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The Male Romper

As the year of 2017 comes to a close, along with all of its newer fashion tendencies, political controversies, and celebrity fiascos, we are finally nearing the point of “the cringe”. That’s right, I’m talking about that time of year when we get to look back at all of the incredibly ill-advised trends that somehow made an appearance at some point throughout the year. In former years, we have seen the emergence of crocs, the necessity to wear dozens of plastic wristbands, denim on denim, and now, the year of 2017 has brought us the male romper! The one-piece garment combining a shirt and short, or bloomer-like pants typically worn by young children and women for leisure activities has finally made it’s round into the male demographic. The above article depicts a few of the interesting points in the male romper’s journey of attempting to integrate itself into our general society.


While some people, like me, never even fathomed wearing such an article of clothing purely for reasons of distaste for the design and very clear problems with comfort throughout the day, others chose to boycott the male romper for other reasons. “According to Claire Fallon, it’s a sign of “male fragility” that men would even need a so-called male romper to be on the market in order to have the courage to start wearing rompers.” The subject quickly became one of political and gender norms rather than just a new fashion trend. Men and women everywhere have questioned why it’s so easy for women to just toss on a piece of clothing that is typically considered masculine without creating a new label for it, yet in order for men to feel alright about the wearing the romper in public, it has to be redefined with a new label. Specifically, the romper brand in question within the above article was named the “RompHim”. If we take a look at the popularity of the male romper in the months of August and September, in comparison to the hype it was given in early May, there is a stark disconnect. Even though people like the author of the article had no problem with it, the trend simply did not catch. Why, might you ask? It has to do with something we learned in class called a cascade threshold. While the romper did get some sales in its early release due to advertising techniques, it didn’t spread wide enough to continue trending throughout the summer. There were enough people with negative opinions of this new fashion trend that it never reached a point where growth was indefinite. Therefore, the number of people that needed to like and wear the male romper did not reach the threshold to continue its cascade throughout the population. Instead, it fell stagnant, and then eventually decreased into its demise. And now it rests along with all the other failed trends of our world’s past, right next to sweater vests and leg warmers.


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