Saturday, 3 October 2015

Spotlight on Luxury Legs

Luxury Legs have created a unique profile in the hosiery retailing scene in the UK. With their focus on premium brands, quality and first class customer service, they have developed a stand-out profile.

Luxury Legs have also been great supporters of the Hosiery For Men blog. We were really pleased to be able to interview the co-founder of Luxury Legs Stephen Sheldon recently.

Can you provide Hosiery For Men readers with some background to Luxury Legs? When did the business start and how has it developed?
Luxury Legs started trading in June 2103 and was founded by Madelaine and Stephen Sheldon, who combined have over 50 years experience in the industry. Their previous business was operating the Wolford Partner Boutique in London’s South Molton Street plus the website, selling Wolford products.

It was therefore a natural progression to open a multi brand ecommerce site specialising in the world’s leading premium brands of hosiery.

In a crowded online hosiery retailing market what is unique about Luxury Legs?
Specialising in only premium quality brands is our USP. We also love natural fibres.

Do you have many male customers at Luxury Legs? Are they buying for their partners or themselves?
We have loads of very loyal male customers, probably around 40%. Many buy for their partners but also lots for themselves.

Are there any particular items that you have in stock that you feel you can recommend for men this autumn and winter?
Ooh that’s a difficult one! We have so many fantastic new products.

What I do particularly like are the Wolford Velvet Sensation Tights (arriving soon). Wolford produced them first as leggings and they are a best seller. These tights/leggings have micro fleece on the inside so are very soft and warm.

The other product which has started to sell really well is the Falke ‘Seasons’ Cotton and Cashmere Tights. The quality and feel is amazing and at £22.00 they are a great price!

The Gerbe Futura 40 Denier Tights are also a good choice. It has a really deep flat waistband and is very generously sized. It also has a light graduated support so is perfect for those who are on their feet all-day. It is an undiscovered gem except for those in the know!

What kind of service will male customers receive at Luxury Legs? Do you welcome enquiries and requests for advice? 

We are more than happy to give advice. All customers male and female receive great service. We have just produced our second brochure too and are happy to send that to anyone as well.

There is always quite a lot of media interest in the subject of tights for men. What are your thoughts about the greater visibility of men buying and wearing tights?
The more exposure the better! I am often asked about how many men we sell to and when I explain that men actually like to wear tights, some people are actually shocked. I think recent press articles will help remove this stigma.

To men thinking about trying tights, what would you say are the main benefits of wearing them?

Warmth, comfort and the ability to enjoy and share in the experience that quality hosiery brings.

What are your plans for the future at Luxury Legs? Have you considered stocking a range of men’s tights, or curating a selection of tights that are recommended for men?
At present we have no plans to stock the men’s ranges. We have sampled quite a few products but feel the quality doesn’t quite match up to some of the wonderful labels we sell. We have recently introduced MaxMara and other new collections are arriving all the time. We love the winter!

Thanks for speaking to Hosiery For Men Stephen. We hope readers of the blog will takes a look at what is available at Luxury Legs and also that they will make contact if there is anything they need to know more about.

We wish all the colleagues at Luxury Legs a successful autumn and winter season. 

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Saturday, 26 September 2015

Spotlight on MyStockings

MyStockings is a new arrival on the hosiery retail scene in the UK.

We recently spoke to Kriszta of MyStockings and we are pleased to now publish this interview.

Can you tell Hosiery For Men readers about MyStockings? Why did you start the business and how has it developed?
MyStockings entered the market this June. So, it is fairly new and solely online. There are some great online shops in the UK offering a wide variety of legwear. The question naturally rises as to why to launch another business of the same sort. We enjoy fashion and are enthusiastic about hosiery. Our purpose is to provide a different choice not necessarily in brands, more in models and styles.

What are the main brands of tights that you stock?

We have started out with just a few brands. We insist on high standards and beauty. We have fabulous, French designer made GERBE of Paris tights by Gaspard Yurkievich. Wonderful, Belgian-made tights and stockings by Cette.

Ballerina and Gabriella are reliable Polish brands. Italian-made Jolie Folie has just debuted in the UK through Mystockings with its Selene 50 denier models in the colours of the rainbow.

What kind of service will male customers receive at MyStockings? Do you welcome enquiries and requests for advice?
All our customers get high quality services from the moment they land on our pages. Besides basic services, all orders are hand-wrapped in golden tissue paper, tied with satin ribbon and posted in discreet packaging. There is no indication of content of the parcel on the outside. We provide free UK delivery on orders over £30.

We deeply believe that our customers help us shape our business, thus all comments, suggestions, requests are welcome and considered. We actually encourage our visitors and customers to contact us with their requests, whether they are service or product related. If you have a particular item you are looking for and cannot find anywhere, we will happily try to get it for you.

