Best buys: ladies loungewear

Sarah wearing loungewear

Getting dressed used to be so simple didn’t it? I’d have my office attire for work days, casual clothes for the weekend and stylish outfits for dinners with friends. Thanks to COVID-19 however, the rules have changed. With so many of us working from home – and socialising there too – what are we supposed to wear now? The sartorial solution, it seems, is ladies loungewear. The undisputed star of lockdown fashion, loungewear sales have risen exponentially in 2020. And I don’t think it’s hard to understand why. Don’t we all want to feel cosy, comfortable and cosseted these days? It really makes no difference whether you’re dining at home in your kitchen or settling down in front of Netflix. But 24/7 pyjamas should not be an option . In fact, I feel that ‘getting dressed’ is a ritual we need to preserve! I think the right choice of loungewear can help you look and feel pulled together. This way, you’ll feel ready to face pretty much whatever the world chooses to throw at you. Ladies loungewear involves just the right amount of effort don’t you think? So you can invest in a “Goldilocks” third wardrobe that’s suitable for work, rest and play.

What exactly is loungewear?

I think ladies loungewear means different things to different people… But, broadly speaking, it’s defined as casual clothes that are suitable for relaxing in and spending time at home. Tracksuits, onesies, hoodies, super-soft knits and leggings are some of the most popular examples. Think stretchy, slouchy, separates that cocoon, not constrict, without compromising on style.

All white

A fabulous option to explore if you’re keen to create a quality, loungewear capsule wardrobe is The White Company. I adore almost every item in their current collection. There are tops, t-shirts, jumpers, hoodies, trousers and joggers, with selected clothing available in a very exclusive 4-18 size range. Think soft, draped silhouettes in cashmere, cotton and silk blends. I like to mix and match versatile neutrals with pretty pastels. My go-to outfit recommendation from here is a beautiful grey ensemble. This combines cotton-silk joggers, a wide-rib cardigan with cashmere, and an organic cotton t-shirt.

The White Company ladies loungewear
Layered loungewear is a must as autumn advances. This outfit combination from The White Company features flattering tapered cotton silk joggers (£79), a wide rib cardigan with cashmere (£129) and a white organic cotton t-shirt (£37)

The beauty of Boden

No blog on ladies loungewear would be complete without a peek at yummy-mummy stalwart Boden. Featuring both sets and separates, Boden’s loungewear also incorporates an attractive activewear collection. I think it’s as perfect for Pilates as it is for popping to the shops. Dull, grey days call for bold, bright colours, and this canary yellow puff sleeve sweatshirt delivers an instant mood boost. I like the neat ribbing, the relaxed shape and the subtle stretch. In fact, so much, I’ve bought one! It pairs perfectly with these cuffed navy jersey joggers. The waistband drawstring is super forgiving if you’ve overdone the lockdown banana bread. I also like the stripy cuffs for a clever pop of pizzazz.

Boden loungewear
Boden nails cosiness and casual chic with this bright and beautiful ladies lounger combo. The puff sleeve sweatshirt (£55) is available in 11 different colours (plain and patterned). The cuffed jersey joggers (£45) include two useful pockets and are available in sizes 6 to 22.
Sarah wearing loungewear
I just love my jersey lounge hoodie in grey marl, £55, from Boden – it’s super comfy and perfect for all those evenings curled up on the sofa. I’ve paired it with these trousers by Grace & Mila and I think they make the perfect combination. I hear you can buy these Thriller pants with a sporty stripe from Glam & Grace for just £12 in their sale – they are so well made, I can tell you that’s an absolute bargain!

Betty knows best

Sweaty Betty might be best known for its bum-sculpting leggings…but there’s much more to this brand than just specialist fitness apparel. Did you you know everything is designed by women for women by an all-female team? Over the years, its clothing collection has evolved to include new prints and fashion pieces that fit and flatter.

If you’re looking for ladies loungewear with a sporty twist, look no further. One of my favourites pieces is this after class sweatshirt in misty rose pink. Made from soft, lightweight organic cotton, this boxy design with side splits really is the perfect post-workout layer. I think it looks amazing with joggers, or teamed with these Power 7/8 gym leggings. They’re super stretchy, sweat wicking, and even include a handy back zip pocket.

Sweaty Betty ladies loungewear
British brand Sweaty Betty is the queen of active loungewear. Go for the burn in these bum-sculpting gym leggings (£75), then go easy in this after class sweatshirt (£65) – both available in multiple colourways and sizes from XXS to XXL.

Putting the luxe into loungewear

Luxury loungewear might seem like a contradiction in terms. What is the point, you might think, of splashing serious cash on everyday items that potentially nobody will even see? To which, I suggest a clothing recalibration.

First and foremost, why not consider cost per wear? To work this out, you need to divide the price of an item by the number of times you wear it. This is a great formula to evaluate whether something is (or isn’t!) worth a hefty price tag. Pre-COVID-19, most of us wouldn’t hesitate to buy an expensive dress that might only be worn once or twice. I’ve done this and these outfits tend to then languish, unloved, in the back of my wardrobe. Why, then, are we reluctant to invest in some top-quality ladies loungewear? After all, it’s highly likely to be worn week in and week out, which will more than justify its outlay?

Another element to consider is the mood boost we get from treating ourselves to something special. 2020 has been a difficult year for almost all of us. If a little self-care, in the form of a super-premium ladies loungewear set, helps to keep the horrors of coronavirus at bay for a while, quite frankly, I’m all for it.

Hooray for Olivia von Halle

Billionaires’ playground Monaco might be out of reach for most of us right now. But, luckily, this Missy Monaco loungewear set from Olivia von Halle at Harrods is only a few clicks away. At £1,195 it’s certainly not a budget option. But it is a sumptuously soft cashmere-silk blend with stylish stripes and a touch of stretch. I must confess, right now there’s nothing I want to wear more!

Missy Monaco luxury loungewear set from Olivia von Halle
No ordinary athleisure: this Missy Monaco luxury loungewear set from Olivia von Halle is as at home in the street as it is on the sofa. Composed of silk and cashmere, it combines slim fit, drawstring waist sweatpants with a long-sleeved crew neck sweatshirt

In praise of Chinti & Parker

Another luxury loungewear option is this gorgeous grey duo from Chinti & Parker. The heritage striped sweater (£275) is knitted from a super-soft blend of wool and cashmere. I love how the striped detailing offsets the charcoal grey colourway. Team with the coordinating grey heritage striped track pants (£295) and some on-trend trainers for an elevated off-duty aesthetic.

Chinti & Parker grey heritage loungewear set
Off-duty chic: Chinti & Parker’s grey heritage luxury loungewear set features eye-catching cream, pink and ginger stripes and a slouchy, sporting finish

Get Wyse

Rainbows pictures thanking NHS workers for their efforts were a familiar sight during this year’s national lockdown. It’s a motif that’s echoed in Wyse London’s Ella Rainbow Tie Hoodie (£220). I think this gorgeous luxury loungewear piece that’s sure to brighten even the dreariest of autumn days. Knitted from 100% cashmere, it features a useful front pocket and a colourful rainbow tassel. Mix and match with existing separates, or wear with the Aurelie Rainbow Stripe Lounger (£210). 

Wyse London Ella-Rainbow-Tie-Hoodie-Grey
Rock the rainbow with Wyse London’s cashmere hoodie and lounger, available in pale grey with a sorbet vertical stripe

Looking for a stylish face mask to wear when you’re out and about? Then you must check out my blog on Best buys: stylish face masks

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