What to do with pajamas during the day?

I have never known what to do with my pajamas in the morning. They usually end up being folded and set on top of my dresser. The dresser location is functional, but it’s cluttered. Years of living with clothes strewn on my dresser left me wishing I had a place where my pajamas could live that wasn’t on top of a flat surface.

After a recent trip to the hardware store, I came home armed with a “S” hook to solve my problem. The hook fits over my closet’s clothing rod and provides an instant place for my pajamas during the day. I also have enough space in my closet that my pajamas don’t touch any of my clean clothes. My pajamas are out of sight, off a flat surface, and behind the closed door of my closet.

If I had children, I think that I would install more permanent hooks that screwed into the closet wall at a height convenient for them. This way, they would be able to hang up their own pajamas even if they couldn’t reach their clothing rod in their closet.

I know that some people will likely comment that pajamas should be stored either under your pillow or in your pillow case. I just can’t do this. I think about how I sweat on my pajamas during the night and am not comfortable with then storing them next to where I put my face when I sleep. The reality may be that it is more hygienic than I am imagining, but I can’t do it. It gives me the willies. For me, the “S” hook works perfectly.


This post has been updated since its original publication in 2007.

64 Comments for “What to do with pajamas during the day?”

  1. posted by chzplz on

    Or, keep on uncluttering and just sleep naked! Works for me…

  2. posted by Indigo on

    I’ve never heard of storing pajamas underneath a pillow or in a pillow case. It gives me the willies too. o_o

    I bought an over-the-door hook for my pajamas and things. It’s mounted so the hooks are inside the closet. It works well for me.

  3. posted by Gayle on

    Or… WASH them? If you sweat in your PJs, why are you putting them back onto your body?

    Me confused.

    Me also sleep naked, so me may no have relevant opinion.

  4. posted by spark on

    I must agree with Gayle here, she posted quicker than I could.

    What is wrong with the drawer inside the dresser? No clutter!

    And if they are dirty, and you don’t want them “touching clean clothes”, then why in the world are you putting them back on in the evening?!

    My pj’s go in one of two places, the laundry if they are dirty, the dresser when not.

    I don’t understand either, but not because I sleep naked, maybe because I just haven’t slept.

  5. posted by Aisha on

    Hmm… we just use hooks behind the bathroom door. It gets them aired AND out of the way.

  6. posted by Lauren on

    My first thought was the same as the previous posters — if they are too sweaty to be placed near your pillow, why would you want to re-wear them??

    I have an over-the-door hook on my bathroom door; PJs go there during the day, my “around the house” sweats that I change into after work, hang there at night.

  7. posted by twosandalz on

    Lately, I have been glaring at my PJs, which innocently clutter the top of my bureau when I’m not wearing them. This idea will work wonderfully for me!

  8. posted by awurrlu on

    I also use a hook in my closet, as most nights my pajamas (actually, long underwear that does double duty) usually stays clean enough to be used two nights in a row.

    (In the summer, I use a full-length slip as a nightgown, and that too gets hung in the closet.)

  9. posted by Leslie on

    Hmm. This raises a question that I never knew I should be asking: am I the only one in the world who wears a fresh set of jammies each and every night? The idea of hooking, folding or otherwise storing something I’d sweated in all night gives me the willies … and very possibly moths.

  10. posted by mary on

    I hang mine or drawer them also. I don’t wear new pj’s every night b/c I’m trying to be environmentally conscious. Saves on washing and line drying. Though I must confess my bed is not made right now and I think my pj’s are on the floor. Three kids and halloween tiredness will do that to you.

  11. posted by John of Indiana on

    I thought PJ’s were something you kept folded under the nightstand in case of fire?

  12. posted by John of Indiana on

    That sounded kinda snarky, din’t it?
    I like that hook. You could use it to stow away sholder bags, purses, etc. Things that don’t lend themselves to hanging on a hanger.

  13. posted by Lola on

    Growing up, I always hung my PJs on a hook on the wall of my closet. Since I’ve been living in my own place (with my husband), I’ve been folding them and keeping them on top of a storage box where I also lay out my clothes for the next day. Cluttery, but I think it’s a controlled clutter. I’ve never heard of keeping them in or under a pillow!

    I do wear the same pair for several days – yeah, it’s kind of gross, but I don’t really get sweaty at night, I think it’s just general griminess of the day. But the next morning I take a shower and everything’s good again.

  14. posted by Robin Weiss on

    You mean I’m not supposed to wear them during the day??? (Sorry couldn’t resist.)

