Leandra M. Cohen: Man Repeller

Photo from inc.com

What in the world is a man repeller? Perhaps it is a woman who just cannot secure a man for the life of her? Or maybe it is a special device that makes men run for cover. According to Leandra Cohen, a man repeller is a woman who dresses in a way that repels men. This is the very idea for which she named her company.

In 2011, Cohen was a junior in college studying journalism at the New School in New York City when she thought of the idea. In a video for StyleLikeU on Youtube, Cohen shared the moment she knew she was a man repeller.

“I was at Topshop with a really close friend of mine and I was complaining to her about the sad state of my love life,” Cohen says. “It was failed relationship after failed relationship and I was like, ‘why does this keep happening to me?’”

To which her friend replied, ‘‘maybe it’s because of how you dress, look at what you’re wearing: high waisted denim cutoffs, with a button up denim shirt and suede black flat booties.’” 

She realized, “‘Holy shit, I’m a man repeller.’”  

Photo from manrepeller.com

Around this time, Cohen was studying abroad in Paris, so she took it as a perfect trial run to launch a blog with a target audience of people who were sick of the haughty nature of most fashion publications. She wanted humor; she wanted it to be weird; she wanted real. Naturally, the brand’s namesake was Man Repeller. The most important aspect of the site was that Cohen wrote articles that she herself would want to read. She wanted it to be casual and hilarious — “a humorous website for serious fashion.”

Photo from twitter.com

What began as an experiment, transformed into a beautifully successful, full-time career for Cohen. 

Since 2011, she has grown her brand from the ground up. Nowadays, she is regarded highly in the eyes of New York’s fashion elite. She sits front row for every show at New York Fashion Week and always publishes a witty article about all of her findings soon after the shows.

The most interesting thing about Cohen is that her sense of humor translates into her wardrobe. Her idea of the best wardrobe is “one that you can blindfold yourself and go pick anything out of it.” Her style is weird and quirky, but it works. It has definitely stuck with the theme of “man repelling” — but don’t worry, she eventually found her now-husband, Abie!

Photo by David X from instyle.com

Cohen’s consistency from writing to clothing style is impressive and her hard work is admirable. Her story can be seen as an inspiration for all aspiring fashion writers.

No matter how strange the look, confidence perseveres.


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