Clothing for seniors is very different than clothing for younger generations, and for good reason. If you’re shopping for yourself or for a loved one, you might be wondering why clothes designed for older adults is noticeably different. I hope this article will help shed some light on the topic.
Once we reach old age, we have lived through unfathomable fashion trends from platform shoes to feathery jackets, and some fashion trends we might choose to forget!
Ultimately, as we age we tend to value comfort over vogue. But who said you can’t mix comfort with style? If you’re tired of wearing the same old cardigan your daughter got you last year from Etsy, maybe it’s time to shake things up because being in the latter part of life does not mean you have to give up on looking your best.
Certain medical conditions like diabetes, chronic osteoarthritis, and the need for washable incontinence pads make some features undeniably useful to look for when shopping online for elderly clothing. Easy-to-wear and put on options such as pull-ons and elastic waists as well as low maintenance materials that are durable, machine washable, and iron-free are some top practical tips.
Many seniors have a specific type of need that should be accommodated along with their clothing choices. Following are more details.
What to Consider in Clothing for Seniors
When you progress to a certain age, fashion begins to seem like a faded concept. Instead, what matters is comfort: physical, psychological, and social comfort. Choosing the right clothing that portrays the person’s persona can make them feel better about themselves and promote a positive body image.
Questions you need to answer before buying clothes for a senior citizen:
- What kind of fabric do they enjoy and feel confident in?
- Any clothing that hinders their ability to function?
- What is the life and durability of the garment?
- What colors do they love?
- What health concerns do they have that affect their clothing needs or preferences?
Knowing the answers to these questions can help you put the following considerations into perspective as you navigate the many clothing options available to seniors.
1. Practical Fit
Clothing for seniors doesn’t have to be baggy to be comfortable. Make sure you find the right size. Wearing saggy bottoms or underlays will not flatter your body. Sometimes it can be easier to stick to one brand you like and that has clothing that fits you well. That way, you don’t need to hunt for those size charts for every purchase.
The reason elastic bands and pull-on are deemed adaptive clothing is because of the undeniable convenience. They’re time-savers, and for caregivers struggling to help an elder dress, they save on frustration.
Not having to worry about buying new pants after the Christmas season or after a long period of illness, when the waist size can go up and down, can be priceless.
3. Slip Ons
You can never go wrong with slide-on socks and shoes. Past the age of 60, many experience that their body temperature fluctuates often and they become more sensitive to cold. To keep the feet warm, slip-on washable slippers are ideal for protecting you from cold floors but also practical since they are simple to put on and take off.
4. Simple Colors
The golden age is full of charm, and you don’t want to spend it wearing black, gray, or navy on a continuous basis. No one wants to hear “all old people look the same.” Buy clothes with colors and patterns, something soft to the eye. Unless, of course, you’re looking for mature bikinis – then find something that sparks your fun in the sun!
This is especially when shopping for elderly women’s clothing. Consider purchasing light colors that you love and avoiding too much glitter and glam and too many extra pockets, which can create a baggy look.
5 – Daily Functioning
Most elderlies prefer clothing that is easy to put on and off. If someone needs assistance getting dressed, it’s in everyone’s interest to opt for clothes that are a loose fit with features like front openings, zipper pull-ups, pull on/off garments and stretchy, crease-free materials.
6 – Safety Concerns
According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention statistics, almost 36 million injuries are caused among senior citizens each year due to falls. People 65 and older have a higher chance of sustaining head or bone injuries. More than 95% of hip fractures are caused by falling, making this a real public health concern for adult citizens.
Brands focusing especially on senior citizen clothes spend a great deal of time and money on research and production to cater to the needs of the elderly. Whether it’s magnetic closures for mobility impaired adults or non-binding grip socks for diabetics to help keep them healthy and safe.
Another common concern while selecting senior citizen clothing is seasonal issues such as sweating that can cause itching or rashes. Being aware of fabric sensitivities and allergies is an important piece of feeling good in your clothes. Get rid of any materials causing allergy or irritation.
When you need assistance for many daily activities, safety is of the utmost importance. Safeguarding from fire is a significant concern. Avoid woolen items and shop for flame-resistant clothing articles. Another safety issue can be falls caused by fabric entanglement.
Example Clothes for Seniors
Men’s Elastic Waist Pant for Seniors
This set of adaptive clothing is just the right fix for a Sunday brunch. With a 60:40 ratio of cotton and polyester, they are comfortable to wear and easy to maintain. The material is easy to wash and dry and is used in many retirement and nursing homes.
- Easy to Put on and Wear - The Pembrook elastic waist pants men features a full elastic waistband and no zipper or snap/button making them super easy to pull on and off! The relaxed fit makes these the perfect mens pull on pants rehab. The features also make them suitable for seniors and elderly that may need adaptive clothing that can adjust to their need for comfort.
- Easy Sizing – All sizes come in 31-32" length so depending on customer height the elastic waist mens slacks may require tailoring. Waist sizes (not expanded): Small (28-30”), Medium (30-32”), Large (32-34”), X-Large (36-38”), 2X-Large (40-42”), 3X-Large (43”+). Designed to be generous and loose fitting without losing that classy dressy look.
Those that struggle with bathroom visits will be happy to discover these elastic waist pants exist both with and without button closure and zipper. The different colors and sizing options make these pants super practical and versatile.
