House Clothes for Dudes?
September 23, 2018 12:34 PM   Subscribe

Are you a man or a masculine-of-center person? What do you wear when you're hanging around the house? Where do you buy those clothes?

I've been feeling really uncomfortable with feminine clothing recently! But while I've mostly figured out how to manage this with my normal wardrobe, my "stuff I throw on while working from home" options are basically the same as they've been for the rest of my adult life. Which is to say: a lot of house dresses and feminine-pattered pajama pants which my mom gave me for Christmas.

What kinds of kicking-around-the-house clothes have you found comfortable and reasonably priced? Where did you by them?

I've had pretty good luck with Uniqlo lounge pants and oversized tee shirts but that's about as far as I've gotten with this!
posted by Narrative Priorities to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (55 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
My mom actually bought some super nice cotton boxers for me and sewed it up at the crotch, and now I wear them as lounge shorts, over underwear. I would probably take them with me if I had a fire. No hyper-expensive booty shorts for me, thank you! (There's nothing wrong with them, but they don't have enough coverage for lounge wear to be comfortable for me.)

Combine with any free t-shirt I have and that's my lounge gear for 2/3 of the year. If it's too cold, I wear a nice pair of Puma sweatpants I got at Costco. I'm a nonbinary AFAB.
posted by yueliang at 12:38 PM on September 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

Whatever random shirts and pants I find at Value Village that look comfortable.
posted by clawsoon at 12:40 PM on September 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

Summer/hot season: a T-shirt (or undershirt if I had gone to work that day) and athletic shorts, usually the mesh kind. I just buy them from sports supply stores, usually the house brand. (I have Nike quick dry running shorts but I keep those for actual athletic activities.)

Winter/cold season: T-shirt/undershirt, a hoodie (I have a bunch from college), sweatpants (I just get them from Old Navy but also got gifted a pair from Bonobos).

A lot of guys walk around in boxers, but I’ve always had roommates so I always feel the need to put on some minimal level of pants.
posted by andrewesque at 12:41 PM on September 23, 2018 [2 favorites]

my husband has several pairs of pajama type pants that he gets at places like Ross. lives in those things on the weekend.
posted by supermedusa at 12:41 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

I prefer men's pyjama bottoms and Hanes tanks or Ts. You can just get them at Target.
posted by DarlingBri at 12:42 PM on September 23, 2018

t-shirt and athletic shorts (whatever is cheap at tj maxx) when it's warm and sweatpants/cotton pajamas when it's cold with random long sleeve shirt over a t-shirt.
posted by noloveforned at 12:42 PM on September 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

men's plaid pyjama pants and a t-shirt.
posted by pseudostrabismus at 12:47 PM on September 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

Worn in jeans and a cotton flannel shirt.
posted by catspajammies at 12:49 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Lived-in 501s (from Amazon) and one of various colors of t-shirts I get cheap at, of all places, Michael's. When things turn a little cooler, I add a flannel shirt from one of my local big-box stores (Meijer, in my area). Sneakers and nice cushiony socks on the feet.
posted by Thorzdad at 12:49 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

I personally wear a button-down and jeans or pants pretty much all my waking hours every day, but if I were to wear lounge clothes, I would wear:

- the more robust kind of boxers and a tee - meaning the ones you buy individually rather than in a pack. I got some J Crew boxers on sale a few years ago and wear them to sleep in. Tees are men's from Everlane.

- this is a great time to be alive because everyone from the Gap to Everlane has joggers, which I believe are supposed to be a slightly more structured and reputable kind of sweatpant. If you're average female height, they'll pool a bit at the ankle, but they're sweatpants so it won't matter.

- I also wear thin cotton sweaters - the sort of default office casual cotton ones you can get at any mall-type store. They're soft and relatively stretchy (which is one reason I never wear them to work - too casual and they don't hold up well) but they're daytime clothes. Shop around a bit, as quality varies wildly on these.

