As the former teen fashion holy grail Abercrombie & Fitch works on rebranding itself, the company is hoping its new bearded male model can help drive sales. Unfortunately, the new style direction isn’t totally hitting the mark.
With a new men’s division head in place, Aaron Levine, Abercrombie rolled out a spring/summer campaign this month featuring model Alex Libby in a bunch of artfully unpolished looks that signal a focus on less collegiate gear.
Business Insider reports:
According to a press release, the new line is a hat tip to the brand’s roots combined with “new fits and fabrics, which is in line with the A&F’s move toward a more elevated and distinguished look.”
This is much different from the LFO-approved frat-party style we’re all used to from Abercrombie. But this new direction is very hate it or love it.
So far, the campaign has yielded mixed results. While GQ and Maxim have sung the praises of the nearly unrecognizable Abercrombie of 2016, Facebook commenters are not head over heels for what they’re calling a “homeless” look.
Oh damn. While Abercrombie’s fourth quarter comparative sales increased 1 percent last year, they’re down 2 percent overall.
Regardless, Alex Libby (who’s modeled a lot for ASOS), along with his man bun, is doing his best to sell this line. BI notes that “plenty of commenters who appear to be female on Instagram have been swooning over him, writing comments like “my kinds [sic] of aber model” and asking if “he [comes] with it?”
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Images via Abercrombie & Fitch