Seoul, Korea, April 14, 2014 (Korea Bizwire) – Middle-aged men are leading the fashion market, buying up high-priced cosmetic items, wristwatches, casual wear, and fashion accessories for themselves.
For example, the sales of business suits are in decline while those for casual wear are rising fast. At Lotte Department Store, the share of formal suits in total men’s wear segment fell to 20 percent last year from 23 percent in 2010. In contrast, that for casual wear rose to 26 percent from 19 percent during the same period.
A Lotte Department Store official said, “Since 2008 when most companies instituted a new dress code urging their people to wear business casual rather than formal suits may have influenced the sales trend.”
Today’s middle-aged fashionistas are quite different from the same age group a generation ago. Instead of white-color shirts and pants, they prefer bright-color ones. During the two-month period in January and February this year, E-Mart reported that primary-color pants accounted for 30 percent of the total pants sales.
This trend is not just limited to color preference. Instead of stale-looking briefcases, the men in their 40s and 50s flaunt with college student-like backpacks and small-sized bags for tablet computers. Some of them are bold enough to carry clutch bags that were hitherto exclusively for women.
In the cosmetic market, the older men are big buyers. Only a few years ago, they were ashamed of visiting department store cosmetic vendors and instead asked their wives or daughters to buy things for them. But now they are not afraid of showing up and pick items they want to buy.
A Lotte Department Store salesperson said, “More than a half of older male customers buy three items or more and their average purchasing amount is typically twice higher than that for those younger customers in their 20s and 30s.”
Some of the middle-aged men are also visiting plastic surgeons more often. Procedures such as lower eyelid surgery, botox, and facial fillers are popular among those men in their 50s or older.
A plastic surgeon said, “More and more middle-aged men in their 40s and 50s are getting cosmetic procedures and skin care not just for cosmetic purposes but for gaining confidence in their life.”
Written by Sean Chung (firstname.lastname@example.org)