Even though he works outside the style industry, Rodger Berman isn’t afraid to take fashion risks with his celebrity stylist wife, Rachel Zoe.
The investment banker escorted Zoe to MAC (Cosmetics) and Carine Roitfeld’s Le Bal during Fashion Week, sporting what some experts are calling “pretty intense guyliner” and sparking the question: Will this start a new male fashion trend?
“I don’t know where the eyeliner came from, but I don’t think it will affect anyone majorly in terms of trend setting,” Maren Hartman, content director for WGSN, said. “They’re not only fashionable people, but known to have a love for rock and roll. That definitely exemplifies that.”
WGSN, the world’s leader in fashion trend forecasting, uses research and analysis to track consumer trends. Hartman says “man trends” from the catwalk are popping up, but may not survive in their own market.
“When it comes to women’s trends, what you see on the runways actually do hit stores and will trickle down to the mass market,” Hartman said. “Whereas men’s runway trends are far out there and don’t infiltrate the system. So when it comes to trends like macletes [man bracelets] or murses [male purses] or mandals [man sandals], you’re only going to see those styles in a fashion forward market or urban area.”
Hartman says trends such as male Spanx and “guyliner” aren’t necessarily fashion faux pas but part of a niche market that’s been growing through the years. “It’s funny because there is a beauty industry and there is a fashion industry for men, but the needle moves slowly here in the US. It leans to traditional heritage things,” Hartman said. “However, guys are getting more bold with color and patterns and jewelry.”
And that boldness is what Village Voice columnist and writer Michael Musto says is driving more acceptance in the fashion world overall, making it acceptable for both gay and straight men to “have fun with fashion.”
“Fashion should make people feel uncomfortable,” Musto said. “I think these trends are the logical next step after metro sexual, where a lot of straight guys feel comfortable enough wearing what they want or moussing or waxing,” Musto said. “Rachel Zoe’s a fashion trend setter, so she’s obviously endorsing, putting a stamp of approval. Women are going to see this as ‘Hey, if it’s good enough for Rachel’s husband, why shouldn’t my man wear it, too?’”