Friends Don’t Let Friends Go ‘Bear’-Legged


Robin Maryland, president, ActSensuous

Remember the slogan “Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive Drunk,” written several years ago by the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Ad Council? That campaign created an effective awareness about the death toll from driving impaired, and introduced the concept of the Designated Driver.

I like to think that The ActSensuous Blog has similarly wide-reaching influence, and I’m sort of the designated person trying to drive women to wear pantyhose.

Let’s count the ways this blog has impacted what you’re now enjoying, shall we?

During the 2010-11 NFL season, I complained in my blog about Faith Hill’s awful “bear” legs in her Sunday Night Football intro song.  And then, what happened in the 2011-12 season? That’s right: She donned pantyhose and looked 100 times better.  Oh yeah, I’m taking credit for that. (Hey, you’re welcome!)

Not convinced? OK, how about this: Devoted watchers of NFL Network have to admit they cringed every time they saw one of the show’s hosts, Kara Henderson, who always wore way-too-short skirts for those horrid pasty white legs of her’s, which she flashed all too often. And what happened not long after I called her out for this (Nov. 4, 2011: “Pantyhose happenings on my mind”)? That’s right. She has been wearing pantyhose regularly on the show — quite beautifully, too. Coincidence?  I don’t THINK so.

Check out this video of Kara Henderson in studio on the NFL Network:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=Ym7_Ji4Zf_s

I can picture how the conversation around the NFL Network studio must have gone: “Kara, we love ya, girl, but those bear legs of yours are killing our ratings. We get that you women today hate pantyhose, but listen, we don’t want you to end up getting The ActSensuous Blog’s next Grizzly Award. That’s the kind of thing that can end a gal’s career.  So, c’mon now, why don’t you break out the pantyhose? Our ratings will soar, and Robin will probably heap loads of praise on you for how good you’ll look. It’ll be a win for everyone.”

Yeah, it likely went something like that, I’m pretty sure.

Now, if you Google Kara Henderson, you won’t find a single photo of her in pantyhose. But on NFL Network, she has become a pantyhose babe. But, I’m not done with the NFL Network yet. Now, it seems every female host on the show has gone all pantyhose on us. Check out this video of the lovely Lindsay Soto (now, Rhodes):

http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-network-total-access/09000d5d826f8ad8/Rolle-looks-back-on-championship-run

Wow. Those are some killer legs in beautiful sheer nude pantyhose, eh? Do you just see how influential the ActSensuous Blog really is?

I feel some of you slipping away from me.  You want more evidence, don’t you?  Fine, fine.

One of my regular columns on this blog is “Credit ‘Wear’ Credit is Due,” in which I recognize and glorify the little people (you know, like Ann Curry and Julianna Margulies) for dressing beautifully, including wearing pantyhose. Otherwise, probably no one would ever pay these budding celebs much attention.

You remember my post in January 2011, “Credit ‘Wear’ Credit is Due — Who’s that T-Mobile Girl?” In that one, I lavished so much praise upon the up-and-coming Carly Foulks for how pretty she looks in those pink dresses, high heels and very sheer nude pantyhose. Yeah, that’s right — I put that girl on the map!  And what happened after that? Verizon goes out and gets the beyond-beautiful model, Cherub Moore, to wear that fabulous gray skirt and dark wine-colored blouse, complete with gorgeous sheer pantyhose for last year’s Black Friday TV commercial.  Need I say more?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w34kGqZb52c

Again, if you Google Cherub Moore (and, really, why wouldn’t you?), you won’t find one picture of her wearing pantyhose. But it’s pretty clear that when advertisers write spots for their clients, they think of me and the influence of The ActSensuous Blog. Obviously, they realize the value of featuring their lovely models in pantyhose.  And, again, I take full credit for that. (What?)

Too much power?

But, as Peter Parker’s uncle taught us in Spiderman, “With great power, comes great responsibility.” (Did I mention Kirsten Dunst wore pantyhose in those Spidey movies because of me? But, I digress …) And now, I have to live with the fact that this far-reaching influence I wield actually could be starting to back-fire. That’s right. Those people who are equally devoted to the bear legs movement — the people I like to call, you know, the villains — are beginning to take notice of all the good I’m doing out there for truth, justice and the American way, and they’re fighting back.

I didn’t write a post about this next subject (although I did think about doing it), but you guys beat me to the punch when you wrote some comments about the CitiBank TV commercial, in which (actual professional rock climber Katie Brown) says:

My boyfriend and I were going on vacation, so I used my Citi Thank You card to pick up some accessories: A new belt, some nylons, and what girl wouldn’t need new shoes? …

A few of you praised that commercial for its obvious reference to nylons of the hosiery variety. I loved that you picked up on that and made a big deal about it. But have you noticed that the writer(s) recently modified that line? Now, when the lady rock climber talks about picking up some things she’ll need for her vacation, she says “A new belt, some nylon (instead of nylons) …”

Are you kidding me? Is the writer of that commercial such a pantyhose hater that he or she (more than likely, she) had to take away that cute play-on-words in order to not encourage us pantyhose lovers? I can just picture some little Kelly Ripa-like writer thinking to herself: “I’ll show those pantyhose lovers!” Is it just me, or is this edited line a retaliation for all the excitement I (OK, you this time) generated about this commercial’s use of the word “nylons?”

