If, like me, you're a millennial, then you are familiar with the media making sweeping generalizations about your personality, habits, and preferences. However, The New York Times might be on to something with their latest article about why millennial women are choosing granny panties over thongs. I'm not entirely convinced that this gravitation towards full-coverage underwear is a type of third-wave feminist protestation, as the article suggests, but allow the data to speak for itself.
According to data from the research company NPD Group, thong sales have decreased by seven percent over the past year, while sales of fuller coverage styles, such as briefs, boy shorts and high-waist cuts, have collectively gone up a huge seventeen percent. According to Bernadette Kissane, an apparel analyst at the market intelligence firm Euromonitor, "Within millennial and Generation Y consumer groups, it’s considered cool to be wearing full-bottom underwear. Thongs have had their moment."
Which is true enough. Thongs seem to radiate a cliche, trying-too-hard, '90s aura that is totally lame, while also being wildly uncomfortable.
But the NYT suggests this preference could also be a sign of something much more, a movement towards pro-woman underpinning liberation. According to many lingerie makers, women are increasingly choosing underwear for themselves, opting for what makes them feel happy, sexy, and comfortable as opposed to what's viewed as typically attractive to men (i.e. g-strings, impossibly strappy bras and the like).
The reasoning behind this line of thought isn't so farfetched. I'm sure there are a handful of women who are actively attempting to fly in the face of patriarchy via their choice in underwear. But at the same time, it also doesn't seem so absurd to suggest that most young women might just be going for the pair of undies that doesn't leave them feeling like they have a perpetual, un-pickable wedgie.
Just a thought.
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