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What to Wear to a College Class

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College Girl in a Classroom

One thing I get asked probably more than anything else is what you should wear to class in college.

I’m sure you’ve all seen the facebook groups: Are You a Model? No Wait, You’re an Idiot who Got Dressed Up To Go To Class, and Are You Homeless? No, You’re the idiot who didn’t get dressed for class. And if you haven’t seen those, yes, they exist.

Obviously, classroom attire is a controversial subject among college students!

So what do you wear to class, what don’t you wear, what constitutes “dressing up”, and what doesn’t?

I have answers to these questions and more as someone who loves fashion but still has to roll out of bed and make it to class on time.

The “Dressing Up For Class” Debate

If you haven’t heard about this before, here’s the basic argument:

College Girl in sweatpants and a North Face jacket
Photo by Checkered and aMUSEd

Some people think that because you’re in college and no one is telling you what to wear, you should use the opportunity to wear nothing but sweatpants. They also claim that sweatpants are easier to put on and more comfy than regular clothes, and that most college kids are hung over every morning and can’t be bothered to change out of their PJ’s to make it to class.

These are usually the people who drag themselves to class and immediately fall asleep, snoring loudly enough that they eventually wake themselves up. They also smell bad, yawn a lot, and generally have no idea what’s going on. They think that “just showing up” is good enough.

Here’s why their argument is ridiculous:

First of all, sweats aren’t any easier to put on than a clean pair of jeans and a cute top. Second of all, if you’re too drunk to function, you don’t belong in a class & should really just stay home. Third, these people are obviously insecure, and trying to make those who look good feel bad about it.

I could go on and on about this, but I’ll save it. Let’s just say that I don’t agree & leave it at that!

Why You Should Get Dressed For Class

Closet full of clothes
Photo by Becka Liu

I’m not saying that we should spend 5 hours getting ready every morning, or that fashion should be more important than anything else. But I do think that looking nice is important, and wearing sweats in public is always a bad idea.

Here are some reasons why you SHOULD get “dressed up” for class, even if that just means jeans and a tee.

Showing respect for your professor

Showing up to class in sweatpants not only makes you look like a slob, but it’s also disrespectful to your professor. He/she dresses nicely for class, in order to show that they take their job seriously. When you dress like you’re ready to fall asleep, it gives off the image that you really could care less about the class, which is not a good impression to make.

Making it easier to focus

I don’t know about all of you, but I don’t feel very productive when I’m wearing my PJ’s. Sweats and pajamas are good for a few things – sleeping, watching TV, and lounging around. When you’re dressed a little nicer, you’re not going to be tempted to fall back asleep or space out.

Looking good

Okay, this is an obvious reason not to wear sweats. PJ’s and sweatpants aren’t cute in the real world. I love ‘em for wearing around the dorm, to the gym, or even to a final if I’ve been up all night studying… but never outside of the house for a day of classes.

If you love fashion (and I assume you do if you’re reading this site), you should wear your fabulous clothes! Don’t settle for boring & shapeless sweatpants. Wear something unique and have fun with fashion. Why bother having amazing clothes if you aren’t going to wear them?

What To Wear To Class

Even if you only have a few minutes to get ready, it’s not difficult to wear something cute and comfortable to class. Resist the urge to throw on sweats!

Here are some examples of outfits that I would wear to class:

Outfit #1 – Simple & Chic

College Class Outfit

Product Information: Skinny Jeans – Charlotte Russe, Tank Top – Wet Seal, Cardigan – Wet Seal, Flats – American Eagle, Bag – Target

This is a simple outfit that I would wear a lot in the winter – a pair of skinny jeans, a long tank top, and a cardigan on top. I would finish it off with some cute metallic or brightly-colored ballet flats, a long necklace, and a cute tote bag.

I wear many variations on this outfit in the cooler months, but it’s one of my go-to’s whenever I’m pressed for time and still want to look nice. So easy and still so chic!

Outfit #2 – Comfortable & A Little Bohemian

Outfit For A College Class

Product Info: Dress & Bracelets – Charlotte Russe, Gladiator Sandals – American Eagle, Sunglasses – Wet Seal, Bag – Karmaloop

This outfit would be great to wear to class when it’s warm and sunny out. A dress is so easy to just throw on, and it pretty much makes an entire outfit in itself.

I added a few accessories to this outfit in the form of bangles, gladiator sandals, and sunnies, but you could go without the jewelry and even just wear Havaianas if you wanted! This outfit is all about comfort, so your footwear should be comfortable too!

It’s All About The Basics

At the end of the day, if you have most of the wardrobe essentials for college girls, then you’re basically good to go when it comes to getting dressed for class.

Most of the time, a cute pair of jeans, a great top, and some accessories are all you need. If you want to wear something more interesting, though, I say go for it! I’m all in favor of showing off the clothes you love & self-expression through fashion.

Have fun with it… and just say “No” to the sweats!

Your Thoughts?

What do you think about the “getting dressed for class” debate? Would you wear sweatpants to class, or would you never even think of it? What would a typical school outfit be for you?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments section!

Posted on on August 14, 2008 / Filed Under: College Life / Tags: , ,

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110 Responses to “What to Wear to a College Class”

  1. 1
    August 14th, 2008 at 7:02 pm

    I actually just wrote an article on College Candy(that has yet to be released) on shopping for college loungewear and I clearly stated that pjs should NEVER be worn to class and sweats should be worn in moderation. I don’t go to class in cocktail attire but i refuse to show up in my lecture looking like a bum!

  2. 2
    August 14th, 2008 at 7:12 pm

    Haha the “not” picture of the girl walking to class on her phone looks like it could have been taken at my campus. Is that a North Face? Oh this is the typical outfit. I detest it.

  3. 3
    August 14th, 2008 at 7:26 pm

    Finally! Someone else who realizes that sweatpants are things that don’t ever make it out of the house! I am so sick and tired of watching people come to class in sweatpants and pajamas and lord knows what else.

    I’m glad to know there are other people out there who think dressing up a little for class is something that should always be done.

  4. 4
    August 14th, 2008 at 8:04 pm

    I agree with you 100%. the outfits you showed that are acceptable are basically what I woe everyday to class in highschool and will continue wearing in college. I think the people who wear sweats everyday don’t care at all. For me being comfortable is wearing skinny jeans and a cute top because then I know I look good and feel good, sweats just make me feel gross and want to go to bed and I have never worn them in public except for a final or regents.

  5. 5
    August 14th, 2008 at 8:18 pm

    I’m a rising senior and all my friends know by now that if I have on sweats in class I’m either deathly ill or heading to the gym immediately after LOL. I love dressing up for class because it makes dreary mornings a little bit better and lets you have some fun with the beginning of the day :)

  6. 6
    August 14th, 2008 at 8:26 pm

    I go to school in Maine, so in the winter you’ll see girls with sweatpants, wanna-be uggs and like 3 sweatshirts/fleeces. Obviously no one ever introduced them to this amazing thing called a coat….

    Personally, I love winter because I can add more to an outfit with a coat. Though peep-toes and snow don’t go together :-)

  7. 7
    August 14th, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    Business casual is dress code at my college. I’m at a loss on how to make it pop, though. I would probably wear the first outfit sans skinny jeans, I just can’t find jeans that don’t make my hips looks HUGE. I love wearing sweaters, especially when I’m studying at the library or tutoring some kids. Too bad it’s always hot and humid here in Miami.lol.

    I don’t wear sweats unless I’m home playing DDR for 3 straight hours. Sweats and PJs make me feel like a slob and I usually end up watching Gilmore Girls rather than studying while wearing them.

