What to Wear on a Long Plane Ride

No one feels all that great during a long travel day, but at least now you can look it with these tips from a friendly stylist.


Are you one of those guys who wants to look stylish but finds it doesn’t come all that naturally? We feel you. Don’t fret: With some advice from LA-based stylist Rayne Parvis, we’re all going to learn how to dress a little better. In this edition, we’re looking at how to dress appropriately for the unpleasantness that is a long-haul flight.

Step #1: Sit Back and Wear Black (and Cotton)

“It’s always a good idea to wear dark colors while flying just in case the plane runs into some turbulence and you or your neighbor end up spilling something on your clothes,” Parvis explains. She also recommends wearing as much cotton as possible—Banana Republic has an entire line of non-iron, cotton clothes—since cotton allows the armpits to breath: That way, you won’t stink after sitting on an airplane all day. This is especially handy if you’re rushing straight from the airport to a business meeting, a wedding, or to make up for the time spent away from your significant other.

Step #2: Stow Your Skinny Jeans (and Your Belt)

If there’s anywhere manspreading really isn’t an option, it’s on an airplane, so choosing comfortable pants is an essential part of a pleasant travel experience. “Whether you decide to wear jeans, joggers or chinos, you want to pick out a pair that has plenty of room for your balls,” Parvis laughs. “I also recommend leaving your belt in your luggage, so it’s not digging into your skin all flight long.”

In this same vein, Parvis recommends not wearing any kind of pullover sweater, so you’re not elbowing your neighbors every time you take it off or on. Instead, she suggests a lightweight zip-up or button-up sweater, whether that be a hoodie or something a little more formal, like a cardigan.

Step #3: Prepare to Take Off Your Shoes

“You’re going to want to wear slip-on shoes—stores like Payless and Walmart have cheap black slip-ons that get the job done—so you don’t have to lace and unlace them at every security check,” Parvis explains. Plus, you’ll be able to easily kick off your shoes mid-flight without having to put up your tray table and bend over to unlace them. “This also means you want to step up your sock game because they’ll be extra visible,” Parvis says. “Leave your plain white gym socks at home.”

Step #4: Thanks for Flying, and Don’t Forget Your Underwear

Your mother always told you to pack clean undies, and flying is the perfect opportunity to show her you were actually listening. “Make sure to pack a clean pair of underwear and an extra T-shirt in your carry on just in case your luggage gets lost,” Parvis says. She also recommends packing and wearing tagless underwear [undies that have the tag on the outside, rather than the inside] to avoid itchiness and a pinch to the butt (not the pleasant kind) all flight long.

Now what’s the deal with that airplane food, huh?

If you have any questions about getting the look you want—fits, cuts, colors or anything else fashion-related—leave it in the comments and we’ll have a stylist answer it in an upcoming post.