Similarly, Cherub Moore has since appeared in (at least two Verizon commercials that I’ve seen), but now she’s actually wearing pants that do nothing for her lovely figure. I hope Verizon is happy with themselves for dressing her down, and making her look just average, after I (yeah-yeah, you guys, too) bragged about how beautiful she looked in the Black Friday commercial.

Are the writers/directors/producers of these commercials making adjustments based upon what we’re doing in this blog? OK, well, probably not. But it does kinda make some sense. We brag them up for dressing their spokeswomen in pantyhose during a time when, let’s face it, the majority of the world’s women hate pantyhose. You’d have to think those responsible for these commercials might realize that they could attract a larger audience for whatever they’re selling if they suck up to the bear-leggers rather than to those in the minority who appreciate and value pantyhose.

Reality setting in

Similarly, I’ve been sooooooooo disappointed lately in many of the celebs on whom I’ve heaped tons of praise for their devotion to wearing pantyhose. And when some of the usually-pantyhose-friendly ones don’t, I make excuses for them and blame it on the costume designer for dressing them in bear legs. But, when celebs appear on late night talk shows, or are out and about town, and dress in nice outfits but with bear legs, that’s clearly on them.

Stars I’ve complimented for their devotion to class and elegance, especially in dressing up and wearing pantyhose, have been letting me down lately. For example, I have never seen Morena Baccarin wear pantyhose on a single talk show or awards show. Not Dana Delany either. Not Jennifer Lopez. And lately, I’ve seen Milla Jovovich more often bear-legged than in pantyhose. And don’t even get me started on Angelina Jolie and her constantly popping her bear leg out from her high-slit dress during the Academy Awards show. Bimbo.

Actress Julianna Margulies is always professional and classy during appearances on late night talk shows, such as “The Late Show with David Letterman.”

Still, the only celeb who seems to always do the right thing when it comes to how she dresses for public appearances is Julianna Margulies.  But, is she wearing pantyhose in the photo above?  If so, those are the sheerest nude pantyhose on the planet.  I actually saw this episode of  “The Late Show with David Letterman” and thought she was wearing, but at least one of our readers commented on this post that she is actually bear-legged.   I guess my eyes aint what they used to be, or more likely, I saw what I wanted to see.   What say you?  Did Julianna Margulies actually appear on Letterman bear-legged?

I’ve often written that Nicole Kidman and Sandra Bullock, almost always can be counted on to wear pantyhose during public appearaces.  And, maybe to a large extent, that’s still the case, but increasingly, it seems that 99.5 percent of celebs are brainwashed and believe they have to appear in public bear-legged because “that’s what everyone is doing.” Pitiful.

One celeb I thought I could count on more than most to wear pantyhose during public events is gorgeous Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi, but she’s killing me these days. I really thought of her as very strong-willed and independent — someone who would always do what she wanted to do — not what everyone else was doing.  Yet, while she once frequently wore pantyhose during publicity events, presumably because it is the right thing to do, and because she has the class and traditional values to do the right thing, it is increasingly rare to see her in pantyhose.  Still, I have confidence in her.  I believe (I need to believe) she’ll go back to doing what she knows is right.  She looks incredible in pantyhose and even (gasp) bare-legged (no bear here for her), so I can only hope she chooses pantyhose just because she wants to.

And lovely little Lucy Liu? Forget about seeing her in pantyhose, which is practically a crime since she looks stunning in them.  And the extremely rare times we do see her in pantyhose, they’re too often the thick black ones that just don’t suit her.

While it is great that Sandra Oh was honored recently in Canada’s Walk of Fame, it’s sad that she didn’t think the occasion called for pantyhose with that nice dress.

But I am most dismayed by the way Sandra Oh dresses. I know what you’re thinking, but unlike her character on “Grey’s Anatomy,” she truly is gorgeous in a dress, high heels and sheer nude or suntan pantyhose.

Sadly, it seems lately that we’ll just never see her in pantyhose anymore.

She’s a perfect example of a star who grew up with traditional Korean values, used to dress beautifully and appropriately in the proper situations, but now has seemingly become just another brainwashed Hollyweird go-along-er.

A case in point occurred in October 2011 when Sandra Oh was inducted into Canada’s Walk Of Fame for her long career in film and television.

If ever there were a time for Sandra Oh to wear pantyhose, this was it, especially since she grew up in Canada. Instead, she did the “ugly American” thing and showed up bear-legged.

Terrible, Sandra.

Always hope

Actress Miranda Cosgrove shows class and grace, appearing on the Red Carpet wearing a beautiful dress and pantyhose during a Screen Actors Guild awards show recently in Los Angeles.

As much as I appreciate when veteran celebrities do the right thing and wear pantyhose during public appearances, I think I love it even more when very young up-and-coming stars set themselves apart from the pack in the way they dress, wearing pantyhose with their pretty dresses and high heels.

You know how I’ve gushed over the likes of Lady Gaga and Katie Perry for being frequent wearers of pantyhose when out and about. And that can be said for Paris Hilton, too. I’ve almost resigned myself to realize and admit that EVERY celeb is going to have days where they just can’t be bothered to dress nicely.

But recently, I’ve been seeing two 19-year-olds, Selena Gomez and Miranda Cosgrove (iCarly) wearing pantyhose during public appearances.

I have to say I had never heard of Miranda until I saw her on a couple of late night talk shows and was so proud of her for dressing up and wearing pantyhose for the occasions. This is such a great sign of hope for the future.