  8. 8
    August 14th, 2008 at 9:25 pm

    I wore pj pants to school a few times in high school and ended up feeling like a total bum. Never again.

  9. 9
    August 15th, 2008 at 12:58 am

    Wow, those facebook groups are extremely judgemental. I think people should generally wear whatever they want to class, as long as they don’t smell bad or look like a 5 cent hooker. For me personally though, I do like to take the extra effort to look cute for class- and you’re right, it really doesn’t take that much extra time!! It helps me to resist the urge to take daytime naps or feel like I just crawled out of bed, and more importantly, it makes me feel BETTER about myself. I have to say though, that facebook hate group is pretty discouraging, but I will try to ignore it and keep looking fabulous ;)

  10. 10
    August 15th, 2008 at 2:15 am

    As a college student going to UC Berkeley (and from NorCal, no less!), I’d say that we have a very different idea of what’s appropriate and what’s not. I think here, it’s completely normal to see students in sweatpants, but it’s also completely normal to see truly grungy outfits. I know that most fashion experts advise against flip-flops, but as one person I knew commented about Cal students, “It’s flip-flop country here.” Much as the rest of the fashion world wouldn’t like it, I really believe that we have different aesthetics here with our “chill” atmosphere.

    That having been said, I believe that when showing up to class, you should be clean, presentable, and if you can manage it or have time, cute and updated. The outfits you posted here are great – not ostentatious, but cute and presentable. Personally, I don’t mind seeing people show to class in jeans, sneakers/Converse shoes (we do SO much walking here!!) and a jacket or blazer, so long as it’s neat. I really think that’s the most important part of dressing – but that holds true no matter where you are.

  11. 11
    August 15th, 2008 at 7:00 am

    It’s okay to wear wear sweatpants to class, but of course, it depends on how you will carry it during class hours.

    Skinny jeans would do for me. I always wear that style since high school.
    And it looks good to me because I’m not so tall and not so petite.

    Confidence is the answer to everything.

  12. 12
    August 15th, 2008 at 10:51 am

    Couldn’t agree more. Casual little dresses are ALWAYS the way to go when you’re feeling too lazy to put together a whole outfit – hence the reason I own like a billion :)
    Sweats are never, ever NOT a no-no. With the exception of the gym and being sick of course.

  13. 13
    August 15th, 2008 at 11:03 am

    I believe that if we are going to pay the amount of money that we do to go to university, we have the right to wear whatever we want to class, be it haut couture or yoga pants and a hoodie. I think that wearing pajamas to class is inappropriate, but I see nothing wrong with sweats, especially at 8:30 on a Monday morning in a class you really didn’t want to go to. I had mono this year and just didn’t have the energy to plan out an outfit like I did the year before. I lived out of my sweats. There is nothing wrong with being extra-comfortable on days that you really need it.

    That having been said, I agree that *always* dressing down for class shows a lack of respect for the professor and for the other students. On presentation days or to a meeting with your professor, you should always dress up. And one should make as much of an effort as possible to look presentable no matter where they go, if for no other reason than because it’s fun.

  14. 14
    August 15th, 2008 at 11:28 am

    I really enjoyed this post, but I had to open up an Internet Explorer Window to view it. The images in the posts never work in Firefox. I just wanted you to be aware of that because though I love your blog, I prefer Firefox browser. Keep up the good work anywho. :-)

  15. 15
    August 15th, 2008 at 12:10 pm

    Kayla: that’s funny, because I use Firefox and the images work just fine. Maybe it’s a reloading thing or…I’m really not quite sure what!

    Ugh! We had so many girls wearing sweats to school in HS, and they thought they were so cool, with their cup of Dunkin’, chewing gum, a huge sweatshirt on.

    See, I think the roll-out-of-bed look doesn’t mean sweats. It’s more, if I may refer to “Gossip Girl,” the Serena type of look. Just the effortless casualness look.

    I’d be interested to see what the general consensus is on hair, though, whether it really is okay to come in with wet hair, because I never would in HS, although many girls did. #1 it makes you sick (at least it creates a higher risk) and #2 it’s messy, at least for me.

  16. 16
    August 15th, 2008 at 12:44 pm

    Sweatpants are for sick days, thanks. Not for going to class.

    My idea of bumming it is a hoodie, jeans, and funky sneakers. No way in hell am I walking out of my apartment in sweatpants, sorry!

    And I must say, I LOVE that first outfit! Skirts aren’t very practical for me (campus is SUPER windy), but that first one, LOVE!

  17. 17
    August 15th, 2008 at 2:05 pm

    Oh yes, I hate to see girls dressed from head to toe in A&F AE or Hollister sweats. It’s so unoriginal.

    There are so many pretty clothes out there that it’s a waste not to use them.

  18. 18
    August 16th, 2008 at 1:57 am

    My school is seriously called the fashion college r professors even say it how sad is that. I love my sweats pants maybe its just me I went to private school for 4yrs and I’m use to a uniform in the morning I change my mind at least 5 times and sometimes I really wanna stand out I know school is place to get an education but I’m at the fashion capital of the world ny

  19. 19
    August 16th, 2008 at 3:53 am

    Sweat pants or Pj bottoms and uggs dont cut it for me. .And getting too dressed up (like going to a party etc, is a no-no either)

    Why have to buy clothes if all you want to wear to college is sweats/Pajamas and ugg boots? In college, it is our turn to experiment what goes well and what doesn’t, that’s why there is no excuse to go shopping!

    So on top of that, dress and leggings are the norm for me, or jeans, shirt and cardigan as well, or a casual skirt instead, but presentation wise, its good to dress a little professionally or neatly. :)

  20. 20
    August 16th, 2008 at 11:58 am

    I think its always important to look your best. One of my friends went to Clemson for a year and left because of the way the other girls treated her. She is a huge fan of the sundresses and delicate sandals and would spend a reasonable (but not insane) amount of time getting ready. Well when the other girls showed up to class they all had sweatpants on and they made fun of her. So she actually LEFT CLEMSON to go to the College of Charleston. I mean, we both love Charleston because we’ve lived there our whole lives, but to leave a top southern school to go somewhere else just because of fashion zombies making fun of you…that’s dumb. Girls should be proud of their clothes and take pride in how they walk out of their dorm!

  21. 21
    August 16th, 2008 at 12:00 pm

    Also, I dress up for everything. I always walk out of the house in a skirt or dress and heels. Anthropologie is my lifeline for clothes.

  22. 22
    August 17th, 2008 at 6:44 am

    oh may i add to my previous post, i feel that sweats/pj bottoms and uggs look VERY untidy in my opinion. I make an effort to look good or even decent, even though i may only be there for a few hours…. clothes can express yourself :)

  23. 23
    August 18th, 2008 at 12:45 pm

    Thank you! It is so refreshing to hear that someone actually believes in the ‘look good, feel good, do good’ philosophy. I don’t know about you, but I tend to feel gross and surprisingly uncomfortable when I wear my lounge apparel in public. When I feel clean and put together I am confident that I can take on anything.

  24. 24
    August 18th, 2008 at 12:57 pm

    I think some people are misinterpreting the spirit of that facebook group. There is a big difference between looking neat and tidy for class versus looking like you’re ready for a photo shoot. One thing to keep in mind when getting ready is the context of the environment. While sweatpants and pajamas don’t belong in the classroom, neither do cocktail dresses and heels.

  25. 25
    August 19th, 2008 at 8:52 am

    You know, my french teacher told my class “You do better on exams when you’re dressed up” and it is true. I have never ever worn sweatpants or a baggy sweatshirt to class (cute fitted ones, occasionally.) Coincidentally, I once had a dream that I wore the gigantic school sweats/sweatshirt combo to school – and in my dream I felt so gross!

