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80s Fashion for Men: Embracing Casual Menswear in Style

CEO Tinh Phung
Image: Tracksuits - sweatshirts - 80s fashion for men from Sears 1983 80s Fashion for Men: Marketing jazzy new loungewear lines Article adapted from The Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, New York) - March 27, 1983...

Tracksuits - sweatshirts - 80s fashion for men from Sears 1983 Image: Tracksuits - sweatshirts - 80s fashion for men from Sears 1983

80s Fashion for Men: Marketing jazzy new loungewear lines

Article adapted from The Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, New York) - March 27, 1983

Fashion and custom have long offered women attractive clothing for lounging. But it’s as if history and the fashion industry turned their backs on men.

What does a man put on when he takes off his business suit or sports jacket and casual slacks?

Geoffery Blythe of the Red Barn says, “We don’t have loungewear; we have sleepwear — pajamas, nightshirts, and robes.

“For lounging, a jogging outfit is good. Every college kid is wearing one; they can sit around the fraternity house in it, then go out for a beer without changing.”

Vintage '80s novelty t-shirts for guys Image: Vintage '80s novelty t-shirts for guys

Tracksuits and activewear: The stars of casual '80s menswear

As more and more people took up jogging, they also put on outfits designed especially for it. And they liked them, says Michael Dorris, assistant manager at Marjax Enterprises at Long Ridge Mall in Greece.

“It’s a hit, absolutely; there’s no question about it,” he says. People buy jogging suits for both lounging and jogging.

Pam Pugliese, sales representative for menswear designer Ron Chereskin, certainly hopes so. Chereskin’s line of mauve, purple, and blue cotton velour jogging suits was introduced this year in the $90 price range in such “forward fashion” men’s shops as Casa de Hombre, on Oxford Street.

The success of the line, which sold out immediately, may indicate an eager market for men’s loungewear.

ALSO SEE: Vintage 1980s shoes for men: What stylish guys were wearing

Casual vintage '80s menswear from 1983

Browse this whole section of casual clothing for men from the 1983 JCPenney & Sears catalogs!

Velour coordinates and Reach brand clothing for men

Reach clothing for men

Trendy eighties activewear for guys with Olympic logos

Trendy eighties activewear for guys

Levi’s activewear — trendy 80s fashion for men

Striped polo-style shirts tucked into twill pants. Now that was an eighties look. Levi's activewear from the '80s

Hunt Club collection of spirited classic clothing for men

Hunt Club collection of spirited classic clothing for men

Stylish 80s fashion for men — all dressed up for a date night & a movie

Fashionable '80s guys all dressed up for a movie-night date

Cable-knit and striped sweaters for men

Cable-knit and striped sweaters for men

Soft 'n' warm Orlon acrylic pullovers, cardigans, V-neck sweaters, and turtlenecks for men

Soft 'n' warm Orlon acrylic pullovers, cardigans, V-neck sweaters, and turtlenecks for men

Zipper-collar pullovers and sporty velour knit V-neck pullovers for men

Zipper-collar pullovers and sporty velour knit V-neck pullovers for men

Easy-fitting one-piece casual jumpsuits for guys

1980s menswear clothing from Sears 1983 Jumpsuits for guys

Activewear: Sweat separates for young men from Sears

ALSO SEE: Vintage 1980s Nike shoes, from regular retro sneakers to classic Air Jordans 1980s menswear clothing from Sears 1983 (2)

Par Four pullovers and striped shirts for men - plus slacks in gray, mocha, olive, khaki, and navy blue

Par Four pullovers and striped shirts for men - plus slacks in gray, mocha, olive, khaki, and navy blue

The iconic Izod shirt epitomizes 80s fashion for men, but the Fox polo shirt for men and boys was a common substitution.

The Fox polo shirts for men and boys

Get sporty, guys! Vintage Hunt Club clothes

Get sporty, guys! Vintage Hunt Club clothes

Tweed slacks, plaid shirts, khaki pants, corduroy slacks (cords), and webbed cotton belts for guys

Tweed slacks, plaid shirts, khaki pants, corduroy slacks (cords), and webbed cotton belts for guys

Action Master Stretch jeans for men in dark wash and blue denim

This '80s look also features the once-ubiquitous Top Siders/dock shoes and suede shoes. ALSO SEE: The unlikely history of Levi’s jeans - or, how clothes from 150 years ago are still fashionable today Action Master stretch jeans for men in dark wash and blue denim

Stretch polyester gabardine jeans with slightly-flared legs, plus stretch cotton-blend jeans with a zipper fly

Stretch polyester gabardine jeans with slightly-flared legs, plus stretch cotton-blend jeans with a zipper fly