I like crewneck heavy cotton sweaters from Land's End (the drifter sweater - as with everything else, the quality isn't what it was, but they're not bad) for colder days.

Basically, structured fleece or cotton knit pants from the men's section, a non-oversized tee (Everlane for me; their tees are really good for the price), a cotton pullover or cardigan on top if it's cold. The keys are to get daywear, not pajamas, and to get things that are not too huge because that just feels like pajamas.

I get everything secondhand on eBay except things from Everlane, but it's pretty much all J Crew, Gap or mass-market athletic stuff like Champion.

I have some nice fleece shorts from Nike-via-eBay that I wear to the gym but that would probably be good summer hang-out clothes.
posted by Frowner at 12:50 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

T-shirt. Sweatshirt or old, soft and frayed sweater when it’s cool. Mornings I’ll linger in pyjama pants — seersucker or flannel depending on the season — until it’s time to do something outside, and then I switch to jeans. Half of this is from garage sales, eBay or thrift stores, or was inherited.
posted by jon1270 at 12:53 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Comfortable pants and an old t-shirt. If I'm literally not planning on going outside at all, pajama pants and an old t-shirt. And slippers, sandals, or sneakers depending on what I have going on that day.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 1:07 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

And yeah I have a zip-front hooded sweatshirt from LL Bean that I'll throw on if it's chilly. It's got kind of a fleecy lining, very snuggly and floppy.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 1:08 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Hubby & I both wear zip-up hoodies and t-shirts on top and I wear long, black yoga pants (Old Navy or Target) and he wears black, cotton, pants-length thermal underwear made by Hanes (he cuts off the band at the ankle to make them less constricting and cuts some to bermuda shorts length for summer). This is both lounge wear and sleep wear. We have enough multiples of the entire outfit that fresh components are available every day for a least a week without having to do laundry. If it's super-hot (rare for our climate) we have boxer briefs to wear.
posted by quince at 1:28 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

afab, binary-ish guy. I spend a lot of time in these clothes because usually when I get home I ~immediately peel off my pants and binder. I usually leave my wallet and keys in pants, leave pants and binder near bedroom door, and leave shoes near the front door of the house. This way, it's not too hard to become decent and go out if necessary.

summer: t-shirts, especially soft old ones that are kind of grungy-looking, boxers/briefs.

spring/fall: summer, but with warm socks and sometimes sweatpants, athletic shorts, or leggings.

winter: spring/fall, but sometimes with a long-sleeve t-shirt or hoodie.

places to buy: Darn Tough for socks. Uniqlo for "long underwear" - soft, warm, lightweight leggings for men. Old Navy, Primark, Target, LL Bean for everything else.
posted by bagel at 1:30 PM on September 23, 2018 [2 favorites]

Honestly, Uniqlo all day every day for me. The lounge pants are great, but the athletic section is worth checking out too -- the Blocktech pants are nice for cold weather and substantial enough to pop out for a quick jog or grocery run, with a Heattech longsleeve on top (go for the Warm or Extra Warm -- they're soft and fuzzy inside!) and maybe a hoodie on top of that if it's really chilly. For summer, Uniqlo Easy shorts and a mesh Airism shortsleeve top. (If no one else is around and it's really hot, sleeveless undershirts and boxer shorts or running shorts.)
posted by halation at 1:32 PM on September 23, 2018 [2 favorites]

My partner wears t shirts and boxers most of the time around the house. Shorts or sweatpants if more coverage is needed for company or to do outdoor chores or something. An open button-down over the t-shirt if it’s chilly. The vast majority of his clothes come from Target.
posted by Stacey at 1:39 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Just the same stuff I wear outside the home, except maybe with more holes and/or stains.
posted by rodlymight at 1:45 PM on September 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

Basketball shorts are super comfortable for lounging and are longer than boxers. Pair with a t-shirt or hoodie of your choice.
posted by hydra77 at 1:57 PM on September 23, 2018 [5 favorites]