  26. 26
    August 19th, 2008 at 11:50 am

    I believe this all depends on the school you attend. I also go to UC Berkeley and there is a wide range of fashion on campus. Plenty of people wear clothes similar to your two outfits but there are also lots of people in sweats and Uggs. Personally, I am not against the sweats look even though I love fashion. When it is cold and rainy, as it often is, I care about comfort first. Plus as an athlete it just doesn’t make sense to dress up constantly when I have to hit the gym and go to practice daily. Fashion is fun but when you’re a student practicality is key. Wear what suits your lifestyle and keep in mind the setting you will be in. The most ridiculous outfit I’ve ever seen was not pjs or sweats but a girl in an itty bitty skirt and thigh high stiletto boots. She looked good but completely out of place.

  27. 27
    August 19th, 2008 at 12:40 pm

    Having read this article, and all the comments on it, I have a question for you all…
    Would it be appropriate for a girl to wear clean and colourful sweat pants on a day that they were almost too sick to concentrate? You know, those days where you can’t afford to miss a class but you’re so sick the world is spinning? Would it be okay to then wear sweats?

  28. 28
    August 19th, 2008 at 12:46 pm

    Wait! Sorry! My question was already answered in another article!
    Tee hee, me and my bad memory!

  29. 29
    August 19th, 2008 at 10:48 pm

    I’m heading back to college after being out of high school for about 10 years, I’ve learned in everyday life that dressing the part can get you the part!! I agree that you shouldn’t over due it to the point that it looks like you are obsessed with your appearance but spending some time on your self in the morning and putting some thought into your outfit can do a world of difference for you mood and self esteem :)
    I’m loving outift #1 it is going to be my inspiration when out shopping for some key back to school outfits!!

    * and if by chance I am having one of those icky days you will be sure that my sweats will be clean and my hair will be done!!

  30. 30
    August 23rd, 2008 at 9:24 am

    Hey, I dunno how relevant this is, but I’m an aussie college (Uni, here) student and I don’t see a problem with CLEAN sweatpants (or trackies, as we’d call em) to uni, if paired with a sporty-casual shoe and a tee with a cardi. That having been said, I wear jeans every single day of my life with white sports casuals and a colourful cardi.
    Though I absolutely detest those fluro trackies and Ugg boots. And girls who wear black tights and clingy little dresses with heeled boots to uni at 8am in hailstone weather. It’s a balance, I think :-D

  31. 31
    August 23rd, 2008 at 12:04 pm

    I TOTALLY agree and sweat- pants are comfortable but save them for the times when you are just lounging around the dorm. I LOVE the sundress outfit you showed i think it is sofisticated, cute, and very presentable and its definetley what kinds of things i like to see people wearing on college campus’.

  32. 32
    August 23rd, 2008 at 1:16 pm

    I like to dress up, but definitely not for class. I think people look ridiculous when they come to class in a skirt or pumps, unless you’re giving a presentation, there’s no need to dress like that. You go to class for 2 hours to sit and take notes nobody cares what you’re wearing. And I don’t know what kind of sweats you wear but there are a lot of cute sweats out there, and I’m not talking about af, hollister, or anything like that. You can still look presentable dressing down, just make sure the rest of you is put together…hair, makeup, etc. I love fashion, but I think it’s unnecessary to dress up for class.

  33. 33
    August 23rd, 2008 at 7:27 pm

    haha i love the picture of the girl in the pink sweats, uggs, and north face. 95% of the girls who go to my school wear this identical outfit. they all look exactly the same. why would you wear clothes that make you look JUST LIKE EVERYONE ELSE? i just dont get it and personally when im walking behind one of them in their over sized uggs, dragging their feet, I’d like to punch them in the back of the head :))))

  34. 34
    August 24th, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    You definetly have some good points. From my personal experience at USC (Los Angeles), you just go through the day with more confidence if you make yourself pulled-together and cute. If you’re wearing sweats it really does look like you didn’t care as much when you got up that morning, unless you pump it up with more formal pieces. For example, some people get away with sleek grey yoga pants and a very pretty lose cardigan, plus their hair looks cute and they sport accessories.

    ebayfashionaddict.wordpress.com

  35. 35
    August 24th, 2008 at 4:59 pm

    Hey everyone! I’ve been reading collegefashion.net religiously this summer and was inspired to start my own blog. It is similar to this site with a more emphasize on beauty and makeup for college students. Please check it out and leave feedback at http://www.xanga.com/wakeup2makeup

  36. 36
    August 24th, 2008 at 7:39 pm

    I don’t necessarily agree with dressing up for class however I certainly hate it when people stroll into 8 A.M classes wearing PJ’s. I’m 100% for comfort first, especially if it’s raining outside or you are sick, but anyone who I see wearing PJs to class I find to be dirty. And as far as Uggs go, I’d rather wear those and keep my feet warm then wear really cute boots and freeze.
    Don’t get me wrong- I like fashion and wearing cute outfits- but as long as people wear clean and presentable outfits (even if they wear sweats once in awhile) I don’t see a problem.

  37. 37
    August 25th, 2008 at 5:39 am

    Its really nice that there is someone who thinks just the way i do.As a young writer wanting to help my fellow nigerian student i say fashion is not all about clothings,nor what you are wearing but all about how you feel and where you are.
    Sweats is nice to wear but not to all places while Pajamas is not to be worn to class thats really absurd to do.
    I hope students start getting the clues to good fashion very soon

  38. 38
    August 25th, 2008 at 4:05 pm

    I am in complete agreement with you! UGH I study fashion merchandising and it makes me so mad when FASHION majors don’t put effort into getting dressed. Clearly no commitment to their studies.

  39. 39
    August 26th, 2008 at 1:05 am

    Wow. I most certainly agree with not looking like a slob in class. When you’re just wearing wrinkled, fading sweats with a baggy T-shirt, your hair unbrushed and face unwashed, you just look lazy and ill-prepared for class. What kind of message is that sending to your professor and classmates?

    To be honest, I don’t even consider the first outfit getting “dressed up.” *lol* at people who don’t even have the 5 minutes to do that.

  40. 40
    August 27th, 2008 at 2:07 pm

    Question:

    I see alot of girls around campuses in pajamas or sweats but they also have on a ton of makeup.

    How can they have time to put on makeup but not clothes?

  41. 41
    August 28th, 2008 at 4:32 pm

    This is ridiculous.

    My professors are going to respect me more for my $40 sunglasses made in Malaysia by 15 year olds? If so, then those professors need a reality check.

    Keep consuming, ladies!

  42. 42
    September 3rd, 2008 at 1:30 am

    Love this article.
    Its not about spending money, its about showing respect for yourself and the professor (not to mention I like looking good, I feel better and enjoy the process of getting ready as well).
    You don’t show up to work, or even dinner with your parents, in sweatpants, or (horrors of horrors) pajama pants. Everyone does it sometimes, its ok, and really people shouldnt be judged by it. At the same time I feel that the entire education system of College and the oppurtunity we have here should be respected. Don’t listen to headphone while the professor is lecturing, dont wear pajamas.