So I’ll go ahead and give myself credit for that.  I’m funny that way, ya know.

2011 a Great Year for Pantyhose


Robin Maryland, president, ActSensuous

If the “bear” legs movement won the decade of the new millennium, pantyhose certainly got their legs back in 2011.

(NOTE: I’m putting quotes around “bear” just once and then running with it as-is. Seasoned readers get my play on words, which have their origin in one of my earlier posts: “Why Bears Don’t Wear Pantyhose.”)

No, I’m not proclaiming that everything’s back to normal; far from it. But I think greater strides were made in 2011 than at any time from 2000 on.

I do think 2011 gave us much for which to be thankful, and optimism for years to come. While things looked pretty bleak from 2000 through 2010, I am thrilled by the number of new and seasoned celebrities we saw wearing pantyhose in 2011.

In movies, on TV shows, in TV commercials, on singers/performers taking the stage, on game shows, across fashion runways, in magazines, and practically everywhere we looked in the community, we saw more pantyhose in 2011 than I think we saw in the previous 10 years. And if you want to see beautiful women in pantyhose, just do a google search, and you’ll find that pantyhose are indeed alive and well.

Pantyhose took us by storm in the late-1960s, absolutely ruled in the ‘70s and ‘80s, and enjoyed a good run through most of the ‘90s before “Sex and the City” reared its ugly head in 1998.

In the role that made her famous, actress Catherine Bach as Daisy Duke on the TV show, “The Dukes of Hazzard,” made sheer pantyhose famous.

And, in the ’70s, no one did more for pantyhose than actress Catherine Bach in her role as Daisy Duke on the TV show, “The Dukes of Hazzard.”  Bach took sheer pantyhose to icon status, wearing them with her signature short-shorts and heels on the show.

It’s difficult to imagine how and why so many women in the world would try so hard to distance themselves from the look made famous by Bach.

Looking at this picture of Catherine Bach, I can’t see how anyone could believe that pantyhose are old-fashioned and irrelevant in society today.  A look of sheer beauty and the truest sense of femininity is never irrelevant, and it never goes out of style.

I honestly didn’t believe the bear legs culture would catch on, and I never dreamed it would flourish, almost to the demise of pantyhose.

It has taken a great deal longer than I imagined, but women have begun coming to their senses again. That was clear in 2010, and never more evident than during 2011.

Still, through the darkest times of the 2000 decade, I was so pleased and encouraged by the vast number of men throughout the world voicing their displeasure over the bear legs movement. There are thousands of pantyhose forums, websites and blogs about the love and devotion that (at least) men feel for pantyhose.

I still can’t believe that so many women don’t seem to care that seemingly 99 percent of the male population loves them in pantyhose. The fact that women almost universally reject the beauty, femininity, class, elegance, and sensual characteristics inherent in pantyhose remains a complete mystery to me.

I should acknowledge that, along the way, there have been many women who never bought into the bear legs culture.  Occasionally, I read on an online forum about a woman or two who, like me, just don’t get the hostility other women have toward pantyhose.  It is so heartwarming and encouraging to read the words of some women who say they love pantyhose, and the attention and appreciation they get from wearing pantyhose for men who love it so much.  We can’t know about these everyday women on a large scale, so unfortunately, I cannot give them the praise they deserve. Still, we know they’re out there, so if you’re reading, thank you for remaining professional at the office, classy about town and always feminine in all situations.

Similarly, I’ve been delighted and encouraged by all the support from readers of The ActSensuous Blog this year. I greatly appreciate all your comments, compliments and well wishes.  So, in addition to my usual ranting and raving about celebs and the state of the pantyhose industry, in this year-in-review post, I want to share with you some things you might find interesting – the stuff you guys contribute.

Your comments

You guys write some well-conceived and thought-provoking comments.  You have a real understanding of what’s going on in the world of pantyhose.  You know the celebs who are devoted wearers, and you know the ones who aren’t.   In many of your comments, you attach links to pictures, videos and online articles about pantyhose.

I love it when you write about a colleague at work who routinely wears, or doesn’t.  I love when you write about your most memorable pantyhose experiences and the affects they had on you.

And, of course, I appreciate all the nice things you write about my different posts.  I couldn’t do this if I didn’t think you cared and appreciated it.  So thank you for all your support.

In case you ever wondered, most of those who comment on my blog are not ActSensuous customers.   Sometimes, it’s a bit embarrassing when a customer writes a comment and closes with how much he loves our products and our customer service.  I’m not asking for that, but it’s always nice to read the positive feedback, and I am sure it’s good for business.  So, to those customers/readers, I’ll say this:  That’s not what the blog is about, you don’t have to endorse us in your comments, but I know it comes from the heart, and I do appreciate very much your good intentions.

One reader complimented me a long time ago for keeping the blog separate from the business.  I never expected anyone to notice or care about that, but I always appreciated that this guy got it and pointed it out.  In fact, of the 48 (before this one) posts I’ve written since May 2009, only one was blatantly about ActSensuous – the one on April 25, 2011, called “Return of Pantyhose TV ads a Good Sign.”  In it, I shared my vision (OK, fantasy) of having a celebrity become the official spokesmodel for ActSensuous.  I wrote about the celebs I’d choose if I could.  That post was pretty popular and got some good comments, but I really thought it would get more response from you, telling me which celeb you thought would be perfect to represent ActSensuous.

