On Monday morning, I reluctantly rolled out of bed for my 10:05 class, low on energy and the thought of skipping and going back to sleep in my mind.
I decided I should probably go to class but I really could not be bothered to get dressed.
And so my routine of changing from nighttime pajamas to daytime pajamas ensued.
I left my plaid black and white pajama pants on and swapped my long sleeve t-shirt for another large t-shirt and a hoodie. I tucked my pants into long socks and put on my platform Doc Martens (not for fashion’s sake, but it was raining and did not want to get my feet wet).
I was walking to my class when I realized I value comfort far more than I do style.
Yes, clothes can serve as an outward expression of yourself and your personal style, and I love putting together a good outfit. But as a college student, I don’t have the time or the energy to do that every single day. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
I’m taking a creative writing class this semester, and a lot of my classmates show up in what I think to be cool outfits. When I noticed this, I was worried my lazy outfits wouldn’t cut it – how would my classmates know I was cool if I didn’t pull out all the stops every Monday and Wednesday?
But a college class isn’t a fashion show, and there’s no competition for who has the best outfit or who looks the most put together.
The emphasis on personal style and “aesthetics” seen on social media like Instagram and TikTok can make us forget the sole purpose of our clothes: wearability. I’m not saying don’t try to express yourself with your style, but I don’t fear looking “basic” if I’m feeling lazy and just want to be comfortable for the day.
Some of my clothes express my style, but others are for comfort’s sake, and each fulfill their purpose well.
Don’t Die Wondering magazine claimed “‘comfort over style’ is dead” in a nearing post-pandemic world, but if there was ever a time to value comfort, it’s now.
Moschino designer Jeremy Scott is one proponent of putting comfort behind us.
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“Comfort schmomfort!” he told Vogue in 2021. “What we need now more than ever is fantasy and glamour and things that make you feel wonderful.”
I do feel wonderful when I put together a good outfit, but I also feel wonderful when I don’t have to care about how I look and can just wear what makes me feel comfortable.
Also, comfort and style don’t have to exist independently from one another.
Athleisure has been on the rise for the past several years, thanks to brands like Lululemon that blur the lines between activewear and everyday clothes. “Balletcore” is a new style aesthetic gaining traction on TikTok that combines the comfort of athleisure and dance attire with the glamour of ballet dancers.
I love playing around with the intersections of comfort and style. The optimal outfit for me ranks high in both areas. Wearing a nice shirt with a comfortable pair of jeans, dressing up a pair of sweatpants, or even color-coordinating can accomplish this.
The idea of having to choose between comfort and style is outdated and irrelevant. Try to combine the two. Don’t sacrifice your comfort.
Wear what you want – even if what you want is sweatpants.