  43. 43
    September 4th, 2008 at 9:43 am

    I’m actually shocked that anyone would wear pajamas outside the house or sweats outside the gym or when they’re not jogging. I’ve never seen anyone at uni in Europe do that, it’s completely inappropriate. Clothes project an image – realizing that is not being shallow or consumerist, it’s a fact of life that people’s perception works this way.
    Looking at it that way, not taking advantage of this and projecting an image of a slob, a person who can’t be bothered to even change their underwear in the morning (if they show up in pajamas -eeeew) – is not really intelligent.
    Again, it takes me twenty minutes to get ready in the morning – that includes showering, breakfast, dressing up (I lay out my clothes the night before) and doing my hair and makeup. And because I send out a visual message that I take myself seriously, for the rest of the day, I’m taken seriously at classes and internship. This is not shallow. This is giving yourself the edge in a small aspect of your life without wasting a lot of time and effort. Welcome to the real world.

    The consumerist argument that Courtney brought up completely misses the point, I think. I sew my own clothes, which takes me just a couple of hours of my spare time on the weekends and I’ve built a wardrobe of high quality staples that fit perfectly and last years. I’m not a consumerist. But I do realize aesthetics is an important part of life. Big difference.

  44. 44
    September 7th, 2008 at 3:33 am

    Thank you so much for showing women that you do NOT have to spend a fortune to look great, feel confident, and show your campus that you are serious about yourself and your classes. Thanks for all of the fabulous tips! :)

  45. 45
    September 11th, 2008 at 5:08 pm

    I COMPLETELY AGREE!

  46. 46
    September 16th, 2008 at 3:47 pm

    I think you’re missing the point. The article is shallow; it has faulty logic, and also encourages consumption via the prominent links to Am Eagle, etc. (It’s not like they posted some patterns and asked us to sew with fairly traded or self-grown material, or even to buy second hand. And yeah, you could do that yourself– and I hope everyone does.)

    Ok, I’m a programmer, so here comes the pseudocode.

    If _student_ wears _fashion_,
    then _student_ is serious.
    Else _student_ wears Uggs,
    is lazy, sleeps in class.

    There would be a whole lot of women who wouldn’t get caught in this “if” statement, which makes the logic faulty.

    The Else portion is part of a negative stereotype that needs to be combated, not mindlessly agreed to. If you need to have a certain outfit to feel good about your interactions, then cool. I personally want to encourage women to be as natural as they please (not necessarily in the style of hippies, but w/e). I’m really not into this stereotype, or into limiting what my sisters feel comfortable doing. Also, the combination of 1) the stereotyping of female students with 2) the advertisement of third world merch peddlers makes it clear that this article completely misses ANY point at all about strengthening women by giving them the respect and solidarity they deserve.

    _____________________________________

    cosmeticsdatabse.org — Do YOU know what’s in that makeup? Neither does Revlon.

  47. 47
    September 16th, 2008 at 7:19 pm

    Courtney – If you read this site at all, you’d know that I do talk about buying things secondhand, and I’m not telling anyone go out and buy a whole new wardrobe in order to “feel good about their interactions.” In fact, I talk about saving money all the time too, so the whole consumerist-agenda idea is way off. I’d rather see people using what they have in new ways than buying everything new all the time.

    As for the stores I linked to, I don’t know about their third-world peddling policies, but regardless, I’m not telling anyone that they have to shop there. I just use them as examples of where to get inexpensive clothes that are flattering.

    And as far as respect for women goes, I’m trying to encourage more women to have respect for themselves and take care in their appearance, rather than giving off the impression “I give up.”

  48. 48
    October 26th, 2008 at 1:16 pm

    The answer is cute college sweatshirts, jeans, a girl next door pony, a little makeup, and uggs/sneakers/flip flops. You look just as dumb dressing up as you do not caring and wearing orange pants with a pink hoodie. The professor is going to be more impressed by the girl who asks intelligent questions. He doesn’t give a crap about your black tights or big bag. Smart girls stand out in college classrooms. Save your cute outfits for parties/going places with friends.

  49. 49
    October 27th, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    Mandy – I definitely don’t think that dressing well is a substitute for being intelligent, and that’s not something I would ever claim! But this is a site for girls who like fashion and who enjoy having fun with their clothes. If you don’t care about fashion, then obviously what you wear won’t be important to you.

  50. 50
    October 28th, 2008 at 11:41 pm

    I definitely think that being well dressed is not a mark of either intelligence or shallowness, but caring. Courtney, I pride myself in looking good when I show to class in the morning, but that doesn’t mean I wear 40 dollar sunglasses that I bought brand new. Actually, I lost my only pair of sunglasses ages ago, but that’s beside the point. I would say somewhere between 50 and 80 percent of my wardrobe comes from thrift stores, and the rest comes from inexpensive stores like target. Last year I spent two dollars on a dress for a semiformal occassion (which I found, of all places, at a costume sale: an adorable strapless dress that looked like it came straight out of a boutique!). I then spent less than 10 dollars on a sexy, chique little black dress from goodwill. I also own a dress by a spanish designer, also for probably 10 or 15 dollars used, that would have been between 100-200 dollars new. I enjoy finding vintage pieces, and basic tees and skirts from brands like abercrombie or h&m that would be 30 dollars new but are five bucks at amvets. I spend the most money on new, sturdy shoes, and everything else I buy as cheap as possible. I have a stylish closet with a few timeless, versatile pieces, plus some hand-me-downs from my mom that have come back in style!!

    So, fashion is not necessarily about mindless consumerism. It can be an art form, it can be fun, and I love when it when I have three or more people compliment me on a special outfit. And I can safely say that I am intelligent, I have a high GPA, love reading, and enjoy debating current issues with my friends. I respect my teachers and have strong goals in life.

    I think that means I deserve even more fun with clothes!

  51. 51
    November 13th, 2008 at 5:44 pm

    I totally agree. Especially being a student at NYU, it’s so important to look your hottest in case The Sartorialist is hanging around.

  52. 52
    December 16th, 2008 at 12:41 pm

    I think dressing good, is not a matter of being a showoff or consuerism, it in all matters boosts yuor confident, regardless of how confident you are naturally and earns youlots of respect, dressing good doesnt mean wearing your 100dollar gucci dress and 6inch pump, it just means looking descentand presentable in all manners, and wearing pjs to class just show a careless slobby, unserious student, on the other side its not all about what people think about yo…but as i said its all about earning yourself a little respect, and dressing for the right place…try earning yourself respect, it always feels good :-)

    Anyway the first outfit, is totally beat up and right, the second looks good on those very hot andhumid summer days :-), save your pjs for bed and slobby trackies for the gym, or anight watching the notebook with your girlfriends
    cute sweats look good though

  53. 53
    December 27th, 2008 at 12:24 am

    if someones gonna say I don’t care about my education just because the way I LOOK in the morning? Give me a break!

  54. 54
    January 3rd, 2009 at 3:07 am

    I also, surprisingly enough, go to UC Berkeley and I agree with the girl above who said that she saw people dressed like that every day on campus. Every where I look I see people in sweats, fake uggs, or just very casual pajama like clothes. I don’t go out dressed pajamas. In fact, I didn’t even hang around my dorm (outside my suite) in my pajamas. I wish someone would tell all those girls who dress so casually that wearing that kind of clothes to class is very disrespectful to the professor. I rather they just didn’t show up. I’m definitely not promoting dressing up to the tee to go to class, but wearing something other than your pajamas should be pretty much mandatory. I’m sure those girls care about their education, but what they don’t realize is that even though they don’t see their clothes as being disrespectful, their professors most likely would.
    On the other hand, I wish that this blog focused on clothes that were more accessible to everyone. It might be a surprise to you, but not everyone can (or wishes) to spend 25+ dollars on a coat or 15+ dollars on a top.

