Murses, also known as male purses or man bags (or if this were a different article, male nurses) have allegedly made a huge comeback in the retail industry. Or whatever word there is for a thing that has become popular that was never really a thing to begin with.
According to a market research firm, murse sales rose 3% over the past year compared to the year before, which might sound like not much, but came out to $957 million. This is while sales of super-cool men's bag alternatives like messenger bags and briefcases declined.
The real winner, though, is backpacks; their sales grew 24%, though there's no indication that women aren't buying more backpacks and padding the numbers with their love of the androgynous aesthetic. Of the men, an industry analyst explains the growing popularity of the murse thusly:
Men have been silently learning just how important it is to have a bag to carry their “stuff.” “Stuff” such as electronics, chargers, headphones, glasses, grooming tools and products, and even good old fashioned books. And just think about the practical side of this. Men’s clothing has gotten tighter again. Now where do men put those keys or phone?
(Emphasis ours because it's important to note that men aren't standing around in locker rooms or board rooms or wherever they gather and discussing how much they love their murses. No, this is a personal choice each man is making on their own as they grapple with the side effects of pants that get tighter with each passing day.)
The mention of tight pants brings up a good point: it's obvious that the murse trend can be blamed on hipster millennials who have probably figured out that the secret to getting people to leave you alone is to walk silently and carry a really big purse. Unfortunately, while these hipsters are getting all the credit, they aren't acknowledging the man who made the man bag work long before they were ever even putting on their skinny jeans. His name is Joey Tribbiani and he knew that a man's bag is always a great place to store one's sandwich. Unfortunately, he was ahead of his time; the world wasn't ready for him or his bag.
We will forever know, however, that Joey said it best: "It is odd how a woman's purse looks so good on me, a man."
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