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BG Falcon Media

Independent student content

BG Falcon Media

Independent student content

BG Falcon Media

The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 16, 2023

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Howard U. proud of pink

One glance around the Howard University campus and you might catch a glimpse of something pink. A purse, a skirt, heels, a hat, shoelaces, sneakers, a T-shirt, a dress shirt, a tie, boxers. And pink is not just for girls anymore. From the boardroom to the club, brothers are giving new meaning to the phrase “pretty in pink.”

The trend is not new. According to Liz Snowden, marketing manager at the luxury shirt specialists Thomas Pink, it began in the 1990s.

“With the death of Macho Slob, Nineties Man saved the day by getting in touch with his feminine side. This was evident . . . by the way he groomed himself. Male moisturizers were launched; even the concept of an ‘executive’ manicure took off.”

The adoption of the trend by the hip-hop community is due largely to rapper Cam’ron, who has been seen sporting everything from cell phones to hummers to jeans in a rosy hue. The response to Cam’ron’s style was overwhelming. Retailers across the nation began stocking their men’s sections with carnation-colored items, and men starting buying.

“I (wore) a little pink before Cam’ron came out with it, but I really started wearing it more after I saw public figures wearing it,” said Howard freshman Brandon Smith, sporting pink shoelaces. “(It’s) in my weekly rotation. I like to be original. I like to stand out. People take notice and I like that.”

With so many guys wearing pink now, the question may be, where’s the originality?

“If one celebrity (is) doing something, everybody’s going to do it. If it wasn’t for Cam’ron, most guys wouldn’t wear pink,” said Howard freshman D’Anthony Gray.

However, not all men like wearing pink.

“The trend is nice, but it’s not for everyone,” said Gray. “I might wear a little bit of pink, but it depends on the occasion.”

With pink a traditionally feminine color, some question the masculinity of the men wearing it.

“Pink doesn’t undermine my masculinity. The average dude might question it, but I’m not trying to impress him,” Smith said.

According to Snowden, the man wearing pink exudes confidence. The man who wears it successfully has no insecurities about the “feminine” color.

“Pink has become a classic color, and the majority of people no longer look upon a man in a pink shirt as being daring or risque. It is an easy color to pull off and therefore appeals to many men.”

Smith said he was not worried about anyone misconstruing his apparel.

“I (don’t) care what dudes think,” Smith said. “It’s all about what the ladies think.” And the ladies like it — sometimes.

“Pink looks nice on certain guys. It just depends,” said freshman Alisha Brown.

Freshman Michelle Wilson agreed.

“Guys wearing pink (says) they’re not afraid to wear a color that was traditionally for girls. But I think some guys should stay away from it,” she said.

The consensus seems to be that while wearing pink is peachy, knowing where to draw the line is key. “One or two pink items is OK, but a pink outfit with accessories is a bit much,” Wilson said.

Smith said he recognizes its limits.

“I wouldn’t wear pink to a business meeting or a wedding. I would never wear a pink suit, because it’s really gaudy. I wouldn’t wear a pink T(-shirt) because they’re cheap looking,” Smith said.

Most fashion trends have short life spans. Will pink’s popularity last?

“I’ll eventually get tired of it and want to do something else,” Smith said.

“I think it’ll last as long as Cam’ron is doing it,” Gray countered.

Whether or not the trend is here to stay, it is breaking down fashion-gender barriers. And it might even be paving the way for more novel styles.

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