Currently in its 11th year, Hosiery For Men is the go-to source for men who are interested in hosiery. We had the opportunity to speak with the founder and curator of the blog and get his thoughts on why he felt there was a need for his blog, his thoughts on the industry, and the future outlook for men interested in hosiery. Check out our conversation here:
Can you tell us a bit about the Hosiery For Men blog? How did it come to be, what pushed you to want to start it and what is your target audience or reader?
I started writing and curating Hosiery For Men in 2011 and its now in its 11th year. I started writing it because there was very little on the internet that focused on men who wear tights. Well, you can find fetish sites of course but there wasn’t much that looked at it as normal and acceptable. There used to be a blog many years ago that reviewed hosiery from a male perspective but it ended and its archive disappeared also. I thought there was a gap that needed to be filled. I tried to create the kind of blog that I myself would like to read.
I had no idea how it would go when I started. However, it became clear quite quickly that lots of retailers and hosiery brands were keen to collaborate, send samples and support what I was doing.
On Hosiery For Men you will find hosiery reviews, news and features/interviews with brands and retailers. The target reader is broadly men who wear hosiery, and there are loads of them all over the world. The blog has a big international readership with most readers coming from the USA, the UK, Canada, Germany and France. There are also women readers, including partners of men who wear as well as women working for hosiery brands and retailers.
How long have you been wearing hosiery for?
Since I was 15. I took part in a Shakespeare play at school and was asked to wear opaque tights as part of the costume. I was amazed at how great they felt. Soon after that I started to buy tights for myself.
What do you feel the hosiery industry is missing (if anything)?
If they are missing anything it is acknowledging more openly that men are buying the hosiery they are making and selling. It’s a very open secret and I am convinced that all brands are aware that men are part of their customer base, and some have responded to this by creating larger sizing options. Some brands, of course, have also created products specifically designed for men.
The biggest gap is probably in creating more inclusive marketing and product imagery.
To be fair, the overall picture is much more positive than it used to be.
From your experience, what do you think men are looking for in a brand or product? And what do you look for personally?
I think there are two things that many men are looking for. Firstly, tights that are well-made, fit well and are comfortable. Secondly, genuine acknowledgement that we exist as customers. Personally, I look for quality – that means yarn with Elastane or Spandex, a generous leg length, a deeper brief with flat seams and gusset, and a wide, comfortable waistband.
Other than your blog, have you found any other communities (either online or in person) that our male customers could join if they're looking to communicate with other men that wear hosiery?
I have never found, nor sought out, a community in person. There have been forums in the past which were genuinely useful for sharing information and more. But all of them have closed over the years. At the moment, it’s mainly bloggers and Instagram accounts that are bringing people together and facilitating interaction between brands, retailers and male customers. For me, Instagram is the preferred social media platform for Hosiery For Men to disseminate information and connect with readers and a wider community.
What is your favorite way to style your hosiery?
I have to admit that I am not particularly adventurous in this regard. I have always mainly worn tights under jeans and trousers, as I love the insulation and comfort. From time to time I do go out wearing opaque tights under shorts.
What would you say to men who are curious about trying hosiery?
I would say that that curiosity should be followed. There might be thoughts about what it might feel like to wear tights, and the only way to address that is to give it a go.
What’s great about the internet is that, if needed, hosiery can be purchased online. However, I have always found retail staff in hosiery and department stores really helpful at giving advice and answering questions.
Brands, like Threads for example, are much more open these days to answering queries and giving advice to male customers. So if you are unsure about what to buy or have questions about sizing or anything else just get in touch with a brand or retailer. Many of them have a chat facility, and some retailers also curate a selection of tights for men.
On the Hosiery For Men blog you will also find a huge archive of hosiery reviews which can also help when making purchasing decisions. The i love hosiery blog is another great source for informed reviews and recommendations.