  55. 55
    January 12th, 2009 at 3:11 am

    I am majoring in Fashion Merchandising and this last semester there were so many students in my class dressed like slobs. Truth be told, we can’t yet afford the legendary designer pieces we learned about, but if you are spending a whole class period discussing Chanel and Balenciaga, why look like you rolled out of bed? This is my first visit to this website, and I love it! Thanks!

  56. 56
    January 13th, 2009 at 10:20 am

    i don’t wear them all the time, but i love my sweats! when i wear my sweats and a tank, there’s a part of me that actually feels sexy. there are certain girls i’ve seen that have this added confidence about them when they do wear them, they are gorgeous and comfortable with themselves in the simplest of attire. in class, i’m out to learn and use my mind, rather than impress those with my physicality. honestly, if you dress like a fashion diva, most profs. look at you as if your trying too hard in the wrong area of your life.

  57. 57
    January 13th, 2009 at 10:28 am

    ps, “Clothes project an image” that idea is part of consumption. consumption/consumerism is a much larger and more complex idea then what you guys are discussing. it’s better to stay away from that argument because the whole discussion and article is pretty much enveloped and sustained by the idea of ‘consumption’.

  58. 58
    January 13th, 2009 at 9:31 pm

    there has to be a happy medium. don’t look like a slob, but don’t dress up to the extreme. pajamas are worn to sleep in. if you connect the attire to the activity, what might happen in class? when you look lazy, you look like you don’t take care of yourself. think about the image you portray, as you prepare yourself for the “real” world and for a career.
    changing out of those PJs you fell asleep in shows respect for the teacher, showing you care enough to look decent for class. i think cute sweatpants are fine…i rarely wear them unless i plan on working out RIGHT after class. but if i have a fat day then they are the most comfortable. i’m not saying you should buy tons of new clothes and look the best dressed and whatnot, but present yourself the way you want to be perceived.

  59. 59
    February 17th, 2009 at 6:48 pm

    “These are usually the people who drag themselves to class and immediately fall asleep, snoring loudly enough that they eventually wake themselves up. They also smell bad, yawn a lot, and generally have no idea what’s going on. They think that “just showing up” is good enough.”
    oh really? they why do I, and most of my good friends who also dress casually in class have excellent grades? and when I say class I don’t mean public relations or english 101 i mean actual class like organic chemistry and molecular biology. many of my professors (not saying that this i right either) look down on the girls who come to lab in designer clothing

  60. 60
    February 21st, 2009 at 3:32 pm

    Hey,

    I know i’m a little too late with this comment, but it’s just that i found out about this website one week ago! Anyways that does not really matter, cause I love this site!
    My opinion about people going to class in sweats? I live in Holland and i don’t see that happen a lot here (thank god!). Some people really dress up and others wear what they feel like (but I’ve never seen someone in sweats except for the tesweek), but no sweats are worn here. I think everyone takes there time to wear something they look good in. But when I read this, it really surprised me. I think people have to realise that if you just wear sweats or PJ’s to class, you’re not taking good care of yourself (at least that’s the look we have here on this). And when YOU don’t care about yourself, others won’t care about you either.
    Besides I don’t get it! Doesn’t it feel nice to turn some heads here and there every once and a while? I’m just saying it boosts up your confidence and makes you feel good about yourself…And when you feel good, people notice! Just try and watch how you suddenly get more attention from everyone and how people actually won’t to hear what you think (and people tend to support you more).
    And getting compliments from your friends in class about just a normal jean that you’re wearing, but that fits you great, is really great for you confidence too!
    I think i’ve written enough…just keep in mind people: people also tend to take you more seriously (except for when you go to class like a barbiedoll, which i never like either). There’s a balance for everything ;)

    Sincerely yours,

    Tam

  61. 61
    March 17th, 2009 at 7:29 pm

    Zephyr, I love your website and follow most of your fashion advice, however this is something I must say I disagree on you with.

    I think wearing sweatpants in public, including class, is perfectly acceptable. The thing is, when you are walking around all day, to and from class, the library, lunch, clubs meetings, etc., sweatpants are soooo much more practical! Jeans are ok, but nothing beats a good pair or sweats.

    Sweatpants can be cute, if they are fashionable (like PINK) and fit properly, and are worn with matching colors. I also believe in doing your laundry aka don’t wear dirty pants, or the same ones everyday, or the PJ’s you slept in!

    I haven’t noticed much difference compared to the days I wear sweatpants vs. the days I wear a skirt and nice top regarding the professor.. all of my professors like me if I am attentive and participate.

    I get the point of the article, and I agree with the underlying idea, but personally I am one to dress fashionable for parties, going out with friends, and dates – not class. No one even notices what you are wearing at 8:30am.

  62. 62
    April 7th, 2009 at 6:41 am

    i love the clothes that you have picked out, they’re not dressy but they look really nice too. i was just thinking….. do you have any other outfit ideas? just so that i could have a look to give me some thoughts in what to wear. i love the fact you pointed out the thing about sweatpants! i so agree! i think they try and do the ‘bed-head’ lazy look, but everyday it just looks like you’re a lazy slob and that’s the only dress sense that you have ..

  63. 63
    April 26th, 2009 at 2:17 am

    Allie –

    I think Zephyr is saying that there’s a fine line between dressing like you don’t care at all and dressing casually. Wearing a t-shirt and jeans is dressing casually…in my opinion, wearing sweats/pj bottoms in public is screaming to the world: I DON’T CARE ABOUT THE WAY I LOOK. It’s not about being fashion forward – it’s about showing an ounce of respect to yourself and others you engage with. It’s not that hard to put on a real pair of pants if you can throw on your sweats. And as for comfort level – there’s a time and place for that and it’s called home. When you go to class you’re not supposed to be alert, not comfortable (but at the same time not uncomfortable, like wearing a designer frock) and sweatpants just make it easier to fall asleep in your chair during a boring lecture.

    I doubt that many professors “look down” on students for expressing their sense of fashion…if some girl pops into office hours in a pair of stilettos and a shi shi dress, THEN that’s maybe overkill. But most girls don’t do that. And even if they did, I’m sure they’re polite enough to not judge students if they’re dressed in something they like to wear (MOST professors, I may note.)

    That is just my opinion, however.

    Anyway Zephyr, great article. I used to be one such girl who would wear sweatpants and uggs to class, but not anymore! I’m going to start dressing how I want to, even if my outfits are considered too “dressy” to other people (let the haters hate…) Here wearing anything MORE than jeans tucked into boots and a basic t-shirt is considered “dressy”…Good Lord I’m going to stick out like a sore thumb lol..oh well :) Channel Carrie B (from SATC) is what I always tell myself.

  64. 64
    June 25th, 2009 at 6:16 am

    Maybe I’m missing something here but what is the big deal about wearing decent sweatpants and uggs?? I live in NYC and go to school in New England. That’s basically the winter uniform on the East Coast. And if you could only see how my professor looks at 8:30 with some dress she literally threw on and wet hair you would know she doesn’t care how we look but if we understand the material. I love your site but I just don’t see why you are so harsh to my fellow sweats and Uggs girls.

  65. 65
    July 7th, 2009 at 5:05 pm

    Hi
    i found the advice really useful, especially the ‘what to take to college with you’ also, i’m so bad at taking the write thing and end up forgetting basic stuff :)

    i’m from the UK and i was really shocked to hear that some students in the US wear pj’s to class, lol. The only time i’ve seen that was for a sponsored charity event. In the UK it’s more a case that people can be too overdressed but generally i don’t think people at uni really care what others are wearing-maybe not at the london college of fashion though.

