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Men Wearing Women's Leotards-Is It Right?


Men wearing women's leotardsSome people wonder about men wearing women's leotards. The leotard is a body-hugging garment that is typically worn as a dance practice or workout piece of clothing. It leaves very little to the imagination, as you can see by this photo. That is one of the reasons why ballet students wear leotards in class; so the teacher can see every muscle and judge every movement.

If you have ever seen photos of a ballet class during practice, you will notice two things. Most beginner level ballet classes have either all girl students or all boy students. Mixed gender classes usually happen further along during training when the female and male dancer are taught how to partner during a performance. The other thing you will notice is that only the female ballet student wears the leotard with her legs showing.

The Leotard Is Thought Of As A Female-Only Garment

Male ballet students in class typically cover their legs by wearing tights over their leotards. Male dancers most often wear white t-shirts and tights instead of going bare-legged in a leotard. There is much debate about whether a man should or should not wear a leotard in the same way a female does. The ballet is full of die-hard tradition. That includes dress. Bare-legged men and ballet are rare.

The Leotard Was Invented  By A Man

Somewhere back in history, the leotard went from being a garment made for male trapeze artists to being just a female garment. The leotard itself was invented by Jules Leotard, a French man. How it got switched like this is anybody's guess. Many men who choose to wear leotards are accused of being cross dressers or worse. The problem with leotards is that they only come in one way. They don't differentiate between male and female. They simply stretch over the body.

Should Men Stick To Unitards?

Should male dancers and regular guys who wear leotards worry about all this fuss? I don't think so. If people really understood how history, tradition and changing values affected the leotard, they would understand that leotards were originally made for men by a man. Unfortunately, Jules Leotard isn't here anymore or we could ask him about it. My greatest quess is that the leotard design made way for bathing suits that were more flattering to a woman's body shape than a mans. It just might be that the female ballet student is actually wearing a garment that was made as a mans garment and society is now conditioned to the leotard as being "female".

What do you think about the guy here ? Do you feel he maintains a masculine appearance or does this strike you as odd and out of place? For any guys reading this, would you consider wearing a leotard? Ladies, would you date this guy???

If you want to see real dance garments made just for guys, check out the styles of these Leotards for men.

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6 comments

user avatar
Written by richardcruz, 4 months ago
I am a male amateur dancer. I love wearing leotards. Normal dress code is tights over the leotards for men, but I would really like to wear ladies tights under my leotard. Guy's tights are thick and not as comfortable, and since it's worn outside the leotard, it tends to fall as you move. Ladies tights are stretchier, and worn under the leotard, stay body hugging all the time. If you wear a dance belt in the right way (pointing down), your bulge is very modest, only slightly bigger than the female area.

Bare leg is not as good looking. Male dancers need to wear traditional tights made for women under the leotard.
user avatar
Written by eddiemars, 10 months ago
Made for acrobats who had a need to move freely. I can see why dancers would have the same need. However, I think the need could be achieved in a way that doesn't challenge societal "norms," if we have any such thing anymore. If we call them women's leotards today, lets let them be women's clothing. A place for everything and everything in its place.

Of course, I don't even like movies or television where men dress in women's clothes.

To each his own.
user avatar
Written by landocheese, 3 years ago
I never knew the leotard was invented by a man named Leotard. Now I do.

As for your question, the picture makes me uncomfortable indeed. I see a man wearing a woman's outfit, despite your history lesson. I do not find this outfit becoming of a man and would not like to see a ballet where men are wearing leotards of this type.

That's just one opinion.
user avatar
Written by lperry, 3 years ago
Yipes...poor hubby. I guess Seekyt will have to be like Vegas, whatever happens here stays here LOL

I suppose I am one of those who have been "conditioned" to see men with legs covered. At my age, exposure to male "packaging" could cause temporary confusion and delirium..
user avatar
Written by careercounselor, 3 years ago
ROFL, that is hilarious!! I'm not tellin.
user avatar
Written by careercounselor, 3 years ago
What an interesting history lesson about the leotard, I had not given it much thought as far as dancers go, but now that you mention it I do see men wearing tights instead of showing bare legs.

Football players wear tights as well but in the same manner it seems only natural on the playing field, even some of their movements seem like ballet in a way.

I guess there is obvious reasons for men not wearing leotards while dancing this being that men have more of a concern to keep their private parts in place, thats just a guess but if he wore one at any other time outside of dance practice it may look odd.

Dancers have great bodies and the man in the picture looks great to me, I would date him for sure, but don't let my husband hear me say that he would definitely have a complex about his body, because he is heavy around the mid-section. Ha Ha.

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