Why bears don’t wear pantyhose

OK, I know I’m the editor here, but you guys can tell me when you notice my screwing up.

I wrote a survey for you (below) and originally titled it Today’s bear legs culture.  None of you called me on it, but later when checking the results I noticed my mistake.  Of course it should have been bare, not “bear.”

Wish I could say I wrote that on purpose to get people to respond, but it was a total blonde moment.  I went to see the votes (as of this writing, 83 percent of you have chosen “Can’t die a horrible death soon enough”), and I busted out laughing about the mistake I made.

But now, I kinda like it.  So I changed the original headline of this post, too.  Maybe we ought to refer to women who choose not to wear pantyhose as having “bear” legs instead of bare legs.  But I like bears, so maybe not.

I’m still baffled by this whole bear legs movement.   What is it about this global protest over wearing pantyhose?  OK, let’s review here: Pantyhose are too hot, too uncomfortable and too … what? … too girlie?

Korean actress Lee Yoon-seong and friend.

Those arguments crack me up.   Let’s break them down, shall we?

Too hot:” I suppose if you work outdoors in Miami, pantyhose would be too hot.  But c’mon, you drive to work in an air conditioned automobile, and you have to walk about 20 feet from the parking lot to the air conditioned office where you’ll spend your entire day.  Sorry, that excuse doesn’t fly.

Too uncomfortable:”   Well, if you wear the super support kind, which are so tight everywhere that they fit and feel like a skin diver’s wet suit, then yes, you’re probably going to be uncomfortable.  Pantyhose aren’t uncomfortable.  High heels are uncomfortable!  But no one’s calling for a boycott of them (thankfully).

Too girlie:”  Hey, if you just really don’t want to be all delicate and feminine, then why even bother wearing a dress?    Is that where we’re headed?   Today, the enemy is pantyhose.  Then what?  Tomorrow, women will decide it’s too girlie to wear dresses or skirts?

What are your thoughts about this subject, pantyhose lovers/haters?   Please comment on this post, or at least participate in our poll (it’s still open) with the goofy heading.

Thanks, and ActSensuous.

NOTE (Sept. 3, 2011):  Special thanks to Bridget Brown, owner of Solarity Design (a graphic arts design company) and an ActSensuous customer, for her clever artwork of the bears ripping apart our pantyhose.

NOTE II (Sept. 3, 2011):  The haters must be taking my poll.  Now, the results of “Today’s Bear Legs Culture” are only 58 of the 107 votes so far (58 percent) are for: “Can’t die a horrible death soon enough.”

20 thoughts on “Why bears don’t wear pantyhose

  • I attach a link from the TV show ‘The Talk’. Julie Chen talks favorably about pantyhose and shows off her sexy legs and feet in hose. The other harpies on the panel have a less favorable view of pantyhose so this is definitely a mixed bag. Some women in the audience applaud that Chen looked good in hose.

    • Hi Steven,

      Thank you for your comment, and welcome to The ActSensuous Blog. Also, thank you for the link. I’ve seen it before, and you’re right that Julie Chen is (mostly) pro-pantyhose, but that moron, Leah Remini, is very anti-pantyhose. I think she really went overboard in her negative rant, and tried to steal the show from Julie.

      I thought the other panel members were neutral, or afraid to voice an opinion because of the sharp divide between Julie and Loudmouth Leah. And, yes, the audience was buying in with Julie, but they gave too much laughter and applause to Remini’s tirade, so in the end, the pantyhose issue was still in question.

      I am terribly disappointed in Remini because she frequently wore and looked fabulous in sheer nude pantyhose as Carrie on “The King of Queens” (back then when she had a nicer figure, too). For her to turn against pantyhose now just shows how weak her true character is, as it was clear she had bought in to the negative (and totally stupid) excuses so-called fashion experts had been touting back when they were trying so hard to “run” pantyhose out of existence altogether.

      I used to like Leah Remini, but now I think she’s just a big-mouth, overweight, slob.

      • Good comments Robin. Looks like the minds of the so called fashion experts and the media got to Leah’s head. Thankfully, she is no longer on the Talk as she was fired from the show afterwards due to criticism about her attitude towards her co-hosts. A couple of years later when she was a celebrity dancer on Dancing with the Stars, Leah wore nude hose with her outfit in this publicity photo:

        I find it kind of weird that Leah hates pantyhose, but wears them unless she had to wear it in the photoshoot for Dancing with the Stars. To me, she looks very beautiful and sexy in hose in that picture. Maybe she might change her tune about pantyhose after seeing how sexy she looks in them but I doubt it.