And that leads me to this:

The polls

I thought polls would be a good way to be heard for those who don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment on a blog post.  What could be more anonymous than that?  Even I don’t know who clicks an answer on a poll on my blog. Yet, the response numbers seem low to me.

To those who have voted on my various polls, I thank you.  Your answers to the poll questions – your voice – give me an insight as to what you think about the state of pantyhose in society today.  To demonstrate that point, I’ll share with you the results of some of those polls, starting with:

  • “Which celebrity would be perfect to represent ActSensuous?”
Following her breakout role in the movie, “The Devil Wears Prada,” Anne Hathaway has maintained a classy and feminine look, including wearing pantyhose for all the right occasions and venues.

Of the 50 votes this poll generated, Anne Hathaway garnered 14 (30%).  To put that in perspective, the next highest vote-getter was Milla Jovovich with 9 (20%).

They beat out the likes of Sandra Bullock, Bai Ling, Nicole Kidman, and four write-in names: Zhang Ziyi, Gong Li, Christie Brinkley and Morena Baccarin.

I was not surprised you chose Anne Hathaway.  I love that, even though she is so young, she gets it. While probably every celeb has her days when she just isn’t going to wear for any occasion, Anne is pretty consistent.  She has the maturity, the class and sense of femininity to wear for all the right reasons and at the right venues.  I believe Anne has a bright future as a Hollywood star, and I’d be proud to have her represent ActSensuous.

Of course I love Milla Jovovich.  She is beautiful, extremely professional, ultra classy and just plain cool.  She is a great actress, and if the truth were known, I’d choose her if I could.

Of the others, I love Bai Ling, Nicole Kidman, Zhang Ziyi and Gong Li, and I would be thrilled if any of them would even consider being the face (legs) of a pantyhose campaign, but that seems rather remote to me.

Christie Brinkley

Now, Christie Brinkley as the official spokesmodel for ActSensuous ….. that seems pretty realistic and very appealing to me.  I’ve always liked Christie.  She’s always been extremely professional, very classy and ultra feminine.

Those are some incredible legs, and she certainly understands the appeal of sheer pantyhose.

I would have thought the same thing about Morena Baccarin, but even though she can always be counted on to wear sheer pantyhose with her outfits in TV series (“The Visitors” and “Homeland”), I’ve never seen her wear during visits on late night talk shows.  I find that so frustrating because it kills my image of her.  I want to believe she is what I see in her TV roles, but have to face the reality that when she’s on her own time, she chooses not to wear.   That amazes me because she looks 100 times better in pantyhose.  Then again, isn’t that true of all of them?

  • Which Celebrity do you most want to see in pantyhose?”
Sandra Bullock performs a scene in her new movie, “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close,” in Brooklyn.

This poll generated 91 votes, of which Sandra Bullock took 34 (37%).

She overwhelmed the likes of Jessica Alba with 22 votes (24%), Kate Beckinsale, Nicole Kidman, Bai Ling, and seven write-in answers, including Fran Drescher, Michelle Yeoh, Lucy Liu, Bette Middler, and Jenna Fisher.

Good for Sandra Bullock to win that poll.

It goes to show the popularity of the veteran action, dramatic and comedic actress among the ranks of pantyhose lovers.

Why not?  Sandra always has had the professionalism and class to wear pantyhose for the right occasions.

I would have liked to see Michelle Yeoh, Bai Ling and Lucy Liu score higher, but they do in the next poll.

  • Which Asian actress do you most want to see wearing pantyhose?”
The lovely and multi-talented Asian-American actress Lucy Liu sometimes wears pantyhose during public appearances, and when she does, she looks fabulous.

Out of 34 total votes (only 34 – what’s wrong with you people?), Lucy Liu won with 13 votes (38%).

Very impressive, as she beat out whom I think is the world’s most gorgeous woman, Zhang Ziyi, who came in second with 8 votes (24%).

This poll was won because of the popularity/familiarity of Lucy Liu.  I mean who doesn’t love her?

Ironically, from what I’ve observed, Ziyi is a much more prolific wearer of pantyhose than Lucy will ever be.

In fact, as much as I adore Lucy Liu, she breaks my heart by doing the bear legs thing much more often than wearing pantyhose.

Further, it seems the rare occasion on which we see Lucy Liu in pantyhose, she’s wearing the thick, black ones.  Yet, to behold her in sheer nude pantyhose is a breathtakingly beautiful sight. At least the black pantyhose she’s wearing in this photo are fairly sheer.

Zhang Ziyi (“Memoirs of a Geisha,” “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon,” Rush Hour 2”) is only just becoming known to Western audiences, and since she lives in China, she’s not quite the household name Lucy Liu is.

Classy Chinese movie star Zhang Ziyi almost always wears pantyhose during public appearances.

But Ziyi is the Asian actress I most want to see in pantyhose.  To me, she is total perfection.

Other vote-getters in this poll were Tia Carrere, Michelle Yeoh, Devon Aoki, Bai Ling, Gong Li, Maggie Q, Karen Mok and Brenda Song.

Besides Zhang Ziyi, I next most want to see Michelle Yeoh in pantyhose.  I still love her more than any other Asian actress, and she is simply awesome in pantyhose, although, sadly, that’s a rare sight these days.

