WASHINGTON (CBS DC) — Delayed marriages and less formal fashion choices among millennials have caused tuxedo sales to decline dramatically.
Millennial men are shunning formal wear rentals at weddings and other events traditionally featuring the tuxedo. Men’s Wearhouse reports that tuxedo rental sales dropped 2.8 percent in the first quarter and CEO Doug Ewert predicted to CBS News that such numbers would decline by “low-single digits” in 2015.
Ewert noted a shift in “cultural attitudes toward traditional weddings.”
“We’re seeing an increase in the number of wedding groups who elect to purchase retail outfits as an alternative to renting,” Ewert said. “We believe this is a function of a movement towards more casual and destination weddings.”
The millennial generation recently topped baby boomers as the nation’s largest population by age, with an increasing amount of young Americans choosing “I won’t ever” rather than “I do.” Pew Research Center surveys show that about one-quarter of young adults may never get married by the time they reach their forties.
Although more Americans have opted to remain single since 1970, millennials are predicted to reach the highest percentage of un-hitched individuals compared to any other generation.
About seven-in-ten Millennials (68 percent) have never been married, and those who are married delayed their nuptials until later adult years, Pew data shows. In 1963, the typical American woman tied the knot at 21 years of age and the typical man wed at age 23. By 2014, those figures climbed to ages 27 for women and 29 for U.S. men.
And when millennials are getting married, grooms are increasingly choosing less formal suits over tuxedos.
Four-in-ten couples say they’re seeking “unusual venues that better reflect their personality” according to a survey conducted by TheKnot. Farms now host 6 percent of U.S. weddings, double the rate from 2009.
A rise in sartorial selections online have pushed many millennial men to purchase less formal wedding attire outside of brick-and-mortar stores. Combatant Gentleman told Fast Company that 40 percent of its customers formerly shopped at Men’s Wearhouse or Jos. A. Bank stores.