A man has revealed the lengths he went to to protest his company’s dress code after his manager complained about women wearing yoga pants to work.
The 31-year-old man, who goes by the username u/GingerlyForged on Reddit, reflected on the series of events in a recent post to the subreddit r/MaliciousCompliance, where he revealed that he also began wearing yoga pants in solidarity with his coworkers.
In the post, the man, who described himself as “a bit of a clown but very good at following rules while doing so,” recalled how he’d been working at a “popular convenience store” when a new manager was appointed, who he said seemed eager to “flex her authority”.
According to the OP [original poster], in an effort to prove her authority, the manager began to take issue with the way employees were dressing, with the man revealing that his then-boss had “posted the uniform portion of the handbook in the breakroom and started complaining about people’s attire”.
However, he said the manager’s biggest issue was with female employees wearing yoga pants. The complaints from the manager prompted the man to read through the dress code outlined in the handbook, which he said stated that yoga pants were allowed as long as the ankles flared.
According to the individual, he also realised that there was “no gender designation for these articles,” which he said inspired him to purchase his own yoga pants to wear to work in protest of the treatment of his coworkers.
“Cue malicious compliance, I and a friend went to Walmart after work and bought a couple pairs of flared yoga pants,” he recalled, adding that he then began wearing them “almost every day” he worked, and “especially” if his manager was working.
The outfit reportedly “infuriated” the man’s manager, who he said he often heard protesting his pants. “I would regularly hear her protests and even saw her go to the AGM and GM,” he wrote. “Their response was always: ‘I can’t say anything, he’s in dress code.’”
According to the man, after a month, his manager eventually requested a transfer.
Speaking to BoredPanda about his protest, the man reflected on the importance of using one’s privilege to help others. “Just because an issue doesn’t affect you doesn’t mean you can’t participate in fighting it,” he said.
As for how his coworkers felt about his fashion choice, the OP told BoredPanda that “they loved it” and asked that he wear the pants long after the manager left, a request he said he “occasionally obliged”.
On Reddit, where the post has been upvoted more than 34,000 times since it was shared on Monday, users have applauded the man for his handling of the situation.
“Not only were you MC [maliciously compliant] with the boss, but you were protecting your coworkers, all with one fashion faux pas. Good for you,” one person jokingly commented.
Another user said: “The hero we need,” to which the man replied: “Not a hero, just a man in really tight pants.”
“You’re the real MVP and I bet you looked fabulous,” someone else said.
Others praised the story as being the perfect example of “malicious compliance,” with one person describing it as “completely malicious and yet, not cruel”. “My favourite kind,” they added.
In response to another user, who said they always enjoy stories of men “MCing dress codes,” OP reiterated the importance of using privilege to help others. “Sometimes it’s up to us to show management how asinine their rules are,” he wrote. “Let women work in comfort.”
In September 2021, two high school students tested their theory that their school dress code was “sexist” by wearing similar outfits. The teenagers, who documented the experiment on TikTok, seemingly proved their hypothesis after teachers only disciplined the female student for breaking dress code.