Fashion Infraction: Pajamas in Public

Pajamas in Public. Photo: Malingering on Flickr

You would think it’s common fashion sense to not wear pajamas in public, but a trip to your local grocery store will show you otherwise. Recently, Louisiana lawmaker Michael Williams pushed to make it against the law to wear pajamas in public.

“Pajamas are designed to be worn in the bedroom at night,” says Williams. “The moral fiber in our community is dwindling. Today it’s pajamas, tomorrow it’s underwear. Where does it stop?”

In January 2010, a grocery store in the UK banned people from shopping in their pajamas and were met by outraged customers. “It is ridiculous and stupid,” one PJ wearing 24-year-old mom said. “I’ve worn my best ones today, just so I look tidy. … You see loads of people going in wearing jogging bottoms, what’s the difference?”

Weigh in — is it socially acceptable to wear pajamas in public?

I’m with Williams — pajamas are for the bedroom. When you go out, take a minute to swap those PJ bottoms for a comfortable alternative. As Jax said on Pinterest, it takes just as much effort to put on nice clothes.

9 thoughts on “Fashion Infraction: Pajamas in Public

  1. Permissable is not the right word to use. That only makes those too lazy to get dressed mad. Is it smart? No. Pajamas in public cause the wearer to appear stupid unable to dress him or herself, stupid not knowing something better to wear, stupid thinking what he or she wears does not matter, stupid thinking their rebellion shows how brave they are, stupid giving away their visual authority and intelligence, stupid is as stupid does.

  2. Even if I have to run to the store for emergency baby Tylenol at 10 pm I change out of my pajamas pants into yoga pants, which are slightly more acceptable to me. Pajama pants in public are a never ever for me! Although, my yoga pants are frequently my pajama pants so there is a bit of a gray area there… :)

  3. I have never worn pajamas in public, but I don't think it should be against the law. I can imagine a few scenarios where wearing pjs in public might be legitimate. Say, for example, your kids are all sick, it's late at the night or early in the morning, and you are nine months pregnant. For situations like that I think you should get a pass.

  4. I wouldn’t wear pajamas when I go out. Yet i agree that it is ridiculous to ban people wearing pajamas from shopping or any other places. Is it socially acceptable to judge people by the clothes they wear? Not in my opinion.

  5. Thanks for your thoughts, JoLee. People start proposing laws against XYZ when they think that people aren't going to make the right decisions on their own. I can see a mother prioritizing her children's health over what she is wearing.

  6. Thanks for sharing, Aenakin. I wouldn't go out in my PJs either. This lawmaker seems to have higher expectations of our society which I can understand, though if it's a law, it would be a hard one to enforce. It's an unfortunate reality that people make snap judgments about us by what we wear, whether or not we like it.

  7. Thanks for weighing in, Judith. I would tend to think people wearing pajamas in public would be more mad for being called stupid for their choice of attire. Not that it makes pajamas in public alright, but stupid is an awfully strong choice of words. You certainly have a point though — people give away their visual authority and perceived intelligence by wearing pajamas in public.

  8. People nowadays are brave enough to go beyond the usual even in choosing a fashion statement. I don't see anything wrong in wearing pajamas in public though I've never tried it. As long as they feel comfortable with that, let them. Maybe it's awkward to see people those sleepwear in public but do we have the right to judge them?

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