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Dafna Fashion Friday: No-Mas-Te to Yoga Pants

by Borderstan.com March 22, 2013 at 10:00 am 12 Comments

From Dafna Steinberg. Follow her @AlizaySteinberg. Email her at dafna[AT]borderstan.com.


Yoga pants: Do NOT walk around in them, unless you’re going to class. (Rachel Nania)

This is another post about one of my fashion pet peeves. I’m only going to say this once: Gym clothes are meant for the gym. You wear them to the gym. You can wear them home from the gym. You can wear them to run errands BEFORE or AFTER you have gone to the gym.

However, you SHOULD NOT wear them out to the grocery store, coffee shop, hair salon, etc, if you aren’t planning on going anywhere near the gym. (And don’t try to tell me that you wear your gym clothes out because you may end up at the gym. You are either going or you aren’t)

But Dafna, you might say, my yoga pants are SO comfortable…why shouldn’t I wear them out? Of course yoga pants are comfortable. You have to bend your body into unmentionable shapes, the least your pants could be is comfortable, not to mention stretchy.

Yoga pants, and gym clothes over all, started out like other horrible fashion trends. They were something practical with a purpose. Look at Crocs. Crocs had a purpose: comfortable footwear for people who had to stand on their feet the whole day.

Doctors, for example. But then people started wearing them at home. And then to the grocery store (because who cares what you wear to the grocery store, right?). And then, people started wearing them all the time. Because they are oh-so-comfortable. Guess what? They are also uglier than one of those hairless cats.

Women, specifically, seem to gravitate towards clothes they can wear to the gym and then, without changing, go out for a night on the town. Maybe it’s because Lululemon’s prices are so high, they feel the need to attach more purpose to their gym clothes. Maybe it’s because they want to show off their firm… ahem… assets after all the hard work they did in Bikram. Who knows? All I know is that whenever I see women out and about wearing yoga pants, it makes me want to scream.

Solution? Wear a T-shirt and jeans. Or funky patterned leggings and a sweater. It’s comfortable, but makes you look like you actually took a shower today.

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  • Earl

    So you’re calling for a moratorium on wearing gym clothes to the grocery store? You should contact SDCA. They love a good moratorium.

  • Aggressive

    What’s with all the yoga pants hate lately? And the rationale that leggings are fine, but yoga pants are not. Newsflash – either are actually pants. Further, why are people judging what I wear to the grocery store or to do errands? Who the hell cares what I wear, I’m going about my own business, not trying to impress anyone or show off that I “care” or “don’t care” about my appearance…I mean come on, I’m at Target to buy toilet paper, a broom and probably storage bins or baskets, I could care less what I look like. I’m sorry if you find my yoga pants offensive, but I find your ugly floral leggings a fashion crime against humanity.

    • Ricky

      @aggressive- It sounds very clear that you don’t care about your appearance and that’s fine (do what you do) but do everyone else that has to view your appearance a favor and cover up the visuals.

      • You’re quite a gent

        I think what “Ricky” really means is that women are falling down on their first priority lately of dressing in ways that please and appeal to him.

        I will sit quietly with my hands folded while I wait for “Ricky” to pick out my outfit and order my dinner.

        Disregard this stupidity. Wear your leggings or not — Ricky is no doubt rocking some awesome pleated pants right now.

    • Anonymous

      I think it might be a generational thing that divides the different schools of thought here. While I hear you when you say who cares about what someone wears to do errands, etc., I have also heard the advice or thought that you never know whom you are going to run into while out. I have lived in big cities and small towns and it’s quite amazing that you will run into someone, even when you think you are only out for but half a second. Maybe you don’t care and that’s fine. I think that different generational thinking is that they did care more or that people should care a little more, as it shows respect for oneself and for others. I think it’s a sign of the times.

  • Dear Aggressive,

    This column is something you can take or leave. If you don’t like what’s written in it, it’s okay. Just like you aren’t trying to impress anyone when you are going about your errands, I am not trying to make everyone change. I was simply venting a fashion frustration (of which I have many when it comes to DC). When I told a number of friends of mine I was writing this column, they excitedly told me “THANK YOU” because it seems that it is a frustration among many people who want to see the city become more fashion conscious. You even say so yourself that there is so much yoga pants hate happening as of late. (Ooo that rhymed!)

