicates to be seen, with criss-crossing straps and high-neck styles hitting the stores.
Agent Provocateur is famous for their Alina bra – a style that claims to “frame your cleavage” with its french-maid looking, tear-drop shaped straps.
If you’d like this boudoir look without breaking the bank, try Elle Macpherson Intimates, or the latest indie fave – Hopeless lingerie. For inspiration, look at these celebs rocking their underwear on the streets and the red carpet.
Images via the Lingerie Addict, Glamour, Purse Blog and Agent Provocateur.
But it’s not only
- 1875 ? the “Union Under-Flannel” – a no-bones/eyelets/laces/pulleys garment made from wool fabrics
- 1889 ? the “Bien-?tre” – French for “Well Being” a design that perhaps rebelled against the constrictive dangers of the corset
- 1893 ? the “Breast Supporter” – a garment which included separate pockets for each breast, shoulder straps, and hook-and-eye closures
At the turn of the century, things were travelling in leaps and bounds in the bra department and in 1907 Vogue magazine first used the term “brassiere”, which interestingly, has its origins in the old French word for “upper arm”.
This is not to be confused with “brasserie” which is, of course, somewhere to eat.
Hot on the heels of Vogue, the Oxford English Dictionary, bastion of all things proper, lists the word “brassiere” in the 1912 edition.
Later, the outbreak of World War I forced women en masse into the work force. Factory work and regulation uniforms made wearing a corset everyday something of a problem for our war-time sisters. This did not deter women from the purchase of such items and in 1917 The U.S. War Industries Board requests women to stop buying corsets to reduce the consumption of metal. Sources say up to 28,000 tons of metal were conserved through this effort reputedly “enough to build two battleships.” Yay team!
During the 1930s the word “bra” came into popular usage and in this decade Warner developed what would become the universal cup sizing of bras around the world.
Soon World War again threatened women’s underwear manufacturing and between the years of 1941 and 1945, with common fabrics such as cotton, rubber, silk and steel in short supply. Manufacturers adapted their designs to utilise the new range of synthetic materials.
Recent years have seen some technologically-advanced enhancements to this basic bra model including padding and boosting by way of inserts, gel pouches and now inflatable pockets. I wonder what our ancient warrior sisters from Crete would think of that?
Women in the 21st century have a selection of underwear available to them like never before in sizes, fabrics and types of support, for sport, maternity, evening wear and everyday wear.
Let’s go shopping…