Over the weekend, Harry Styles was photographed at his close friend and agent Jeff Azoff’s wedding, swathed in a plush white San Ysidro Ranch-branded bathrobe. The moment I laid eyes on the scene, I knew exactly what I was looking at: A Great Moment in Robe History™.
The bathrobe, especially on men, has long been unfairly maligned as a symbol of laziness and slovenliness. Of giving up. But as Styles—only the most stylish man in the world—shows us, the robe can also be luxurious, an expression of easy confidence, and the ultimate power move.
Here, we celebrate 22 significant robes for their many contributions to society. They are ranked in rough order of “would absolutely wear it on the couch all day” to “mankind’s most majestic achievements in terry cloth and silk.” Some are associated with onscreen characters, others occurred in the wild, all of them are magnificent. Behold, the greatest robes of all time.
22. Paul Newman as Brick Pollitt in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
Classic film, classic guy, classic robe.
21. Jack Nicholson as Jack Torrance in The Shining
All work and no robes makes Jack a dull boy.
20. Elton John
Saturday night's alright for fighting … but every morning’s alright for a robe.
19. Will Ferrell as Ron Burgundy in Anchorman
I love robe.
18. John Malkovich as Osborne Cox in Burn After Reading
As Malkovichian as a robe gets: opulent, distinguished, and slightly menacing.
17. Wesley Snipes as Nino Brown in New Jack City
More like Great Robe City (I’m sorry).
16. Jon Hamm as Don Draper in Mad Men
And here's me enjoying this robe.
15. Offset at the 2014 BET Awards
These hyper-luxurious Versaces are what your ratty bathrobe dreams of becoming one day.
14. Cardi B at Bonnaroo 2019
Offset’s better half also rocked the onstage robe, after her original catsuit ripped in two. (A robe will never betray you like that.)
13. Sean Connery as James Bond in Dr. No
Forget the suits and martinis: far too little attention is paid to 007’s extensive, always-suave robe appearances throughout the franchise.
12. Sean Connery as James Bond in Goldfinger
Not technically a robe, but a stroke of terry cloth genius all the same.
11. Bill Murray in Lost in Translation
A paragon of the lonely hotel room robe.
10. Prince George meeting Barack Obama
Crucial example of robe-based international diplomacy.
9. Brad Pitt in Fight Club
The first rule about this robe is you always talk about this robe.
Leave it to Rihanna to invent the street style bathrobe.
7. Robert De Niro as Ace Rothstein in Casino
Martin Scorsese would go on to forge a long and beautiful history of putting De Niro in pajamas, but his greatest hit has to be the silky, flamingo-pink Casino number.
6. Harry Styles’s Wedding Officiant Robe
5. Alfred Molina as Rahad Jackson in Boogie Nights
A shimmery and psychotic(ally good) scene-stealing robe.
4. Nicolas Cage as Ronny Cammerari in Moonstruck
Johnny stole his hand, Johnny stole his bride, but Johnny didn’t steal his robe!!!
3. Jeff Bridges as The Dude in The Big Lebowski
The robe abides.
2. Muhammad Ali’s Classic Pre-Fight Robe
A robe fit for The Greatest.
1. James Gandolfini as Tony Soprano in The Sopranos
Tony’s robe is more than just a robe: it’s an outward expression of his inner despondency and a salient symbol of the diminished role of the modern man. It’s the most enduring image of the most enduring man on television. May we all collect the newspaper in such era-defining style.
Originally Appeared on GQ