SparkNotes Blog

How to Rock Sweatpants: A User’s Guide

“I’m not wearing this thong for anyone but me!”—you scream into the abyss, once again confusing thongs and sweatpants. The truth is that our beloved sweatpants couldn’t be further away from the torturous world of the thong. One is painful and supposedly attractive and the other is the most comfortable thing ever and considered straight-up ugly. Surely we won’t sacrifice our comfort to look cute, but does that mean we have to throw away being a cutie to enter the limits of Comfort City? No! We’ve found ways to successfully rock sweatpants in public and we’re here to share our secrets. Here are pro-tips from folks wearing sweatpants right now (us)!

1. Make sure they fit. This is huge, people! Sometimes it seems like everyone is all, Well if I’m wearing sweatpants, it doesn’t matter the size. No! Just because you’re riding the 11 o’clock cotton-jersey-elasticized-waist express doesn’t mean you need to look like you’re wearing a sleeping bag. The first step to rocking them is making sure they are the right size.

2. Make sure they are clean. We know you’re not a slob, but chances are there is a coffee stain somewhere on those wonderful sweatpants of yours. The number one rule to rocking sweatpants in public is knowing, and being 100% on board with, the fact that you’re working from a negative status right off the bat. People see you in sweatpants and immediately think slobbish-type thoughts about you based on your fashion choices (if it wasn’t a “fashion choice,” then why would David Beckham be wearing them, eh?). If their initial reaction is supported by garment bagginess (see #1) or uncleanliness, you’ve lost the game. If their prejudices are instead met with some fly-ass-proper-fitting-crisp–and-stainless sweatpants, you’re 100 points ahead. Everyone expects someone in sweatpants to be lazy. Blow their minds by stringently paying attention to detail and presentation.

3. Have on an outfit that matches. Make sure it doesn’t look like you just grabbed some random pieces and walked out of the house. If your shoes and top work with the sweatpants and come together as a whole outfit, you shall be crowned queen of the comfy-yet-cool realm of society. If you can’t manage that, then just throw on some floating lapels.

4. Always be listening to Outkast. No one rocks sweatpants better than Big Boi. Throw on some flip-flops with socks if you’re feeling extra rebellious.

5. Appreciate them. You can’t wear sweatpants in public everyday, so when you do, know it’s a treat. Relish the experience like some super-expensive dark chocolate. The more you appreciate them, the happier you’ll be wearing them, which brings us to our final tip …

6. Rock them with confidence. We, um, know someone, cough, cough, who has already gotten her morning coffee and done most of her daily errands today in her sweatpants, and she’s here to say IT’S THE BEST. She also thinks the key to her success was following the rules above, knowing she looked put together, and knowing that walking around in sweatpants is best done with a strut. If you’re embarrassed that you’re wearing them, everyone will see that for what it is: shame. If you wear them with a mix of confidence and pride, everyone’s gonna be like, “HOLY HOLY WHO’S THAT HOTTIE LOOKING SO COMFY???” And you’ll be like, it’s me y’all, it’s been me this whole time.