    I think however that as long as you are clean/some make up etc that jeans and sweater and flip-flops/flats are ok.
    I don’t know for sure but maybe the people that turn up wearing pj’s have their own personal issues whatever they may be, clothes being a reflection of self.
    I don’t think that some of these girls are lazy, but maybe they are just affected by other things in their life.
    Sometimes it feels that some girls that dress up all the time look great, but are just working harder at covering up any feelings of insecurity to look confident.
    Having said that i know i always feel good when i’m wearing nice clothes…Any girl i knew that went around all the time in uggs/and joggers was generally shallow and gossipy, and i felt, sometimes unhappy, they usually had way too much fake tan on as well.
    There are others at Uni (college) that are very clever and always wears sweats! The lecturers don’t really care what we wear, they only care that we turn up to class and learn.
    thanks anyway

  66. 66
    July 10th, 2009 at 9:03 pm

    While I agree that pajamas to class is disgraceful, I live on a HUGE college campus. I walk 5+ miles a day, and for three months of the year in weather that’s about 95-100 degrees. Cute little flip flops do not bode well for walking, and flats are horrendous when it comes to supporting my feet.
    Typically here in Austin, everyone wears shorts, t-shirts, and tennis shoes. Even our professors wear more casual clothes. I think dressing for the environment is important too. Wearing jeans to class in this weather would be like asking for a heat stroke.

  67. 67
    July 17th, 2009 at 9:17 pm

    i have to admit, i do wear a north face and uggs at my college. north face jackets are good transition jackets in the fall and spring, and uggs make sense to me because i have to walk a long distance in 10*F weather in the winter. however, i will not wear them together because that is what everyone does. i like to dress up my fleece with a scarf and will wear mocs or flats with it. i usually wear my chestnut uggs with a cropped black peacoat. everyone wears them together and i hate seeing clones on the elevator, so i try to keep these two peices seperated. i just can’t let the two of them go!

  68. 68
    August 23rd, 2009 at 12:43 pm

    Wow i find this article bogus. im in medical school and i wear sweats everyday..at least im getting the grades! isnt that what matters?

  69. 69
    August 28th, 2009 at 5:15 am

    While I agree that sweats are sloppy and should not be worn to class on a regular basis, there are certain instances in which they are acceptable, such as when you’re sick but don’t want to miss out on an important class, so you just throw something on, go to class, and come back and take a nap. Or if you’ve been up studying, and it’s exam week. Other than that, yeah, sweats are ultramessy. I also agree that jeans are the most-weared item in my wardrobe!

    I’m definitely all about sweaters, too. I’m more of a pullover girl than a cardigan girl myself. I tend to find them cozier. I have a really cute grey and white striped one on right now.

  70. 70
    September 7th, 2009 at 5:13 pm

    I agree about not wearing pajamas to class, but I certainly don’t think sweatpants in public is a crime. Sometimes I have class right after dance class and I have to go in my dance clothes (I throw on a skirt over my leotard, of course) because there’s not enough time to change clothes and get to class on time, and I don’t believe in being late to class! My pink ballet tights under my skirt aren’t what I’d wear for a night out, but part of being in college and trying to do everything means that you can’t always take the time to get dressed up for class. So while there’s nothing wrong with dressing up, you shouldn’t be so quick to judge those who don’t. Maybe that girl in sweatpants is coming from yoga because she’s taking better care of herself than the girl who spends the morning sitting in front of the mirror!

  71. 71
    October 24th, 2009 at 2:00 am

    Obviously a lot of controversy over this article.. in my opinion this one’s a little unrealistic. For one thing, sweats and Uggs or tennis shoes are much more comfortable than jeans and flats and when you’re walking a mile or so to get to class that matters! Almost all of my flats give me blisters if I walk as much as I have to to get from one side of campus to another. I’d like to argue you can look just as cute in some Juicy or Victoria secret sweats.

  72. 72
    November 19th, 2009 at 12:10 am

    I think that a few of you are missing the point of this article! This is one idea about what you could possible wear to class. It doesn’t mean that you have to go out and dress exactly like that to be taken seriously. But I totally agree that I personally feel better about myself and find it easier to concentrate when I am clean and tidy. If that’s not what works for someone esle that that’s cool. That’s the whole point of fashion isn’t it? To dress the way that you want to and express your individuality?
    P.S. I absolutely love this site – you have some great articles!!

  73. 73
    January 1st, 2010 at 10:10 pm

    When you go to class, it really is important to dress in a way that creates a good impression. This is especially true if you go to a small college where the professors and TAs know your name. Why not look as smart and chic as possible? Also, though this isn’t mentioned in the article, try not to wear plunging necklines… they tend to make older professors uncomfortable.

  74. 74
    January 23rd, 2010 at 10:31 am

    I believe that a stylish girl is always stylish no matter what she wears.I like dressing up but that doesn’t mean I can’t wear sweatpants.This is 2010. Sweatpants are not grey or black and baggy to make you look like a boy or a sweaty basketball player.I wear velvet sweatpants, in bright girly colours, with gem stones or fur.It depends on my mood and I like variety.One day I wear skinny jeans and heels and the other Juicy Couture sweatpants.Look at Eva Longoria, she has the ability to wear sweatpants and look sexy, athletic, casual chic and stylish. IT depends on you and how you wear it.remember : ‘the dress doesn’t make the girl, the girl makes the dress”

  75. 75
    January 30th, 2010 at 7:42 pm

    I’ve frequented the halls of my high school in sweatpants many times & looking back I realize that taking a few extra minutes in the morning to throw on a cute outfit once in a while really wasn’t that bad. This coming fall, I’m going off to college & I would really like to spice up my wardrobe, not to mention the fact that I will be a Theatre major, I would really like some cute outfit suggestions.

  76. 76
    February 6th, 2010 at 2:23 am

    I completely and utterly agree. Thank you for posting up this argument that I have been longing to talk about. I just don’t understand what the attraction of looking like a complete bum is. Can someone please explain? I swear that I see the majority of the people at school wear their sweatpants, Uggs, and Northface jackets everyday; Don’t forget the oh-so-chic messy side pony tails. COME ON! Most of the girls that I see wearing these crime outfits are so stunningly beautiful but don’t want to take the time to get ready in the morning, instead rolling out of bed is the easiest choice. Isn’t this a matter of personal hygiene? This awful epidemic has effected guys nearly as much as the girls. I hate seeing guys in sweats even more than I hate seeing girls in sweats. Please please please stop this nonsense and just attempt to look pretty!

  77. 77
    March 13th, 2010 at 5:40 am

    Hello Guys, can you post info. on what shall a boy must wear for college.,

  78. 78
    May 15th, 2010 at 9:10 pm

    I totally disagree with this! As long as you get the right sweat pants, you can even go out on the town with them.
    For instance.
    http://i362.photobucket.com/albums/oo62/kailin63/236480.jpg
    these amazing People’s Liberation pants are comfortable, and cute. =P I wore them with strappy heels and got a lot of compliments.
    (Sorry, I am only posting a butt view…)

  79. 79
    June 22nd, 2010 at 5:30 am

    i really liked this post. I totally believe in keeping it stylish but still not gaudy and over dressed. If you have it, then flaunt and this can be done with casuals as well. Just carry yourself with the right attitude. Be comfortable and believe that you are looking great, and your body language will automatically enhance your personality.

  80. 80
    August 23rd, 2010 at 11:42 pm

    i personaly would never wear sweatpant only because back in HS we would get our picture taken out of nowhere or news camers so i would dress nice just in case something unexpected happened and i think wearing sweats is very unprofessional but is okay if your like sick or something

  81. 81
    September 12th, 2010 at 3:46 pm

    I hav only vest tops leggings and jeans what can I do with that combanation??

