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April 11, 2021

On the Brink of the Brank: The Do's and Dont's of sporting a man's tank

By SALLY MINN | September 27, 2012

The Brank, or more formally known as the bro tank, is a phenomenon most present, for better or worse, among young males in today’s society. The brank is a constant staple in the wardrobe of somewhat toolish, somewhat arrogant, but often simultaneously humorous and even laudable males in their teens and twenties.

The brank is designed and often meant to show off a male’s muscles and machismo (or rather lack thereof). The brank in its rudimentary form is your basic, loose fitted tank featuring slightly gaping armholes. Traditionally, it comes in plain, solid colors or for the more serious bro, always ready and ravenous to rage, obnoxiously loud neon colors approaching high Levels of radioactivity…just in case your fellow rager failed to spot you in the dark.

To give credit where credit is due, branks were first innovated by skaters and the like on the West Coast, who did away with sleeves for the practical purpose of allowing their underarms sufficient room to vent while the warm California sun beat down upon them. Since their humble beginnings, however, branks have drastically evolved and now feature a wide array of patterns, statements, logos, and images with armholes growing greater and greater in diameter such that everything quite literally is out in the open.

Now that we’ve all got a bit of history and background, here are some Do’s and Dont’s of the Brank:

1) DO be unabashed in resorting to the brank multiple days in a row during the summer. If it’s anywhere in the eighties or above, the brank provides a clever way to stay cool throughout the day and avoid unpleasant sweat stains. So long as you rotate a different version of the brank every other day, who’s to call you a slob?

2) DON’T forget that every version of the brank has a time and place. If you’re in class or in the library studying, maybe spare the “YOLO,” “RAGE,” “SCHWASTED,” and other flashier branks for those nights and weekends worthy of them. Along the same lines, counter to the nature of the brank and indeed the essence of bro as it may seem, try and keep the slogans at least partially clever. Hint: If you’re sporting a brank that calls for “PARTY WITH SLUTS,” and if by “sluts” you are ‘fondly’ referring to attractive females, the less likely you are in fact to party with such females.

3) DON’T overexpose the hair: I can respect the fact that people have different grooming habits and preferences, but if there’s just as much hair under your arms as on top of your head, either abstain from the brank or perhaps consider a trim.

4) DO remember that it IS okay to employ the brank as a way of occasionally putting your physique on display. Hey, if you work hard for your body, then why shouldn’t you get to show it off once in a while? Fair warning, you may come off as more than a little douche-y if this perk of the brank is overused. But the brank, after all, was at least partially intended as an outlet for male peacocking. If girls can wear and rock the booty shorts and low cut tops with minimal backlash, the bros can call on the brank.

5) DO use the brank for comfort, cooling down, and for easier movement when pumping iron and molding the guns for peak presentation.

6) DO use the brank as an outlet for displays of excessive regional, national, cultural, or sexual pride. As long as you’re not putting others down but rather bringing something up, there’s nothing wrong with flaunting the fact that, let’s say, you’re from a nation that’s won back to back wars. Charlie Sheen would certainly agree, that #bi-winning is definitely something to be proud of, something worthy of a brank.

And last but not least, it is important to remember that whatever brank you opt for:

7) DO own it and wear it with confidence. After all Bro is not a synonym for b***h.

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