Monday, May 03, 2004

Wash and wear, my ass!!

You'd think with all the billions of dollars they sink into the women's fashion industry they'd manage to come up with products that come even halfway close to the quality of menswear. Case in point. I bought a shirt for my husband recently for $25 that was a beautiful sueded silky fabric - a material I'd love to see in a shirt of my own. He insists on washing every new piece of clothing *before* he wears it. We wash it, and throw it in the dryer - and even dried on high it comes out completely wrinkle free. He has a complete closet full of such clothes that will never see the bottom of an iron. His dress slacks come out just as nice, are stain resistant as well and still have the original pleat in the legs as the day they came off the store hanger. And they still fit just like they did in the dressing room.

I, on the other hand spend the same amount of money on a shirt, or a nice pair of pants... and then do my absolute level best to get as many wearings out of those clothes as possible before I *have* to wash them. Because I know - the minute Maytag gets ahold of them they will NEVER, EVER look the same. I can wash them on delicate, even line dry them and they still come out shriveled, wrinkled and faded. Why???? Why?? Is it the same laundry gods that allow dry cleaners to get away with charging women twice as much for similar items of clothing????

No, I think not. I think it's the fashion industry that counts on women being brainwashed into wanting the newest, hottest "look" so they quit wearing clothes that have supposedly gone out of style long before the shoddy material and design manifest themselves via regular wear and tear. You know, maybe the genderfied gap in income wouldn't be so apparent if women didn't have such high expenses. Yeah, sure it's all a choice - but there's no denying that men who conform to societal standards of personal appearance get off a hell of a lot cheaper than women who do the same. Besides just the quantity of clothes, shoes, accessories and jewelry a woman needs to appear "stylish"; there's cosmetics, nailcare & that sort of thing - which women spend hundreds of dollars on a year; haircuts that cost 3 times as much as a man's (nevermind color & perm if that's your thing); and pantyhose (don't EVEN get me started on pantyhose!!!). What have men got? Hmmmm... shaving cream and razors. That's about it.

Truly, that's one reason I love living in the Pacific Northwest, where the "natural" look, hairy legs and all is quite the norm. Let's me spend my money on truly important things - like cool plants for my yard.

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