It’s so frustrating that Maggie Q doesn’t wear pantyhose on her hit show, “Nikita,” (or any other thing I’ve ever seen her in.)  There was a time (early 1990s) when Tia Carrere (“Wayne’s World,” “High School High,” “True Lies”) was the most beautiful thing that pantyhose ever happened to, but those days appear to be long gone.  I would guess most of you have no clue as to who Karen Mok is (“Black Mask” and “So Close”), but someday I’ll do a whole post about her.

Young model/actress Devon Aoki (“Debs” is my favorite movie of hers) is a frequent pantyhose wearer and looks amazing in them.   I haven’t seen enough of Brenda Song, but it’s neat that someone voted for her.

I love Gong Li, Maggie Cheung and Karen Mok, and they all look fabulous in pantyhose, but to me, there is just something truly remarkable about seeing Bai Ling in pantyhose. Maybe that’s because it’s so unexpected.

Bai Ling dressed beautifully, complete with brown pantyhose, during an appearance at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre on Nov. 4, 2011, in Hollywood, Calif.

Bai Ling is an enigma.

She is extremely intelligent and has great talent.  She is incredibly beautiful.  But she fits in perfectly within the Hollyweird culture. I don’t really get her, but I can’t help but love her.

She is known for wearing the skimpiest and strangest outfits, and looking awesome in them.

But when she wears pantyhose, it is so heartwarming to me.  She kills me in a good way.

  • Pantyhose – To Wear or Not to Wear (ladies only please)

This was not the poll that saw the widest margin of victory, but the winning answer got 19 of the 24 votes (79%). The winner, I’m happy to say, is this answer:

“I choose to because I believe in and wholeheartedly support the concepts of beauty, glamour, class and sexiness inherent in pantyhose.” Coming in second was the answer:  “I am not on one side or the other and would wear or not wear pantyhose based on the appropriateness of the situation/environment.” That answer got 3 votes (13%).

I wrote (ladies only please) at the end of the poll question because I knew what answer men would give, and I really wanted to see what women would say. I always wondered if the votes were indeed by women only. I don’t know, but there were 2 votes (8%) for the answer: “I choose not to on my own personal volition because I think pantyhose are uncomfortable, impractical and/or unnecessary.”  We know women cast that vote.

But here’s the real news: Not a single vote came in for the answers: “I choose not to because I believe in and completely support the cause for the bare legs movement … period;” or for: “I choose not to because the excuse now exists thanks to the bare legs movement.”

Hey, I’ll take our minor victories anywhere I can get them.

  • Today’s “Bear Legs culture:

This is the poll, attached to the post “Why Bears don’t wear Pantyhose,” that launched my whole “bear” legs terminology.  The answer that won this poll was: “Can’t die a horrible death soon enough.”  Still, it got only 60 votes out of 110 (55%).  Taking second place with 26 votes (24%) was the answer:  “Is to punish men (for being men).”  Sorry about that, guys.

OK, are you wondering what poll got the most activity and won by the very widest margin?  This won’t come as a surprise to most of you. It was attached to my first (and arguably best) post of 2011 (Jan. 9), titled “Why Not Pantyhose and Open-Toe High Heels?”  This post still gets comments and generates discussions, remaining one of the most popular on this blog.

  • Pantyhose with open-toe high heels?

This poll generated 160 votes – by far, the most activity of all the other polls.  The winner was the answer: “Absolutely! Yes, please!”  You gave that answer 151 votes (94%).  I’m so proud.  Getting only 7 votes (4%) was the answer: “No way! No How! Never!”  And just 2 voters (1%) selected the answer: “Who cares?”

Professional singer/dancer and TV personality Paula Abdul always wears sheer pantyhose during public events, and looks perfect in open-toe heels.

More than any of my other posts, “Why Not Pantyhose with Open-Toe High Heels?” struck a huge chord with you.  This was the post in which I first bashed all the so-called “fashion experts” for making up hard and fast rules that dictate what they say is acceptable or not for you to wear.  That anyone listens to these people is unfathomable to me.

I had no idea when I wrote it that this post would generate so many comments and poll votes.  I am so glad you overwhelmingly support the wearing of pantyhose with dress sandals.

Even more, I love it when celebs (by far the greatest influencers of fashion) completely disregard the advice of the “experts” and always wear pantyhose with open-toe heels.

Looking at the picture of Paula Abdul, I can’t imagine how there could be even a few people out there who still think this look is wrong.

 

Wrap-up

As much as I love my self-appointed mission of being the voice of hope and reason for the return of pantyhose to favor in all aspects of society, I couldn’t write this blog without your participation.  I try to make my posts compelling and entertaining, hoping to generate comments and discussion among you.  And I throw in polls to give you another avenue to express your views about pantyhose.

Sometimes, when more time than usual goes by between posts, I’m struggling to stay motivated or to come up with something I think you’ll care about.  The point is I do this for you.  I hope you will continue to contribute, and I hope more of you will get involved.

Finally, I could say this (and probably will) until I turn blue, but we owe our thanks to so many wonderful celebrities all over the world who turned out in droves wearing pantyhose this year. There’s not enough space to acknowledge all of them, but let me recognize a few we couldn’t have done without this year.

Ann Curry: She is beautiful, classy and professional. We owe her so much gratitude for keeping the bar high in TV journalism.

Carly Foulkes, the beloved T-Mobile Girl:  Now we know it wasn’t a fluke. I don’t know how many commercials she’s made now, but she’s always in one of those famous pink dresses, with awesome pumps and sheer nude pantyhose.  She’s a young hottie who potentially can influence an entire generation to dress more femininely.

