Pants Suck, Am I Right?

Pants: pour le sport!

Everyone feels that way, right? They feel like pants suck?

No? I guess not. Someone in the office mentioned that pregnant women tie their blue jeans with some manner of twine so they can continue wearing them thoughout their pregnancies. Frankly, I’m  not going to name names, but maybe the person who told me this was a liar. If not, I was terrified by that. Because I thought pregnancy was finally the time you got to break out all of those great empire waist dresses. Like Empress Josephine, but with better cleavage!

Apparently I’m wrong, all the time.

Blue jeans: they’re something a lot of women are committed to.

Meanwhile, I pretty much never wear pants.  That’s not because I’m somehow being ladylike. It’s not like I’m Mandy Moore in that movie where spoiler she dies, just wandering around in knee length dresses, clutching my cardigan, speaking in bible proverbs. It’s not some sort of modesty thing. Nor is it because I really, really love the styles in the 1940′s, and I work on my time machine every damn day (I do. And I practice not stepping on butterflies). If it was that, trust me, I’d run around wearing pants like Katharine Hepburn, because no one ever looked better in them.

The real reason I generally opt for dresses over pants is because I’m not that competent, and wearing dresses is a way to trick people into thinking that I am.

I mean, I’m certainly not competent enough to commit to style decision that would require twine artistry in the event I should ever have a fetus inside me. But also, I am barely able to make decisions about what clothing goes together. I mean, I guess everything goes with blue jeans. You could wear, pretty much any kind of top with them and it would be fine. Military jackets, regular jackets… straight jackets. Jackets. And t-shirts. And then you could coordinate them with your shoes and maybe you would have to layer another top over it or something. How do people plan this? Do you lay all your clothes out the night before? How do you make so many decisions so early in the morning?

Look, do you know how much planning goes into styling a dress? Putting it on. Boom. You have a look now. Your look is “I’m wearing a dress, I already look pulled together, running around in this here dress.” It’s odd how you immediately become folksy when you wear dresses, but that’s fine. It’s winter? Okay. Your look is now “I’m wearing a dress and put tights on under it. Boom. Running around in this here dress, my legs encased in tights like I’m a goddamn ballerina.”

The amazing thing is that people will not see this as a sign that you have only the most basic understanding of how jackets work, they will say things like “your look is so polished.” Yes. Because you are wearing only one garment instead of five. That is how you streamline everything in a pretty effective way. And if you spend $25 to go in and get your dresses tailored to fit you perfectly at your dry cleaner’s after buying them, you will come off as some kind of style superstar. And then go off and laugh like a supervillain. Like this:

rocky horror picture show laugh

True, a dress and tights, isn’t a really clever, inventive look, but it is a look that will be appropriate just about anyplace. And if you are incompetent in a “constantly forgetting what you are going to that night” kind of way, when some uppity deputy editor says “you know we’re supposed to go to a cocktail party for [some kind of skin cream] at 6:30 tonight, right?” you will be able to say “I knew that.” They’ll know you’re lying, but no one else will! Because you’re wearing a shift dress. It looks as though you planned to be there all along. Drink all the champagne, you never need to remember any appointment ever again! [tagbox tag="pants"]

And you know that thing that happens when you are wearing blue jeans and you sit down and your butt crack is revealed? Which happens especially if you want to avoid wearing pants that are cut too high, because you’ve had it drilled into your head that mom-jeans aren’t flattering? That will never happen in a dress. Ever. You would have to wear the weirdest dress in the entire world for that to happen. And then, I suppose it would be a very strategic part of the look. The worst inadvertently exposed body part mishap you can have in a dress is that you might go out without underwear and flash someone if you spread your legs like Sharon Stone. That would still be sexier than exposing your butt crack, and, correctly applied, could probably get you featured in US Weekly. Otherwise, you could solve that problem by wearing underwear, or not spreading your legs really wide apart.

Basically, what I’m saying is: pants, great if you’re Katharine Hepburn. Dresses: great if you’re a little incompetent and out to trick people. Blue jeans: not great if you’re pregnant, apparently.


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    • Goldie

      Yes to all of this. I used to be always dresses all the time for all of these reasons. Then I sort of wore out/stained/got tired of a bunch of them and I’ve been in this pants phase all year and it sucks.

