Robes Can Be Worn Outside Now; Trust Me, I've Done It
Typically, I live in NYC, but due to the pandemic, I've been crashing at my mom's in California for the past four months. I've picked up on her daily habits. The more obvious ones being: green tea when you wake up, fold laundry immediately out of the dryer, and clean the kitchen before you leave the house. What I'm still shocked by, but enjoy more day by day, is the robe culture she's established in our house. She has satin robes, cotton robes, robes from her childhood, and robes she wore in her first year married to my dad.
Occasionally, she'll wear a robe deep into the afternoon, claiming in her heavy South African accent, "it keeps my kidneys warm." I naturally run warm, so I was a bit hesitant to follow in her footsteps. But after months in the same baggy sweatpants, I longed for the feminine vibes she, and so many others, exude in robes. Needless to say, I recently conformed.
Since then, I find myself reading about robes and seeking them on my favorite retailers' websites. Tracee Ellis Ross taught me that housecoats and robes are two different things, the main difference being fabric, I think? I've found robes that double as dresses, which are perfect for stay-at-home life because it doesn't require too much commitment.
As a new robe owner — three weeks and counting — not only do I understand the comfortable appeal but the fashionable options have convinced me that robes could be as functional outside as they are inside. But was this just wishful thinking? Or is it actually doable and acceptable in public? A quick Google search didn't do much to ease my apprehension — "is wearing a robe outside illegal," and "is it weird to go outside in a robe," were the highest searches.
Well, I've done the hard work for you: I've graced the outside world in my robes, and it feels amazing and empowering. Some days, it's a style element; others, it's a comforting piece — as I slip it on, wrap it around, and tie at the waist — it's the hug I've been missing in a pandemic world.
Prior to COVID-19, a lot of my favorite outfits sacrificed comfort for style. It was the reason I couldn't wait to get home to rip jeans and structured tops off. The robes I have are crazy soft and easy to move in; they're practical and ready for anything the day brings.
I'm not saying go outside in a bathrobe. Although, we wouldn't judge if you did. I'm just saying robes are a lot more socially acceptable than you'd think. A properly styled robe makes for an out-of-the-box outfit. It spices up my regular grocery trips, and the prints make me feel like it's actually summer instead of the sometimes scary, sometimes confusing period of time we're all living through. It's truly the ultimate relaxed luxury.
So go ahead, wear a robe all day — here's how I styled three of my favorites.