My boyfriend lives in the gap's drawstring cotton lounge pants around the house, that and a t-shirt, a hoody overtop if it's cold.
Agreed uniqlo is good for comfy warm stuff they make really soft long-sleeved t-shirts.
posted by lafemma at 2:04 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

My husband wears gym shorts. Usually ones he gets for cheap at Walmart. He likes the silky texture (and he gets pockets often!) He also wears really soft Next Level brand tees that he’s gotten for free at IT conferences with various branding on them. (You can buy the brand itself online.) He sometimes wears sweat pants or PJ pants. As a lady I wear plain gym shorts, yoga pants, sweat pants, and tank tops and t shirts and zip hoodies. Sometimes a cotton sports bra. I’ve gotten stuff from Target, Walmart, and Old Navy as well as random Amazon stuff.
posted by Crystalinne at 2:45 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

I have a drawer full of old, too-large, and stretched out t-shirts that I've cut the tags out of (both because old tags get brittle and irritating, and because it makes sorting faster on laundry day since I don't bother folding the tagless shirts). Every day when I go to bed I put on a clean t-shirt from that drawer and a pair of "lounge pants" (and honestly I don't know what the difference between "lounge pants" and pajama pants is supposed to be). The t-shirts are just old t-shirts that came from wherever, and I have so many of them I cull the ones with big holes or weird scratchy printing so everything that's left is both soft enough and not too embarrassing. The lounge pants come from Target or Marshall's, or once from an Old Navy I happened to be in. When I get up in the morning that ensemble may stay on for a while. I'm still wearing it today, in fact.

When it's cold I supplement with a "house fleece," which is just an old fleece that's too coated with cat hair to be seen publicly. I've got a couple of those. If I've left the house and come back I may remove an outer layer (possibly a different fleece) and put on a house fleece, and otherwise I just hang out in whatever I happened to be wearing.

And it's ridiculous, but lately if I've come back from a workout and I'm not too smelly I have spent the better part of the day in my workout clothes, like every basic girl everywhere. I don't put on workout clothes just for the purpose of hanging out at home, and I'm usually too stinky after a workout to stay in those clothes, but the number of days over the past year that I've spent in workout leggings and a wicking top is higher than you might expect for a straight guy.
posted by fedward at 2:52 PM on September 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

Butch dyke here. If you're small enough to wear a youth XL, you can get basketball shorts and athletic sweats for soooooo much cheaper. I live in those year round - Jeans and t-shirts/layers if necessary outside the house, t-shirts or thermals and sweatpants or basketball shorts inside. Feel free to message me if you have sizing issues, it's hard to figure out especially if you're small.
posted by scruffy-looking nerfherder at 3:09 PM on September 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

Any comfortable cotton T-shirt I have laying around. Basketball shorts in the summer and sweatpants or pajama pants in the winter. I will wear boxers alone if it's really hot, and I will wear thermal underwear to bed if it's really cold (but I find it too constricting otherwise - I may modify them as quince suggested above).
posted by Seeking Direction at 3:50 PM on September 23, 2018

Just popping in to say this is all really helpful and also, man this is a cosy thread to read.
posted by Narrative Priorities at 3:56 PM on September 23, 2018 [12 favorites]

Lots of hanes (or similar) white undershirt and Hanes (or similar) underwear, often with a pair of Levi’s or flannel pajama bottoms.

Nice shirts are for leaving the house in my current life, while home I want something cheap and comfortable and I don’t care if it gets stained or stretched or torn, ymmv.
posted by SaltySalticid at 4:55 PM on September 23, 2018

Nthing Uniqlo. I also like "adventure" gear; it's typically extremely comfortable and durable. I have long pants from patagonia and other more local brands. Don't waste money on adventure t-shirts, but for pants they're great. Nothing is very tight!
posted by smoke at 4:57 PM on September 23, 2018

My husband favors yoga pants (the men's kind aren't form fitting like women's) and a black teeshirt. It doesn't scream pajamas and I think he looks quite cute and cozy in them.
posted by joan_holloway at 5:24 PM on September 23, 2018

Colder: jeans or sweatpants, t-shirt, flannel shirts I have had since I was in high school, thick socks. Possibly forgoing the pants and just sitting under a heavy blanket.