Are there any brands and styles that you particularly recommend for men?
There are some unisex models that can meet all expectations and also there are brands especially designed for men.

There is always quite a lot of media interest in the subject of tights for men. What are your thoughts about the greater visibility of men buying and wearing tights?
Running tights, compression pants and tights are widely accepted and used by men. Their benefits are recognised. It only takes one more step to realise how nice and comfortable tights can be on an everyday basis. Some men around us might already have worn tights under trousers and stayed invisible. Tights are great and men shouldn’t be excluded from wearing them.

A lot of people associate male tights with fetishes which makes their recognition as an ordinary garment more difficult.

To men thinking about trying tights, what would you say are the main benefits of wearing them?
Comfort. Practicality. Durability. Simplicity.

Especially opaque winter tights are perfect for keeping warm.

What are your plans for the future at MyStockings? Are you planning to stock any tights specifically made for men?
We at MyStockings focus currently on ladies' hosiery. If we recognise a growing demand among our customers for male tights, we definitely will stock them.

Thanks for speaking to Hosiery For Men Kriszta. We hope readers will check out the MyStockings website, as well as stay in touch with you on Twitter and Facebook.

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Reviewed: Wolford Luxe 9 Tights

One of our favourite hosiery retailers Luxury Legs sent Hosiery For Men a pair of the Wolford Luxe 9 Tights to trial and review.

Hosiery For Men readers should be aware that Luxury Legs also stock a range of high quality men's socks in addition to their impressive range of tights and other legwear from top brands.

Material and features

Wolford describe these tights as:

Highly transparent and airy tights that can barely be felt. Their natural look keeps them comfortable inconspicuous, making them the perfect choice for summer occasions - from a business meeting to an evening occasion.

Packaging is similar to most Wolford styles.The tights are folded around a card rectangle, with images of Wolford products, and are then housed in a folded card envelope. Everything is then wrapped in a cellophane envelope.

These tights feel incredibly light and airy; almost weightless.

They are made from 100% Polyamide. Wolford have used a special stretch yarn, that contains no Lycra/Elastane, but still has impressive elasticity.

The fabric is extremely soft and has really excellent stretch.

They are not sheer to waist but have a slightly denser brief/panty with a cotton gusset.

Toes are not reinforced which makes them idea for wear with sandals or open-toed shoes.

Seams are flat throughout.

The waistband is 3cm wide and very comfortable. As with all Wolford tights, there is a label attached to the inside of the waistband.

The waistband is 3cm wide and has the Wolford log printed on it.

Fit and sizing

The Wolford Luxe 9 Tights are available in five sizes: XS, S, M, L and XL.

The XL size is not currently stocked at Luxury Legs but they can obtain this speedily if needed.

I tested a pair in the L size.

These tights are really very sheer and delicate, and can be barely be seen on the leg. They gave my legs a very slight tanned appearance. There is very little shine.

Despite the absence of Lycra/Elastane the fit on the leg was very snug, with no bunching.

The fit in the L size was good, although I think I would prefer the XL size as that is always perfect for me when wearing Wolford hosiery.

Colour range
The Wolford Luxe 9 Tights are available in seven colours at Luxury Legs: 

  • Cosmetic 
  • Gobi 
  • Caramel 
  • Honey 
  • Marzipan 
  • Nearly Black 
  • Black
I tested a pair in the Gobi shade.

Price and availability
The Wolford Luxe 9 Tights are priced at £15.00 at Luxury Legs.

Luxury Legs offer free delivery on all orders over £50.00 (UK only)

Luxury Legs sent us the Wolford Luxe 9 Tights at the height of summer, with the weather at its hottest. These tights are very much a style to wear in summer - they are a really comfortable wear in warmer weather but also extremely light and almost invisible when worn.

Wolford have created the ideal summer tights. They give your legs a great appearance but you also stay cool and refreshed.


Thanks again to Luxury Legs for the sample and for their support for the Hosiery For Men blog.

Saturday, 19 September 2015

Spotlight on Pebble UK

Pebble UK are a Cambridgeshire based, independent online retailer, who specialise in the supply of quality therapeutic hosiery.

Earlier this month we caught up with Naomi Jarman of Pebble UK, and we are pleased to publish our interview with her.

Can you tell Hosiery For Men readers about Pebble UK? What is the business all about? 

Pebble UK is a family-run business who supply a great, range of graduated compression support hosiery and compression garments to men and women. Products are chosen by quality, price and fashion.

Why did you start Pebble UK and how has it developed?

It all began when my mum, Nadine Smith, was wearing TEDs (anti-embolism stockings) herself whilst in hospital. She watched a news report about a young fitness instructor (Emma Christofferson) who died from a DVT when travelling to Australia. Nadine had the thought ‘if I’m wearing these stockings to prevent a blood clot, then surely there must be some kind of product available to the public that can help with the prevention of blood clots and DVT.’

