The second PS Readership Survey (with prize)

Friday, May 31st 2024
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Four years ago we did a readership survey, and it was incredibly helpful. It gave us a clear picture of who the reader is, and what they want out of Permanent Style. 

We always have feedback on PS - the comments section is one of the best around - but the survey gave everyone an opportunity to give their view, even those that didn’t want to do it publicly. And the structured format of it made it much easier to implement changes. Almost 2,500 people filled it out, and as a result we introduced many things. 

It was as a result of the survey that we introduced an article-alert email to go alongside the weekly round-up one. We also improved the comment function, including the ability to add images. We introduced the waiting list system on the shop, which is now so fundamental to PS products that it’s hard to imagine it’s that recent. And we’re almost ready (four years later!) with the filters on the Lookbook page

We’re now repeating the process, and it will be interesting to see how people have changed. How many are using TikTok? How many now subscribe to editorial content, through platforms like Substack? Both the market and the media have evolved. 

We’re also offering the same incentive. Everyone that completes the survey will be entered into a draw, with the winner receiving £500 to spend in the PS shop. 

I would be enormously grateful if you would take 10 minutes to fill it out. 

There are 32 questions, and you can rattle through them pretty quickly - or if you prefer, take your time and leave some very detailed thoughts.

To everyone - whatever your motivation for completing the survey - I would like to repeat my personal, heartfelt thanks.  

You are the reason this site exists, and I am deeply grateful. The survey can be found here and closes in a week. 


Use of data

The data received as part of this survey will only be used by Permanent Style and not communicated to any third parties. 

Aggregated data might be used in public information about Permanent Style - for example, saying in our media pack that the average reader age is 42 - but no individual information.

Email addresses will be used only to enter readers into the £500 draw. They will not be added to any newsletters or subscriptions. 

(Though if you want to sign up to the weekly newsletter, of course, you can do so here)

The results of the first survey were covered in an article here

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Some of the questions to me were a little unclear, for example when talking about buying from the PS shop is that only the online shop or also the popup shops? Also on your how much would you pay for a subscription there wasnt an option to say £0/wouldnt subscribe


Hi Simon,
Yes. Noticed same thing. It needs to be clearer you can some skip questions. If you put in a zero, you’re then asked in next question what content you would pay for, without an N/A option.
Personally I would give careful consideration to a subscription option as people would expect a lot more content if paying directly.
What I didn’t put in the survey as I have only just thought of it is possibly consider a pod-cast as that may warrant a subscription or could be sponsored the same way you have ads, not product endorsement. Just a thought.


Completed the survey. If I recall correctly, question 18 states that multiples can be selected but after choosing a response the survey proceeds to the next question.


Thank you for the opportunity to chime in on what makes PS special!

It took me no where near the 7+ minutes that where suggested though, but that may be because I had a lot on my mind.


Completed! I really like PS and the blog format. The blog format is slowly dying, but I’m glad this is still a bastion in that sense. Keep up the good work!

Sir C

Second that!


Hey Simon,

Q25 says you can choose multiple answers, but you can only select one


Hi Simon,

Question 25 suggests to pick as many answers as you like but only allows you to pick one before moving on.


Survey complete. On a separate note, with the denim and chambray shirts you are waiting for, will you be doing an article on these once they are available?


Oh exciting! Do you mind me (not Alex) asking how the stock levels are on the undershirt – would prefer to combine orders with the shirts but, more importantly, don’t want to miss out on the undershirt!


I would be curious to see more bespoke projects like the bespoke pea coat or like the perfect travel blazer. So I mean not just ordering the standard house style suit of a tailoring house but pushing their limits to design for you something cool and to take the pencil and draw some designs for you. As suits are less omnipresent in a modern office, having some funky jacket-like pieces of bespoke tailoring sounds really exciting. And I guess not all tailors would be comfortable with such non-standard projects.



Was a pleasure.

I greatly enjoy and benefit from your writing style and willingness to be fairly honest and also quite detailed in your reviews of products – and somehow, it never feels dry or “specification” based.

That’s valuable. Keep telling us stories please Simon.

Best wishes
Joseph Levon Price


I completed the survey and was alarmed at some suggestions like tiktok and subscription based readership. I hope we’re not going in that direction


Tiktok is the antithesis of PS. I commented on the subscription model, but I just wonder who on earth would say ‘Yes, please charge us!’ haha
Overall, Simon, thank you very much!