Warmer: t-shirt, Thai fisherman pants or just boxers.
posted by curious nu at 5:31 PM on September 23, 2018

For something a little more dadcore, we have a couple of LL Bean chamois button downs that are great as an extra warm layer. Ours are 1-2 sizes up from street clothes so are plenty roomy. They are usually hung up next to the bathrobes, and tend to be what we put on instead of a bathrobe when we want to be comfy but not too luxurious. Add a big t shirt and sweatpants or plaid flannel bottoms and I am ready to stay inside all weekend.
posted by tchemgrrl at 5:32 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Can't go wrong with soft, well-worn chinos and one of those vintage-y cotton sweatshirts with the V stitching on the front -- basically like McQueen's character in The Great Escape minus the bomber jacket. In warm weather substitute a thin cotton v-neck t-shirt. Barefoot most of the time.
posted by theory at 5:46 PM on September 23, 2018

My dude wears thai fisherman pants and Tshirts. Occasionally athletic yoga pants.
posted by platypus of the universe at 5:48 PM on September 23, 2018

Older loose t-shirts (or free t-shirts for things I don't exactly want to be a public walking billboard for) and baggy comfy shorts in summer. Sweatpants with pockets (must have pockets) in winter, or when the sun sets and it gets chilly in fall / spring. Also known as "SWEATPANTS TIME!" in our house. Whichever hoodie I can find first if needed.
posted by true at 6:03 PM on September 23, 2018

I wear masculine clothes 85% of the time. My knockarounds are the same as my cold-weather pajamas which is an old t-shirt, an oversized zip up hoodie and some stretchy one-step-above-pajama cotton drawstring pants with pockets. I can., if needed, wear this to the post office. If I am at home and it's cold I'll toss on a bathrobe over this. If it's warmer, I will wear sport shorts and a tank top. I get all of these at the thrift store and they cost from $1-3 each. Worth it to experiment a little before you are sure what you will feel okay knocking around in.
posted by jessamyn at 6:13 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

I haven't played a game of basketball in probably 20 years, but I have three pairs of basketball shorts.
posted by Rock Steady at 6:28 PM on September 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

T-shirt and shorts and flip-flops here in the tropics.
posted by mdonley at 7:02 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Scrub pants when it's not summer because they're indestructible and they have all of the pockets
posted by scruss at 7:07 PM on September 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

From observing my boyfriend:

Warm weather - cargo shorts (because pockets are handy) with a t-shirt (usually a fun graphic tee) or short sleeve button-up patterned cotton shirt

Cool weather - wide legged plaid flannel drawstring pajama pants, t-shirt, long sleeve flannel plaid shirt (clashing patterns, because why not?)

Cold weather - add a zip front hoodie and sherpa lined wool slippers

(he buys almost all his clothes at thrift stores or at a store that doesn't exist in the U.S., so I can't recommend anything specific)
posted by Secret Sparrow at 7:39 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Joggers and shorts by the brand top shelf at Walmart. They're in the men's section, very cheap, in loud prints (totally my style. I'm wearing some right now covered in roosters and knives.). Also a plaid flannel bathrobe, polo brand, which I bought second hand. Feels like luxurious dad-wear.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:00 PM on September 23, 2018

This is exactly the time of year that Costco will have one or two top+bottom sets of men's loungewear in vast quantities for a reasonable price.
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 8:29 PM on September 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

When it's hot: athletic shorts and a t-shirt. When it's cooler (my favorite), sweat pants or scrub pants and also a t-shirt unless it's quite cold and then I add a zip up hoodie that I love the cut of but is branded like something a 17 year old prep schooler would wear (American Eagle or something?) so I'm embarrassed to wear in public, plus it's permanently embedded with dog hair now from snuggles.

