The gentleman’s guide to holiday loungewear

They say we spend a third of our lives asleep, which on the surface is a slightly scary statistic, and yet on the other, a happy thought for sleep is good and we love it. But it begs the question, how much time do we spend thinking about how we dress for sleep – and for home for that matter? We dither about dressing for the do, the date, the work event and think little about what to wear when we’re home from such said activity. So, dream with us now about loungewear, if you will...

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Carl Thompson sitting on a stool in Calvin Klein jogging bottoms and sweatshirt


The why


We need our downtime now more than ever. Our always-on lives – especially at Christmas – mean we need to savour and carve out time for recuperation. In the past, men's loungewear has had something of a bad reputation – university halls of tired t-shirts and worn-out bottoms spring to mind – but it doesn't have to be this way; downtime dressing can be dapper.


Pyjamas were first worn in Britain around 1870, brought over from India, with the word coming from the Hindi term paejama, meaning ‘leg covering’. They started to replace the nightshirt as men’s sleepwear of choice, and became seen as elegant relaxation attire, along with the smoking jacket. Hollywood greats propelled pyjamas into the limelight. Paul Newman in his slate grey pyjamas in Cat On A Hot Tin Roof and Cary Grant in his classy set in Indiscreet show the sophistication of sleepwear.


“A crisp pair of pyjamas is something to swoon over”


The relaxed nature of pyjamas speak of easy elegance and an understated intimacy. It’s worth caring a bit about your around-the-house attire. After all, we spend a huge amount of our free time there.

Carl Thompson sitting on a bed in a Ralph Lauren robe, Howick t-shirt and pyjama trousers


The how


Doing loungewear well (as with relaxing itself) can involve different approaches. Classic, crisp cotton pyjamas will always look luxe. Team with a well-fitting crew neck tee and choose a muted colour palette such as chalky grey or duck egg blue to give off mellow, relaxed vibes. If you’re in the position of a well-heated abode, go for simple shorts and an optional tee.


On the flip side, opt for the more modern variant of cuffed joggers – making sure they’re not cut too short – a tee and a sweatshirt or hoodie. Keep the shapes slim cut and match tonally to look pulled-together. Slippers look a lot more chic than rumpled socks and a luxurious robe is the essential for bath to book to bed.


“Take inspo from the greats”


Slick loungewear can almost give a reason to relax. Embrace the whole of the wind-down routine. For pre-slumber, nab yourself a woody scented candle, a nourishing moisturiser and a rejuvenating serum. Morning, claim back that precious pre-commute moment with a coffee and the paper.


Christmas, of all times, is when you need rest the most and when your nesting wardrobe looks so good, who wouldn’t want to loaf? We, gentlemen, deserve the time off.

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Make a sanctuary

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