Skip to Accessibility Tools Skip to Content Skip to Footer
Community Tips for RA Friendly Clothing

Community Tips for RA Friendly Clothing

Clothing can sometimes define our uniqueness – it gives us a sense of style and can define who we are. However, many in the RA community struggle with the day to day functionality of our clothing. So, we asked our Facebook Community this question: Do you have tips for RA-friendly clothing based on comfort, temperature control, clasps, etc? 

The clothing ideas that so many of you came up with is clothing that makes you comfortable, has easy functionality, and all in all makes you FEEL good. Check out some of the suggestions!

What makes certain clothes RA friendly?

Basic requirements:

  • Cotton
  • Easy to pull on and off
  • No Buttons
  • No Clasps
  • Stretchy
  • Slip On
  • Velcro
  • Elastic Waist Bands
  • Spiral Laces
  • Thin Layers

For the top:

  • Pull Over Tunics
  • Camis
  • Hoodies
  • Baggy Tops
  • Tee Shirts
  • Overalls
  • Zip Up Vest

For the legs:

  • Leggings
  • Yoga Pants
  • Jag Jeans
  • Sweat Pants
  • Cotton capris
  • Perfect Fit Pants (LLBean)

For the feet:

  • Sketchers Go Walks
  • Crocs
  • Pedor Shoes
  • Fit Flops
  • Tom’s
  • Merrells
  • Earth Orgins
  • Ryka Shoes
  • Pull on Ankle Booties
  • Compression Socks
  • Loafers
  • Ian’s
  • Wolky’s
  • Paul Green High Tops

A dress to impress:

  • Cotton Dresses with Tie
  • Maxi Dresses

Undergarments:

  • Front Clasp Bras
  • Compression Socks

Places to shop:

  • Etsy (Silkandmore)
  • Old Navy
  • Susan Graver (Liquid Knit Dress)
  • LLBean
  • Lularoe

What features do you consider when purchasing clothing?
Please post your comments and share your thoughts below.

Comments

  • Indigo2
    6 months ago

    I think that flip flops can be a tripping hazard…so, I wear low heeled plain Mary Jane shoes, they are comfortable & look good with skirts, which I find easy to wear & comfortable.

    Thanks for the suggestions!

  • stormlight
    8 months ago

    • Is it soft?

    • Is it going to compress my joints? Tight fashion jeans are a banned item in my household!

    • Is it going to make me boil alive? With a husband on anticoagulants, our home temperatures must be at least 24°C in lounge and 21°C elsewhere.

    • Is it going to keep me warm outdoors without weighing a ton? (Top tips: layer with the kind of thermal vests we used to wear as kids: Merinho wool garments are awesome — warm, but not heavy, and fine enough that it barely itches)

    • Shoes *must* be flats or very near flat. High heels are another banned item. Shoes should also have Hush Puppy-type cushioning.

    • Slippers should be the bootee type — hubby bought me a wonderful pair of bootee slippers for my birthday, they’re fleece and ideal for keeping draughts off my feet and ankles.

    • Tights/hose: I find the cotton-rich type best. All my friends are wearing an ultra-tight type of 140 denier Polyamide tights which hurt my inflamed hips like crazy, but the cotton-rich sort are less constricting, just as warm, and let my skin breathe too.

    • In summer, I find linen trousers very valuable: my friend whose father has RA, gave them to me during a heatwave. They’re loose-legged and tie-waste, so they’re great!

    • In summer, avoid garments made of viscose (aka rayon). It isn’t a natural material, and in the heat, it behaves pretty much like polyester.

  • LynnElliott
    10 months ago

    Great list. Also, when looking for long sleeve warm shirts I make sure the wrist of the sleeve is not tight as that seems to aggravate wrist pain. T

  • Ruthieq
    11 months ago

    Lately I’ve been going with lularoe for the stylish and comfortable clothing. Much easier to get on and off. Also I’ve gone to stretchy bracelets and easily clasped necklaces so I don’t have to struggle. Socks are the worst because I seem to have larger ankles than manufacturers can imagine. This is a problem in winter. In the summer I wear Keen sandals almost exclusively.

  • Alesandra Bevilacqua moderator
    11 months ago

    Thanks for sharing this insight with the community, Ruthieq! – Alesandra (RheumatoidArthritis.net Team)

  • gammy
    2 years ago

    I am a firm believer in the comfy clothing especially LuLaRoe. I have many pieces from them especially the leggings. The only difficulty is finding tunics to match my zany leggings. I shop Zulily.com for most of them as they have the largest selection. I also have found Amazon.com has a good selection of both solids and fun leggings and tunics. Just thought I would share my findings with all of you. I am a new member BTW.

  • DMetz
    2 years ago

    Merino’s shoes are fabulous. They’re very light weight. I’ve accepted I’ll be in Go Walks for years to come but I will splurge again soon and get another color.

  • awellsdba
    2 years ago

    I’ve fallen in love with Dickies work socks. I can get them at Walmart now… men’s socks last forever, they stay up, and they come to my knees… best of all, they are easy to put on.

  • Pat
    4 years ago

    I have a pair of Lauren Conrad knit pull on capris that don’t bind and are soft that I get at Kohl’s. I have flare clothes, loose things that i can get on and off easily. And I have regular clothes.
    I’m a boot nut and have had to dispose of my perfectly fitting cowboy boots that I got 30 yrs ago. (A wonderful home where someone will wear them another 30 years!) I have discovered Justfab has boots that have easy zippers, fit my feet perfectly and don’t cost a whole lot.
    I also found some sandals that are made by Dawgs that are light and don’t make anything in my body get smushed out of shape, like my hips… I am beginning to realize that my days of flip flops year round are almost gone, so I will enjoy this summer.
    After having the worst flare EVER two weeks ago, I’m taking over one of my sons walking sticks, picture Gandalf’s staff, and keeping it by my bedside. Husband had just had back surgery and there was no way he could help me get out of bed! Plus, big stick is useful for whacking intruders, like our daughter, The Nurse, while heaping praises upon her ears.

  • Pat
    4 years ago

    Couldn’t have done it without her!
    Shhh, but don’t tell her that…

  • Erin Rush moderator
    4 years ago

    Hi Lynn! If you have a Macy’s or JCPenney’s near you, you can go in for a professional sizing/fitting and the ladies can then recommend a bra for you. I personally prefer Macy’s. My fitter has been a lifesaver for finding the best bra for my size and budget. Have you considered zipper front bras? They tend to be sports bras, but they definitely will provide support! I have good luck with Wacoal brand bras — http://www.wacoal-america.com/front-close_wacoal-bras-catalog/. I am an H and Wacoal is what works best for me. They fit well, offer strong support, and make me feel attractive. The downside is that they are not cheap and they seem to NEVER go on sale. The upside? They are high quality and last a long time if washed properly. Really, a good fitter can steer you to good brands that will work best for you. I hope this helps! Good luck! Have a good night, Erin, RheumatoidArthritis.net Team Member.

  • tulugaq
    4 years ago

    Front clasp bras: I have extremely large breasts (38G) and have yet to find a front clasp bra that makes me look good — and yes, that’s important, too. Right now I have a great bra that clasps in back with only 2 hooks, and I can mange it fine — but that model isn’t made anymore.

    Can anyone here recommend a bra brand that might work for me? Thanks.

  • Lauren Tucker moderator author
    4 years ago

    Hi Lynn,
    That’s a great question! I hope the community can give you some feedback on some of their personal experiences with front bra clasps that would be helpful.

    Thanks for being part of our community.
    Best of Luck,
    Lauren (Community Manager RheumatoidArthritis.net)

  • Poll