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The pyjama drama: Should you be allowed to shop in nightwear?

The Vote

Published on February 3rd 2010.

The pyjama drama: Should you be allowed to shop in nightwear?

What would you think if you saw someone perusing the condiments and sauces aisle of your local supermarket in jim-jams and slippers?

Perhaps you’d think they were crazy, cosy, or even lazy. Maybe they forgot to get dressed. Or maybe they couldn’t care less what you think.

Tesco, however, want the pyjama perpetrators to care about the opinions of their fellow shoppers, and have laid down the law accordingly. A new sign outside a store in St Mellons, Cardiff reads: ‘Footwear must be worn at all times and strictly no nightwear is permitted.’

The first shopper to be refused service on the basis of unacceptable attire was Elaine Carmody, a 24-year-old mum of two. Since the incident Carmody has been quoted, re-quoted and probably misquoted in reports which paint her as Waynetta Slob II.

It stinks of snobbery to many. This is a woman getting on with her shopping in her look of choice. If Tesco want us to shop at all hours of the day and night to keep their profit margins high, they need to accept nightwear as well as daywear. Who are they to tell us what to wear? Talk about Tescopoly.

Still, the fact remains that shopping in your pyjamas is somewhat lacking in manners. Social etiquette exists predominantly for the benefit of others and it’s this customer courtesy that's behind Tesco's new rules. It’s not even a question of social standing, as respectability matters for any class.

A spokesperson for Tesco said: “We're not a nightclub with a strict dress code, and jeans and trainers are of course more than welcome. We do, however, request that customers do not shop in their PJs or nightgowns. This is to avoid causing offence or embarrassment to others.”

Correct early use of leaving house in pyjamasMs Carmody argued that she’d only popped into Tesco to pick up some cigarettes. But whilst everyone experiences laziness at some point, you do have to question your actions when you can’t be bothered to get dressed to go to the shop. Right?

On the other hand, fashion has allowed nightwear-as-daywear to become more acceptable over the years. Anyone who has visited Sainsbury’s in Fallowfield will have witnessed students shopping in pyjama look-a-like outfits and outdoor slippers, AKA Ugg boots. Is this any more civilised?

The backlash from the ban has resulted in Tesco being branded a sexist, classist, kill joy hypocrite. Others believe that by taking a stand against slobby shopping, Tesco are just saying what many of us are thinking.

Some think that pyjama-wearing in public represents other problems in Britain. It might be absurd but by banning it in their stores, Tesco really is proving that every little helps.

What do you think? Should PJs be banned from supermarkets?

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10 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousFebruary 3rd 2010.

Well actually my night wear is nothing at all just skin, and my mate who is shy as well as chilly has been dressing in one of Primark's grey trackies and hoodie. If the weather goes on like this maybe they will be reviewed on ManCons fashion pages.....unisex for cross dressers.

AnonymousFebruary 3rd 2010.

Only if there is no skiddies in them

GoogleFebruary 4th 2010.

Did you see the hound who was the story? Outside the supermarket at 11.00 am still in her grubby PJ's? WTF was the lazy smelly hound doing looking for a packet of fags? Tell her to stop smoking, get a sodding job or have herself put down at the Vets.

Jane BaxterFebruary 4th 2010.

Not bothering to get dressed is just a sign of a complete slob. It's disgusting, dirty and revolting. If you're not either ill or just about to go to bed - get dressed! How can anybody even consider venturing past their front door in pyjamas? Where is their self respect? Ugh.

Helen WoodFebruary 5th 2010.

Another "customer" quoted said she didn't feel the need to get "dolled up" to go to Tesco. Dear God, since when has getting dressed been considered a massive beauty routine?

Smyth HarperFebruary 5th 2010.

I don't wear jammies...

Michele HartFebruary 8th 2010.

Sad to go shopping in your jim jams but you can legitimately wear them out in public on 2 July 2010 if you join in the Manchester Midnight Walk for St Ann's Hospice - see http://www.manchestermidnightwalk.org.uk. Everyone welcome and lots of fun and of course raised money for a great cause. Come on let's see everyone in a mass public jim jam outing walking the city's streets through the night.

Dave SpannerFebruary 8th 2010.

I sleep naked so no, going out in my nightwear isn't anywhere in my plan for life.

powerful pierreFebruary 13th 2010.

If you want to shop in your pyjamas then you have no pride and you just prove to everybody what a SLOB you are !

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