Julianna Margulies is one the most professional Hollywood actress, always dressing professionally, especially wearing elegant outfits with sheer pantyhose everywhere she goes.

Julianna Margulies:  She has always been professional and classy, and now, as the star of “The Good Wife,” she can do no wrong.

She’s a great actor on arguably the best show on TV, and so, in her we have a highly visible celeb who wouldn’t be caught dead not wearing pantyhose.

Hopefully, Julianna will influence those career women who don’t think there’s anything wrong with showing up for work with bear legs.

What I like most about Julianna is that not only does she always wear pantyhose on the job, but also out in public and on late night talk shows.  She’s truly a devoted wearer.

Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Beyonce, Rihanna, Selena Gomez and other young professional entertainers are doing the right thing.

Perry and Gaga, and Paula Abdul are practically pantyhose ambassadors because they wear not only on stage, but also out in the public eye.

These women are priceless contributors to our cause.

Kate Middleton: Obviously, much has been made of her commitment to wearing pantyhose, and rightfully so.  She clearly is all about class and elegance and doing the right thing.  In all fairness, she may be the one woman who singlehandedly changes the course of pantyhose’s fate in global fashion circles.

Yes, 2011 was a great year for pantyhose. We’ve made up so much ground, and I am looking forward to more of the same in 2012 and beyond.

Wishing you and yours a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year!

A Grizzly goes to London


Robin Maryland, president, ActSensuous

Readers of this blog have come to know and appreciate my column, Credit ‘wear’ Credit is Due, in which I heap loads of praise on some worthy celebrities for their devotion to wearing pantyhose.

And we’ve had some great ones, haven’t we?  Ann Curry, Fran Drescher, The T-Mobile Girl (Carly Foulkes), Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez, Kate Middleton, and Carrie Ann Inaba (for doing a complete 180 and finally wearing pantyhose on every episode of the game show “1 vs. 100,” which she hosted recently.)

Minus that headline, I’ve also glorified some other devoted pantyhose wearers, such as Anne Hathaway, Julianna Margulies, Milla Jovovich, Meredith Vieira, Katy Perry, Parker Posey, Linda Fiorentino, Kim Basinger, Nicole Kidman and Sandra Bullock.  And there are many, many more who deserve such recognition.

Then, a couple of months ago, I introduced a whole different column.  This one shines the spotlight on those celebs who completely miss the boat, just don’t get it, lack the finest sense of true femininity, and always miss opportunites to show some real professionalism, elegance or class.

So, for only the second time, I am handing out the coveted (NOT) ActSensuous Grizzly Award.

And this time, the hardware goes to one Stacy London.

Fashion consultant Stacy London always wears beautiful dresses and high heels, but unfortunately, she's a devoted and vocal follower of the "bear" legs culture.

That’s right, the co-host of  TV’s “What Not to Wear,” a reality makeover show, in which London and her wonder boy sidekick, Clinton Kelly, use their superior brains and good taste (yes, I’m being sarcastic here) to completely trash the wardrobe of their guests and reinvent them in their own fashionwise images.

And, as many normal people have written in comments to online postings by or about these two “fashion experts,” they often do it in a completely arrogant and insulting manner.

A perfect "Beauty and the Beast" scenario as the professional and classy Meredith Vieira, left, who always wears pantyhose, interviews fashion expert Stacy London, who never wears pantyhose. Does London not see how much better Vieira's legs look than hers?

As readers of this blog know, I despise so-called “fashion experts” who make universal rules and tell everyone what they can and cannot wear, as if their likes or dislikes about fashion trends are somehow more appropriate and obviously more sound than what anyone else on the planet thinks.  It’s “fashion experts” like these two who’ve come up with the “rule” that one can never wear pantyhose with open-toe high heel dress shoes a rule that, incidentally, is almost never followed by anyone with half a brain, and one that is standing up less and less to scrutiny everywhere.

So Stacy London, possibly the queen of all “fashion experts,” gets the second Grizzly Award (after Sarah Jessica Parker for obvious reasons)?  But it’s not just because she’s a “fashion expert.”  Rather, it’s because she’s on record as stating that she likes bare legs for all seasons.  That, and she’s using her credentials and influence to further her own agenda — a personal dislike and distaste for pantyhose as a fashion accessory.

Here’s are a couple of excerpts from a 2008 segment of TODAY.com where London is a style contributor, answering readers’ questions about fashion:

Q: I was watching “What Not to Wear” when you appeared horrified by the idea of wearing hose. I know it’s not really the style now to wear nylons, but I have terrible spider veins on my white legs. What do I do now that skirts are knee-length and those veins are so obvious? Any advice?

A: First of all, the only hose I really hate are the semi-sheer ones in suntan or black. They look dated and remind me of a time when women would walk to work in their suits, those hose, white sweat socks and white leather aerobic sneakers. Blech. Might as well throw in a whole can of hairspray, too. Too ’80s!  Stay away from anything that has a mid-range denier number that indicates the sheerness of the hose (10 is very sheer, 30 is semi-sheer and 50 is opaque).

I recommend a good self-tanner for the pale-leg situation, but also realize that won’t help with spider veins. Look for opaque tights and try them in a subtle color, like a burgundy or deep purple, when wearing a neutral-color knee-length skirt or suit. They will hide your legs and add a visual punch to your outfits!

