Linen skirt Brad Pitt on the red carpet

Written Leah Dolan, CNN

This week, many of us have experienced record temperatures in Europe and parts of America. While the unsettling heat may make you want to close the blinds, turn on the fan, and lie as quiet as possible, there are jobs to work and a paycheck to earn, and that’s the reality of Brad Pitt.

On Tuesday, the star was in Berlin for a preview of his new action movie Bullet Train as the city experienced ups and downs in the mid-90s. Pitt kept his cool, donning a head-to-toe linen look with a brown skirt, a matching jacket, and a salmon button-down shirt left carefully half undone.

Fans and critics have taken to the internet to weigh in on Pitt’s knee-baring hemline, but the jury didn’t decide if the outfit was “absolutely a killer” or should have come “with a warning,” as some Twitter users put it. The skirt even earned Pitt the trending hashtag of the same name on Twitter.

The all-linen look has raised eyebrows online. Credit: Tristar Media/WireImage/WireImage

But those who are shocked by Pitt’s skirt suit may be too young to remember that this is not the first time. In 1999, to promote Fight Club, a film that at its core explores the dangers of conventional masculinity and the obsession with achieving alpha status, Pitt appeared in Rolling Stone in not one, but five mini dresses. Pitt’s photo shoot, shot by acclaimed photographer Mark Seliger, was a cultural touchstone that made a strong case for a gender-neutral dress code. And for all the doubters, his status as an international sex symbol remained intact, even when he was dressed in a tight pink sequined dress.
Yet men in skirts continue to make headlines nearly 25 years later, whether Harry Styles on the cover of Vogue or Billy Porter Tuxedo at the Oscars 2019. Progress is slow, but the more it happens, the less shocking it is. Many gender-defying fashion statements seem reserved for high-end cultural events, but they seem to be making their way into more low-key events and everyday life. And why not? Sometimes, as perhaps in the case of Pitt, a man in a dress may not be a disruptive fashion at all, but simply a practical solution. If you can’t stand the heat, grab a linen skirt.

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