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Dear Designers of Women’s Pants

A Manifesto

By Nicole JohnsonPublished 7 months ago 3 min read

As a woman, there are countless issues at which I could be pissed off. Some of the things that irk me, I share with tons of women all over the world. Serious issues, such as domestic and sexual violence, equal pay and reproductive rights, have a permanent place high on my list of concerns.

Other things of way less importance offend me as if they were highly-debated women’s issues. First world problems, you might call them. But I know I can’t be the only woman who has a grievance about the lack of pocket space (or pockets in general) on women’s pants.

All too often when I put on a pair of pants, I sigh to myself in frustration, I forgot, these pants don’t have pockets. Sometimes I’m lazy and just leave them on, taking my purse with me instead. Usually I shimmy out of the pocket-less pants and opt for different ones, because it’s a huge-ass inconvenience to not have pockets.

I’ve accidentally bought pants that have decorative pockets instead of real ones. What’s a decorative pocket, you ask? Well, it’s a slit on the side of the pants designed to make you think it’s a pocket, when in fact it’s not. And even when our pants do happen to have pockets, they’re rarely deep or wide enough to hold anything securely. I’d at least like to not worry so much about my phone falling to its death.

Do we not get pockets because women are supposed to carry purses wherever they go? Or is it because women’s pants have to be ultra-form fitting around the hips in order to make the woman look fashionable and sexy, so there’s no room for pockets? What about women who don’t so much care for tight pants? What about the women who are “less feminine,” or who don’t enjoy the burden of purses but still need something to hold their most essential items? Adding a couple extra inches to deepen and widen our pockets would not hurt style, functionality, or cost.

I call this a women’s issue because it’s unheard of to men. Pockets are always, always, always plentiful and spacious on men’s pants. Jeans, slacks, khakis, you name it. Even some swim trunks have them. What are men putting in their swim trunks?

I’m assuming that most men don’t even realize we women have smaller pockets because we don’t even think to complain about it. Ladies, why are we so complacent in the absurdly small size of our pockets?

The pants with the most spacious pockets I’ve ever bought was a pair of men’s jeans that someone had tossed into the women’s section, and happened to fit me reasonably. I liked the style of them, but I didn’t know they were men’s jeans until weeks later when I realized why they had so much crotch space.

In my younger days, I was never one to opt for carrying around a purse; it was uncomfortable for my shoulder and it just wasn’t my style. But I could fit the whole world into those men’s pockets and it was glorious. My phone, keys, wallet, everything I needed. I could even shove my entire hands in there if they got cold. Even though they weren’t the worst pair of pants I ever owned, I never meant to buy men’s jeans, and I haven’t since because I shouldn’t have to.


I promise that this essay is all in fun and I don’t actually resent men for having amazing pockets — as long as you don’t put your stuff in my bag. Thanks for reading!


About the Creator

Nicole Johnson

There is nothing on this earth quite like writing. If you can think it, you can write it. Limitations don’t exist. I’ve been fortunate enough to turn writing into a career as a beauty editor after earning my English degree.

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