10 Things You Shouldn’t Wear on an Airplane

Airplane Passengers

To make air travel as comfortable and enjoyable as possible, avoid wearing these things on an airplane.

1. Tight Clothing

Tight Pants
Source: Pixabay

As far as your health is concerned, you’ll want to avoid wearing tight clothing, including socks that are too tight or leave marks on your skin, when flying. One reason is because our bodies naturally swell when we fly. And, if you’re wearing restrictive clothing, your blood won’t circulate properly. Which brings me to point number two: Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) — a serious medical condition that causes life-threatening blood clots — often occurs while flying. And, wearing restrictive clothing can increase your risk of developing DVT. Therefore, make sure you wear clothing with elastic. You might also want to consider wearing compression stockings to reduce your likelihood of developing DVT.

2. Uncomfortable Shoes

Source: Pixabay

It stands to reason that if it’s not a good idea to wear tight clothing on an airplane, it’s also not a good idea to wear shoes that are uncomfortable. Ladies, that means leave the pumps and stilettos at home — or at least inside your luggage until you get to where you’re going.

But, here’s something else you need to keep in mind: “High heels can slow you down and even puncture the slide in case of an evacuation,” Taylor Garland, strategic public relations coordinator for the Association of Flight Attendants, told Reader’s Digest.

3. Complicated Shoes

Flip Flops
Source: Pixabay

As we just mentioned, high heels can slow you down when you and/or other passengers are in a rush. The same thing goes for clunky boots… and slides, and flip flops, and open-toed sandals. Not only will these types of shoes slow you down, they can trip you up when you’re trying to exit the plane. And, if the plane happens to crash, these types of shoes can get caught on wreckage or debris.

Here’s another thing to keep in mind: Shoes with lots of straps and laces take longer to remove in the security line, which means you’re not only slowing down the process for yourself but for others in line behind you.

TIP: Wear sneakers or slip-on loafers instead.

4. Contact Lenses

Contact Lenses
Source: Wikimedia Commons By איתן טל [CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)]

Airplane cabins have low humidity — about 10 to 20 percent humidity to be exact, although it’s sometimes as low as 1 percent. And, as you know, dry eyes and contact lenses are not a good combination. Airplanes can be uncomfortable at times, and the last thing you want to do is add to that discomfort by wearing contacts in a dry cabin.

TIP: Wear your eyeglasses for the duration of the flight. Once you’ve landed and settled in your hotel room or wherever you’re going, you can put in your contacts.

5. Perfume (or Cologne)

Source: Pixabay

We know you love smelling good. And, anyone sitting near you will appreciate the fact that you take pride in your hygiene. But, when in an enclosed space such as an airplane, you might want to limit yourself to just soap and deodorant. That’s because some people are allergic to certain fragrances. Also, some people just may find your favorite fragrance offensive. Just because you think it smells good doesn’t mean others will. So, be respectful of your fellow passengers and skip the perfume/cologne until your flight has landed.

6. Jewelry

Source: Pexels

Many of us feel naked without our jewelry. But when it comes to air travel, it’s best to put your jewelry in your carry-on bag. The reason being is that all that metal will set off the metal detectors. So, you’ll have to remove all of it before going through — slowing you (and others) down in the process.

Also, beware of shoes with large metal adornments or studs. They will set off the metal detectors as well. So will high heels since they have nails in the heels.

TIP: Be careful with unique-looking jewelry. According to an article published by Reader’s Digest, “any jewelry shaped like a potential weapon also raises red flags.”

7. Skimpy Clothing

Skimpy Clothing
Source: Pixabay

Do yourself and your fellow passengers (especially the kiddies) a favor and don’t wear low-cut shirts, short shorts, miniskirts, or anything revealing for that matter. Not only will you offend some folks, but you’ll probably freeze since airports and airplanes tend to be very cold.

Not only that, but if there were some emergency and you needed to use the evacuation slide, you’d most likely end up burning your bare skin on that slide.

Lastly, if you’re flying on an employee pass, you may be required to follow the company’s dress code. If not, you may be prevented from even boarding the plane — which is what happened a couple of years ago to some female employees who were wearing leggings when trying to board a plane. You may think there’s nothing wrong with wearing leggings on a plane, but remember, they give people an up-close, personal view of your bottom. And, if you’re reaching into the overhead storage compartment, they can give others an up-close, personal view of your crotch.

8. Bulky Jackets

Bulky Jacket
Source: Pixabay

As we just stated, airports and planes can be very cold. But, instead of bringing a big, bulky, oversized, space-hogging coat on the plane with you, dress in layers instead and remove some of them if you happen to get a little too warm. Or, you can bring a thick or lightweight cashmere or wool shawl or scarf along with you. It can double as a blanket when it gets chilly. Something else you could bring along with you is an all-season jacket that’s warm enough for the winter months yet not too heavy for crisp fall weather or breezy summer nights.

9. Offensive Clothing

Nazi T Shirt
Source: Wikimedia Commons By Helenfhall [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)]

Did you know that you can get removed from a plane for wearing offensive clothing? Yep, it’s true. And, it’s happened before. According to an article published by AirfareWatchdog.com, passengers have been removed from airplanes for wearing t-shirts with expletives and certain political messages.

But, that’s not all. Even your religious attire can be seen as offensive to some people. Because of this, Town & Country Magazine suggests doing some research regarding cultural norms before your next flight. That way you won’t offend anyone in the country in which you’re visiting.

10. Fabrics That Don’t Breathe

Source: Pixabay

There are three reasons why you should avoid nylon, polyester, leatherette, rubber raincoats, waterproof jackets, and other fabrics that don’t breathe. First, they hold sweat on your skin when it’s hot, making you feel even hotter. Plus, these types of fabrics prevent air circulation. Third, these synthetic fibers can be highly flammable. If there were a post-crash fire, the high heat from the flames would melt these synthetic fabrics against your body, causing your skin to blister and burn.

TIP: Wear natural fabrics (cotton, silk, wool, linen) or moisture-wicking activewear instead.


Now that you know what you shouldn’t wear on an airplane, learn what things you shouldn’t do at the airport.

Need additional tips? Check out these ten hacks that will make air travel more enjoyable.

Thank for reading!