You’ve Never Seen Sweatpants Like These Before

convertible travel clothing for women

When it comes to the world of travel fashion, two words have never spoken to me as clearly as the following:

Dressy. Sweatpant.

Did you read that? Yes that’s dressy and sweatpant thrown into the same phrase, folks.

If you’re familiar with Her Packing List, you already know Encircled, a Canadian small business that’s developing responsible clothing with multiple wear options. We’ve reviewed their Chrysalis Cardi as well as the Evolve Top in the past, but when Kristi got in touch with me about some more recent products we could test out, I couldn’t get my mind past the dressy sweatpants.

I just had to try them out.

For girls who have taken a page out of a similar book of comfort and style, this review might be no other than life changing.

The Dressy Sweatpants review
The Dressy Sweatpants with a Clever Travel Companion pick-pocket proof tank and Tieks flats.

The Dressy Sweatpant

I received my pair a couple weeks ago and long story short, I want to live in them. And that means they are a perfect candidate for travel since I pack light and in turn wear basics repeatedly throughout a trip. The more I love one item, the less it concerns me to be in it all the time.

But that’s me. You’re probably going to need a little more information than that to know if the dressy sweatpant is right for you.

The Dressy Sweatpants cropped.
The Dressy Sweatpants cropped. (I’m laughing because I feel silly being photographed like this- I do it for you all!)

Material and Style:

The following features make the dressy sweatpant a unique and appealing purchase.

  • Harem style: The cut is a bit loose and forgiving with a slight harem style which ultimately means they are comfortable, roomy and airy. I’d have no problems wearing these on long flights, bus rides, car rides, and definitely not on train rides. Yet, the slimmer leg and look of the fabric also makes them dressy in a pinch. Day to night without any fuss!
  • Ruching: The ruching at the bottom of the leg provide a fitted form to the long pant, but can easily be pulled up to a cropped leg as well.
  • Pockets: I love pockets. These pants have them, plus a tiny zipper pocket on the middle of the back waist-band. Winning!
  • Soft fabric: Just like the Evolve Top and Chrysalis Cardi, the dressy sweatpants are made from a modal base with a blend of spandex. It feels nice.
The dressy sweatpants with a sweater.
Throw a sweater over that Clever Travel Companion tank and you have something that’s verging on nice.

They’re awesome pants. However, one thing that you should be aware of is that they’re not what you might think of when you say “sweatpants”. They’re not the warm, fuzzy, thick pants you would put on for a cool winter day around the house.

But then again, you wouldn’t be able to wear those sweatpants to a conference or for a night on the town either.

The Versatility:

Whether it’s for home or travel or a working holiday, Encircled’s dressy sweatpant is a viable option. I love purchasing items that are useful for travel but can be used in normal life, because then I truly get my money’s worth. Yes, you’ll definitely need to look at the cost of wear for these dressy sweatpants because they’re not cheap- but they’re also not made in a mass manufacturing facility in China. These garments are ethically made.

The dressy sweatpants business style, over a Merino wool t-shirt by Kathmandu.
The dressy sweatpants business style, over a Merino wool t-shirt by Kathmandu.

Areas to Be Aware Of

Hey we like to be honest here, so there are a few areas that travelers should be aware of.

Dry time. The fabric is not super quick-drying, so if you wash it on the road, you’ll have to wait a bit longer than other travel gear for it to be ready to wear or pack away.

Warmth. The pants are thin so they aren’t going to be warm in the winter chill without an extra layer underneath, like tights, if you’re going to be outside for an extended period of time. That said, they are loose enough for tights, and they’re airy enough for summer.

Encircled's Dressy Sweatpants

My Thoughts

These pants are a big win. I went with the size medium (because a girl gots hips), but I might have been able to get away with a small and have a less baggy mid-region. That said, I wouldn’t change it now at all.

I’ve worn these dressy sweatpants on several occasions at home and have also just taken them on a weekend away where they were dressed cute with flats and a scarf and dressed casual with boots and my poncho (yes, it’s winter here in Australia).

The dressy sweatpants in action while antique shopping.
The dressy sweatpants in action while antique shopping for vintage suitcases.

I’m also planning on taking them with me to a conference in August because they do the job of looking put together but also comfortable for hours of sitting.

>> The Dressy Sweatpant is currently on offer on the official Encircled website.

What do you think? Is the Dressy Sweatpant from Encircled something you’d be interested in?

Two Words - Dressy Sweatpants

Written by Brooke

I run the show at Her Packing List and love packing ultralight. In fact, I once traveled for 3 entire weeks with just the contents of a well-packed 12L handbag. When I'm not obsessing over luggage weight, I'm producing episodes of The UnPacking List or just snuggling with my pet rabbit, Sherlock Bunz.

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Gear We Use


Packing Cubes – Organize your luggage with the lightweight, durable and compressible Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Compression Cubes.

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Pacsafe – Since they come with extra theft-resisting features, Pacsafe bags make you a more confident traveler. We especially love this bag.

Sea to Summit – Of all the Sea to Summit products, our most recommended is the fits-in-your-palm, super packable Ultra-Sil Daypack.

Personal Care

Nalgene Toiletry Bottles – These leak-free toiletry bottles and tubs come in all sizes – even super tiny, helping minimalists pack it all without bulk.

Turkish Towels – They’re thinner than most travel towels, and they actually cover your body! We can’t get enough of Turkish towels for travel.


Speakeasy Supply Co. – They make the awesome hidden pocket infinity scarves that are perfect for stashing secret cash, lip balms, and passports.

Anatomie – Anatomie travel pants come with luxury prices, but they offer many benefits for travelers. See our review of the famous Skyler pants.

Travel Resources

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Dollar Flight Club – Get flight deal alerts for your preferred departure airport. There is both a free and premium version (recommended for more sweet deals). Members save on average $500 USD per flight!

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Airbnb – Airbnb is the best place to book out apartments around the world. Sign up using this link to get $37 USD off your first stay booking + $14 USD towards an experience booking! – Search for hotels, hostels, and apartments using this one resource. Use it for flights, car rentals, and airport taxis as well.

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Trusted Housesitters – Save money on travel accommodation by becoming a housesitter. Housesitters often have extra duties, like caring for pets and gardens.

Reader Interactions


  1. nancy says

    Definitely interested! One of my concerns is the harem pant look is very trendy. For this price I would not want trendy. However, these do not look overly haremy, if you know what I mean.

    Also what is the rise? Looks like you are wearing them rather lower? I do love the ruching on the lower legs, that’s such a great idea.

    We’re going to Italy for 3 weeks, I seriously want to travel with 2 bottoms, one pants, one skirt. I am sure these would dry while I wear the skirt. And I could buy more clothes in Rome!!!

    Well, I might I have too many questions, I think I have to buy them and see…

  2. Jo says

    Boo! Just went to the website to order a pair and they are sold out in every size except XS! Was dying to have these for an upcoming trip!

  3. Jo says

    Hi! I love the look of these pants! I wanted to ask you about the length. I am 5’4″ and would like to know if you thought they might be too long for someone my height. Thanks so much!

  4. Tracey says

    Thank you for this review. I’ve ordered myself a pair based on your review. They should arrive tomorrow and I’m really excited to take them with me on my upcoming travels!

  5. Tania Danilenko says

    OMG, I love them! If I had to chose just one pair of trousers for a year, these would be it. Funny, I’ve got the same “gripes” as you: long drying time and lack of warmth, but otherwise, they are the most comfortable and most versatile pants I’ve ever owned!

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