What's the Deal with Genderless Clothing?
Last week, Zara launched the brand's new genderless clothing line. The collection, called "Ungendered," features 10 unisex pieces, like denim, shorts, sweatshirts, sweatpants and tanks.
Launched under the TRF line, the online storefront features both male and female models wearing the same basic clothing pieces.
Zara, however, is not the first brand to launch a genderless clothing line. Selfridges, a U.K. department store, launched a gender-neutral line last year; and American Apparel, Gap and The North Face have been pushing unisex inventory for years now.
Of course, this begs the question: Is this the new trend for apparel? Promotional businesses have been taking steps to introduce both men's and women's apparel pieces—women's apparel that features more fitted silhouettes, more conventionally feminine color-ways and softer fabric options.
But, perhaps, this isn't what end-users want. From slouchy tanks to comfortable sweats, more and more female consumers are opting for these bulkier options that their male counterparts have been wearing for quite some time.
The NPD Group recently published en e-book called "Blurred Lines: How Retail Is Becoming Less Gendered, and Why You Should Care," which expands on the growth areas for genderless clothing.
"From clothing to footwear to technology, forward-thinking companies are enacting a less binary vision of how we shop, dress and live—in response to an emerging consumed need," the NPD Group said. "A genderless fashion market is developing. It's far less saturated than its gendered counterpart, and it is rife with opportunity for new entrants."
Promotional product suppliers should take a look at their apparel lineups and decide whether or not it makes sense to push separate, gendered collections. From marketing materials to the clothes themselves, it could benefit your business to move away from these binary constraints.