I work at a latex boutique here in Copenhagen, and I’ve learnt a lot about human nature, and particularly, rubberists’ human nature since I started here. One of the things I’ve been able to observe is what a large percentage of our male customers are dying to wear women’s clothes.
Now, I’d rather this thread not turn into a debate as to why this phenomenon is so prevalent, so I’ll leave my theories to my personal blog, but what I’d like to do today to help you fellows figure out what you need to know before shopping for ladieswear. My tips below can help shy men overcome their hesitation when shopping for latex clothing, and quite possibly, help fellows become better shoppers, and avoid such embarassments like bursting a seam or wrecking someones merchandise.
So, here goes, Miss Fuzzy Bunny’s Beginner Guy’s Guide to Buying Womens Clothing:
Step one: Ask directly for help if you have questions.
There is no need to be shy, or assume the shopgirl or boy will judge you for wanting to wear women’s latex. You are in great company. In fact, there are days when I never encounter a single man who wants guys’ clothes! Your latex shopkeeper has seen it all, trust me.
Step Two: Know your size! Know your size!
At the bare minimum, find out your chest, waist and hip measurements, then take a look at where you fall in women’s sizes, just so you’ll know where to start. (Ideally you should have a friend or a seamstress or tailor take your measurements. You needn’t worry that either will find this a strange request, since all kinds of garments are made to measure.)
Sizes vary from maker to maker, but one thing is consistent in every case: women’s sizes are smaller than men’s. Take a look at this size chart from Latexa. Let’s say your measurements fall into the men’s size large. Now look at the womens size chart. You will notice that your measurements correspond best to a women’s XL, or possibly XXL. It’s pretty much the same with Libidex, DeMask, Blackstyle, Honour, Syren, etc. etc. etc.
Step Three: Understand a little about womens clothes. When in doubt, ask!
See this nice corset? In order to try it on, you will need to both unzip and unbuckle it. You should also loosen the laces in the back so you have as much room as possible when you first get into it. You’d be surprised if I told you I’ve had to rescue people in the changing room trapped in a corset, but that’s what will happen if you try and pull it over your head like a sweater!
Also note that while a good corset will shape and whittle a body, you will still need to pick the correct size. A size small corset won’t turn you into a smaller person if you’re not close to being a size small–all it will do is bend and buckle and waste both our time!
Step Four: Beware of reverse body dysmorpia.
See step 2 again. Guys often grab a skirt or dress that pleases them, even if it’s the wrong size, with potentially disastrous results. Sometimes fellas even grab something their imagined ideal could wear. (Look, Mosh is definitely a joy to behold, but chances are, if you’re a guy, you are not Mosh’s size, no matter how much you would like to be.)
It shouldn’t embarrass you to try on women’s latex, but trust me, you will embarrass yourself if your dress rips while trying it on! (You’re also likely to be remembered in the shop as that guy who wrecked a zipper while trying to squeeze his way into a too small dress.)
Step Five: Give yourself time!
You will want your first shopping experience to be as stress-free as it possibly can, so allow yourself at least 45 minutes or 2 hours to spend trying things on. Email in advance to find a quiet time if you’d like more privacy and attention.This may be a whole new world to you. Don’t expect to master it in 15 minutes.
Step Six: Talk to other guys whose cross dressing style you admire.
Nearly every online latex community will have members who’ve already done this. Many will also have photos of their latest acquisitions on their Flickr pages, or even YouTube videos. Check these profiles out. Which look best? Is this a style you can incorporate into your own wardrobe? Try and choose men with similar body types as your own, to open yourself up to what’s possible for you.
This wraps it up for your first lesson. I hope I’ve helped a few newbies with some common problems. Please leave comments if you’ve found good online resources for learning about cross-dressing!