  15. posted by Erin @ Unclutterer on

    Okay, guys, I’m not some freakishly sweaty sleeper or anything. I just meant the normal wear on a pair of pajamas. I dare not imagine what type of an impression you all must have of me … πŸ˜‰

  16. posted by Daniel on

    When I was little, my mom had my sister and I put our PJs under our pillow after we made our beds. That way, we always new where they were and they didn’t smell like the floor.

  17. posted by Jani on

    I have a system that works well for my 3 school-aged children. I have a set of hooks on their wall (from home depot) on which we hang their school uniforms, underwear, socks, etc. for the next day. Then, when they take off their pajamas to get dressed, the pajamas go on the hooks and the clothes go on their bodies. Ideally either pajamas or uniforms would be hanging on those hooks at all times! This has saved me tons of time hunting for pajamas and uniforms. Their walls may not be ready for a Better Homes and Gardens photo shoot, but when that magazine calls (ha!), I’ll be sure to hide the clothes in their drawers!

  18. posted by Amie Ragan on

    As kids we were taught to fold our pjs and leave them at the foot of our made beds. As a teenager I did neither and pretty much everything was on the floor. As an adult I give the bed a half-hearted attempt because the dogs are going to mess it up during the day anyway, and I hang my pjs on a hook in the bathroom when I get in the shower. Erin’s sweat soaked pjs aside πŸ˜‰ I probably get out fresh ones two to three times per week.

  19. posted by Lulu on

    I am a reformed germaphobe–

    It is NOT gross to re-wear you Pj’s after one use. Do you wash your coats after being outside all day that touch everything in the world and then touches your inner clothing?

    So I will use the equivalent of a small lake the energy of a 10-story office building monthly to keep from feeling…”icky”? Really? We need a little “its not that big of a deal” attitude. Cuz were talking Pj’s folks

    Weigh your values. Get in that head of yours and dislodge that skewed fixed thought.

    Can we have a post titled “OCD or neat?” Where’s Dr. Ragan?

    Why do we create scenarios that induce fear and phobias, and then make them so real? You can convince yourself of anything–ya know, anything! You can also undo ways of thinking.

  20. posted by HandsFreeHeart on

    My dh and I each have a “re-wear” drawer in our dressers for those items that you wear for a short time… they’re hardly dirty but we don’t want to put them back with the clean clothes either. My worn pjs go in that drawer as well. I don’t usually sweat when I sleep either, but after 2-3 nights of wear, my pjs are definitely hamper-ready.

    My children each have a small plastic crate in which I place their clothes for the next day. Once dressed, their pjs reside there until evening. When they are getting ready for bed (or after they’re asleep, I pick out their outfit for the next day and place that in the crate.

  21. posted by Lulu on

    I wanna apologize to everyone, I came off hostile.

  22. posted by jt on

    folded under the pillows works for my beloved and I.
    The hook idea is nice and all, but it IS “just one more thing”…..
    Oh, and whether or not to store the jammies under the pillow or chuck em in the laundry IS a day-by-day call, too. Neither of us wants to be lying in bed with someone who smells like a locker room. But we’re not real keen on filling the laundry with pj’s either.

  23. posted by Pip on

    I guess I don’t sweat much either. I wear PJ’s for a week or more, and I go to bed sometimes pretty dirty from dancing for 4 hours. So there. We change our sheets every 2 weeks and I change PJ’s & pillowcases every week or so.

    I can honestly say that I fold or sometimes toss my PJ’s into the bed before I make it. The hubby sleeps naked so he’s good.

    My “hook items” are the pants/jeans that I wear to work in the lab. They definitely don’t go back into the drawer after being in the lab. Just to squick you out even further, I wear them each about 6 times before washing. Muahahahahaha!

  24. posted by Kristen on

    I’m another naked sleeper(well, I sleep in just my undies)…saves lots of laundry and makes for a happy husband. πŸ˜‰

  25. posted by allen on

    Um…. do you guys mean that the only choices there are, are naked or PJ’s? πŸ˜›

    Personally, i sleep in my boxers. If it’s cold, i slip on one of my undershirts. if it’s REALLY cold, i put another blanket on the bed. I just use the boxers from the day, and that really cuts down on my washing.

    When i have guests over for night, i _DO_ have sweat pants that i slip on. I guess i’ve never understood the point of PJs?

  26. posted by Kelsey on

    I reuse my PJs (well really just a tank top and shorts) for a few nights before washing them. My husband and I used to hang our pajamas or casual clothes on the post of our bed. However, once I started uncluttering and simplifying, this habit drove me crazy!

    Our new solution is to store them in our bedside tables. We have these Ikea, white tables with a drawer, and a large cabinet with two shelves. Now the pajamas we’re currently using go in the cabinet, out of sight and conveniently located next to the bed. It works great!

