Dear Shopping Savage,
I just caught wind that they created "spanx" for men. I'm in decent shape but a little help to hold everything in would be great, if you get my drift. Maybe not for everyday at the office, but for special occasions, important business meetings, etc. What's your take on this?
Man for Man Spanx
When it was learned that a line a men's "shape wear" was hitting the market, the first thought was that finally men had garments to level the field of feigned fitness and shapeliness that women have so desperately clung to (or rather, the other way around). And yet, for all the reasons that many men have embraced the idea - to date, the line has sold quite well - they also seem to be the same issues taken with the idea of "manx".
They claim to help with the appearance of a firmer chest (i.e. eliminate "man boobs"), reduce lower back pain by supporting correct posture (i.e. "lumbar support"), flatten the stomach and even help circulation and regulate breathing. All of this may be true (and it should be for undershirts that cost anywhere from $55-$80 for a single tank, crew-neck or v-neck) but at the end of the day, you're still wearing a man girdle. And even though women have had shape wear in their arsenal since the advent of the corset, there was something always refreshing knowing that with men, what you see is what you get.
This is one of those things that makes it clear that we all are still struggling with accepting ourselves with the genetic hand we've been dealt. If the world were free of shape wear we'd see how everyone is really built, and as scary as that thought may be, could possibly help someone with their self-image issues.
If you want to look like you would in spanx then you should spank your hand when you reach for that extra portion to pile onto your already calorie-laden plate or spank your own butt every time you go to the gym and mentally spank yourself if you don't go.
So be a man. Suck it up. And if need be, suck it in, but don't rely on a "compression shirt" to do the work for you. There's enough deception in the world. Don't add to it.