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Men Love Manx
By: Alisa Gould-Simon

Women aren't the only ones who love a garment with a little firmness. With new shapewear styles flooding the men's wear market in the last few months, purveyors of the male version of Spanx—Manx—have watched sales go through the roof. "We are selling them as quickly as Spanx can make them," Neiman Marcus' s men's fashion director Nickelson Wooster told the New York Times. Meanwhile, Michael Kleinmann, the president of Freshpair, a purveyor of men's and women's underwear, called Manx "the next big thing." Another popular but hush-hush product in profile-enhancing underwear is in the works, a wonder-garment Kleinmann called "the equivalent of a push-up bra" for men. Not surprisingly, online sales heavily outweigh those of in-store purchases. It seems men are shy about shopping for Manx in the public domain.

What are the big selling points for the garment, aside from slimming down dudes’ silhouettes? Some men are claiming that the suction-like style actually relieves back pain—likely bull but a claim nonetheless—which is not to detract from another another, possibly more important benefit: Manx can help men be less self-conscious about their nipples. The real catalyst for purchasing slimming undergarments is either insecurity or vanity. Men are looking for a simple sartorial pick-me-up the same way women have for centuries. After all, aren’t Spanx really just modern day corsets (albeit far more comfortable versions)? That said, there’s no denying there’s a double-standard with regard to men and women and their respective self-maintenance. And with everything from murses to heavage and meggings circulating heavily in men’s fashion, I think Dockers’ ’Wear the Pants ‘ campaign has the right idea.

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E-mail: press@freshpair.com