One of the most common questions I get from new PMT email subscribers is about workwear that’s comfortable. You know I get LIT UP helping women find crazy comfortable clothes, so I decided it’s time to write a full-length blog post to help you craft a super comfortable work wardrobe, with all my best tips and clothing recs in one place!
In this post, I’m focusing more on the general categories of workwear that’s comfortable and professional rather than specific pieces. Specific pieces will go out of stock, and I want anyone reading this to have the vision and ability to craft a comfortable work wardrobe anytime of the year by simply opening up your options and sharing what’s possible so that you know how comfortable your workwear can be! That said, I will share a few specific pieces, but I’ll try to stick to the ones that tend to stay in stock for long periods of time.
Alright, now that that’s covered, let’s go!
SIZING INFO: I’m 5’6″ and usually S/M or 6 in clothes and 8.5 to 9 in shoes.
1. Stretchy Work Pants
One major key to a comfortable work wardrobe is making sure to have comfortable pants! Pants dictate whether I feel comfortable sitting and moving and doing all the things I need to do, so definitely focus here! There are some INSANELY STRETCHY, SOFT, and amazingly comfortable work pants out there—that also look super duper professional. This is where I will totally get into some specific pieces and brands because a few of my favorites are typically available year after year.
My top recommendation is Liverpool Los Angeles’ Kelsey Super Stretch Ponte Knit Trousers. These are very smooth, very soft, and soooo stretchy, and they are fairly thick. They are expensive, but they are absolutely worth it. The quality is beyond others, and they feel freaking incredible and look very professional. Many, manyyyyy PMT readers have said these are now their holy grail of work pants, and it’s for GOOD REASON! I’m wearing them in both black, maroon, and navy in the pictures above. See how you can wear them in business casual to business professional looks. You can find them in an array of colors and in regular, petite, and long lengths and in plus sizes, HERE. I wear size 4 as these run pretty large. You can check them out at Liverpool’s site directly through that link, or you can look for them at Nordstrom, HERE, to utilize free shipping and free return shipping. Sizes and stock are sometimes less available at Nordstrom, but I tend to try there first because of the generous shipping/return policy.
Another pair that’s usually always in stock is the Wit & Wisdom Ankle Skinny Pants. This is great for business casual to casual but is not dressy enough for business professional. This pair is from my favorite denim brand, and these pants are stretchy and soft, and they have a stretchy elastic waistband—my favorite! You can see them on me in the collage above in the green color, Lily Pad, in the bottom left two outfits. They come in 11 colors in straight sizes, HERE. Available in 2 colors in plus sizes, HERE. I fit both sizes 4 and 6 depending on the color, which I know is not helpful! Ha, sorry. FWIW, Nordstrom offers free shipping and free return shipping on all orders, and I always recommend ordering two sizes to find your best fit anyway.
One last pair that I’ll share is the Tapata Pants from Amazon, which comes in 14 colors and in regular, petite, long, and tall lengths. While this pair is not nearly as comfortable as the Liverpool Kelsey Ponte Knit Pants, they are pretty stretchy and half the cost. Plus, during wintertime last year, they had pairs that were LINED WITH FLEECE, which is very helpful in colder months! The straight leg also works with booties that have a tall and narrow shaft. I’m wearing these pants in both black and navy in the bottom right pictures in the collage above. Find them HERE. I wear size M.
There are many other work pants that I come across that are affordable and decently stretchy, but they don’t stay in stock for long. Be sure to subscribe to PMT Emails so that you get my emails with in-stock clothing reviews and outfit ideas.
That said, the main takeaway that I want you to have is that there are some VERY stretchy work pants out there that look very professional, and that is probably my number one key to comfortable workwear.
Shop Stretchy Work Pants:
2. Stretchy Knit Dresses
I love a good stretchy dress, and these are available in plenty! You can find them in different colors and prints, different cuts and styles, different lengths, and different levels of how thin or thick they are. I personally like ones that have some sort of waistband as those provide a little bit of shape. That small feature adds structure which helps make a super duper stretchy, comfy dress look more professional. I’m wearing some examples in the pictures above!
I rounded up some good options that are currently available in the widget below. However, if they are no longer available, you can search for some on your own. My favorite places to find ones for work that are pretty affordable are at Amazon and Kohl’s. (Old Navy and Target, in addition to Amazon and Kohl’s, have great stretchy dresses for casual wear.)
Shop Stretchy Work Dresses:
3. Flowy Blouses
I tend to wear clothes that don’t hug my body tightly in general, and this is of course helpful for workwear so that my tops aren’t constricting. All of the tops above have a fit that’s looser without looking oversized.