Henceforth, Nadine found a supplier who made flight socks.

Pebble started in 2001 with just two products, flight socks for men and flight socks for women. Very shortly afterwards, support tights were introduced, and then a few colour choices, then we added some thigh-highs and maternity tights, and bit-by-bit the catalogue has grown along with the customer base.

You specialise in graduated compression hosiery for women and men. Can you tell us about compression hosiery: what is compression hosiery designed to do and how exactly does it work?

Graduated compression hosiery is designed to improve the blood circulation, to help prevent pooling and clotting in the veins. It is very effective at preventing and relieving leg fatigue, heavy feeling legs, swelling (edema), varicose veins, thrombosis, deep vein thrombosis, lymphoedema, chronic venous insufficiency and venous related circulatory disorders.

Graduated compression works by giving a gentle pressure at certain points in the leg; it exerts most pressure at the ankle, which then gets less and less up the length of the leg. It is easier to imagine as an upside down ‘icing bag’, fill it full of icing and squeeze it and the icing is forced up through the nozzle, similar to the hosiery squeezing at the ankle and the blood will be forced back up the leg veins to the Heart.

Can you tell us about your range of men’s support hosiery? What brands of tights do you stock?
We have a pair of our own brand Pebble UK Men's Support Tights that are specifically designed for the needs of a man. They take into consideration the sizing of the hips and leg length as well as the circumferences of the leg and feature a fly front for practicality. They are a great value product for those who suffer with venous insufficiency.

For those who are in a fortunate enough position to be able to spend a bit more money on their hosiery, then the Solidea Dynamic Man Therapeutic Tights are well worth every penny.

Men have a choice of knee highs, thigh-highs and tights that are designed around their needs and Pebble will soon be offering a plain top, core spun unisex thigh high, made by Therafirm. We are rather excited about this new addition to the Core-Spun range, as the socks have proven very popular, they are extremely good quality, very easy to get into and more comfortable to wear, and because of the sock-like fabric, they will be ideal for the coming cooler months (and look like socks under trousers). These are ideal for men, whatever their profession. They are extremely good at preventing odours and keeping the feet dry and healthy due to the moisture-wicking, Microcool in the fabric.

On your website you mention that some men might be embarrassed about wearing ladies tights? Do feel there is still a stigma about this?

Unfortunately, I do think there is a stigma about this. Some men feel that ‘hosiery’ is for ladies and some feel embarrassed about having to wear tights, but on the flip side, we do speak to many men who wear ladies hosiery and who don’t care, as it’s not only important for them to wear it for their health, but actually, no one can see what they’re wearing under their clothes anyway.

Unfortunately, men draw the short straw when it comes to choice in the compression hosiery world, so most of the time they have to opt for a ladies product, for example, ladies tights (with no fly) because what they are looking for exactly, is usually not available on the market, unless they find us of course!

What kind of service will male customers receive at Pebble UK? Do you welcome enquiries and requests for advice? 

Absolutely, every customer is treated with utmost confidence and we welcome any phone calls for advice. We would rather you talk to us and order what’s right for the individual’s needs, rather than get it wrong and be unhappy.

Are there any brands and styles that you particularly recommend for men?
We have a dedicated men's support hosiery section, which lists everything that we recommend for our gentlemen customers. This ranges from socks, tights, sports compression socks and other garments.

There is always quite a lot of media interest in the subject of tights for men. What are your thoughts about the greater visibility of men buying and wearing tights?

If a person, no matter what sex, has the desire or need to wear tights or compression tights, then there should be no problem. The media need to portray this more equally to reduce the stigma that hosiery is for ladies only. This is 2015, not the 1940’s! I mean men have been wearing long-johns for years, and tights are essentially long-johns with the feet in.

Men of today are more sophisticated in their grooming methods and they want to look good, so if that means shaving their chests and legs, and sticking on a a pair of skintone sheer tights, then so be it.

To men thinking about trying tights, what would you say are the main benefits of wearing them?

Normal tights: they can flatter the look of the legs/are excellent at keeping you warm
Support tights: your legs won’t be so fatigued/painful at the end of the day, and will feel more energised

What are your plans for the future at Pebble UK? Are you planning to increase the range of tights for men?

We add to the men's range as and when we find a product, which is suitable, good quality and easily accepted by men themselves. Specifically in relation to tights for men, not many manufacturers make them, so they are more difficult to come by. However, we would most certainly consider any new options, so it gives our gentlemen customers more choice.

Thank you for speaking to Hosiery For Men Naomi. We hope readers will enjoy reading the interview and will also check out the products on Pebble UK.

Glamory Support 70 men's tights

Here are some further images from the new Glamory 2015-16 catalogue photo shoot.

These are the Glamory Support 70 men's tights.