How Are Pullovers, Sweatshirts & Hoodies Different?

When it comes to winter outerwear, we often get quite muddled up about what goes with what. So many of us reach out for a pullover or a frontline hoodie without giving a second thought about styling it right. 

It goes without saying that what goes with a sweatshirt may not go with a hoodie and vice versa, especially in women’s fashion. It is crucial to understand the difference between sweatshirts, hoodies, and pullovers, especially if your style relies on fast-casual and if your workplace has a semi-formal or relaxed dress code.

For instance, an oversized pullover can look amazing with clingy bottoms or something that accents your frame; whereas, a hoodie may need something rather different, depending on its silhouette and fall. You can wear a sweatshirt with a skirt any day, but styling a hoodie with a skirt can be really tricky. So put all your winter wardrobe anxieties to rest, we explain the major differences between a pullover, a sweatshirt, and a hoodie.


What is a hoodie?

A hoodie is a hooded sweatshirt and is the go-to winter option for people across all age demographics. A hoodie is essentially an easy jacket which features a head-cover. Interestingly, the style has its roots in Medieval Europe when monks would wear flowy, hooded robes to cover their body and their head. 

The reason why the hoodie has sustained and thrived as a mass-favorite is that it is so convenient and practical, especially if you don’t like wearing too many items. A hoodie can replace your t-shirt, your vest and of course, your winter headgear, it’s a complete package. Also, a hoodie is very diverse in its make, as it can come in a pullover format, or it can come with a front zipper, or even as a sleeveless gilet.

While the hoodie never really went away from pop culture, it was in the 1990s that it found a huge relevance with the younger crowd, and even found a place in high fashion. It easily translates a sense of relaxed, low-key dressing, and it constantly was seen on American television, films, music videos. In fact, even today, brands like Versace, Dolce & Gabbana and Burberry feature hoodies as part of their Haute runway line-up. The 90’s aesthetic of dressing down was completely in sync with the hoodie and made way for the hoodie to be accepted as fast fashion’s biggest weapon. 


What is a sweatshirt?

A sweatshirt is a typically loose, warm shirt, most often found with long sleeves; while a sweater is knitted like a jumper and is meant to envelop you, the sweatshirt is made of cotton or some specific blends. 

A sweatshirt is also much more utilitarian and versatile than a sweater or a jacket, mainly because a sweatshirt can accommodate many kinds of detailing, from collars to front buttons, to cropped cut and can be styled in many different ways. 

The reason sweatshirts are so popular with women all across the world is because they are the definition of easy casuals; you can literally throw it on and team it with a pair of denim, and wear it to work, to brunch or even to go clubbing.

With the rise of athleisure and the global attention on street style fashion, the sweatshirt has gone through a major evolution, as it carved out a niche in off-duty fashion. Supermodels like Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner, etc trust the good ol’ sweatshirt immensely, as their sense of casual style depends a lot on athleisure-driven ensembles, which can also be worn as loungewear. Besides the regular throw-on format, the half-zip sweatshirt has also become really popular as it adds a quirky edge to your wardrobe.

 You’ll notice that sweatshirts today have also added a glammed up detailing featuring adventurous hemlines, fun silhouettes and are often made to cater to your post-work socializing needs as you can easily style them like a statement party wear. 


What is a pullover?

A pullover is typically apparel that you wear by pulling it over your head. And though it’s one of the most widely-used winter wardrobe staples, the pullover is quite difficult to style. It is usually heavier and roomier than a sweatshirt. 

This means you always have to be careful about what you team it up with. If you are wearing a pullover sweater, you will need to pair it with some interesting denim or semi-formal trousers, or even a relaxed A-line skirt.

One of the most popular kinds of pullover is the hooded one as it resembles a hoodie, but it is usually much cozier and snug. Pullovers usually have an androgynous quality about them, which means that they can usually be worn by both men and women effortlessly. 


How to style sweatshirt, hoodie, and pullover differently?

It is important to understand the difference between the different vibes which a pullover, a sweatshirt, and a hoodie bring. A sweatshirt is very multi-faceted and can get into any sartorial situation. 

You can wear it with some dressy bottoms for a work event, or under a blazer. Alternatively, you can wear it with some easy denim, or even some sweatpants. A hoodie is usually casual apparel, but you can skip the usual styling hacks and try wearing it with a dress or even a formal shirt. Zipped hoodies, for instance, can be worn with a lot of items. 

Hoodies are also very durable so they make for an amazing addition in your travel wardrobe. A pullover is decidedly dressier than a hoodie or a sweatshirt and you can use that to your advantage; wear a fun pullover on your next casual Friday at the workplace. Women can wear it a formal skirt or well-fitted trousers and even accessorize with it to switch the mood of the wardrobe. If you’re looking to wear a pullover as athleisure apparel, try going for a lighter, stretchable material like French terry cotton.

Just Sweatshirts has a fantastic line of 100% cotton hoodies, sweatshirts, and pullovers for men and women. We design our warm outerwear in all kinds of colors and styles to suit your mood and activity.

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