    I’m not sure if you read my column regularly (or if you just saw “Yoga Pants” and that piqued your interest), but I regularly talk about how fashion should be looked to to make people more confident in themselves. Even when you are going to the grocery store. Because, in my philosophy, you never know who you will meet or see, so you always want to feel at your most confident.

    But because you seem offended, I apologize. Wear your yoga pants to Target. If they make you feel confident, even better!

    And maybe while you’re there, you will find a cute pair of floral leggings to wear to the grocery store too.

  • Ricky

    AMEN sister.”Yoga” pants,Leggings,Jeggings or whatever anyone wants to call them-I’m so sick of seeing soft-core porn on every woman in this city that I too nearly lose my breakfast,lunch,or dinner at the very sight.It doesn’t matter where you are,the doctors office,in the work office,the restaurant,grocery shopping,or the library the rear butt-wedgies,butt coin-slots and front “can you see me now’s” and are everywhere.Women have become so classless in public.
    Don’t think for one moment all men aren’t talking about it too.Men in general won’t tell their girlfriends to wear something else out of fear of a screaming lecture,but I can factually state that men are sick of seeing their girlfriends in them.We, together are talking about it.Just like we did we when couldn’t get them out of sweatpants.Finally that trend ended.Hopefully this one that seems to be going on forever will end to.Soon.

    • You’re quite a gent

      Hey grandpa — here is a newsflash for you: Women do not dress to please you. Nor do they dress according to your instructions. Nor do they really care what you think, most of the time. Nor is what a woman puts on her back your business, in the least.

      “We couldn’t get them out of sweatpants”??

      Do you have any control over what a sexist nutjob you are?

  • Anonymous

    Hey Dafna, there are fashion trends that I’m no fan of but how are yoga pants different from leggings? You could make the comfort argument for both but leggings are more form-fitting/revealing b/c yoga pants aren’t quite as body hugging (I’m guessing since I don’t wear them). I do get your point. Casualness is running all over and throughout society these days. I’ve benefitted from the casualness, though I never wear yoga pants or leggings/jeggings either. I don’t get worked up about it but it’s not my favorite outfit to see, especially in a place other than the gym. I just tell myself not to do it.

    • Hi Anonymous,

      You bring up a valid point and an argument that has been occurring among many fashionistas in the past few years. There isn’t that much of a difference between leggings and yoga pants. And I can’t really argue against wearing leggings (I wear them all the time…more so because I have a hard time finding jeans or pants that fit my body type properly, but that’s another story).

      However, to me there is a certain look that accompanies yoga pants. It’s not just the pants themselves…it’s the Lycra dry-fast jacket/top, baseball cap and ratty gym sneakers that complete the outfit. When I talk about leggings, I’m envisioning ones in fun colors or patterns, not plain black and definitely not cut to mid-calf (it makes your legs look shorter!) to go under an over-sized sweater or a dress.

      All in all, I do feel that many people in this city get too comfortable with their fashion and don’t make too much of an effort to spruce up their wardrobes. As I said in a below comment, you never know who you will see or meet and you should always be at your most confident and dressing in a way that is attractive and comfortable can help with your confidence level.

      Thanks for reading!

      • Anonymous

        Hey Dafna, thanks for your thoughtful reply. It occurred to me that I think we are bombarded by images of celebrities who dress super casually when doing errands (probably to be incognito as much as possible more than trying to make a fashion statement or anything else). When people see this as an example, they think it’s okay to emulate what the celebrities are doing since people seem to be follow their every move. As for confidence, I absolutely agree about the importance of confidence really helps support being attractive and comfortable. However, doesn’t confidence really start from the inside?

        • Dear Anonymous,

          You are too right. Confidence does start from the inside. But, I’m a firm believer that your fashion statements are a projection of your inside out. So why not dress as confidently as you feel?


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