While the baggy trousers trend seems to be as strong as ever in some areas, not everyone has jumped onto this controversial fashion bandwagon.
When young men, particularly those who lived in urban areas, began to wear pants that sagged well below their waistlines, it seemed it might be a short-lived fad. Years later, however, not only has the fad not disappeared, but some U.S. cities and states want to pass legislation that outlaws such baggy trousers, mainly because of the negative connotations that surround this fashion statement.
Baggy Pants Background
Many people agree that the sagging pants trend originated in the prison system. Whether it started because prisoners aren't allowed to wear belts with their pants or as a form of availability, the fad quickly made its way to the streets. Young men in major metropolitan cities adopted baggy trousers as a style. Like many fashion ideas, this one trickled up and young guys from various backgrounds began to wear their pants this way. Hip-hop artists and rappers also contributed to the trend and young men who emulate such musicians naturally try to imitate them in dress.
Baggy Trousers Backlash
For people who grew up in a different era-when men wore hats with their suits and ladies wore gloves-this trend is viewed in a very negative light. Even some members of the current generation don't approve of boys and men who wear their pants so low that their underwear is clearly visible. The degree of bagginess varies, but onlookers are often treated to a couple of inches to nearly full views of underwear. Legislators who want to outlaw what they view as a fashion nightmare point out that the youngsters who sport baggy trousers not only appear sloppy (thus allowing others to form negative opinions of them right off the bat), but also can be judged harshly. Delinquency, crime and lack of education are just some of the messages this particular trend can convey. Lawmakers who support banning baggy pants feel that fines or jail time would be sufficient deterrents to get young men to pull their pants up.
Baggy Trousers, the Song
On a lighter note, if the term "Baggy Trousers" makes you nostalgic, you might remember the song of the same name by the British music group Madness. This 1980 song and video was an innocent little tune about childhood school days. Ironically, only one member of the band appears in the video in baggy pants, but the pants are simply loose-fitting and don't reveal any underwear.
Degrees of Bagginess
Maybe you don't want your underwear to show, but you still prefer your slacks to fit loosely. While tight pants are sometimes in style, for the guy who likes a casual vibe and wants to wear clothes he can feel comfortable in, a baggier pant is preferable. While these looks are perfect for the weekend, they aren't appropriate for work, especially if you want to get ahead and be taken seriously. Also, if you're past your twenties, this is not a good look.
How to Wear Baggy Pants
If you're sold on baggy trousers, you can still get away with wearing them at times, but follow these tips to avoid being judged too harshly:
- Don't reveal your underwear
- Wear a belt
- Know there's a different between loose and sagging
- Don't wear them to work
Some people still don't care for this trend and form opinions on the young men who embrace it, so bear that in mind if you're trying to impress someone. First impressions do count and if you know that this particular fashion statement isn't viewed positively, you may want to wear more form-fitting pants when meeting someone for the first time.