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30 1970s Men’s Fashion Adverts That Cannot Be Unseen

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Men’s fashion is the gift that keeps on giving. Until armour becomes ubiquitous, men will continue to struggle.

As the great Yeoman says on these pages, ‘Before launching into the typical “Oh, aren’t those Seventies fashions so terrible” spiel, let’s get one thing out of the way: 70s’ fashions are an easy target because they took chances.” And drugs. In a man-sized onesie. And, like wife-swappers in a Hollywood whirlpool, these men moved on quickly. Had these style seekers not grasped adventure by the balls and squeezed it into Mick Jagger’s bucket ‘n’ spade we’d all still be wearing denim leisure suits. And that can’t help anyone.


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Spotters: EatLiverAllThatIsIntersting.

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  • Archie Dux

    I wish I could still buy a mint green, mix-n-match liesure suit.

    • Princessofmirth

      My dad had one until 2005!

      • flashbakcom

        Any photos to share with us?

        • Princessofmirth

          I do, but my scanner is out of commission! I’ll see what. I can do.

          • Def Aced

            please please please deliver

    • Jimmie Robinson

      I had one and can’t find one photo of me in it…I was one cool cat…

    • Rosie46

      Or pink!!!!

    • MakingSatanBlush

      I had a neon green nehru jacket!

  • Princessofmirth

    Can’t get over the yellow fortran outfit with the pimp hat.
    Sadly, this was what they were wearing when i was born (1973).

  • The4thStooge

    Whenever I think that the 70s weren’t that long ago, I look at ads like these. There was something about that era that made it seem dated even while it was going on–at least that’s what it seemed like to me. Granted, I can only remember bits of 1977, more of 1978, and quite a bit of 1979, but I remember laughing at bell bottoms. Of course, the 80s really couldn’t laugh at anything…fluorescent green t-shirts, Swatches, and leg warmers for all!

  • Ed Freeman

    I was in my thirties during the seventies. Nobody I knew wore clothes like that. I never even saw those fashions, if you can call them that, on the street. Everybody I knew wore jeans and tee shirts, not much different from today. Those designers were catering to clueless, wannabe hipsters in small towns in the midwest. They were the butt of jokes back then, same as they are now.

    • Mary Kaye

      Where the heck did you live? I saw guys wearing this stuff all the time, especially the high-waisted pimp-clothing, at the mall by the navy base. Usually they had a pimp hat and a fur coat, too. Swear to god.

      • Rosie46

        They were pimps!! LOL

      • Martine

        I agree. These are not pictures of real life. I have seen enough pictures of street style of the seventies, and people looked alot better then they do now. Just google 70’s street style photos. Tou see the most amazing looks. I am sure no one wore anything like that. Everyone wore bell bottomed Levi’s, or straight leg Levi’s, and they wore jeans that fit alot better. Or watch a movie made at the time, you will see people wore really elegant things. I love the high waisted looks on guys. Look at the Dirty Harry movies. You will see some perfect style. Or watch Love Story with Paul Redford. He looks amazing. Regular people wore simple jeans. And actually alot of the things shown here are great. That buckskin jacket would be perfect today.

        • xbj

          High waists didn’t come in until the mid-late 70’s, and from the glam bands in England. VERY different styles and mindset between the early 70’s (the apache scarves, the wild colors, the crazy prints) and the reactionary disco years when eveyrthing was high waisted angel flight pants and shiny polyester shirts.

        • brkitdwn

          Those were all models doing photo shoots. Of course they all looked cool.

        • Sal Vation

          im sorry but you must of been living in a cave. those clothes were everywhere. some people lose their memory as they age.

      • Richard Harper

        I was 20. *I* wore this stuff all the time.

    • AlbertCat

      I only saw these looks occasionally in high school and college. But what gets me about fashion shoots then is how tight everything is. Yes, jeans were tight-ish (with bell bottoms), but nothing like skinny jeans today. You wore your shirt tucked in, but never that tight! And Levis with button flies were as ubiquitous as Dingo boots….with the metal ring!

      • SCOTT

        I still have my Dingo boots. My feet haven’t grown the way my waistline has.

      • Katriana

        actually we called those tight jeans, corduroys, and striped bell bottoms ball crushers, and the guys did wear them, I was born in 64, and lived in different states growing up.

    • cconover1

      Born in 64, my mother bought me a lot of clothes that looked like that. Not the sweater stuff, but the print pants, especially. I had bell bottoms too.

    • Willow Silverhawk

      I totally remember these fashions. Everyone wore them. And I lived in a small midwestern town. I’m not sure who you were hanging out with. I was in my early teens, and it was definitely what everyone wore.

    • medievalrants

      I was a teenager in the 70s and, yup, the guys wore a lot of this stuff. I remember looking at the patterns on the print shirts of the guys who sat in front of me in school.

    • Jeffrey

      because everyone knows kids in small towns in the midwest stay at the height of fashion *derp*

    • zioledeux

      i wore clothes like this and so did my friends. i guess it depends on the circles you moved in. if i could go back there and buy those clothes again i would

    • Edward Land

      ed…eddie here in los angeles. Did you like the jumpsuits of the era as form of unisex androgenous looks?

  • Richard Palmer

    I was in my teens in the 70’s. If it didn’t have this logo. It just didn’t get worn.

    • Sean O’Neal

      W36 L34… as a teen…

      • Jaiden Everett

        501s are shrink to fit, which necessitates buying them in a bigger size.

