To sell these jeans to men, though, brands face a conundrum common in the fashion and personal-care industries: How do you convince guys to buy something they believe is for women? In the case of stretch denim, brands have found success by obfuscating what their product actually is, allowing them to recast stretch pants as a tool of masculinity. Intentionally or not, these branding decisions have helped change the modern idea of what it means to look like a man. Denim is traditionally percent cotton, but mixing in 1 or 2 percent elastane the generic name for Lycra or spandex fibers gives jeans a softer feel and helps ease the adversarial relationship between the durable, rugged textile and tender bits of the human body. Women embraced the change quickly.
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Such is cycling in Then, he won the Olympic time trial. If it was a disappointment that Team GB fought but failed to get Mark Cavendish gold in the Olympic road race, I'm still pinching myself every time I see a British rider that is, Cav wearing the rainbow jersey of the world champion all season. And the result of all this glory? British Cycling, UK cyclesport's governing body, has set a new record membership. This means that a sport that, when I first took up bike-racing in my 20s, ranked somewhere between Tiddly-Winks and Shove-Ha'penny in popularity, has now almost pushed footy into the shade, at least for a few weeks in the FA's off-season.