Ah, yoga pants. The wardrobe staple of every woman in America. They’re the pants we slip into as soon as we get home from work. The ones we bask in every weekend while we flip through magazines and watch trashy TV and ignore our families with the ease of a jaded Betty Draper, all the while speaking ill of both our coworkers and our work attire.
But what if there were a way to get away with wearing stretchy pants to work? While I can’t get rid of your nagging kid/mom/husband/boyfriend/roommate or somehow find you a work-from-home job that allows you to continue paying for both your wine and your Netflix addiction (seriously, I’m not a wizard), I can help you with the whole “hating your work clothes” thing.
So, through some scheming and tricking and not-so-much playing by the rules, here is how you get away with wearing your favorite leggings to work:
1. “Forgive Me. My Life Is Falling Apart.”
Next Monday, arrive at work in sweatpants, an XL T-shirt, pool flip flops and greasy hair. When HR requests to meet with you and politely asks that you start dressing more appropriately for work, apologize profusely and tell them that you’ve gained some weight because your boyfriend’s mom’s sister recently separated from her boyfriend of a month and it’s really hitting you hard -- but you’ll try to start dressing better. The next day, show up in leggings, a loose fitting shirt, and accessories (complete with clean hair!) and act like getting dressed was a really huge accomplishment. Even if you’re not exactly meeting dress code, everyone at your company will be so happy you’re clean that they’ll leave you alone for at least three weeks. When HR inevitably brings you in again, come up with a new (equally ridiculous) story until they give up and let you wear whatever you want.
2. “Moving On Up To A (Fictional) Apartment In The Sky.”
One of the best ways to get away with looking like a total slob at work is to tell your boss that you’re moving (spoiler alert: you’re not). This basically buys you a month of wearing whatever the hell you want. Between the laundry and the packing and the sleeping on someone’s couch for a week and then the subsequent unpacking and even more laundry that moving brings, you’ll buy yourself a whole lotta days of wearing glorified sweatpants to your place of employment. Should your boss bring up the fact that you’re not exactly in keeping with the dress code, roll your eyes and not-so-subtly tell him that he’s lucky you’re even showing up. Aside from death, divorce, and illness, moving is one of the most stressful things a person can do. So milk this little white lie for all it’s worth.
3. “Guess What? I’m Having A (Food) Baby!”
Tell your boss you’re pregnant. When he asks you in nine months why you haven’t given birth to a tiny human, tell him that you’d really appreciate it if he would stop bringing up your lady parts at work. Like, dude, have some boundaries. People these days -- so invasive!
4. “I’m Sick. Leave Me Alone.”
Your job (aside from your real job) is to come up with a believable, but not so serious illness. Think along the lines of mono, seasonal allergies, or PMS. Basically anything that can get you a few days (or a few weeks, depending on how you spin it) of workplace relaxation. This works well because everyone praises the sick girl who comes into work with cards and flowers and statements of “You are SUCH a team player for being here!” and 100 percent ignores the fact that your hair looks like crap and are dressed somewhere between a soccer mom and a homeless person. While it won’t give you a ton of time, playing the whole sick card every few months grants you a well-deserved vacation from slacks and pencil skirts. So fill up your coffee cup with rum, turn on the Jimmy Buffet Spotify, and set your screensaver to a picture of the beach. It’s like a tropical getaway without the diet -- meaning that in other words, it’s the best vacation ever.
5. “What Are You Talking About? These ARE My Work Pants!”
In order for this to work, you’ve got to let go of the dream of wearing capri cut or tapered ankle leggings. Bootcut or give it up, ladies. Basically, you just need to start treating your bootcut leggings like they are your run-of-the-mill, classic black slacks. Wear longer shirts at first so that your lack of booty pockets go unnoticed, and still continue to wear your makeup/hair/accessories as you normally would. Should someone come up to you and complain about your spandex, simply laugh it off and say something along the lines of “Oh my goodness! I’m so embarrassed! What a silly mistake.” Then write that person’s name on your Sh*t List and continue to wear your yoga pants regardless. If someone’s most important job at your company is to monitor how tight your pants are, then you need to find a new job. Ain’t nobody got time for the corporate fun police.