  • I think what it all comes down to is the fact that our culture is becoming more gender neutral and rejects things that are either too masculine or too feminine. Pantyhose are as girly, delicate, and feminine as it gets.

    For the last 20 years or so, women who came of age in the days of the late 1960’s and 1970’s feminists are dominating culture, politics, and entertainment. These women have worked much of their lives to eliminate gender differences in a misguided attempt to equate equality with “sameness”. I have noticed in recent years that women have become less feminine and younger men have become much less masculine.

    Many people believe that the “bare legs” movement started with “Sex and the City” and I think there is some truth to it. I think Hillary Clinton becoming First Lady in 1993 was a foreshadowing of this trend. Hillary Clinton is a disciple of 1960’s feminism and was rarely, if ever, seen in anything but pantsuits. Around this time, women began to rebel against pantyhose in the workplace since I think they viewed them as a form of male-inspired tyranny against women. Women seem to not want to be overly-feminine as they may feel less empowered.

    I disagree. A classy woman in pantyhose will have men wrapped around her finger and willing to do their bidding. I find many of the women I know aren’t really concerned with or care about dressing to attract the attention of men.

    It’s really a shame because men have become deprived of much of the feminine beauty, elegance, and class, that used to exist in American culture. Just my $.02.

    • Wow, Andrew. That is such an expertly-conceived and well-written comment, I had to read it twice to make sure I didn’t actually write it. Great comment. Thanks very much. Oh, and by the way, let’s be honest here … would anyone really want to see Hillary’s legs anyway?

    • I am interested to hear or read your opinion, Andrew. I do agree and think their is a lot of validity to what you are saying. I would also add that the latest trend of fashion “experts”, really pundits, use the word ‘tights’ for pantyhose and actual tights. Another viewer of this blog touched on this before, forgive me for not remembering his name. I also agreed with his point of view. I think the fashion pundits think that if they can get women to think of pantyhose as tights women may not be as adverse to them. As, these days the word ‘pantyhose’ seems to always be equated with older women; mothers, grandmothers, and any other business types.

      Also, many Europeans refer to both pantyhose and tights as ‘tights’ which bothers me personally. I think fashion pundits need to refer to each type of hosiery for what it is. Pantyhose should be pantyhose, tights tights, thigh high stockings as such or stockings, and knee highs as knee highs.

      The other really important thing for fashion experts to be corrected on and start implementing is an attempt to give class, respect, and even a attitude change in favor of these garments and reflect them as being a positive accessory to wear.

      We who love pantyhose and other types of hosiery know the main stream fashion pundits won’t do this because very few of them rarely wear them if at all. And, if they do they wear them with a high unspoken disdain for them.

      On a happier note, I will say that I counted seeing 58 different women, of all races, today in downtown Atlanta wearing pantyhose and tights. I was very happy and impressed to see that and hope it continues to grow. Even if the reason is weather related, I’m glad to see they all had the class and professionalism to wear them. Finally!

  • New to the blog and first time reading this post. Agree with all the readers. Seems we have been slipping into a gender neutral society. I do think however, it’s shifting. Today we had one of the hottest days this summer. Most of the summer it’s been “bear” legs. Even in the winter some women will wear nice dresses, expensive looking heels and go bare when its 20 degrees. Digress. Today with it being 94 and a heat index of 99, still saw 2 women in the office wearing pantyhose. One about 40ish in suntan hose and open toe shoes. Another under 35 wearing black hose. Wish I could compliment their taste in dressing professionally, and being feminine, but some women can take a compliment the wrong way. Still hopefully the trend is turning. Thanks Robin for keeping pantyhose for women in the forefront.

    • I work out in the desert where it has been 105 with humidity. Not the most comfortable weather, but I still wear slacks and a long sleeved shirt because I’m inside of an air conditioned office. Plus I want to look professional.

