How to Dress Like a Tomboy

If you're a girl who'd rather keep it simple than wearing hot pinks and gobs of makeup, you might want to consider trying out the tomboy look. This article details the ins-and-outs of the clothes, shoes, and accessories that make up the tomboy look.



  1. Take advantage of the boys section. If you want to dress like a tomboy, you’ll at least need to check out the source. Head to the boys section of your favorite stores and peruse the racks. Look for graphic tees and distressed shirts. More likely than not, the clothes will be a bit baggy on you but that’s not a bad thing. Pick out things you like and try them on. If they are absolutely humongous, you can always try altering them.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%201%20Version%203.jpg
    • Other great stores that have unisex options include Reebok, Hot Topic, and Tillys. Look for clothes that can be worn by both girls and guys.
  2. Pick out some t-shirts. Loose, comfortable t-shirts are one of the most basic aspects of tomboy style. Cotton shirts in boyish colors (forest green, navy, grey, black, brown, maroon, etc.) are always great to have on hand--and go with pretty much every outfit.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%202%20Version%203.jpg
    • You should also buy some stylized tees. Shirts with band names, skater themes, and skulls (among other styles) are all considered tomboyish clothes. You can also look for shirts with sarcastic or funny images or phrases on them.
  3. Opt for pants rather than skirts. While you don’t have to ditch skirts entirely, tomboys are pretty much defined by not wearing skirts or dresses. Instead, wear cool, comfortable pants that have a boyish look. Stores like Gap sell ‘Boyfriend’ pants that are cut like boys’ pants but are fitted for a girl’s body. Skinny skater pants, distressed or boot-cut jeans, and athletic pants are all good options for a girl wanting to dress like a tomboy. Black, opaque leggings are also great tomboy apparel.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%203%20Version%203.jpg
    • If you do have to wear a skirt for whatever reason, pair it with some leggings, some Converse, and a t-shirt with your favorite band’s logo. These additions will play down the girliness of the skirt.
  4. Keep shorts in mind when its hot. Instead of tiny Daisy Duke shorts, try rocking some loose distressed jean shorts or longer shorts that go to just above your knees. Shorts that are made of a stretchier or more athletic material (like board shorts) are great for running around.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%204%20Version%203.jpg
  5. Play up the plaid. Plaid is a unisex fabric that is a great addition to most outfits. It is an awesome material because it can be worn as a shirt or as a light-weight jacket. Throw on a pair of jeans, a plain cotton shirt, your favorite plaid long-sleeve button-up and you’re good to go.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%205%20Version%203.jpg
  6. Rock a hoodie. Hoodies are a great tomboy staple. Zip-up hoodies and regular sweatshirts are perfect for tomboys in a colder climate. Get a plain hoodie in a dark color (black goes with everything) and you will soon realize you wouldn’t be able to live without it. When you heat up, tie your hoodie around your waist for a nonchalant, boyish look.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%206%20Version%203.jpg
    • You should also try on a cardigan or two. Schoolboy cardigans are also a great cold-weather item. Pair a cardigan with low-slung or boyfriend jeans for a cute tomboy look.
  7. Wear sporty clothes. If jeans aren’t your things, wear sports pants and t-shirts for the easiest outfit to run around in. Better yet, wear sports clothes that represent your favorite teams. Tomboys can keep up with guys on the sports field. Why not dress the part too?Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%207%20Version%203.jpg
    • Get a sweatshirt with the logo of your favorite sports team for cold days.
  8. Wear what makes you feel comfortable. While this section of the article has listed different ways you can dress like a tomboy, being a tomboy ultimately means having the confidence to wear what you want and feel comfortable in without feeling like a slob or unkempt. If you consider yourself a tomboy but feel like wearing a dress, do it. The most important thing is that you remember to be yourself.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%208%20Version%203.jpg


  1. Buy some athletic shoes. Part of being a tomboy is being able to run around with ease. That means high heels are out. Instead, pick up some comfortable, cool sneakers. A good rule of thumb when buying shoes is to keep in mind that if you can’t run in them, they’re probably not the best tomboy shoes.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%209%20Version%202.jpg
    • Brands that make cool sneakers include DC, Vans, Nike, Adidas, Converse, Etnies, Airwalk and Supras, among other brands.
  2. Trade in your flats for some cool slip-ons. In particular, printed slips-on are great. Brands like Vans and Toms, among many others, have great slip-ons that have cool designs, are comfortable, and can still be worn to run around in.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%2010%20Version%202.jpg
    • Look for slips-on with checkers, skulls, funky animal designs, band logos, tribal art, etc.
  3. Try out some high-top sneakers. One of the most classic tomboy looks is a pair of converse sneakers. They come in a variety of colors and heights from low-cut to high-top.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%2011%20Version%202.jpg
    • To add some extra spunk to your shoes, replace the normal white laces with some funky shoelaces. You can buy these at your local novelty stores.

Accessories and Hairstyle

  1. Wear hats. Baseball caps are generally the best way to go to top off your tomboy look. Not only can they show off your favorite team, they are also super functional-they keep sun, rain, dirt, and hair out of your eyes. Unless, of course, you rock a backwards baseball cap. You can also rock other types of hats like fedoras or beanies.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%2012%20Version%202.jpg
  2. Avoid gaudy jewelry. In fact, it’s generally just best to avoid jewelry, particularly if you play sports. If you have your ears pierced, wear studs or tiny hoops rather than dangly earrings (which are generally associated with a girlier look.) For necklaces, choose a simple object like a shell or a coin threaded on a leather string. These can be tucked under shirts when running around and are pretty unisex in nature.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%2013%20Version%202.jpg
    • If you like wearing bracelets, avoid sparkly ones. Instead, go for leather bands or plastic bands that can be bought at novelty stores like Hot Topic.
  3. Wear your hair up. Ponytails and half-ponies are the way to go when running around. French braids are also a great way to keep your hair out of your face when playing a sport. Wearing your hair up will allow you to sprint off at a moment’s notice without having to worry about getting hair in your eyes.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%2014%20Version%202.jpg
  4. Cut your hair short. Of course, this is only if you want to (and if your parents will let you.) Having short hair is good for playing sports--wear a headband to keep any bangs or fly-away strands out of your eyes.Dress%20Like%20a%20Tomboy%20Step%2015%20Version%202.jpg


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