      I would add: Weight fluctuations are no big deal with dresses. Especially for me since I gain all my weight in my ass and I usually buy dresses that allow a lot of room there.

      The only irritating thing I can think of is that, since you do automatically look more dressed up, you tend to get a lot of “ooooh who are you trying to impress/why so fancy?” from people. But then, that’s more of a passive hater problem than a dress problem.

      • Ellen W.

        Yes! Why do people do that? Don’t we all understand that sometimes we like to have a dress-up day?

        I’d wear skirts more except that I walk a lot during the work day adn I have a horrible time finding shoes that work with dresses and can also take a couple of miles every time I wear them.

      • Jamie

        Dresses are the best! And I also hate that comment! Especially, “Why are you so dressed up?” I’m not dressed up! You want dressed up, I’ll show you dressed up – this, my friend, is what is called a casual dress. Or a “day dress” if we’re playing 1960s.

      • Alex

        The weight fluctuation thing is one of the many reasons that I LOVE dresses and skirts so much. Sometimes when I’ve been slacking off for a while I just don’t feel like trying on my jeans to likely be reminded that I’ve outgrown them AGAIN.

    • Meghan

      That top photo is the best photo. From ever.

    • Kj

      Le sport… in heels? Je suis le confused.

      One reason why I am not a fan of dresses: chafing. That shiz really hurts. Pantyhose helps reduce it, but ew, pantyhose.

      Plus, since I’m used to pants, I tend to forget to… not flash people. Trust me, it is pretty easy to get overexposed.

      • Daantaat

        I used to have terrible problems with chafing, especially in humid weather, but I discovered this great stuff that you can rub on areas that chafe and get the same effect as wearing pantyhose, except without the pantyhose! It’s awesome. Also, it works on my feet if my sandal straps are too tight across the top of my foot as well. The stuff I use is called Body Glide, but there are other brands too. I found this stuff in the area of the store that sells things like knee braces and bunion pads.

      • Jennifer Wright

        I’ve used body glide too, but only on my feet. It was helpful in me not getting blister from super-blister-provoking-strappy-sandal-straps, so I imagine it would be good in other chafing areas.

        (And I was not dressed to play kickball. I was dressed that way for something entirely different and, unexpectedly, wandered into a friend’s kickball game. So, I’m not actually an… interesting person).

    • Fabel

      I agree with allllll of this, & I can especially relate to choosing dresses because “I am barely able to make decisions about what clothing goes together.” This is why dresses are great! They are one item, plus maybe tights or a jacket. That’s so much better than trying to find a top to go with pants, even jeans. Jeans don’t go with everything, because sometimes a certain top will look okay with one pair while looking horrible with a different pair.

      And yeah, I hate all those “Why are you so dressed up?” comments that imply I shouldn’t have put in the effort. DOESN’T ANYONE UNDERSTAND it would have taken much more time and mental resources for me to put together some kind of studiedly casual outfit.

    • porkchop

      I’ve worn pants to work maybe 5 times in the past 6 months. Skirts and dresses are SO COMFORTABLE.

    • Chris

      Dresses are also super handy if you’re travelling, as long as they don’t crease much/at all. Chuck in some tights, take a couple of long-sleeved cardis/jackets/blazers and you are pretty much set for most weather. If you tend to get quite cold (like me) you can take a long sleeved top to wear under your dresses too, provided it looks okay with the chosen dresses (granted, it will look more casual). I find it takes much less space than packing jeans & some sort of shorts/three-quarter length pants and then different top layers. And shoes-wise, take a pair of boots (if you suspect cold) and/or cute flats that look okay with tights as well. I love dresses for their efficiency, skirts come a distant second, cos then I have to find tops that work.
      P.S. By the way, when you get dresses tailored do the people at the dry-cleaners help you out there? I feel like I would direct alterations that would make the dress unwearable!

      • Fabel

        I also have questions about getting things tailored, because I bought a dress recently that is about 4 sizes too big (it was gorgeous and the only one left) Should I actually take it to the dry cleaners? Or just attempt to take it in myself (with one giant seam probably, due to my limited sewing skills?)

