Men’s Apparel Sales Skyrocketing While Women’s Segment Remains Flat

TORONTO, February 25, 2014 – Retailers looking to get ahead will move away from their target female audience and focus their attention on men. Recent data from leading global information company The NPD Group reveals that department store clothing sales for men ages 20-35 have increased by a whopping 64 per cent in the 12 months ending December 2013, the largest channel increase over the past year.

Known for frequenting specialty shops, men’s gravitation towards department stores is taking some merchants by surprise. However, apparel sales for this segment are up 18 per cent across all channels, indicating a national trend that spells opportunity for savvy marketers.

“It’s a new and exciting world for retailers as men become just as interested, if not more so, in the products that have captured the attention of women for decades,” said Sandy Silva, fashion industry analyst at The NPD Group. “Whether they’re in the market for clothes, accessories, specialty creams or shaping undergarments, men can now adorn themselves with as many goods as their female counterparts.”

While the men’s fashion landscape becomes increasingly exciting with the perpetual introduction of new products, the women’s is being saturated with more of the same. Consequently, the $13.5 billion female-focused apparel market remained flat in 2013, indicating that retailers are actively turning their attention to young males.

The men’s apparel market is primed for continued prosperity, and provided this trend is more than a passing fad, Canada’s fashion industry is poised for much success in the years to come.

“The growing enthusiasm men have for apparel and its broad spectrum of associated products leaves the door wide open for retailers to explore new ways to further engage this demographic,” continued Silva. “More than ever, brands are encouraged to push the boundaries of what is typically marketed to men – Millennials in particular – and are well positioned to expand their markets organically.”

The desire for products that are traditionally geared towards women also spills into neighbouring industries, such as beauty, as more men seek out the latest dyes and serums to prolong their youth. While women are consistently rebelling against unrealistic ideals, men, enticed by a new world of merchandise, seem to be filling in the sales gaps.



Study Methodology:

The data in this study was collected from The NPD Group’s Online Panel. Online collection is based on North American shopping behaviour and purchase information made by individual Canadian consumers in the last seven days. Surveys are emailed each day of the week and approximately 23,000 responses are received per month, with 13,500 individuals having purchased at least one Apparel/Basics item. Sample is demographically weighted and projected to represent the Canadian population, and data is calibrated to Statistics Canada, retailer financials and client inputs.

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Kim McLynn


The NPD Group, Inc.
900 West Shore Road
Port Washington, NY 11050

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