All my sweatpants are Puma brand that I got at Costco and they are great.
posted by ghharr at 8:55 PM on September 23, 2018

I am a female person (though not very feminine) and I wear the same style of lounge/PJ clothes as pretty much all my boyfriends so far - loose cotton/flannel (?) drawstring PJ pants and a plain, soft t-shirt or tank top.

I just use my old worn-out-but-still-comfy shirts for this but you could buy new ones too. The pants can be bought everywhere - I think most recently I got some at old navy. I've worn both men's and women's PJ pants as convenient, since they're loose enough for there to not really be a difference other than the weird gaping hole. Though leg length will vary so I'd probably go for women's if you're on the shorter side and men's if you're pretty tall. But at 5'6 both M/F "medium" sizes work for me.
posted by randomnity at 8:56 PM on September 23, 2018

Obviously I have NO idea how tall you are/what body type you have. But as a 5'4" medium-build woman, I buy my sweatpants, pjs, and slubby t-shirts in the boys department- the biggest size usually fits me perfectly. The cut of boys clothes fits me way better than men's clothes (of course), and it's far easier to find masculine or true unisex-styled stuff than in the women's department. I find it really difficult to find women's loungewear or pjs that aren't form-fitting/super-femme/cutesy-cute.

If you've got a body type that works with boy's clothes, of course.
posted by lollymccatburglar at 1:50 AM on September 24, 2018

Sweatpants from H&M are very comfortable and tailored enough that I don't feel like a depressed blob and can even leave the house in them if need be.
posted by saul wright at 5:43 AM on September 24, 2018

So I'm not a dude but I wear non-gendered clothes at home when I'm shlubbing around. I generally buy nondescript, plain pj bottoms at Target or wherever else I see them on sale. My favorite pair is just gray, some super soft type of cotton, with a drawstring and pockets. My second favorite pair *does* have llamas on, but c'mon...llamas. My body isn't shaped for men's/boy's pants so I just buy the least coded-as-feminine pj bottoms I can find.

For tops, I buy Hane's men's v-neck, tagless undershirts (Target again), three sizes too big, in black. I hate hate hate tight clothing so this works for me.
posted by cooker girl at 7:12 AM on September 24, 2018

Because a few folks have asked indirectly, and in case it's helpful: I'm 5'9" and medium build, with wide hips and a narrow waist. I've been surprised to find that men's pants fit me just fine, and now I vastly prefer them. I used to think I hated pants, but it turns out I just hate the way that women's pants are designed to fit. I just grab a bunch of different sizes and keep trying them on until I hit the right one.
posted by Narrative Priorities at 8:35 AM on September 24, 2018 [1 favorite]

Middle aged, 5'10", dad-bod-ed guy here. I wear 32 waist/30 inseam pants and normally medium t-shirts. Here's what I wear around the house (I work a lot from home, so this is my home office and recording studio attire, too):

- 10" athletic shorts with pockets - either the soccer style or mesh style. Soccer style comes usually from TJ Maxx and are Addidas or Umbro brand. Mesh style are the Champion brand from Target.

- Medium or large cotton t-shirts. I've amassed a lot of band t-shirts over the years, so as they stretch out or start to fade, I transition them into my stay at home wardrobe.

- Hanes brand zip-front hoodie. I buy these at Target when they go on sale. Be careful with these as the sizes are really inconsistent. I have some mediums that fit like smalls and larges that fit like extra larges. I usually go with larges, but honestly I wear them a lot when I'm out in public and have mediums to wear when I'm going to be seeing people.

- I have an assortment of flannel shirts I wear around the house. I like them because they have pockets. I bought a bunch at JC Penny in both large and medium sizes. The larges usually are home wear and the mediums are for wearing out in public. I also bought a few at TJ Maxx over the years.

- I have 2 pairs of these workout pants from Reebock and I wear them a lot. They have pockets and a drawstring, so I can go out of the house in them if I need to with my wallet and phone in the two front pockets. I like that they're tapered leg and fit kinda like the jeans I wear. That price is a little high, though - I look for them at TJ Maxx and found them in the $15-$20 range.