Sporty actionwear for men - Apparatus sweatpants, crew-neck shirts, V-neck shirts, sweatshorts, and zipper-front workout jackets

Sporty actionwear for men - Apparatus sweatpants, crew-neck shirts, V-neck shirts, sweatshorts, and zipper-front workout jackets

Thermal-lined knit jackets, hoodies, and vests

Thermal-lined knit jackets, hoodies, and vests

Loafer shirts for guys who love to take it easy

Loafer shirts for guys who love to take it easy

Fleeced shirts, sweatshirts, and other outwear, plus cotton-blend shirts with contrasting color collars

Fleeced shirts, sweatshirts, and other outwear, plus cotton-blend shirts with contrasting color collars

'80s pullovers, shirts with hoods, striped shirts & casual '80s sportswear for men

HOW TIMES CHANGE: Vintage menswear: Clothes to flatter every body type, from 1916 '80s pullovers, shirts with hoods, striped shirts and casual sportswear for men

Stonewashing: Some of these jeans are literally thrown into the washer with stones to beat the stiffness out of them

ALSO SEE: Men’s vintage suits: 60 bold power suits that were essential fashion in the 1970s Stonewashing: Some of these jeans are literally thrown into the washer with stones to beat the stiffness out of them

Casual menswear from the eighties - Levi’s t-shirts and chambray shirts

Levi's t-shirts and chambray shirts

Vintage Levi’s boot-cut jeans and Wrangler jeans for men

Vintage Levi's boot-cut jeans and Wrangler jeans for men

Basic slacks for men, with straight legs and made of polyester

Basic slacks for men, with straight legs and made of polyester

Retro stonewashed denim jackets, vests, and jeans were at the height of 80s fashion for men

ALSO SEE: Swatch: The colorful watch craze of the 1980s & 1990s Retro stonewashed denim jackets, vests, and jeans

'80s fashion for men includes Wrangler denim jeans and corduroy jeans

'80s Wrangler denim jeans and corduroy jeans

Cotler stylish sportswear for men

Stylish sportswear for men

Classic pocket polo shirts with ribbed necks and short sleeves

Polo shirts in both solid colors and heather tones also came in sleeveless styles Classic pocket polo shirts with ribbed necks and short sleeves - also sleeveless polo t-shirts

Pro-rated for sports! Fashion for men - Active retro menswear

ALSO SEE: Vintage Wal-Mart history: What the first stores looked like, and how they changed over the years Pro-rated for sports! Fashion for men

Vintage sportswear brands for men - Nike, Adidas, Puma

Shown here is a range of branded sports shirts and short-shorts for guys Vintage sportswear brands for men - Nike, Adidas, Puma

Guys dressed up in casual chic fashion

Check out the cotton web belts and webbing tie — high 80s fashion for men! Guys dressed up in casual chic fashion

Oxford Sport workout and casualwear - pouch shirt, walking shorts, and Turtles Oxford shoes in tan and brown

Oxford Sport workout and casualwear - pouch shirt, walking shorts, and Turtles Oxford shoes in tan and brown

Oxford Sport striped cotton-knit sweaters

Oxford Sport striped cotton-knit sweaters

Pullover sweaters and velour jackets are classic 80s fashion for men

Eighties pullover sweaters and velour jackets for men

ALSO SEE: Vintage 1980s shoes for men: What stylish guys were wearing

In the 1980s, men's fashion finally embraced the concept of casual and comfortable loungewear. While women had been enjoying attractive options for lounging, men were left wondering what they should wear when they wanted to relax after removing their business suits or sports jackets.

The introduction of jogging outfits and tracksuits revolutionized casual menswear. People not only adopted them for jogging but also for lounging. The popularity of these activewear sets was undeniable. It became a fashion statement with brands like Ron Chereskin introducing stylish cotton velour jogging suits that sold out instantly.

Additionally, the '80s saw a range of casual clothing options for men. From vintage Levi's jeans to stylish sportswear brands like Nike, Adidas, and Puma, men had a plethora of choices to express their personal style. The iconic Izod shirts, Fox polo shirts, and pullover sweaters were all the rage.

The images from the 1983 JCPenney & Sears catalogs showcase the vibrant and diverse fashion that dominated the era. Classic pocket polo shirts, corduroy jeans, and striped cotton-knit sweaters were just some of the options available. Stonewashed denim jackets and vests, as well as twill pants paired with striped polo-style shirts, epitomized the '80s look.

The '80s were about expressing oneself through fashion, and men were finally included in the world of comfortable and stylish leisurewear. The rich variety of choices allowed them to create their unique fashion statements.

Note: The original article and images are from the 1980s and are used for reference and illustration purposes only.

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