I was doing some housecleaning over the holidays, and I found some old pantyhose in a drawer. Remembering the rule of purging, I asked myself Have I worn these in the last year? Would I wear them in the coming year? And the most important question Is there an expiration date on these things, because I’m pretty sure they’re from the 80′s?
I responded to myself with a resounding No, No, and Probably. So I tossed them.
But not before reflecting on how fortunate we women are that pantyhose have, for the most part, fallen by the wayside for many of us. Aside from those still required to sport these nylon contraptions in the corporate world, who wears them now other than 80-year olds, those who are fashion-challenged, or those with less-than-perfect gams?
And do THEY even wear these things any more? What happened to that drugstore aisle that was filled with so many sizes, shapes, and shades of Hanes, No Nonsense, and L’eggs that it would take us 42 minutes to find our “perfect” pair? Have we all shed our sheers, spending countless hours shaving, exfoliating, moisturizing, self-tanning, and shining ourselves up all in an effort to put our wannabe Malibu Barbie legs in a pair of open-toed shoes?
It sure seems that way.
And who can blame us? For years we felt obligated to wear these circulatory-restricting contraptions that could only have been designed by men who hate women (Control Top comes to mind). We always kept a bottle of clear polish in our purse for that inevitable run that would surely sabotage a perfectly good work day, date, or night on the town. We paid the price literally as we hoped we would get to wear them at least twice before disposing them or using them to line our flower pots. We froze in the winter. Then we roasted in the summer as we couldn’t wait to tear them off, peeling the nylon from the layer of sweat on our legs.
And we celebrated the day the bare-legged look became the norm.
But now Kate Middleton has gone and ruined all of that. Yes, she’s sporting sheers and looking great in them to boot. And the fashion world has taken note.
So after 15 years of plummeting sales, L’eggs is on a major push with a new ad campaign to market their sheers to a new generation of women, as they convince us that pantyhose are back with a vengeance. They’re targeting the 18-35 year olds whose only memory of pantyhose may be that this is the stuffing that came out of those home-made toys they grew up with.
I have my doubts. At the very least, they should have kept that egg as the packaging.
A little web research shows that, as I would have expected, women have mixed feelings about the return of the pantyhose. True, they make your legs look great. They add an element of class, providing the wearer an illusion of thinness, perfect skin tone, and legs free of bruises and varicose veins. But they still have to be the most uncomfortable garment of clothing since the bustle. In this age of casual attire, I just can’t see this fashion trend going mainstream again, at least not in America. Yes, we women often sacrifice comfort for style, but a line must be drawn. And there are plenty of women who feel the same.
But the men seem to be on the other end of the spectrum. When discussing the subject, they’re throwing out words like feminine, sleek, sexy, and sensual, as they seem to be drooling on their keyboards at the very thought of this returning fashion. Apparently, what we’ve written off as a not-worth-the-trouble fashion accessory has been a sorely missed source of, um, fantasy for our male counterparts.
And so it goes. The men will note that Kate looks hot…making us feel a little less-than-hot. Eventually, we’ll succumb to the pressure, restock our hosiery supply, and start sporting those blasted things again.
Thanks a lot, Kate.