Point/Counterpoint: Why does women’s clothing have smaller pockets


Lily Smith

In this photo illustration, pants pockets are seen on Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018. (Lily Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Two columnists discuss the harrowing issue of pocket sizes in women’s clothing versus men’s clothing.

Women deserve bigger pockets

Ever since I was little, I remember carrying a purse. Its contents: my wallet, sunglasses, chapstick, and a few miscellaneous items. Everywhere I went, my purse went. Now that I am older, I realize why I always carried a purse: my pockets were way too small. For some reason, women’s pockets tend to be much smaller than men’s. And although this does not seem like a huge deal, it does make life just a little more difficult for us women.

Some companies say that women’s pockets are smaller for fashion reasons. Women’s pants tend to be sleeker, more form fitting. Designers have persuaded women that their pockets must be smaller or even nonexistent to fit trends. But this does not actually make sense. Men have form fitting, sleek pants, too, but they still get the luxury of deep pockets that are capable of holding wallets and keys. Meanwhile, in order for women to stay fashionable, we have to lug around purses. What a double standard.

Fashion companies need to consider the toll it takes for women to constantly carry a purse. Yes, I love to stay fashionable. But I do not believe that I look unfashionable when I have pockets that allow me to keep at least one personal item in them.

The point is, I am tired of unusable or nonexistent pockets. Everyone deserves to experience the convenience of pockets. I love the days when I wear a coat that allows me to safely put my phone in my pocket. I want that convenience every day.   

-Lucee Laursen

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Men are less creative, need bigger pockets

Why do pants made for women have smaller pockets than pants made for men? To be honest, I truly don’t know the reason. But regardless of why women have smaller pockets, there are clear reasons as to why men have bigger pockets.

As easy at it would be for men to carry a purse, like many women do, society deems that behavior unmanly. Somehow, purses were turned into a “lady item,” so they don’t fit the stereotypical “macho male” persona. Ladies, if you were to ask your boyfriend to hold your purse, you will notice that many will awkwardly cradle it as if it held a bomb or had cooties.

Men who carry handbags are often seen as effeminate or sissies. This is the same reason why men can’t wear makeup or talk about their feelings. These gender norms are slowly fading away, but they still exist, which leads to men needing larger pockets because of their refusal to carry a purse.

But it goes even deeper than gender norms. The real reason women have smaller pockets than men is because women are more innovative.

Think about it — how many different ways do women carry their things because of small pockets? Besides purses, some women keep their cash in their shoe or string things in their hair. I once saw a woman pull a knife out of her bra — an item of untold strength that can hold cash, wallets, phones, etc.

Now, do you really think men are creative enough to come up with all those makeshift pockets? Pants pockets are the only place men can successfully store their stuff and not forget where it is. And that is why we have bigger pockets.

-Wylliam Smith


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