Inevitably it depends what subscription gets you and what you can access without subscription (if anything).
On a similar vote on another site a reasonable minority did vote ‘yes’ in exchange for exclusive content. They did introduce fees but gave long standing members complementary access (registration was mandatory). That lasted 5 years or so and fees were introduced for them too.
There were lots of complaints at the time but most people stayed, though some downgraded to the free option. The site is only part of their business so hard to say the financial impacts for them but its been going 20 years and free and fee access still exist so presumably it worked for them.


Whilst not necessarily if favour of some things, I think its useful to you to ‘test the water’, so as to not miss an opportunity and of course to ensure ongoing relevance. Not that I see an issue with latter in your foreseeable future.


I second concerns around a subscription model (I’m not thrilled at the use of that format in other aspects of media either), however I would be interested in a PS magazine. Perhaps bi annually?

Finally whilst I’m sure we could all benefit from an in-depth guide from Simon on how to floss (the social media famous dance) I too would not want TikTok involved. Whilst you might reach a greater audience I feel it could dilute what PS has become.


Understandably most people would rather not pay for something they have long enjoyed for free. But if I were Simon I would consider whether the current model:

– enables investment at the right level in the site, whether this is trips to the far east or paying for other’s contributions like Manish.
– ensures fair remuneration for Simon and his family given the level of knowledge and effort. London is not getting cheaper as a place to live. In contrast, I know someone who gets paid £500 just to post a picture wearing a brand’s outfit, or YouTubers flogging whatever sponsored content they’ve been given (as opposed to the strict PS no sponsored content).

Jack French

Yes, I would buy a Permanent Style magazine, because I prefer to read in print, but can’t find anything that covers men’s style to the same standard. I come across the occasional worthwhile article in GQ, Esquire or The Rake, but generally I find those them very shallow.
Would anyone here recommend any other magazines?

Jack French

I have seen L’Etiquette in the local magazine shop, but wasn’t convinced, given it is pretty expensive here, but since you recommend it I’ll give it a try.


Depends what you’re looking for but maybe try Avant magazine?

Jack French

I’ve seen that too and it is impressively in-depth, but I’m not enough into denim/workwear to justify £35 on it. For those who are, though, it’s a great recommendation.

Eric Michel

L’Etiquette is a great magazine, in term of influence, I would put them at the same level than PS on my choices. Their podcast “Habitudes” is absolutely brilliant, I would love to listen to something similar in English, 30/40mn discussions with a really cool crowd of artists, journalists, writers, designers…about how they dress, their journey, influences, references… This podcast is in French, but really brilliant. 90 episodes so far. The same concept with British personalities would be fantastic!


Survey completed. I believe there was a question about where you read PS and it said you can make a comment about it in the next question. There was no place for a comment in the next question, the next question was about TikTok.


Subscription !? Don’t you dare ! LOL

TIKTOK ? ….. you’ll be reviewing Uniglo at this rate .

Joking aside it’s a great blog and ‘we’ trust your judgement. It’s why ‘we’ keep coming back thrice weekly to read it .
Personally , I’d prefer more items within my price point (£150 for shirts, £250 for trousers, under £1100 for MTM suits ) and less vintage (just a personal prejudice).


I thought the same about the subscription!
Would definitely argue that great value comes from vintage but yes you definitely need to know where to look.


Already been done Robin

Not only reviewed but recommended too

I’d also like a lower price point to at least feature occasionally and equally have no interest in vintage but unfortunately on the former the direction of travel continues in the opposite direction.

Caleb C

Simon, I forgot to mention it in the comments but I found it difficult to answer how many products I purchased based on PS recommendations.

I answered how many were directly influenced but I would say 90% of my purchases are informed by PS. Understanding fit, proportions, fabric, what fits into my current wardrobe, or what to look for all come from PS so the influence is slightly less direct. (e.g. from a PS article I realize a larger proportioned shirt in a high quality fabric that drapes well but has a collar high enough to wear under tailoring would fit into my wardrobe and style. I then look to LEJ for such a product.)

Markus S

My thoughts on subscription. I might pay but only 5-10 pounds per month and only when there is no more advertising.

