Global fashion shopping platform Lyst has revealed data from shoppers that suggests we’ve finally passed ‘peak sweatpants’. Back in the midst of lockdown, it seemed naively optimistic to splash out on occasionwear with no dressingup opportunities in sight. What we could justify splashing out on, however, was loungewear. 

The week after a third lockdown was announced in January 2021, searches for loungewear skyrocketed 488% compared to the previous year, according to New Look, but Lyst’s latest data suggests the other end of the style spectrum firmly has our attention now, and fashion optimism is in full play. 

“The things shoppers have been browsing, saving and buying in the Lyst app suggest an imminent return to going-out wear,’ confirms Bridget Mills-Powell, Content Director at Lyst.  “Sweats might have seen us through the past year, but many fashion-lovers are now looking to set aside the sweatpants and rediscover the joy of dressing up.’’ 

‘June 21 dressing’ became a fashion category of its own when it was announced that it would be the final date in the lifting of lockdown restrictions. From that date, a full return of bars, restaurants and nightclubs is expected, and will see the UK return to a pre-pandemic state after 15 months. Cue online fashion sites swiftly boasting sections full of fabulous dresses, fancy tops, silky skirts and heels in a bid to get us excited about dressing up again.

It’s worked: data from Lyst shows that searches for high heels and dresses are up 163% and 222% respectively, and sales of handbags – and designer ones at that – are on the rise. 

Ready to sideline your sweatpants? With our reentry officially in sight, here’s what to buy instead: 

Special heels

Lyst’s data shows that colourful mules (in particular, the Attico’s Devon style, which take the 5th spot in Lyst’s most popular product list) are in high demand. With a chunky block heel, it’s the perfect style to start with as we make the transition from slippers and trainers to going-out shoes. 

Look for a kitten heel height, supportive ankle straps and a padded sole for the most comfortable reentry heels.