This month saw a shift in the world of fashion. New York Fashion Week for men ran from 13-16 July at Skylight Clarkson Sq – the first of its kind to take place in America’s fashion capital because until now, New York Fashion Week has almost exclusively been home to womenswear designers’ shows.

As the city joins the other ‘big 4’ fashion siblings (London, Milan and Paris) in holding a bi-annual menswear event, the first ever New York Fashion Week: Men’s could not have come at a more relevant time. For whatever reason, men’s fashion is booming right now.

The rising popularity of male fashion bloggers is testimony to this. What was until recently a largely female-dominated sphere is changing rapidly as more and more men join the fashion blogging community.

Over the next 3 weeks, we’ll be bringing you the low-down on some of the biggest names in male fashion blogging right now and getting their views on the rising popularity of men’s fashion.

Introducing Ben Heath: Twenty First Century Gent

Benji Heath Twenty First Century Gent

Ben only started blogging last year, but his blog Twenty First Century Gent has already gathered a solid following and looks like the work of someone who has been in the industry for much longer. We speak to him about starting out, getting ahead and a lifetime love of fashion. 

I would say it has become more normal to talk about [fashion].

Creativity is now almost limitless so that definitely is a factor in the prevalence of male fashion.

There are certainly more styles in men’s fashion than there were several years ago.

With social media, it is much easier to collate styles from across the globe so I definitely think that each regional/historical style has influenced fashion today.

Benji Heath Twenty First Century Gent

I’ve always tried to keep up with fashion…

…but I guess that it’s quite a subjective term. It was hard to save the cash to be able to invest in good clothing at university so I would say that my interest really took off in the last couple of years.

Creativity is now almost limitless

Put it this way, there aren’t any brands that I dislike!

To name but a few (and in no particular order): Ted Baker, ASOS, Hugo Boss, Burberry, H&M, Oliver Spencer, Ben Sherman… I think that each brand brings with it a certain style and approach.

Ben Heath Twenty First Century Gent

Being in London certainly makes a difference.

It is a melting pot of styles and statements and that can only serve to broaden your understanding of fashion. It’s not hard to be inspired by what you encounter in London. Less travel time to the shows too!

There are huge differences between women’s and men’s fashion blogging.

Readership and number of active bloggers is the most obvious contrast. The female fashion blogging community is saturated with bloggers, which is great for finding inspiration and creating a sense of community. I feel that the male fashion blogging scene is still developing; not so good for finding new connections but a great opportunity to put your own stamp on things!

Benji Heath Twenty First Century Gent

I started my blog in December 2014

It is fairly new. I saw a niche in the UK blogging scene for male bloggers and still think that it is underdeveloped when compared to the US. I’ve also always secretly wanted to be a journalist in some capacity so this lets me explore my more creative side!

London is a melting pot of styles and statements

The most challenging factor is time.

I have a full-time job and balancing that with the blog is difficult. I’m also training to become a qualified personal trainer and tutor in my spare time so I am very busy! The most enjoyable element is the community of blogging – it’s great to receive comments on my work but even better to discover new bloggers.

Ben Heath male fashion blogger photoshoot plus minus magazine

I know quite a few male bloggers.

Having only been active for six months I’m always looking for new bloggers to inspire me and to connect with. I find the US blogging scene appears to be a lot more active.

It is now so easy to connect with anyone, anywhere in the world and swap opinions.

I also think that we have come full circle in the way we digest information with individual endorsements being a very important factor in this. There is a certain level of trust and respect in the blogging community and I hope that it stays that way

The male fashion blogging scene is still developing

If you’re thinking about starting a blog, there is nothing to lose.

Assuming that you have the free time to do it in the first place, all you need is a (vague!) plan. Choose something that interests you. Whether it’s suits of armour from the 14th century or a modern lifestyle blog, you need to write about something you love. Your audience may take a long time to grow but be patient and make sure you interact with other bloggers as much as possible.

Ben Heath male fashion blogger photoshoot plus minus magazine