Cinch the waist, cover it in sequins, beads, or rhinestones and then slap a logo on it. Isn’t that how most sports apparel for female fans are made? A quick search for women's game day gear results in thousands of hits, plenty of which are sexist and quite honestly, offensive. It’s no secret the female consumers dominate the marketplace, so athletic merchandise retailers design with women in mind, but can a girl just get a plain jersey made in her size or no?
I attended a Division I university where football reigned supreme (Hook 'em!) and I ended up buying a legit men's jersey, despite the pink and studded offerings that were available to me. Sure, there were plenty of girls who wore frilly, lacy tops, burnt orange skirts, and dresses with cowboy boots to the game, but the idea of standing (excuse me, baking) in the Texan sun for four hours in anything but shorts, my jersey, or a t-shirt was literally the worst. Either way, what I wore didn't define my amount of school pride and support for the sports teams, nor should it have to.
Whatever your motivation might be to root for your sports team (pee-wee, collegiate or professional) you’ve got quite the selection of t-shirts, dresses, jewelry, shoes and accessories to show your team spirit. But maybe steer clear from the following items because, well, they're just kind of the worst.
1. The Baby Cheerleading Outfit
As someone who grew up in Dallas and hate-watched Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team, I’m familiar with Jerry Jones’ marketing brilliance and the machine behind Dallas Cowboys merchandise. If you had aspirations to audition to be a DCC but didn’t make the cut, no need to worry. You can start training your baby girl with her very own mini-version of the iconic uniform (Dallas Cowboys Authentic Cheerleader Set, $29.95, BabyFans.com).
2. The Crystal-Encrusted Pump
If Kim Kardashian didn’t sport these during her Kris Humphries phase, I think it’s safe to say it’s a hard pass. Unless you’re Beyonce, Rihanna or another courtside starlet who’s plugging these stilettos as a favor, stick to kicks you can actually enjoy the game in, like these espadrilles (Brooklyn Nets Ladies Crystal Pumps, $249.95, LadyFanatics.com).
3. The Pink Sequined Purse
I love pink. Pink is my power color. But unless you’re Elle Woods or over the age of, I don’t know, TWELVE, then you shouldn’t be toting your game day essentials in this ultra-girly, Limited Too-esque handbag. Or maybe it’s a brilliant anti-theft tactic? (Kentucky Wildcats Ladies Sequin Repro Handbag in Pink, $23.95, UKTeamShop.com).
4. The Reflective Bomber Jacket
Athleisure, sports luxe, sporty chic — whatever you want to call it, wearing sweatpants in public is a fashion movement, ladies. For attending a sports event, it makes perfect sense. Yet this quilted varsity bomber jacket highly resembles a fire retardant blanket (Women's Chicago Bears Silver Extra Pointed Quilted Jacket, $109.95, LadyFanatics.com).
5. The Lace Garter
For the bride-to-be who’s also a die-hard fan, this exists. And when your man tosses it to all the single dudes at your wedding reception, they will be all over this like girls fighting over that bouquet (Green Bay Packers Lace Garter, $11.95, LadyFanatics.com).
6. The Furry Winter Boots
I’m still searching for the male equivalent for these faux fur-lined boots, but all I can come up with is UGG for men feat. Tom Brady (Purdue Boilermakers Women’s Knit Bootie, $19.99, PurdueOfficialStore.com)
7. The Sequined Bikini Top
The Ducks are known for having kick-ass sports gear. (Full disclosure, half of the reason why I follow college football is specifically for Oregon's field fashion). Asking for a friend: Do sequins get hot under long periods of sun exposure? (Miss Fanatic Oregon Ducks Ladies Sequin Triangle Bikini Top, $28.99, Shop.GoDucks.com)
8. The Quintessential Pink Jersey
Gals, do yourself a favor and buy a regular (men’s) jersey. Remember Beyonce’s steamy Instagram post in a Carter jersey? Guys DIG that (Miami Dolphins Ladies Draft Me VI Fashion T-Shirt, $49.95, LadyFanatics.com).
9. The Lacy Thong
When it comes to undergarments, I fall into the school of thought who favors functionality and comfort over visual aesthetics. Not so sure how these would hold up under Spanx and such, but if your S.O. is a sports super fan (think Jimmy Fallon in Fever Pitch), this just might do it. But ask yourself: Is it really worth it/necessary? (Women's Green Oakland Athletics Cameo Burnout Thong, $15.95, LadyFanatics.com).