  27. posted by Sairey Gamp on

    This goes to show, yet again, that I assume without really thinking about it that the way I do things is the way everybody does them. After all, I’ve figured out the best way. And probably everybody else has, too, which is, of course, my way. Ha ha!

    I remember having a felt “pajama case” when I was 9 or 10 made up to look like a hot pink and bright orange cat’s face. It had a zipper across the back and you stored your little pj’s in there, and left it on your neatly-made bed, propped against the pillow, as a decoration. I used it for a while, but it was way too much trouble.

    As an adult, I figured out the RIGHT way to do things, which is to sleep in a t-shirt and the day’s underpants, and to hang the t-shirt — which is good for a week unless the air conditioning breaks down — on a hook inside the closet during the day.

    Who knew that people actually still wear pajamas! I thought they disappeared along with June Cleaver and lipstick at the breakfast table. Life is full of surprises.

  28. posted by beth on

    I wear a different t-shirt or tank top to bed each night. It usually becomes the next day’s shirt or undershirt – so I don’t have to store it during the day, or worry about how dirty it gets.

    The pants I tuck under my pillow, or else I hang them on one of my hooks inside the closet door.

    My hooks – and your S-hook – are also a good place to put semi-clean clothes when you go to bed. For example, a jacket or pair of jeans that aren’t dirty yet and you plan to wear tomorrow.

  29. posted by BigGUM on

    If you feel they are that distasteful, perhaps you should wear clean ones each night.
    Seriously, if you can’t stand the thought of them touching your clean clothes, how can you bear to wear them again yourself?
    I don’t get it.
    Not that the s-hook isn’t cool, but this post just struck me as a big, er, strange.
    (Oh, and around here we generally just toss them on the end of our bed.)

  30. posted by Sandra on

    I like to either drape my PJs across my hamper (if the hamper isn’t that full of stinky stuff) or lay them in a spot at the foot of my bed that’s mostly out of sight. I wear PJs multiple times but I also like to let them air out a bit rather than shoving them in my closet with my clean things or into some kind of container.

  31. posted by Confused on

    What are people doing in their PJ’s that’s making them sweat THAT much? o_O

    Under the pillow for me.

  32. posted by Kris on

    I used to sleep sans clothes until I had kids. No pjs = no hassle. Now I keep my tank top on a hook on the back of the bathroom idea. Same idea, differnt location.

  33. posted by Jen C on

    Hook in the closet for the PJs. Clean ones as needed throughout the week (usually only need 2 pairs, at most).

    I love Lulu’s idea! “OCD or neat” (alter to uncluttered for this purpose.) Where is that line?

  34. posted by Mazzycat on

    Where I live it is very temperate so ‘pjs’ are really just a sleep shirt for me, and boxers for my husband. We store them neatly beneath our pillows in the morning when the bed is made, and hoik em out as we get in at night.

    Washing? Well, I just throw the pjs in with the sheets and pillowcases on Sunday morning. That way when you go to bed that night, all miserable that the weekend is over, you have a lovely crisp clean bed and self to ease the pain.

    Smelliness? I find that if you bathe, this is not a problem πŸ™‚ Believe me, I have a very sensitive nose.

    And I agree with Sairey – clearly our own way must be the right way. Why else would we do it? And share it so eagerly with others (secretly hoping for converts)?

  35. posted by Stacy on

    Wow, I’ve never heard of using the inside of a pillow case. Here in Florida, no amount of air conditioning can alleviate the humidity so some amount of mustiness gets trapped on your pajamas in the night time. A hook is a great idea especially since it’s a bit more energy efficient to reuse pajamas instead of changing for each evening.

  36. posted by Stacy on

    Oh! What about gym clothes? Those have baffled me for ages. I drape them over my laundry basket, but it stinks up the entire space!

  37. posted by Carol on

    Straight into the washing machine for those gym clothes sounds like the best bet Stacy, or a quick hand wash in the laundry tub and then you just need to use the spin cycle.

  38. posted by Nikki on

    I shower at night and don’t really sweat, so the pajamas stay pretty clean for a few days. I fold them and put them at the foot of my bed. If I’m having company over that I don’t want to subject to used pajamas, they go in the hamper and I get a new set that night.

  39. posted by Brittany on

    something like this might be an elegant option: http://www.greenergrassdesign......illow.html

  40. posted by Maria on

    I have one dresser drawer for “sort-of” clean clothes. Anything goes in there that isn’t dryer-fresh but also could be worn again.

  41. posted by philipa on

    Question about those of you who say that you’re ‘good’ because you sleep naked. In the world of getting things dirty, how’s that good? Instead of sweating in your pj’s, you’re sweating all over your bedsheets.

