Men’s style after the pandemic – what will it look like?
With the pandemic, the runways and the fashion seasons have been cancelled. So does that mean that men’s style after the pandemic is…over? Not at all.
History teaches us that dramatic world events tend to impact fashion a great deal. Some of the most memorable designs came out of times of struggle. The 1918 Spanish flu pandemic, the Great Depression, the Second World War. All of these dramatic events had great impact on fashion trends. They led to an explosion in creativity and elegance. Think Make Mend Do during WWII, when parachute silk made it into wedding gowns.
Challenging times can provide a thriving ground for creativity. And for bringing our values into clear focus. So what will this mean for how men dress?
How will men’s style change post-pandemic?
When the pandemic led to closures across all industries, to working from home, to no outings in sight for months, some said it was maybe the slowdown we needed. The sustainable fashion world has been preoccupied with slowing down consumption for a while now. So, is this going to be the moment we turn away from mass production, and towards finally walking the slow fashion talk?
There is hope.
The pandemic has meant hardship for the fashion industry, no doubt. Stores and factories have shut down. And fashion sales in 2020 are predicted to drop by a quarter or more compared to 2019. We’ve never seen anything like this in our lifetime, but it certainly isn’t … ahem … unprecedented. So let’s look back at what history teaches us about fashion in times of strife?
Fashion trends slow down
A pandemic or economic depression is not the time to experiment in impractical ways. Classic elegance is what we tend to turn to in times like these. Less income can also mean that we might spend less money on clothing each season. So investing in long-lasting, timeless pieces is likely to be everyone’s strategy.
At the same time, luxury for the sake of luxury is out. After every single dramatic financial collapse, ostentatious luxury has become distasteful.
All this is to say that you can’t go wrong if you focus on quality, craftsmanship, functionality and classic elegance.
Movie stars bygone instead of influencers
We’re likely spending a lot of time at home on social media, but so do the people we follow, so our contemporaries are not necessarily inspiring our wardrobe aesthetic right now. At the same time, there is a desire to escape the present, and movies, and in particular period movies, are fantastic inspiration for classical fashion.
But slowing down doesn’t mean men’s style after the pandemic will take a back sit in our minds. Quite the opposite. We’re likely to end up more thoughtful about our choices.
When you look sharp, you feel sharp
There is a clear sense in the fashion world, that once this is over, we’ll all want to dress up again. And who can blame us? Yes, we will hopefully interrogate our buying and consumption habits, but we will want to look sharp, smart, good. Loungewear, as comfortable as it may be, could never stand the boardroom test.
Maybe initially we were all glad to take a break from suits and jackets. But we’ll likely be just as glad to limit loungewear to weekend afternoons as soon as possible.
It’s no news that the clothes we wear impact us psychologically in many ways. Dopamine dressing refers to intentionally lifting our mood by choosing to wear bright, fun clothes. It’s fair to say that 2020 has been quite bothersome and has ignited feelings of many kinds, none so great. Choosing clothes that enhance our mood, our confidence, seems like a very wise move.
And even if working from home continues to be the norm for the next little while, you might choose to wear that elegant suit in your home office. Will it make a difference to how you show up in meetings? To how well you do your work? It’s worth the try finding out, isn’t it?
What we needed…
Perhaps the pandemic, as undesirable as it is, can mean some much awaited change for fashion trends. Men’s style after the pandemic is likely to welcome timelessness, practicality, comfort. What’s there not to like?