      With the exception of my office where the ladies wear mostly pants (though dressed up), I have seen some ladies wearing tights and pantyhose out here. The bank I go to must have a dress code, because all of the ladies wear either pantyhose or tights. The younger girls tend to wear tights. I’ve also seen ladies in black tights around town…in summer! During winter, I’ve seen a lot of women in hosiery. So even in the desert, there is hope.

  • Just got around to reading this one.

    Your point under “too girlie” is correct. I work in an office setting and see fewer and fewer women wearing dresses or skirts, much less pantyhose. I fear for culture at large what is happening. It’s bigger than the issue of fashion. We are losing the appreciation for masculinity and femininity. Fashion is just one manifestation of that. Consider parents raising their children “gender neutral”. I wonder how many people remember or have even heard the old rhyme about “snips, snails and puppy dog tails” and “sugar, spice and everything nice”? Let’s just say I don’t believe the trend is a good thing.

    There’s a 4th category I think you could have added to too hot, too uncomfortable and too girlie, and that would be TOO CLASSY. I guess it kind of comes under ‘too girlie’ as well, but consider how many people today, male and female, look like slobs. I’m not referring to people who are poor or have fallen on tough economic times, but I mean those in what we would call the middle and upper classes. What’s worse, they pay to look that way. The guys who can’t tuck their shirts in and wear belts but still can’t keep the pants at waist level are usually found with girls wearing jeans. That minority of the young female population that still wears dresses and skirts with pantyhose will probably be seen with guys who shave, cut their hair, tuck their shirts in, pull their pants up and don’t spend half of their salary on tatoos (and probably open the doors for them as well).

    OK, my rant is over now. So glad to have this venue in which to do it.

    • Couldn’t agree more with your points, BKRev! I was at a local watering hole recently with a mid to upper middle class type crowd. I scanned the women whilst my wife scanned the guys and out of a crowd of about somewhere around 100, about 95% of the women were wearing jeans, while every other guy besides yers truly was likewise donning the most popular USofA legwear these days. There was one other woman besides my wife that wasn’t bear legged, out of the maybe 10 or so women wearing a dress or skirt. Apparently, going out these days means (at least in my neck o’ the woods) casual works in almost all situations.

      And to your second point about blurring the male-female dress code, in the office especially, it seems to me that women want to look more and more masculine. Why this is a good thing, I haven’t the faintest idea. Think Ellen DeGeneres; more and more women seem to be good in an office setting wearing dress slacks – “business boring” is my term for this mode of dress. We can only appreciate the very few that aren’t on-board with that level of casualness.

      • Like it or not…. For many many years now the world has been very slowly socially engineered into unisex.. Gender neutral one…. “Brave New World”

  • I like to wear them and I’m a man and have more to be uncomfortable about. I love the way they look and feel on a woman.

  • This post is actually the most poignant on this noteworthy topic. I agree with your viewpoints and will hungrily look forward to your coming updates.

    Just saying thanks will not just be adequate for the extraordinary lucidity in your writing. I will right away grab your rss feed to stay up to date of any updates.

    Solid work and good luck in your life!

    • Wow, Katrina, what a nice compliment. It’s about time my journalism skills were noticed and appreciated.

      Seriously, I am so glad you commented on my second favorite piece, Why Bears don’t wear Pantyhose. (My favorite is still: A Good Time to be Asian).

      Yes, please do follow my blog and comment on any posts you find intruiging or inspiring.

      Thanks again, and Happy New Year!


  • It is pointless if a women doesn’t enjoy what she is wearing. If she is wearing hose because her dress code calls for it, and (complains) about it there is no bigger turn off…well maybe a few

    • I totally agree Jake. My now ex girlfriend didn’t wear them when I met her but she didn’t take any convincing to start. She did it just because she knew I liked it. While she didn’t complain whatsoever, I still had a hard time enjoying it because I didn’t see her as the type to wear them. I felt like she was just doing it for me which was so nice of her, don’t get me wrong, it just wasn’t/isn’t the same.

  • I don’t understand this “bear legs culture” also. Pantyhose were not designed to be uncomfortable. They were designed to show off the natural beauty of a woman’s legs. If you wear those support, control top or opaque pantyhose, they will feel uncomfortable or too hot. That’s why the ones that are 100% nylon and are sheer to the waist are the best. This “bare legs” society has lost their mind. I prefer pantyhose over “bare legs” all the time.

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