Fuzzy Slipper Socks with Grips
Grip socks for seniors are popular items for a reason – safety! Originally designed for patients at the hospital, these soft, warm, and practical fuzzy socks quickly became a favorite to wear at home as well.
- Super Soft – High Quality Chenille Material (Cotton, Polyester and Spandex Blend). These are softest luxury hospital socks you will find on the market.
- Skid Resistant – Gripping rubber treads provide safety and security for any situation. The proprietary tread design provides maximum traction grip on nearly any surface. The tread is color matched to the sock for a subtle look that won’t scuff your floors.
They come up to mid-calf height and don’t bunch up around the ankles. The soles are covered in non-skid rubber grips that are incredible at helping seniors stay on their feet and out of the hospital!
They are unisex and come in a range of different colors and pack sizes. When the weather is no longer appropriate for fuzzy socks, all you need to do is move on to grip crew socks.
- Soft & Grippy Non Skid Socks – High quality recycled cotton with plush terry inside. These are the softest non skid socks for men and women you will find on the market. Upgrade from the flimsy junk most hospitals provide. These socks are incredibly stretchy and fits up to mens shoe size 12 and womens 13.5.
- Womens & Mens Slipper Socks with Non Skid Bottoms for Your Safety --- These socks with grippers keep you from slipping when walking around the house on hardwood or tile floors. Our non slip grip socks have rubber tread bottoms from heel to toe and especially elderly and seniors love the sense of security these anti slip socks give them.
This model also has rubber treads at the bottom to provide safety and protection from slippery grounds but won’t provide as much warmth. This model is available in black, white, and gray.
Fleece Sets for Women
There’s one thing ladies of all ages love. Pockets! This cotton poly knit fleece set is available in beautiful and mood-boosting colors.
- Easy to Put on and Wear - The Pembrook women's sweatsuits feature a full elastic waistband and no zippers or buttons making them super easy to pull on and off! The casual fit and features make these the perfect lounge outfits for older women, seniors, and the elderly that may need adaptive clothes that can adjust to their need for comfort. We have Small to 3X-Large sizes. When in doubt, size down.
- Soft & Comfortable – Our customers love this matching leisure suits for women set for the soft, thick and comfortable plush premium fleece material. It is made of ultra-soft and anti-pilling fleece knit fabric (60% cotton / 40% poly) making it soft, warm and elegant.
This knit two-piece is a timeless classic with 2 side pockets and a classic embroidery on the chest – the type grandmothers will appreciate
Sweater with Snap Buttons
We pictured this item earlier. The snap buttons make life significantly easier for older adults who struggle with finger dexterity.
An all-rounder plush cardigan with snap buttons and side pockets is perfect for loungewear in any season. The classic shape suits most older women work great for casual outings or get-togethers and well as calm days at home.
- Soft Cardigans for Women Embroidered – Made from incredibly comfortable, plush and anti-pilling premium fleece. This sweater for grandma is soft, warm and classic. This cardigan with pockets and buttons for women is sure to become a favorite piece of loungewear or button sweatshirts - just look at our reviews!
- Practical Womens Fleece Button Jackets – We’ve taken the classic cardigan with pockets for women and added more practical patch pockets, easy to manage snap front buttons and a timeless and beautiful embroidery on the chest. The sleeves have ribbed cuffs so they don't slide down over the hand and and a bottom band for some adjustability of the length.
The premium fleece will keep you warm in cold weather and when it’s time – just throw it in the washing machine and you will see that nothing changes – cycle after cycle.
Non-Binding Ankle Socks
If you’re looking after a diabetic patient, they must be exhausted from the constantly swollen feet. But there are socks for people suffering from diabetes, edema, or neuropathy.
- Comfort for Swollen Feet & Ankles - The Pembrook diabetic socks men and women are lightweight, non binding with a loose top around the ankles to aid poor blood circulation. These diabetic socks women and men are easy to pull on over swollen feet and feel soft and comfortable on the skin. The absolute best pair of diabetic socks for women and men who suffer from edema, diabetes or neuropathy.
- Suited to All Activity Levels - Our womens and mens diabetic socks are great for walking, running and sitting still. They help prevent swelling in the feet and ankles and have a breathable mesh top to keep feet dry and comfortable. This is why these are great edema socks and neuropathy socks as well as socks for diabetics men and women.
These loose-fitting ankle-length socks are readily suitable for any season. Another highlight of the cotton blend is that it keeps away any kind of odors and your feet from smelling.
As the old saying goes; when you look good, you feel good. Quality clothing will help them achieve a sense of independence, charisma, acceptance of current circumstances, and self-esteem.
Here are some recommendations from caregivers for choosing the right senior citizens’ clothes.
✓ Include them in the decision-making process.
✓ Inquire about their daily routines
✓ Do not assume what you don’t know
✓ Take them on a shopping trip
In life, it all comes down to our basic needs. Food, clothes, and shelter. Just as the circle of life continues, we learn to take advantage of present circumstances. Old age is not so different. You reminisce while enjoying wisdom.
What you choose to wear is how you present yourself to the world; clothes will forever be a silent language. Learn to communicate with it. Good attire instills confidence, composure, and self-reliance. When you enter the golden age, you hopefully have the time to (re)discover your preferences.