8 “Feminine” Things That Were Originally Created For Men

Written by Niharika Nayak, BA (Media & Communication)  • 

There are plenty of inventions and things that were initially created by men and for men. However, along the way and as time went by, somehow they got adopted by women more, and gradually became womanly things. While some products, like razors and toothbrushes, and more, are gender-neutral, others started out as being male-oriented products before being taken over by women and getting more mainstream. Men once only used things like high heels, pads, and more, and others like skirts were more gender-neutral. So we’ve done some research and now present to you a list of eight things that are considered feminine but were initially being created for men:

1. High Heels

Image: Shutterstock

Let’s start off this list by talking about the most famous invention- high heels. High heels were worn by male soldiers, royals, and aristocrats in various parts of the globe and for various reasons. For example, Persians used to wear high heels to secure their feet to their horses’ stirrups back in the fifteenth century. They then brought it to Europe as they migrated, and it soon became popular among men then. Men who wore high heels were considered a part of the upper class in society. Class and caste discrimination were prevalent by ownership of these items apart from money in general.

2. Disposable Pads

Disposable Pads
Image: IStock

The original disposable pads were created to help stop wounded soldiers from bleeding out. That was the only purpose of those pads. Later, nurses started getting innovative and started using them as they were more absorbent and easy to use than the cloth and reusable pads that were popular at the time. They were much safer too! Many women have opted to go back to those days and use reusable cloth pads (albeit modern ones), tampons, and menstrual cups. Instead of buying sanitary napkins that are full of processed plastic, do some research on organic reusable pads that you can wash and sterilize for repetitive usage.

3. Crop Tops

Crop Tops
Image: Twitter

While crop tops are super popular these days, they are no longer just worn by men. Men who were conscious about their fitness and liked bodybuilding used to cut off the bottoms on their shirts and pass the gym dress code since they couldn’t really train naked (which is so much more freeing). We totally get why they would want to show off their abs and wear fewer clothes while engaging in physical activity.

4. G-Strings

Image: IStock

You must be thinking, “What even?”, but we are here to tell you that g-strings and thongs were once created for men. Men would often wear this style of underwear when they would go swimming. As self-explanatory as it is, it was meant to keep men’s groin in place while taking a swim. It was supposed to be comfortable and functional and barely sexualized. Unlike after a few years, when women were encouraged to wear g-strings as models. Later on, the style was even adopted by Sumo wrestlers during their wrestling bouts. This style of wrestling brought the style to the mainstream world and showcased men for wearing the same. The style eventually disappeared, and when it came back in style later, it was worn mainly by women. Now the style has made a huge comeback and is seen as super hot.

5. Purses

Image: Shutterstock

Purses were initially created to serve as a tiny bag for money. These were popular among men due to their functionality. As time passed, more women began wearing these pouches (due to lack of pockets), and it became a fashion statement. Men are more likely to wear satchels and carry bags.

6. Stockings

Image: IStock

You may be surprised to know that stockings and tights were first created to be worn by men. These types of tights were called “hose” and soon became a popular item in many men’s wardrobes. In fact, men in Europe wore them when they used to go horseback riding in the middle ages. It makes sense, right? Tights are so comfortable to wear and are great for when you want to be active and like to move around. Originally, the noble class adopted this attire and slowly moved its way down the ladder so everyone could use it. These days it’s primarily women wearing tights and stockings and not men.

7. Skirts

Image: Shutterstock

Throughout history, skirts have been considered as gender-neutral attire, and for a good reason. Tights, jeans, trousers, and other types of pants do not allow one’s genitals to breathe properly and increase one’s rate of getting skin infections. During the prehistoric time, skirts were a standard dressing for those from Egypt. If you go through depictions of Kings and their courtiers from Babylonia and the Assyrian Empire, you will see men wearing finger cloths wrapped across their sleeved tunics. Most ancient Egyptians wore skirts that were made of white linen. It is still a traditional attire in Scotland, mainly known as a “kilt”. It has now become a fashion statement among many eccentric male fashion influencers and models. These days many men are bringing skirts back as a fashion statement, for all things positive, like gender-neutral dressing, exploring the feminine side, and embracing an open mind. Not to mention it looks absolutely ravishing!

8. Victoria’s Secret

Victoria's Secret
Image: Business Insider

This is probably the most shocking product to feature on our list. Yes, the much-loved lingerie brand, Victoria’s Secret was created by a man for men. Well, specifically for men to not feel embarrassed shopping for their partner’s lingerie. The brand was created by a man named Roy Raymond in 1977 because he once felt embarrassed by the experience of shopping for his wife’s lingerie. The shopping experience was supposed to feel lux and sophisticated and not like it was a “feminine” experience. Well, the brand has come a long way since then and has had plenty of rises and falls. It’s interesting to see where the brand will go next since the famous Angels fashion show was scrapped.

As you can see, fashion and one’s taste in it are subjective, and a lot of these clothing items are now being worn more and more by men. In the end, it’s important to remember that clothing has no gender and that one should be allowed to wear whatever they choose to. Did any of these products surprise you? Let us know in the comment section!

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