- For shoes I have the Addidas Adilette Slide sandals for wearing around the house if I need shoes. If I go out, I have a pair of New Balance 574s that I keep really loosely tied and can slip on like, well, slip on shoes. During the summer I wear short black athletic socks. In the winter those get stored and I replace them with black crew socks.

- Also, importantly, I keep a couple hats around the house that I can throw on to keep my hair out of my eyes and cover my wild hair when I need to go out into public (also because in Minnesota winters it's worth it to wear a hat and keep the temperature turned a little down on the thermostat) - I have a couple mesh-backed, snap-back trucker caps and a couple of knit toques that I keep around.
posted by elmer benson at 11:21 AM on September 24, 2018 [2 favorites]

A few years ago I started taking at-home comfort seriously. Warm weather I live in broken-in T-shirts and Baggies or similar lightweight shorts with pockets. When it gets cooler I swap the Baggies for these perfect joggers and a sweatshirt or hoody. Bean shearling slippers over merino socks for in the house.
posted by a halcyon day at 12:23 PM on September 24, 2018

Thermal underwear/ Longjohns are my lounge wear of choice next to not wearing clothes. I've even taken to wearing them as pants in winter. I figure if women are allowed to wear leggings as pants, there's no convincing reason why I cannot do the same with my version of tights.
posted by GoblinHoney at 3:14 PM on September 24, 2018

Forgot to mention in my earlier post: Vermont Country Store slippers are amazing. And some nice thick socks in the winter - I know I have a bunch from Roots that I got as a gift last Christmas.

Oh - and I agree 100% about sandals! Always convenient to have.
posted by Seeking Direction at 8:13 PM on September 24, 2018 [1 favorite]

And stuff with pockets is always handy in and out of the house!
posted by Seeking Direction at 8:13 PM on September 24, 2018

soft, roomy levi's (559 relaxed fit straight leg) jeans and plain white cotton men's t-shirt for most days. any brand of tee will do. cargo shorts (cheap-o target brand) or boxers and a ribbed cotton a-line tanks for hot days.

for super comfy relaxed days: tomboyx pajama pants

Also, tomboyx is the brand of underwear you didn't know you needed. soft, comfortable, a variety of styles (bikini through 9" boxer briefs), everything from black and white to a variety of skin tones to nifty patterns and colors. Also: briefs and boxers without the extra panel & hole that cis dude underwear has. Not cheap, but so, so worth it.
posted by carrioncomfort at 7:49 AM on September 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

(I'm a woman with gender-fulidish tendencies who sometimes prefers more gender neutral or traditionally masculine-ish clothing)

I came in to recommend the tomboyx boxers which I LOVE. They are cheaper to buy if you get the multi-packs.

I just bought these joggers at Old Navy and they are super comfy and greaty for house loungey and dog-walky times. (Search Joggers at any similar retailer and you should find some good options)

I also have a pair of plain blue, jresey Hanes men's pajama pants (kinda like this) (again: pockets). Mine are a little baggy for maximum coziness.

I have a few crew-neck sweatshirts from various online retailers/artists I follow to wear over a tshirt in colder weather times. Typically I only buy men's or unisex versions of sweatshirts for a baggier, cozier fit.
posted by nuclear_soup at 2:17 PM on September 26, 2018

Trans*male, fairly cis-hetero-appearing, despite my best, glittery efforts. :-p

Generally just boxer-briefs. I don't like clothes, so that's the bare minimum in private.

If there are people stopping buy, or I have to run downstairs/into the public - soft cotton shorts or pants, and sometimes a Mclaine or t-shirt. Slippers or flip-flops, depending on weather.

Everything is from Target or DisneyStore.
posted by RhysPenbras at 9:19 AM on September 28, 2018

Sweat shorts + tank top. H&M summerware.
posted by oceanjesse at 7:11 PM on September 30, 2018

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