Finding Sensory Friendly Clothing and Shoes for Boys
Quick: has your child ever had a meltdown over a shirt tag, pants too tight, or sock seams? We hear you. It turns out that these are sensory sensitivities and they are often tied to brain maturity.
Your child isn’t alone, however. Kelly shares that her husband will only wear the softest t-shirts, and that she cuts tags out of her own clothes! The good news is that so many more clothes are starting to just print brand information onto fabric, so that they don’t need tags.
Finding sensory friendly clothing and shoes for boys is something that you can literally spend years on. We’re veterans of the “OMG t-shirt meltdowns!” wars, and we’re here to give you some tips today.
Sensory Sensitivities are Real
We still have relatives who look doubtful and say things like “are you sure that his shirt tags matter? I think he just wants attention.” But if you have a child with sensory sensitivity, clothing is just one of the many things that you view with new eyes. We’re her to tell you that you’re not alone. Your child isn’t alone. This is a real concern. And it’s OK to give this a little attention.
If clothing sensitivity gets in the way of life, you can always look at our #Bigchecklist of symptoms, and our collection of checklists. An occupational therapist is often able to help children develop past big sensory sensitivities.
Some children can’t tolerate touch, but like compression clothing, or tight socks. Calmly encourage your child to try different clothing.
Sensory-Friendly Boy Clothing that Worked For Us
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Boy Cotton Shorts
Little boy fashion plates often call for polyester sports shorts, which can bother some kids. , but these shorts, made from sweatshirt material, are beloved by many. Easy-on, easy-off, some kids just live in them, even around the house during winter!
OshKosh also makes some comfortable, pull-on shorts in 100% cotton.
Boy No-Zip Pants
These are awesome pants. They look like ordinary pants, but the top fits just like the softest sweatpant. Easily cover the sweatpant with a sweater or shirt. Made by Spotted Zebra.
Sensory-Friendly Uniform: Boys
Nautica makes a sensory-friendly pant that’s 60% cotton.
The Children’s Place also makes an inexpensive fleece pant with no elastic on the bottom. Depending on your school, you might be able to use this as a uniform.
Chaps makes a sensory-friendly boy’s uniform short.
Here’s the Chaps tagless polo for uniforms. Very soft material.
Plain Old Sweatpants
Some of the best relaxing clothing can be worn by either boys or girls. Furthermore, because of the pink tax (you often pay more for girl clothing), it can be less expensive to pick up casual wear in the boy’s section.
It can be hard to find sweatpants without a tight ankle. These are just comfortable, and you can even remove the string around the waist if you want to!
Hanes makes a comfortable, inexpensive open legged fleece pant with pockets.
SeFu makes a very comfortable 100% cotton sweatpant for boys.
While it’s possible to find tagless t-shirts at local stores, made by Hanes and such, Kozie is known for making sensory-friendly clothing. Here is their soft tagless t-shirt available in all different colors.
And here is a set of tagless cotton long-sleeve shirts, made by Brix Boy’s. Made with Turkish cotton, and extremely soft.
It can be hard to find seamless underpants. Make sure that you just try using ordinary cotton underpants and simply wearing them inside out first, but here are some seamless underpants for boys.
Some mothers admit to buying lightweight cotton boxers and washing them for a month before giving them to their children to wear.
Socks and Sensory Issues
The Sock Wars! Every parent of a sensory sensitive child is extremely aware that some socks have seams, and that the seams bother our children. Unless we can manage to find socks that don’t bother our children, many of us spend time every single day with a child in the middle of a sensory panic session.
There are some things that you can do to make your life easier in the sock wars:
- Take your child to the store with you and have them try the socks on. Tell them that they will be buying their own socks.
- Let them steal yours. I started buying socks at Costco, and letting my child steal them from me.
- Amy at the Oh So Savvy mom blog, says that her son did better with tighter socks, and that they would put the socks on before the pants, to protect the ankles from getting touched.
SmartKnitKIDS a makes Seamless Sensitivity Socks, which are are “knit like a caterpillar spins it cocoon, from the toe up, eliminating all lumps and bumps.” Of course, they DO have a seam, but it’s a small seam, right at the tip of the toes.
Rambutan Kids makes socks with a comfort seam. They’re made from bamboo fiber, which is silky, but not thin. These socks look the most seamless we’ve seen. There is a seam, but it’s hand-sewn.
Shoes and Sensory Issues
Shoes and socks are the cause of so much agony for sensory children and their parents.
So many of our children, especially the boys, loved crocs. My son wore nothing but crocs for at least six years — perhaps ten. He refused to wear his tennis shoes when he was younger because they were “too tight.” It was only when he got into about third grade that he was able to wear normal shoes, and we remain grateful for Crocs.
Best thing about Crocs?
You can wear them in the wintertime! (If you’re a Californian.) This pair of Crocs comes with a fuzzy liner —a big favorite.
But summer Crocs rule.
Other Places to Get Good Sensory-Sensitive Clothing
Fun and Function