      • Jennifer Wright

        My dry cleaner is pretty great about me walking in with dresses and saying “make it fit… better?” and then pinching and using some tape and pins and then, bam, a week later it fits as though I got it made to fit my body. Your dry cleaner may not be as great, but try them! It makes a big difference if it works.

      • porkchop

        Fabel, take it to a tailor if you don’t already know your dry cleaner has an awesome seamstress. The alterations have to be done at the side seams, which is complicated.


    • LaLa

      Yes. I hate pants. And jeans are the worst. I always feel so confined when I have to wear them. Also, it’s so easy to just put on a dress and “Oh, it’s kinda cold out? Let me get my tights and boots!” Or, “Oh, it’s kinda hot out? Let me switch my flats for sandals and take off this cardigan!” DONE! Outfit accomplished with limited thinking/planning.

    • Becca

      Ha. I know this is awful, but I totally wear pants all the time because it means I don’t have to shave my legs. I have lots of pretty dresses, but to wear them I have to pay attention to my leg hair, which is something I just don’t do. So, I guess in my world, I only wear dresses when I’m hoping to get lucky. I know, that’s awful and lazy, but it’s true.

      • Disha

        haha…me too! its pants all winter long, just so i don’t have to shave my legs:(

    • Abby

      Pregnant with number two, and I own NO maternity jeans–I just don’t wear jeans when I’m pregnant! Dresses and skirts are a million times more comfortable, and look great for everything. I can do just about everything in a skirt or dress that I could do in pants.

    • S

      CHAFING MY GOD dresses are torture.

      • Kj

        I know, right?


        We are probably going to be shunned here on the “purse dog” website :P

    • LCT


      But seriously—since I’ve fully accepted my grown-up, working-person’s wardrobe, I get just about everything tailored. Because I still have the body of a 14-year-old, and vanity sizing is everything that’s wrong with the world.

      Also, jeans in my price range suck because of manufacturers’ need to make every. damn. pair. stretchy.

    • Briana

      How dare you call me a liar, Jennifer.

      • Jennifer Wright

        Twine, Briana. Pregnant ladies all twining up their jeans.

    • Nikita

      I think if Jennifer Wright and I met in real life, we would be great friends.

      • Jennifer Wright

        We would have champagne and tea sandwiches and laugh. Oh, how we’d laugh.

      • Nikita

        Laugh in our tailored dresses at all the pant-wearing fools!

    • MM

      I’m a pants-hater too. I just think that tights and skirts are way, way more comfortable than jeans. With the invention of cotton tights, I can wear the most comfortable thing outside of pajamas and still have people think I’m ‘dressed-up’. It’s a MIRACLE.

    • Audrey

      Seriously, who are these pregnant women that only gain weight in their waist? Just a few weeks into pregnant and all the fat goes to my thighs/butt. A whole ball of twine isn’t going to help a pair of my skinny jeans. Pregnant people should just give in and wear dresses… or yoga pants. Don’t get me started on pregnancy jeans. They have a stretchy panel. You have no waistline anymore. All day long the jeans are sliding down! Ugh.

    • fashionfoodfeminism

      Definitely dresses…and one of my main problems is forgetting to wear underwear with them. And like others have side they hide weight gain a lot more than pants do.

    • Alexandra

      Oh I love this article. Not because I can really relate (since jeans are my favorite clothing creation ever), but because I admire girls that can look very lady like in their fancy dresses. I wear dresses occasionally and skirts even more often, but I’m very likely to forget to wear underwear and then I might start doing yoga poses and things would just get awkward. Although tomorrow I will wear a dress just because of this article.

    • Lauren

      i think the author of this is my platonic-soulmate. I wear a dress every day, maybe have worn pants to work/out on a weekend/in public eight times in the past year.

      i like to look nice and dresses instantly do that (unless of course they are stained, wrinkled, etc). plus, i hate the way pants look on me (even thought i have a nice figure, i just think pants accentuate all the wrong areas).

      my boyfriend celebrates the very rare occassions when i wear pants bc he says he can finally see my butt (not that he doesn’t see it every day, without pants).

      also, agreed with many other commenters that it’s incredibly annoying when ppl say ‘you’re so dressed up!’ No, actually this is my everyday wear, perhaps you should kick it up a notch yourself.