4 Unusual Ways Military Has Influenced Fashion Industry

It’s hard to imagine fashion without camouflage pants, military hats, or aviator sunglasses. At first, all of these were developed for the sole purpose of protective, military uniforms, but they changed into trendy clothing pieces over the years. Fashion changes often, but military-inspired clothing stays timeless, and it continues to inspire new trends even today. Aside from military-inspired fashion items, wearing patriotic hats also makes your fashion statement unique and classy, at the same time, you show to the world your patriotic side.

Below, you will find a brief history of military clothing’s influence on the fashion industry and some unusual facts you wouldn’t believe. You can read about the surprising history of why the Croatian military wore neckties or why pilots love aviator glasses so much. Keep reading and surprise people with your fashion knowledge!

Camouflage Pants

Camouflage clothing started as a protective device that was used in military uniforms during World War I and II. As the war continued, its use developed from being just a protective feature to an aesthetic one. In fact, the word “camouflage” was first used in military slang in 1914. It comes from the French word camoufler, which means “to disguise or conceal,” but it was later changed into camouflage.

The fashion trend was first noticed in Europe, but it spread rapidly across the world because of its unique pattern. Camouflage clothing became an interesting fashion trend for civilians in the 1960s. The popularity of this clothing style peaked during the Vietnam War era. Military-inspired clothing came back into fashion again in the 1980s when a new generation was obsessed with punk subculture and rejecting authority. Since then, this clothing style has never ceased to be popular.

Combat Boots

The first combat boots were designed during WWI for German soldiers serving in trenches. They were made of leather with reinforced toes and heels to protect soldiers’ feet from shrapnel. The design was based on an officer’s walking boot, but it had been modified to be more functional and comfortable to wear during combat.

The original German combat boots were inspired by civilian hiking boots. When WWII began, the U.S. Army adopted the same footwear design that German soldiers had used before. Interestingly, the U.S. Army didn’t name these boots for a long time because they were still considered to be walking boots instead of combat boots. They were simply called shoes, marching, jungle, mountain, or moccasin type, depending on the design and purpose for which they were issued.

Since WWII, designers have constantly been improving their quality and functionality. They have added new material types to make them lighter and more attractive, but combat boots still preserve their basic shape and structure to this day.

Aviator Sunglasses

Aviator glasses were first designed at the beginning of WWI for U.S. Army pilots who needed good flying goggles. At the time, military aviators had no choice but to use regular goggles that weren’t very effective in protecting their eyes from extreme cold or bright sunlight while flying at high altitudes. They were often forced to take off their goggles to see better using binoculars or rangefinders mounted in their cockpits. This made them more vulnerable when they came under attack from enemy fighters.

The U.S. government ordered Bausch & Lomb to create a new kind of goggles that would allow pilots to have clear vision even with their goggles on. The company invented a new kind of glass that was so durable and impact-resistant that it could be used to create eyeglasses for pilots. When the First World War ended, the U.S. government created new regulations regarding flight helmets and goggles as well as other parts of pilot uniforms, such as leather helmets and leather jackets made by Aero Leather Company.

The U.S. military continues to use aviator glasses today even though they no longer need them as flight equipment since the late 1940s. Even so, aviator glasses are now popular among civilians because they look so stylish!

Neckties for Military Uniforms

Neckties were first used in Croatian military uniforms because of a decree that stated all officers must wear ties with their uniforms on duty so they could easily distinguish officers from enlisted men. After that, neckties became all the rage with all officers around Europe and in conscript armies like the British or American ones.

In 2014, the British Ministry of Defense announced that their army would no longer require military personnel to wear ties while on duty. The decision came after years of debate about whether ties hindered troops’ movements or not. Some argued that neckties hampered soldiers because they could get caught on equipment or get stuck in door or window frames if someone needed to rush out suddenly.

Others claimed that neckties actually opened up soldiers’ throats and made them more vulnerable to attacks at close range. Other people claimed that wearing neckties was just a waste of money because ties have no practical function at all! However, it seems that neckties have proven themselves useful after all — they actually do help military personnel recognize each other instantly!


Military clothing has a surprising history that still influences our lives today. Military clothing was originally used for tactical purposes, but it has changed into an aesthetic fashion trend over the years. This is no surprise since military designs are sometimes the most practical ones — they are made from durable materials and designed to be functional, but they also look stylish on civilians.