  82. 82
    September 25th, 2010 at 7:20 pm

    Thank you so much. I agree with what you said. I also love that first outfit you put up! I really don’t think that people should go to their classes looking as if it’s Kindergarten Pajama Day all over again, as you said.

  83. 83
    November 24th, 2010 at 4:39 am

    I have seen a guy at my uni walking around campus in a BATH ROBE. No joke (I seriously hope he was doing it for a dare…).

    Anyway, I’d have to say that “dressing up” is totally different from looking clean and put together. To me, dressing up implies that you’re going somewhere special – a date, a nice dinner, etc. – and that you’re going to be dressing a notch above casual. But, then again, my casual is pretty much: tights, a skirt, boots or my wedges (depends on weather), and a nice top. My general outerwear is a hoodie if it’s not that cold, but I always make sure it goes with the outfit (and really, if you buy a nice black one, it can be “dressed up”, too). All of this takes only a couple minutes to throw on, and I rarely ever lay out an outfit the night before; if you have multiple pieces that go together, it’s really not hard to literally just yank pieces out of your drawer, since you don’t have to worry if they don’t go together. I look clean and put together, but not necessarily dressed up.

    Here the general view of people who wear sweats to class IS that they don’t care about how they look, especially since very few people can actually look cute while wearing them…I’m in Canada, mind, but still. People do judge you based on what you wear. Yes, there are times when it’s acceptable, but it really doesn’t take much extra effort to change out of a pair of pjs, or to put on a skirt/dress/pair of shorts/slacks/jeans/etc. instead of sweats…

  84. 84
    November 24th, 2010 at 5:03 am

    And to add in case there’s any confusion: when I say hoodie, I mean a zip-up hoodie, not the pull-over type…(though I do have two pull-overs: one’s a cute red plaid, and the other is one of my uni’s hoodies that I wear in my dorm and when I’m sleeping if it’s really cold. It doesn’t go outside the dorm xD)

  85. 85
    January 6th, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    this was sooo useful thank you! i’ve been at college for a few months now and this was like my bible in the first few, so now i’m into the style i thought i should thak you for makin my life a whole lot easier. i totally agree that sweats are too scruffy for college – you should always make an effort to look nice becuse then you will feel more productive and in a better frame of mind. but conversely, as long as you get the most of what you can at college, i guess it shouldn’t really matter what you wear.

  86. 86
    January 23rd, 2011 at 9:54 am

    i totally agree with u ’bout dressing up to be presentable! ( it’s not like u’re going to dress like you’re going for some movie award!-coz that’s going overboard) People don’t wear pjs in public from where I am from!
    Maybe it’s just an american trend?

  87. 87
    January 25th, 2011 at 8:28 pm

    My school actually has a dress code – no sweats or pjs allowed in lecture halls, or in dining hall after 9:30 am.

  88. 88
    January 27th, 2011 at 12:06 am

    I totally agree! I do agree that being comfortable is important, but like it or not, how you look is part of how others judge you at first. Your boss at work or your teacher at school is less likely to take you seriously if you show up in sweats versus a nice shirt and pants.
    About consumerism, if you look at this website, it’s more about helping yourself feel good and expressing yourself than buying stuff, it’s just examples. Anyone who buys exactly what fashion blogs say to probably shouldn’t be reading them anyways. :)

  89. 89
    March 15th, 2011 at 9:14 pm

    Awesome!!! A few ideas i could use. Though, I knew about the sweatpants. I should show this to my friend. She wears them almost everyday!!!!!!!

  90. 90
    March 27th, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    Oh my gosh… I live in New Zealand with a population of 4 million in our whole country and I have NEVER seen anyone respectable wearing trackpants to school/uni…
    In saying that… majority of our High Schools have uniforms so I guess kids do think about what they wear more at Uni since its like every day is a mufti day

    Love this blog :)

  91. 91
    June 2nd, 2011 at 1:15 pm

    I am not a big fan of sweats and I’m in high school but during finals we normally tell all of our friends to wear their sweats on a planned day and practically everyone has their sweats on. but that is only once a year!!

  92. 92
    June 28th, 2011 at 8:40 pm

    I’m going off to college in September I really wanted to get out of my high school fashion looks and go into college prep looks. I’m pretty much working hard all summer long to get into good habits fashion wise like instead of wearing just a shirt and shoes and make up I can play around with some fashion ideas and look more presentable in class. It’s really disrepectful to show up to school and class like you just rolled out of bed. And I’m planning to actually learn how to use a curling iron this summer instead of letting my hair nautrally curl up. WISH ME LUCK! and this site really really did help lol

  93. 93
    July 13th, 2011 at 8:52 pm

    What type of style do you recommend for a non-traditional student? I am a 46 year old Junior and struggle with my findin g my place. I don’t want to look like a professor, but I don’t want to look like I’m trying to behave like I’m 19 or 20 either.

  94. 94
    August 21st, 2011 at 7:45 pm

    Tonya, just dress nice and presentable. :) I had two women in various classes of mine last year who were wonderful to talk with and simply dressed presentably: slacks, nice shirts (I don’t think blouses necessarily), a coat (not necessarily fancy), and I think I remember both accessorizing with scarves lots. Yeah, they looked similar to one of my profs, but it didn’t matter–the three of them just had similar tastes re: fashion.

    As for my views on this article, well… I believe that fashion’s decayed into a sad state of affairs if sweats (regardless of cuteness) or pj’s, uggs and a baggy hoodie are considered casual. Here the look is considered unkempt, messy, and lazy–not necessarily because the people who wear that style are any of those things, but because that’s the look that the outfit portrays. Casual, here, is pretty much “jeans and whatever” at minimum.

    I wear skirts and shorts exclusively because I don’t like the feeling of jeans or pants. If it’s cold out I wear good tights underneath. I never wear uggs–there are so many more comfortable boots and shoes that look a million times cuter, for goodness’ sake!–and I never wear a baggy tee except for sleeping in. The only time I’ll wear a baggy pullover out is if I’m sick or just pulled an all-nighter and had no time to change before running to class. I take pride in making myself presentable to the world. If another person wants to believe that people don’t judge others based on looks, fine; but if someone is using the excuse that people “shouldn’t” judge others because on looks, then I just shake my head and ask them why they judge people who look put together as caring too much about looks/etc. (hypocrisy, much?) But I do have to say that you can dress up too much for class, though the limit varies depending on what faculty and department you’re in (say, business vs. writing).

    Like it or not, people WILL judge you based on your fashion choices, no matter where you are. Do you want to look presentable to those who don’t share your views, or do you want to look like you’ve given up on yourself? It’s really as simple as wearing a pair of nice jeans instead of those pj’s or sweats.

  95. 95
    August 30th, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    I agree with this article and many of the comments. Very few people on my campus dress in sweats, and when they do, they really stick out. While I hate to stereotype, it’s typically certain groups that dress in their North Face + sweats + Uggs combo. Most of the campus wears the standard skinny jeans + cute top/cardigan + flats or boots combo like in the first outfit you’ve presented. But many others, myself included, “dress up” even more. I think a lot of people don’t realize the difference between wearing a dress and dressing for the club. I own TONS of dresses, many of them in solid colors. I’d like to argue they’re even easier to wear than sweats (just one piece!), and they’re super easy to accessorize–with jewelry and shoes in the warmer months and colored tights, scarves, and/or cardigans in the winter! It’s easy to look cute without looking overdone.