Q: You indicated that pantyhose were no longer proper attire. You stated that in summer, go with bare legs and in winter, wear tights.  I enjoy wearing pantyhose and want to know if I am old-fashioned if I wear them?

A:  I did not mean to indicate in my last segment that pantyhose are no longer appropriate attire. My feeling is that those that are considered day sheer or mid-denier don’t look modern, but a bit dated.  The denier number on hose shows you how sheer the stocking will be. The lower the number, the more sheer they are.

For example, a denier of 10 will be supersheer. These are great for evening, especially with a little shine or a back seam, as they look natural and simply enhance the legs for evening. A denier of 30, is what I have most trouble with; it’s neither here nor there. It’s not sheer. It’s not opaque. You know? It’s like a relationship: Either you’re in or you’re out. This wishy-washy sheerness dates an outfit to the ’70s or ’80s, when this style was most popular. But when you get to a denier of 50 or above, and the stocking is clearly opaque, I think this becomes a more modern and relevant look. A shiny tight like this can be used for day or evening.

OK, first, the country’s leading fashion expert comes out and blatantly tells women to go with bare legs in the summer?  She also tells women to use self-tanner for pale legs?  Seriously?  Second, she recommends opague tights in a subtle color, “like burgundy or deep purple?”  (Those colors are subtle?)

Stacy London actually wore this outfit during the Keep A Child Alive's 5th annual Black Ball Nov. 13, 2008 at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York, NY.

Hey, look, I respect others’ opinions, and the fact that London is considered a fashion expert, if that’s her best advice about leg coverings, then too bad for her and anyone who listens to her.  While I completely disagree with London about everything she says about pantyhose, I’ve got no problem with her actually saying it.  She’s entitled to say what she wants.  Where I have a problem with her is on her point about denier ratings.

She specifically says that it’s pantyhose with a denier rating of 30 that she finds objectionable.  She even cautions “If they come in an egg, you don’t want to wear them,” referring to the L’Eggs brand (owned by Hanes) of the 1970s and 80s.   But she’s wrong.  L’Eggs and their competitors (the most widely-known one being No Nonsense) made their pantyhose in a 20 denier rating.

As she said, denier rating determines how sheer the nylon fabric is.  The lower the number, the more sheer the pantyhose.  When I created ActSensuous in 2001, I looked into the 10 denier rating she referred to, and yes, they are super sheer, but the fabric is coarse and not very natural looking.  They are not soft or silky at all, and while there may be a market for them, it’s not a very big one.  You almost never see anyone wearing pantyhose like these.  And, yes, denier ratings as high as 50 are available, but they are tights that are thick and, in my view, not suitable in some venues, such as a formal dinner engagement, nor for proper business attire.

No, my problem with London’s remarks are about the pantyhose of the 1970s and 80s being so awful.  I loved pantyhose in the 70s and 80s, and I’ve never known of a 30 denier rating.   But what do I know?  The pantyhose of those decades were made almost entirely of 100 percent nylon fabric in a 20 denier, which is exactly why I made ActSensuous in a 20 denier.  I think those are precisely the kind of pantyhose that true pantyhose lovers love.  Those are the style, the look and the feel that we all miss.  Maybe London meant to say a 20 denier rating is what is so awful.

By the way, ActSensuous has hundreds and hundreds of customers from all over the world, literally from Atlanta to Bangkok, from California to Denmark, from New York to New Zealand.  We’re big in England, France and Australia.  We have customers from China, Korea and Japan.  I don’t think there is a country in which we don’t have customers.  And they all tell us ActSensuous are the softest, sheerest and sexiest pantyhose they’ve worn.  But, really, what do we all know?  We’re not “fashion experts” like Stacy London and Boy Wonder.

In doing the research for this post, I ran across this forum on the Internet:

http://askville.amazon.com/honest-opinion-Stacy-London-Clinton-Kelly-Wear-show/DiscussionBoard.do?requestId=8011723&page=1

To the question:  “What’s your honest opinion of Stacy London and Clinton Kelly of What Not to Wear?  Do you like this Show …?,  most answers were negative, but even some of the supportive ones came out against their obvious negative slant against pantyhose.

I particularly love this response:

LindsaySheers said:

… Why is (Clinton Kelly) telling me what all men find sexually alluring on women?

A lot of gay men know a lot about fashion, but to get such advice on that subject, I would like a 2nd & 3rd & straight opinion.

… These two complete followers of Brittany and Sarah Jessica Parker have agreed that they do not like pantyhose, (fine), however, they dictate to their audience and columns that, “No one likes them.” “Everyone looks bad in them.” Etc…

I think my legs are my best feature and every boyfriend I have ever had have all confessed to me, after that shyness period passed, that they were all ‘ga ga’ for me (girls in general) when wearing sheer silky pantyhose (hence my nickname, given to me by my current boyfriend sitting kind of to the side here & still a little shy) and tights, but mostly the sheer nude/tan/beige hues.

Lastly, the show was/is not only incorrect on so many levels, but caters to and from their mindset only. Falling into this show would have you most likely ending up as a follower. Be a trendsetter, not a follower. Be stylish. Be sexy. Be yourself. Not what they insist on.

Let me tell you something: this LindsaySheers gets it.  Good for her.

If ever a case could be made for wearing pantyhose, click on the image to see the expanded version. Stacy London looks very lovely in this photo, but wait until you get to see a closeup of those legs.

You know, I want to like Stacy London.

She’s a beautiful and charismatic woman, she’s very intelligent, and she has accomplished great things in her life.