  42. posted by spark on

    I’d like to add to my comment from earlier….

    Basically I have two ideas about clothes (pj’s or otherwise), they are either clean or dirty. If I will wear them again before washing, then I consider them CLEAN. So if I need to put them away, they go with the rest of the clean clothes, hanging in the closet or folded in a drawer.

    I don’t have a “almost clean” or “almost dirty” pile of clothes. If I am concerned about putting an article of clothing next to the “clean” ones, then this defines that article of clothing as dirty, and it goes in the hamper.

    I certainly don’t wash my pj’s each time they are worn, because they AREN’T dirty. So if they are clean enough for me to wear again, they go back in the drawer. This means they don’t stink and there’s no fear of getting other clothes stinky. If they did, they’d be dirty.

    This goes for all my clothes, including coats and jackets. If they are clean they get placed in the closet with other clothes, if not, to the dry cleaners they go.

    I basically don’t understand the idea of “kind of dirty” clothes. Clean or not clean. If something is dirty, of any degree, then it is by default NOT clean.

    The end. πŸ™‚

  43. posted by The Shopping Sherpa on

    I had no idea there was anywhere BUT under your pillow to put your PJs (oh – unless someone gave you one of those gross PJ holders that looks like a stuffed animal with a zip in the back.

    I’m with Pip on the issue of how often I clean them: The go into the wash on Fridays along with that week’s bedding, bath towels and kitchen towel. The only time I’d wash them earlier is if I dropped something down the front of them.

  44. posted by Carol on

    Clean or not clean can also come down to fibres being natural or synthetic (or a mix). If there are synthetic fibres involved they stink up much quicker than cotton pjs.

  45. posted by Karen on

    maybe it’s a British/Anglo thing, but everyone here where I live puts their pjs in their bed – just under the covers, not under the pillow, but just inside the sheets. IT’S REALLY IMPORTANT because it’s cold here half of the year, and the electric blanket warms up your pjs (preventing that first shock when you put them on) + your bed.

    but then again, i gave up pjs a few yeas ago. i loved the idea of never needing them again, loved the feel of my awesome 100% cotton sheets + anything FOR the storing of pjs would REALLY bug me uncluttering-wise. πŸ™‚

  46. posted by Stacy on

    Again, with the gym clothes, I run nearly every day and live on my own in an apartment without a washer and dryer. If I had a system in house, washing pjs and gym clothes daily may be an option (though a bit energy taxing) but going to a laundry mat every day is a severe time management issue. I’d love to hear about what other people do to conserve these toxic constants.

  47. posted by Baly on

    Seems to me the best way to unclutter in almost any situation is to stop obsessing about germs and sweat and generally being human.

  48. posted by Pixie on

    “I know that some people will likely comment that pajamas should be stored either under your pillow or in your pillow case. I just can’t do this. I think about how I sweat on my pajamas during the night and am not comfortable with then storing them next to where I put my face when I sleep. The reality may be that it is more hygienic than I am imagining, but I can’t do it. It gives me the willies”

    This is not about uncluttering anymore, it’s about OCD. πŸ™‚

  49. posted by Sithean on

    Pip, you’re just awesome. Your post made me laugh out loud. Re: PJs, sometimes it’s a T-Shirt and undies, but more often it’s nothing. If it squicks you out, wash when you need or want to. I think we each have that internal meter that lets you know when something can’t be worn again. Whatever you have to do to give yourself a restful night is OK w/ me.

  50. posted by Deanna on

    Stacy, I also live in an apartment void of the wonderful washer and dryer. My solution to the foul gym smell is to toss them at the bottom of my hamper. I have a wicker hamper that has a inner liner (which doubles as a bag to carry my laundry in! get to the laundromat and toss it all in together, including the bag, yay!) when a few layers, either a towel or jeans are on top of the gym clothes, they don’t smell. If you live alone, you can lay them over your shower curtain to air out if you want to *ick* wear them again.

  51. posted by Shay on

    I, too, opt for passing on pajamas altogether, except in the coldest weather. For PJs and gym clothes, I have a set of over-the-door hooks that keeps these “worn” items separate from my clean clothes. Items on the hooks get washed according to the “smell test”… I certainly don’t wash my gym clothes every single wear. Maybe that makes me a disgusting human being, but so long as it’s not still damp from the previous wear (ew!) then I don’t mind sweating in pre-sweated clothing.

  52. posted by Jackie on

    Can I ask a question? Do you pj wearing people wear underwear under your pjs at night? If not then surely this is like wearing the same pair of underwear every day for a week & I’m sure most of you wouldn’t consider that (or would you??) As you can tell I like clean jammies every night!