    And I agree, while wearing sweats doesn’t have any indication of your intelligence, some professors (not all) DO pay attention to the way you dress and the way you present yourself. I wore sweats one day into class when I had a really bad cold, and my professor immediately asked me if I was okay or if I needed to go home. Maybe it’s a small school thing, but it does make a difference, even if only a small one!

  96. 96
    October 3rd, 2011 at 8:23 am

    I go to appstate. I am a dance studies major. I have to move and be comfy in my classes and seeing as how it is really cold in Boone and always snowing, sweats are PERFECTLY acceptable. Typical attire here is sweats, ugg boots or some sort of warm boot with traction, a tee shirt, a hoodie AND a ski jacket. It’s only October 3rd and the high today is 46. With windchills it will only feel like it’s in the mid 30s.

  97. 97
    October 17th, 2011 at 3:31 pm

    I completely agree…but where is the line between appropriate and inappropriate for class!

  98. 98
    November 16th, 2011 at 11:22 am

    I sometimes wish I could wear my sweatpants to my early morning classes, because they’re so warm and I like the way they look, but I’m always afraid of looking like a slob, haha.

    I do have a question though – are yoga pants okay? I’m on dance team, and sometimes I have to go straight from class to practice, so I just wear black yoga pants with some sneakers and a fleece jacket or a hoodie. It’s not super classy, but I don’t think it looks slobbish, just sporty-casual.

  99. 99
    April 12th, 2012 at 2:31 pm

    Jess, idk if you will see this haha.. but i think that you can wear simple ballet flats and a cute shirt or blouse with black yoga pants! when you dress them up, you can even look classy, since a lot of people won’t notice they are actually yoga pants! try it!

  100. 100
    July 31st, 2012 at 1:50 pm

    Just doing some research for content for a website I’m helping with. I loved this post and completely agree! Sweatpants are just an excuse to cover up the damage that too much drinking has done. Cut back on the every night drinking so you can slip into a cute outfit that makes you presentable- am I right? Great post!

  101. 101
    August 3rd, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    well if i do recall. Victoria secret makes really cute sweat pants and know that in my college they sell sweat pants with the name of the college on them. so if it was so disrespectful then they wouldnt sell them. Its important to be comfortable while trying to study and concentrate.

  102. 102
    August 12th, 2012 at 6:34 am

    Another thing to consider, at the college I will be attending starting this fall (Baker I’m in Michigan). has a “Life time job placement program” Which means professionals from the industry are on campus. They scout for potential future employees. That’s why I plan I leaving my sweats at home. I’m not going to dress like I’m going to interview. But looking like I don’t care at all is going to send a VERY bad message. If I can’t take my wardrobe for school seriously, how can they expect me to take my future job seriously?

  103. 103
    August 15th, 2012 at 1:23 pm

    The only time I had ever been in my pj’s at school was for the get up and go day in high school won almost every year. I don’t know if I should be terribly excited about this or a little worried. Hahahaha.

    But I took pride in my looks and smell making sure that my flaws were hidden inside though I have never really had a style of my own I have always been in hand me downs my whole life.

    Not again though I am now a college girl and I will avenge my non stylish years in high school “Look out world new and improved girl coming through!” With a rocking new look. No one back home in my little unknown town will recognize me I’m changing everything my hair, style, atmosphere.

  104. 104
    September 19th, 2012 at 11:49 am

    While I completely agree that making in effort is always appreciated, the idea that sweats can’t be made to look cute is a biased way of looking at other people’s personal style. The argument used to be made that jeans were impossible to dress up and that’s clearly been proven wrong in many facets of daily and professional life. I know how to rock some form fitting cute sweats and NOT look like a hobo/hungover/don’tcare, thank you! No, I’m not going to wear them to an important meeting, interview, or professional event of any kind, but when it’s -40 with a windchill and I’m running through kneehigh snow, I know how to look cute AND warm.

  105. 105
    November 4th, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    Lol oh dear, I love how most of the comments here seem to consider dressing as a TOTAL dichotomy- the ONLY alternatives to sweatpants aren’t just jeans (the medium) or designer frocks with frothy tutus & 24k gold sewn into the shoulders (the extreme)!

    I hope people realise there are many more nice pairs of bottoms you can wear that AREN’T jeans! I for one find jeans incredibly uncomfortable (the buttons/ zips dig in, & my hourglass shape is frustratingly impossible to fit into jeans)!

    So, my solution? Well, I love wearing:
    ~Palazzo pants
    ~Chinos
    ~Pull-on slacks
    ~Harem pants (the fitted kind though!)
    ~Maxi skirts (with leggings underneath!)
    ~Denim pants (made to look like jeans, but not)
    ~Beach skirts
    ~Linen white pants
    ~Maxi skirts (again!)
    ~Leggings (with a skirt, of course!)

    And the best part?
    a) NONE of these things look too dressy if you wear them with the right tops (like a chambray shirt, or simple t-shirt)- you can even wear them to the gym! =D
    b) ALL of these things are INCREDIBLY comfy- they don’t dig into your waist, constrict your thighs, or make sitting down painful in any way.
    c)ALL of these things CAN be appropriate for any other event in life (interview/ party etc) with the right tops & accessories (blazers, jewellery etc) =D

    So yeah, this kinda makes the whole ‘I WEAR SWEATPANTS BECAUSE JEANS ARE TOO UNCOMFY FOR WHEN I’M ILL/ ABOUT TO HEAD TO THE GYM ETC’ argument invalid lol ;) And before you say anything, all this is coming from a girl who never wears jeans OR sweatpants, but still manages to go to aerobics/ yoga classes, kick ass at Ju Jitsu AND do well at both my part-time job & uni studies- it IS possible lol! ;)

  106. 106
    December 26th, 2012 at 8:01 am

    Bangles to class? Banging (pun intended :p) into the desk? No thank you! Same with long necklasses! You will annoy the what out of your neighbour :p

    (This article is ages old, I know that, but still ;) )

  107. 107
    January 7th, 2013 at 1:03 pm

    I did the sweats thing a few times during my freshman year, and even though I was comfy, I felt inferior to everyone else because I wasn’t dressed as nice. I also had a bit of a harder time staying awake. I stopped wearing sweats and started wearing tee shirts and jeans all the time, which made me feel a bit better. I graduated with my bachelors degree, and now I’m going back to school to get a second bachelors degree (It’ll only take me 2 semesters). I’m 23 now, and after being in the full time working world a while, I enjoy dressing up a lot more now and I’ve realized black pants are super slimming. I plan to dress very feminine business-casual to my classes this year.

    Dressing up does a lot for your mindset and how others think of you. Dressing in sweats kind of seems like you’re showing weakness among your peers, disrespect toward your professors, and incompetence all around. Dressing up nice shows your peers and your professor and everyone around you that you’ve got your life together and under control, and it also helps you stay awake and feel more confident.

    That being said- I did just buy a couple new pairs of cute sweats from Aeropostale… For gym use only. ;)

  108. 108
    February 28th, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    Can you do one for men? Thanks

  109. 109
    August 10th, 2013 at 9:59 am

    Hey does it look sloppy to wear like a cute hoodie with skinny jeans and some boots? (bearpaws or something) …. :)

  110. 110
    September 12th, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    As long as you don’t have bad hygiene and pay attention during class I say wear whatever you want.
    So what if you where sweats, I person in jeans can fall asleep just as easily.
    I find jeans really uncomfortable sometimes, who wants to be uncomfortable for hours in the same room. Sweats are also warm and I actually don’t find much wrong with the above picture, all it is is a girl wearing a warm jumper, some warm sweats, and warm uggboots. Perfect for a chilly morning.

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