        • Martine

          They haven’t been shrink to fit for the last thirty years. If you want to buy raw selvedge Levi’s, prepare to pay over 200.

          • cuturn

            Yep shrink to fit, had to get them about 2 inches bigger & longer. And the 70’s were definately more than 30 years ago. Was a jeans, t-shirts were I lived and cut offs. Hip huggers & cords too.

      • Richard Palmer

        Stock photo. 😉 but yes. I am a big person.

    • brkitdwn

      Those types of Jeans were only 20.00 up until the early 2000s

    • Francis Salvatore Torchio

      Levis are still the best jeans of all time. I prefer the 201s myself.

  • Ah, yes the 70’s… dorks & pimps… we’re so much cooler now – we got hipsters!

  • Def Aced

    $20 for a pair of pants during the 70’s, that was a lot of money.

  • AlbertCat

    I’ll take the suede leather jacket loaded with fringe right now!….espsecially for $25!!!!!

  • Holly Hayes

    How humanity managed to survive through this without dying of shame is beyond me.

  • Ronald

    Somebody please rip out my eyes, set them on fire and stomp on them! AAAAHHHHH!!!!! Seriously though? Women in the 70’s were hot….the guys? Not so much.

  • yllas

    I lived in a good sized city in the 70’s and never saw much of this silliness. It MAY have been the thing in larger cities, but you have to understand it takes a while for fashion to filter down to the masses from their betters, no matter what era. That is why you see guys with greasy ducktails who look like Sha-Na-Na rejects in the 60’s, when in more advanced areas they are wearing long hair and bell bottoms. Give them 5-10 years, the hippie look moved on, but in Tennessee or Arkansas, they finally get the newest fringed vests and Frye boot…. And it always makes me laugh to see, say, a pink polyester pantsuit on some guy, some over the top thing, and an admiring female stuck into that ad. As if to say, ‘look! you can wear this! you won’t look gay! wimmen love it, wimmen loves the fashions! look, there’s one in the ad, that makes it all right!’

  • MuchMoreToLearn

    How could anyone know who the pimps were back then?!

  • M J

    Those polyester shirts used to stink when the guys sweated!

  • Jerry

    Hey! No making fun of those fringed, leather jackets! I used to have one, and they were the coolest! (Of course I don’t advocate leather and fur products now)…

  • Highland Fashionista

    This is the BEST collection of 70s clothes for men I’ve seen in a while. I love the For Whom the Bells Toll advert…total Blue Steel going on.

  • johncnnj

    Y’all needed to visit the clubs in the 70’s and early 80’s…Just another night at Starship Discovery or Leviticus.

  • EAB

    Midnight Cowboy, much?

  • deprivedfed

    Being from Detroit, I remember all of these clothes. You know at least their A$$ w2as not hanging out. Some clothes are moving back to these styles, not colors. There is only so much you can do with clothes.

  • The first handsome model is Jim Hutton, Timothy Hutton’s father, best known for his 1975-1976 TV series, “Ellery Queen”. He died in 1979. My own father, rest his soul, loved wearing those silky patterned shirts (“Lively Look Livelier!”), but he only ever went for simple denim bell-bottoms, thank goddess!

    • Katydid

      None of these models is Jim Hutton

      • This is Jim Hutton as Ellery Queen from around 1976. I don’t have any other “proof”, it’s just my educated guess (going by the cheekbones, nose, eyebrows, and mouth) that the model at the top of the page is him.

  • BT7design

    The strange bit is listening to people make fun of these…while they are wearing a dirty t-shirt, shorts or old sweatpants, and pink see-through crocs. Stay classy America.

    • DrBrodski786

      Exactly. I same the same thing when people start ridiculing old school music, movies and especially TV. Nobody can legitimately claim that things today are in any way better. In many ways they’ve gone backwards. “Wow, look how crappy and cheap the old TV version of The Incredible Hulk was!!” “Oh yeah, the CGI remakes are so much better……”

  • Martine

    Men did not wear leotards in the 70’s. Find me one that did in real life. this is some bullshit. Everyone worse Levi’s. grey cords, and lots of polo shirts. I would wear any of it right now. In fact i do. I love vintage from the 70’s. Its the most elegant time in style. The Lacoste sportswear. The Halston dresses. Perfect. Want to know what people wore? Watch the old Charlies Angels. You will drool over every outfit and wish it was in your closet today.

    • Jack Frost

      I love the outfits in the movie Boogie Nights, have you seen that one?

  • Michael Cavalier

    I can’t imagine living in a world without pink pimp outfits.

  • TKW

    Agreed. I recently found a pic of what I wore then and I am still wearing it! Colored T-Shirts, jeans (ok, maybe they were a bit more flaired) and leather adidas or other sports shoes. People that dressed like this was such clueless fashion chasers wht no sense of there own style. Thought it then, think it now. The few times I dipped into “fashion” I regretted it…looking back – totally embarrassed by how I was “taken in” by the fashion marketing people.

  • hueymiller

    I was 13 in 1970. These ads scarred me for life….I’m still in therapy.

  • At least their pants stayed up.

  • Athena Padgett

    Fabulous. That’s what I say.

  • Francis Salvatore Torchio

    And who can forget Eleganza. They exemplified the pimp look in the 1970’s which was concurrent with the disco look. Both succeeded the hippie look.

  • John_Twiss

    As bad as some of the men’s fashion of the 70s were – I also recall some pretty terrible women’s styles – not forgetting the big hair which is apparently still popular in at least one South Western State! As for women’s footwear today….. PULEEEEZ!