Pyjama drama! Turns out South Africans love their sleepwear

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Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels
Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels

When Parent24 published a story about a US mother who ditched pyjamas in favour of kids sleeping in their day clothes, we didn't expect such a strong response for local readers. 

We shared that the mom had asked if kids pyjamas were really necessary if they could just sleep in their regular clothes, but was slammed online, with over a thousand people posting that the idea was 'gross'.

But, we asked, is she actually a genius? 

Must read: Mom who ditched kids pyjamas slammed online, but is she actually a genius?

A tempting idea?

The reduced laundry, less money spent on single-purpose clothes and the simplicity and ease of just getting up and going in the morning are all alluring. 

We ran a poll to find out what South Africans thought of the idea, and it turns out that for the majority we love our sleepwear, and that sleeping in day clothes is, in a word, "disgusting". 

But not everyone feels like this, and we also received several emails from readers who wanted to share that they actually found the concept very appealing.

In fact, some have even been doing it for years! 

A lockdown routine  

"It is a bit of a germaphobe type topic for most, but I did it during lock down," wrote one reader. "It was comfortable and just not to worry about much, was so comforting for me. As a man, it is probably bad, but you got to regress a little, at a time. Only change when necessary, or needed: each to their own."   

He also posed some questions that are worth considering: What if we had no power or electricity? "What would people do then? Would they still change clothes as often? I think not. Would you change your clothes as often, when you can't wash them, or would you go through the day with your PJ's?" he asked.  

A secret habit 

Another reader wrote to share that he's recently taken up the practice, but asked that we keep his name out of it because "my kids will be shocked!" 

"I'm an old man, turning 82 soon, and only about a year ago I started sleeping in my day clothes because my pajamas got torn, then I started getting into the habit of taking a shower in the evening and then dressing for the next day, and then going to bed in my "work" clothes," he emailed us.

"This made me realise that pajamas are outdated. It seems like many Americans does the same, and it works for me. If I go back to the time when my children were babies I would've let them sleep in their play clothes."  

Also read: Stressed and anxious new mom? These tips will help alleviate the pressure 

The best solution ever

A mom mailed us to say that she'd been doing this for years.

"Starting 35 years ago, I put our children to bed in their next-day clothes,"  she wrote.

"It meant they were dressed and ready for action the moment they woke up. In winter, they did not get cold when they arose as they were still snugly dressed in their tracksuits."

She says this worked for her because her son was easily distracted and getting him dressed to be ready at a certain time was "hopeless". 

"So, until the end of his school days, he went to sleep in his school uniform. In the morning, after breakfast, we would put on his tie, blazer and shoes,"  she confessed.

"It's the best solution ever if you wish to sleep in a little or to avoid fighting with small people. I’d do so again, any time,"  she added.

Pyjama poll

And some parents do agree, but not on the scale that one might think.

With so many months spent in lockdown, working and schooling from our homes when many of us didn't need to change into our work clothes or school uniforms, some clothing items were deemed necessary - perhaps permanently. 

Also read: Will we ever wear bras on a full-time basis again?

However, our poll revealed that 63% of South African respondents think sleeping in your day clothes is "disgusting!".

Just 11% admitted that they had "seriously considered" the idea, while 25% of our poll respondents were happy to say that the practice of sleeping in day clothes was normal in their household.

So it looks like pyjamas, unlike the bra, are here to stay! 


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