While I do not mind advertising as such, I have the feeling that there is a connection between advertising and how often a brand is covered. It would also be good to cover more brands (especially brands from outside the UK).

Markus S

That is good to hear. I was aware that there are no paid-for articles and that you could not buy good reviews through advertising. But this is a step further, and that is reassuring.

Lindsay McKee



Like the idea of spinning up a podcast. Just searched and something similar sounding was around in 2022 with Aleks Cvetkovic. Separately, making the content increasingly searchable and dynamic would be good.


I hadn’t given it masses of thought Simon, but was wondering about natural language interaction on the search, or an ability to search and view images alone, that kind of thing.


Best thing for me are the articles together with the comments section. It has what social networks had decades ago: active moderation. Simon keeps it nice and focused.
It is like an interactive book, with new chapters constantly evolving and old ones being complemented. I read comments or articles, associate them with other comments or articles, I am asking questions myself, I make my own experiences dressing up myself and over time my brain puts it all together and my sense of style evolves.
Would be a bit sad if a paywall would decrease the number of users but I can understand Simon is trying to evolve the PS business model. Fee paying consulting questions with Simon (+ Andrew, Manish etc.) might be a thing but then it is not only the makers‘ input, but to an important extent other readers‘ thoughts and questions which enrich the whole cosmos.
Maybe start with a small monthly fee and see whether traffic changes significantly?
Good luck and thanks for providing PS, Simon.


Hi Simon. A vote for continued and expanded coverage of vintage, if only to remind us that nothing is truly “new”. Always good to know your social history. It informs so much of what makes life a joy.


Not sure about you extending into Cars, Watches, Food etc as we know you have already said that these are areas of which you have no knowledge. And surely these areas themselves are so vast that the odd mention here would never do anything more than scratch the surface?
Stick to your primary focus please.


Even if you don’t know lots about the technical aspects of watches hearing your thoughts on the aesthetics of them with particular outfits is interesting.


I forgot to say this when I replied to the survey, but the “guest” pieces have been very good so perhaps you could get a watch expert to contribute as a guest.

ben w

Slight nitpick here: question 12, “Should Permanent Style cover more of these? If so, which?” is mandatory, but there’s no option to indicate “I don’t think Permanent Style should cover more of these”: you have to select “other” and then enter something like “none of the above”. I think a friendlier survey design for a compound question like this should enable the respondent to more easily reject the premise for the second part.


Hi Simon,

Long time reader here. I just wanted to say thank you for being consistent with the content and taking time to answer everyone’s questions. I started dabbling into bespoke two years ago and this forum has mostly definitely been very helpful! I hope you continue to thrive as the years move forward.


Thank you for asking for our views one again. I wanted to share an additional thought after submission. It seems that the website has trended towards causal clothing since the last survey- which is completely understandable given Covid and the work from home trend. Personally, and perhaps ironically, I find that this pivot made the website less financially approachable from my perspective. Don’t get me wrong! I think that many of the brands and styling posts are fantastic. But while I can justify to my wife a bespoke commission for ‘work’ – I will never be able to defend a $2000 leather jacket. Even more affordable brands will be a very hard sell. It’s simply hard to defend wearing well made casual on the weekend with the kids – when ice cream smearing is the norm.
So, ironically, the pivot from focusing primarily on bespoke to well made RTW rendered the website less ‘affordable’ from my perspective. Maybe in a few years- when the kids are older and the budget is more flexible- I will be able to splurge on $300 jeans- for now I have to stick to bespoke suits…


Re new products I think in mine I forgot to say a cardigan version of the cotton jumper you released! I feel like so many cotton cardigans are overly thin and flimsy.


Zanone do a nice linen/cotton chunky cardigan:

Markus S

Oh, I forgot to mention one thing. It would be nice if there were a few more articles written by women giving their perspective on menswear. After all, most of us dress – to some degree – to look good for women. What’s more, there are probably other perspectives here that would be thought provoking and refreshing.

Markus S

Yes, I did and they are good (but somewhat too rare for me).

Aaron L

Could you do a “PS endorsed” page with links that give you a commission if people buy through them? Besides being a revenue source It would be a good first stop when hunting for things that you don’t yet have in the PS store.