Update: Based on all the evidence that has been pointed out to me as well as my own research looking into Italy’s actual penal code, I would have to say that wearing skirts as a man is not illegal in Italy. Read on to see why this question came up to begin with.
A few days ago, I came across a thread on one of the “men in skirts” forums I frequent that discussed whether it is illegal to wear skirts as a man in Italy. There were no solid conclusions which made me curious, so I did some research of my own and this is what I found.
At first glance, it seems that it is illegal to wear a skirt as a man in Italy. There is apparently a law on the books that makes it illegal to wear any “clothes of the opposite sex”:
The Italian law on cross-dressing is contained in Article 582 of the Italian Penal Code, which states that anyone who “in a public place or open to the public, appears dressed in clothes of the opposite sex, or otherwise disguised in a way that is likely to disturb the public order, shall be punished with arrest for up to six months or a fine of up to € 516.”https://travelasker.com/is-it-possible-for-a-man-to-face-arrest-in-italy-due-to-wearing-a-skirt/
So apparently the Italian legal system considers being dressed “in clothes of the opposite sex” to be a disturbance to the public order and given that Italy’s current government is very right-wing, I think it’s highly unlikely that anything about it is going to change anytime soon.
That being said, however, the only references to this law I could find were those listed below. Among them, only the first one mentioned the actual article number that supposedly forbids beskirted men.
I tried to find it in a Google-translated version of Italy’s actual Penal Code but was unable to find anything about it. Article 582 was about causing personal injury and didn’t mention anything about disturbing the public or about dressing in “clothes of the opposite sex”.
And that means I am back to square one: I still don’t really know if it’s illegal to wear a skirt as a man in Italy or if it’s just a rumor. I would love to be able to answer the question definitively, but from what I can find online, I can’t unfortunately.
My advice would be to just proceed with caution if you do visit Italy and would like to wear a skirt as a man. Perhaps asking an Italian policeman before venturing out in a skirt would be the best, most cautious approach.
What are your thoughts on this topic? Have you seen or heard anything about it? Have you ever worn a skirt as a man in Italy? How do you think it applies to “men’s skirts” such as kilts? Let me know in the comments below!