We dress to impress. We dress to do gardening. We dress to work out.
But we don’t often dress for our health. In fact, we don’t ever even really consider how what we wear might be impacting our organs, or skin, or causing infections.
And most of the time that’s okay. Most clothes are harmless. But there are some things that you should keep in mind before putting on your next outfit.
Leggings are so hot right now. They’re like pants only cooler.
The problem is, they hug your legs so tightly that they rub against your skin, picking up sweat and oil. As a result, they get pretty filthy, pretty fast. Wearing them more than once between washes can easily lead to rashes, fungal infections, and scaly skin patches, according to Dr. Josh Zeichner, a dermatologist from Mount Sinai hospital. So no skipping washes!
2. Skinny Jeans
Are also pretty hot right, but if they’re too tight, they can potentially compress a nerve in your groin or leg and reduce blood flow. If your legs go numb or get swollen at all, they’re too tight.
You should also consider what you’ll be doing all day. A 35-year-old woman ended up in a hospital for four days after squatting all day in a particularly tight pair. Plus, all the friction between your skin and the denim can breakdown your skin’s natural protective barrier, leading to infections, according to Dr. Zeichner.
A final issue is that tight pants can make you sweat more, inviting bacteria to grow. If you can, you should try to find pairs with more give, wash them often, and don’t squat in them for long periods of time.
3. Pants With a Rivet Button Clasp
If you’ve ever gotten a rash below your belly button, it could’ve been caused by a nickel clasp, a common skin irritant. The simple fix is to iron on a small patch, to protect your skin.
The problem with rompers is that they’re hard to take off. Knowing that, when you wear them, you probably try to take fewer trips to the bathroom, or even worse, drink less water.
This can cause bladder infections, pain, discomfort, and digestive issues. So try to wear clothing that makes going to the bathroom easy, whenever possible.
Spanx, stockings, and other restrictive items can be just as bad as skinny jeans. They can even squish your organs, causing stomach discomfort and even acid reflux. These should really not be part of your regular attire, if at all.
Pajamas are often forgot about and left out of the laundry, sometimes for way too long. If you sleep without underwear, you should probably change your pajamas every night. If you do wear underwear you can probably wait longer, but bacteria does build up on them, even if you’re just sleeping.
7. High Heels
Wearing high heels regularly can lead to all sorts of lower leg, foot, and ankle problems. It can lead to muscle imbalances that you make you prone to injury, according to a study from the International Journal of Clinical Practice.
Doing foot exercises, like standing on your tippy toes or doing heel drops, can help offset the damage, but flats are a much better option whenever possible.
I love wearing flip-flops, but sadly they do expose your feet to all sorts of bad things, like bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Getting a foot infection is pretty easy. They can also cause heel pain, affect your posture, and mess up your toes. In the end, I guess they’re just not worth it.
9. Colored Underwear
Fabric dyes can potentially irritate the delicate skin around your vagina, according to Dr. Owen Montgomery. Of course, problems most often occur when underwear are brand new and made of a synthetic material, so white cotton is your best bet.
10. Bras With Underwire
Underwire, clasps, strap adjusters, anything made of metal on a bra really, are all often made of nickel, which can irritate your skin. Just try to make sure none of the metal rests against your skin to avoid problems.
In general, if you wash your clothes regularly and don’t wear anything too, too tight, you should be in the clear. But it never hurts to be careful.