Before co-hosting “What Not to Wear,” she started her career as an editor at Vogue magazine, then, became a stylist for celebrities and designers, then, a fashion contributor on many Today show formats.

She is or has been a spokeswoman for several brands, including Revlon, Pantene, Woolite and Dr. Scholl’s® For Her Comfort Insoles.

Along with Kelly, she’s written a book, “Dress Your Best: The Complete Guide to Finding the Style That’s Right for Your Body.” 

I actually felt a little bad when I named Sarah Jessica Parker the first recipient of the ActSensuous Grizzly Awards because, when researching her for the piece, I actually found several pictures of her wearing pantyhose.   That’s right, the one celeb universally “credited” with creating the bare legs culture with her “Sex and the City” TV series and movies, actually wears pantyhose fairly regularly.   It was more symbolic that SJP had to get the first Grizzly Award.

But I don’t have any reluctance about bestowing upon Stacy London the second Grizzly Award.  I can’t find a single photo of her wearing pantyhose.  Granted, some of the pics of her on the Internet are of low resolution and too small a file to really be able to tell if she’s wearing or not.  But based on everything London says and stands for, I am pretty sure she is not wearing pantyhose in any of the pics on the Internet.  Certainly, she comes across as if she hates pantyhose, thinks they are old-fashioned and irrelevant today.

The dynamic duo, Clinton Kelly and Stacy London of TV's "What Not to Wear."

I liked “What Not to Wear” when it debuted in 2002.

I watched quite a few episodes and I remember longing to see London wearing pantyhose with those beautiful dresses and high heels she always wore.  But it never happened.

I thought that was such a missed opportunity on her part — a chance for her to show professionalism, class and elegance in the role she held.  But, to her, it wasn’t a missed opportunity at all.

This lady just doesn’t believe in pantyhose … period.

Like LindsaySheers, I too was upset and offended when I saw a video of London and Boy Wonder “explaining how to wear pantyhose,” especially when they admitted the video was made only because they were getting so many inquiries from consumers about why they never talked about pantyhose.   Then, when they said that nobody looks good in suntan pantyhose and no one should ever wear them, I realized that there is probably no one more deserving of the second ActSensuous Grizzly Award than Stacy London.

Here’s that video:

http://tlc.discovery.com/videos/what-not-to-wear-how-to-wear-pantyhose.html

So, what do you think?   Could there be a more worthy recipient of the ActSensuous Grizzly Awards than Stacy London?

Credit ‘Wear’ Credit is Due – Who’s that T-Mobile girl?


 

Robin Maryland, president, ActSensuous

    Every seasoned TV watcher understands the power of the remote control.   One of the greatest inventions of our time, it allows one to channel-surf during obnoxious commercials.  

     But every once in a while, a commercial comes along that causes one to freeze and not touch that dial.  For me, it’s those T-Mobile commercials pitting the new myTouch 4G phone against the mighty AT&T iPhone.  

     But it aint the pitch that keeps me glued to the channel – it’s T-Mobile’s new spokesmodel.  

     Turns out that she is causing quite a stir in cyberspace, commanding great interest and admiration.  But mostly, everyone is asking the same question: “Who is that girl in the pink-and-white dress?”

T-Mobile's new spokesmodel in the myTouch 4G phone ads is generating a great amount of interest in cyberspace.

     One writer put it this way, “Who is the gal working the Anne Hathaway-meets-Kim Basinger look?”   Aptly said. 

     And another writer even suggested that she should play Wonder Woman in an upcoming movie.   No argument there. 

Model Carly Foulkes is the striking beauty behind T-Mobile's new myTouch 4G phone.

     While much of the speculation in cyberspace was that she is Jessica Pare of “Mad Men” and “Hot Tub Time Machine” fame, it turns out, she’s actually fashion model Carly Foulkes, best known for her work with Abercrombie and Fitch, Artistry Cosmetics, Express, Gilly Hicks, Khols, Macys, Nieman Marcus, Tommy Hilfigger and one Elle Magazine cover. 

     What I love most is that Carly honors the gorgeous dresses she wears with beautiful high heels and, of course, some absolutely delicious-looking sheer nude pantyhose. 

     My question is:  Does Carly get the credit for this very beautiful, decidedly feminine look, or does T-Mobile? 

     I mean if it were up to Carly, would she have chosen this outfit?  Or would she prefer to wear  jeans and a T-shirt, or even a dress, but – in keeping with the current fashion trend of today’s youth – no pantyhose?  

     In trying to identify her myself, I found a couple of other photos of her wearing dresses and pantyhose on stage or in magazine shoots, so she has convinced me that she deserves Credit “wear” Credit is Due!    

     But, I’ve gotta give some props to the creative talents at T-Mobile for creating the look.  After all, their previous spokesmodel was Catherine Zeta-Jones, who always appeared in glamorous dresses, high heels and sheer nude pantyhose.   

     So, a good case could be made for T-Mobile’s good eye for beauty, class and grace, and knowing how to sell it. 

     Then again, here’s what always puzzles me:  If you’ve got a beauty like Carly Foulkes as your spokesmodel, and she looks absolutely incredible dressed like this (left), why in the world would you ever have her dress like this ( below right)?

Either way, I am impressed with Carly Foulkes.  I believe that  she  really “gets it,” and that we’ll continue to see her looking lovely and classy in dresses, high heels and sheer pantyhose.