  53. posted by tay on

    this is the funniest thing i’ve read in a long time. I’m a germaphobe so I tend to put all worn clothes in the dirty clothes hamper as i enter the house. As for pj’s or rather a night gown I usually will wear more than once because I take it off right before I get in bed πŸ˜‰ So who cares if I wear it again…I won’t really sleep in it…and if I dose, I will get up and take it off during the night.

    As for the person who said something about sweating on your sheets if your not wearing pj’s..GIVE ME A BREAK! I hope the people worried about sweating on your sheets or wearing no underwear with your pj’s are that thoughtful when it comes to using a hotel wash cloth (which is the equivalent to using a pair of (washed-we hope)underwar that 100’s of people have used to wash your face and body!), sleeping in a hotel bed in their sheets, sitting on your bed with your street clothes on, not washing their hands AS SOON as they enter the house, etc!

  54. posted by tay on

    couple of incorrect spellings there..but you get the point

  55. posted by Jackie on

    Crikey Tay you are a germaphobe – I never get stressed about those kind of things! I just like to smell and feel clean!

  56. posted by Eva on

    Erin, I totally understood you from the get-go about the sweating. You don’t detect it, but you know it’s there. I have been laying my nightgown on top of my bed during the day, and sometimes I put it on an over-the-door hook in the bathroom, although the hook seems to stretch it out of shape.

    Similar to the bed clothes scenario, I have clothes I use for cleaning and ones for working out that I wear more than once. I have been hanging them on a rod in the laundry room in separate sections, but it looks cluttered. Any suggestions?

  57. posted by sm on

    Workout clothes that you wear more than once? What do you do for a workout, croquet? My workout clothes practically warrant a biohazard bin. But I digress.

    I think there is a good, non-OCD/germaphobic, reason not to put clothes that you’ve worn before in with clothes you haven’t–both dust mites and moths feed on human skin cells which are the kind of thing you probably wouldn’t notice were on your clothes. You’d never want to store (say, for a season) something you’ve worn without washing it. So keeping my “worn once” clothes out of my bureau helps me remember what’s what.

    I get the PJs thing, particularly since mine just ended up on the floor this morning and it hardly makes for an uncluttered space.

  58. posted by Mike on

    If you’re sweating while you are sleeping in PJs, then maybe you shouldn’t wear PJs or wear less clothes to bed or maybe lower the heat or sleep with less sheets & blankets or just sleep naked.

  59. posted by Sarah on

    I live in Japan and a lot of the unclutterer ideas don’t work for me because of the different construction… e.g. sliding doors (can’t use the hooks recommended above!), short closets (divided in half horizontally to store futons underneath). My alternate plan for PJ storage is (drumroll) a coat rack, which I also use for bags, coats and other stuff that doesn’t fit in the closet.

    Oh, and re: the PJs, I’m wondering why no one has suggested taking a shower/bath before bed, instead of in the morning? It keeps your PJs and sheets clean longer.

  60. posted by WilliamB on

    I wear underwear under my sleep clothes, therefore I feel comfortable wearing my sleep clothes multiple times before washing them.

    Stacy, I run also. Those shirts can really stink, can’t they? Especially in the summer, no matter how early you run. Here’s my suggestion: rinse them out in the sink. Your clothes will be wet but unsmelly.

    Sometimes I feel so nasty after a run that I get into the shower still wearing my gear.

  61. posted by Jami on

    I use a command strip hook behind the door of my en-suite bathroom! I would always rather hang my clothes if planning to rewear than fold. I feel like it lets the clothes breathe or at least gives room to fabric freshen them (like jeans from outside smells). I try to launder my clothes the least amount possible without being sweaty or stinky bc they hold up longer. love your blog.

    oh S hooks are also good on a coat hanger for kids!

  62. posted by laura ann on

    For hot sticky bedrooms turn up air cond. and run fan. I just toss my PJ’s on the bed after it’s made. Who the H goes into the bedroom anyway but us. Over the door hangers (Bed bath and Beyond) has some nice ones with 8 hooks four on top and four on bottom.

  63. posted by JohnCanon on

    I think it’s great to let your pyjamas air out between uses. A hook can be placed anywhere and takes up very little space.
    Also, each morning I fold down the top portion of the bed covers upon waking. Then, just before I leave, I make the bed. Letting things air out seems like a good thing.

  64. posted by Phoenix on

    Unclutter: PJ’s Nov 9-2018:
    Call me cheap-but I just fold them nice and put them under my pillow before I make my bed. Out of site, away from “clean clothes”, and no $$ to spend.

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