On top of that, I love when the material is really smooth and soft and when it has a good drape which adds to comfort. I personally love Vince Camuto Rumpled Satin Blouses for how silky and smooth they feel against your skin. I’m wearing that in the middle outfit on the bottom row—the blue top. It’s so lightweight and silky feeling, but looks really professional! Of course, there are plenty of other tops that feel comfortable, and I tried to show a variety of examples above.
When you pair non-constricting tops with super comfortable pants that have an elastic waistband, it’s gold!
Shop Flowy Blouses:
Sweaters are another type of top that can look very professional but are comfortable as they are usually stretchy and easier to move around in. Obviously, the softer, the better! You can get these in short sleeves for warmer months and long sleeves in colder months. And again, when you pair them with super stretchy professional pants, you’ll be really, really comfortable!
Shop Sweaters for Work:
Perhaps these are a no-brainer for a comfortable layer that you can wear for work, but I just wanted to list them as an option. 😊
6. Stretchy Blazers
Ohhhh, stretchy blazers. I love them! If you’ve ever felt like blazers are too stiff, then, like with stretchy work pants, I just want you to know stretchy blazers exist. They exist in many forms, too, and above I’m showing several different kinds:
a. Sweatshirt Blazer – The blue blazer in the first three outfits is made of material that feels like a sweatshirt, but it looks way more professional than your good old hoodie! The specific one I’m wearing above is the Caslon Knit Blazer, and it’s a PMT fan favorite. It feels like a sweatshirt but is the shape of a blazer, so you get to be super duper comfortable while looking professional. This runs pretty large; I typically wear this in size XS.
b. Sweater Blazer – In particular, J.Crew Factory makes a sweater blazer that feels like a thick, structured cardigan but looks like a blazer. Great with jeans or with work pants. I’m wearing it above in both maroon and black in the last two pictures in the top row. The one I’m wearing is HERE. I wear size S. There is also another one that looks a bit more relaxed, HERE. (Wait for one of J.Crew Factory’s frequent huge sales to significantly bring the cost down!)
c. Classic Suit Blazer (that’s stretchy) – The blazer that I’m wearing in the first three pics in the bottom row is very lightweight and stretchy, though it looks super polished and professional. There are more blazers that are out there like this, though sometimes they cost a bit more, but they’re worth it if they’re comfy! For reference, the one I’m wearing is by Eliza J in case you want to try others from that brand.
d. Relaxed Blazer – The last two blazers in the bottom row are also very stretchy yet still look sharp. Blazers by Liverpool Los Angeles, which is the same brand I mentioned above as the holy grail for comfortable work pants, tend to be stretchy and comfortable. Their blazers are not nearly as soft as their Kelsey Super Stretch Ponte Pants, but they are comfortable. I’m wearing one of them in the last outfit in the bottom row. Another example that is more affordable is this Nine West Blazer from Kohl’s. (Wait for one of Kohl’s frequent huge sales!) It looks a bit more relaxed and less polished than the Liverpool blazers, but if your workplace is more business casual to relaxed business casual (versus business casual to business professional) then it totally works.
Shop Blazers for Work:
7. Stretchy Faux Suede Moto Jackets
For an alternative layer to blazers that makes you look polished and is super comfortable, I love stretchy faux suede moto jackets! I love them for comfortable date looks too. Don’t settle for stiff moto jackets when you can get some that are SUPER DUPER SOFT AND STRETCHY! The one I’m wearing above is the Milana Jacket by KUT from the Kloth, and while it’s pricey, it’s VERY stretchy and soft! I wear size S. KUT from the Kloth tends to have other soft, stretchy jackets, that you can look for from time to time in different seasons. I have also found some really stretchy and more affordable faux suede moto jackets at Macy’s, so check there and read reviews to see if people talk about comfort and stretch.
8. Skirts with Elastic Waistbands – Either Flowy or Stretchy
Another piece you can add to your arsenal of professional but comfortable clothes is skirts with elastic waistbands that are either flowy or stretchy! These look really dressed up, but I actually find them really comfortable. An example of flowy is this leopard print skirt (in “Lightkhaki”). The elastic waistband + the flowy fit keeps me from feeling constricted throughout the day. Another option is a ponte pencil skirt, which will give you the tailored look of a pencil skirt while allowing you to be in comfortable, stretchy material. When you pair these options with a flowy top or easy-to-move-in sweater, you’ll create a great look for work that is really comfortable!
Whew, that was a lot! I hope this helps you have a work wardrobe that looks professional but is super comfortable so that you can feel great throughout your day!
Polished and professional with less time and stress. ✅
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