Crop tops are a summer MUST.
And now, men are jumping in on the look.
ASOS is going viral with selling a wide variety assortment of crops and tube tops for men and people have…thoughts.
“I give up,” one Twitter user posted — leading others to a huge debate if the “moob tubes” were going to make a come back.
ASOS describes the top as a slim-fit bandeau design cut close to the chest, costing around $16.
The trend may surprise some but to others — it will echo the 1980s when seeing a man in a sleeveless crop top and shorts was just another day in the neighborhood.
But let’s take a tour of the crop top’s history, shall we?
Interestingly enough the crop top took a while to take off in West — this was due to a colder climate and also the West’s fashion history was very puritanical.
But in parts of the East — it was a completely different story.
Since the weather was warmer – covering up did not make sense.
A great example in India would be the short top underneath called a choli.
It is usually covered by a traditional sari — the style dates back hundreds of years.
In addition, the midriff-baring pieces worn for belly dance also originated from the East.
And while it is difficult to pinpoint the exact birth of the outfit, it went through multiple changes over a period of time and in different places like Egypt, the Middle East and Asia.
Over time, a style known as the bedlah would gain traction to Westerners.
The two-piece was designed by an Egyptian cabaret owner which showed off the midriff in the name of dancing.
And in 1893 belly dancers were able to perform the World’s Fair in Chicago — introducing the West to the concept of the crop top in general.
While the crop top was intriguing, it would take several decades before it caught on with Westerners. For a time, it was considered too “exotic” and revealing to be incorporated into their fashions, and unlike parts of the East, there was not much of a need for it.
And while the crop top was captivating, it would take a few decades before it caught on with the West.
It was originally considered too “exotic” and revealing to be integrated into their fashions and due to the weather, there was not a true need for it.
But during the 1940s, this all would change.
During World War II, many items (including fabric) were rationed.
This meant that clothing designs had to be more creative to conserve raw materials — which led apparel designers to show off a little skin in the name of conservation — chopping off the bottom half of a shirt was finally in.
The crop top then became a staple look of the 1940s — with this version cut with a high collar, short sleeves, and worn with high-waisted midi skirts.
But like most new trends — not everyone was ready to welcome it into their closets.
Many people felt the piece was too revealing — so much that in 1945, a woman was fined for pairing her shorts with a midriff-baring halter top in Central Park.
Thankfully, most of society was progressive enough to not do without the shirt completely.
The dressy and more conservative style of crop top was around until the 1950’s with the 60’s including the crop but featured more of a fringe trend — cut in the peasant blouse style.
And by the late 70’s – crop tops made a comeback.
The garment’s hemline rose while the bottoms were cut lower — the look became a sex symbol worn by icons such as Cher.
Over the next two decades — the crop top would live its golden age.
It was apart of the “aerobic” look, paired with a cropped sweater or paired with a leotard was totally 80’s. It was even apart of Madonna’s iconic look.
The crop continued to be featured in pop culture throughout the 90’s, especially paired with low-rise jeans.
And that about catches us up to now. While cropped shirts fell off the radar during the early 2000s, they have since made a comeback.
To the racks, ladies and gentlemen!
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