Hooded sweats, also commonly referred to as hoodies, are sweatshirts with a hood. Hooded sweats can be a pullover or can have a zipper front. Their only requisite is the hood. These sweats have become increasingly popular and range from the most casual pieces to those that are dressier.
The hood most often features a drawstring so that the hood can be drawn tightly around the face of the wearer or worn loosely, depending on personal choice. These drawstrings range from being very thick and coiled at the end so as to prevent the string from being lost within the hood to those strings that are thin and made of a durable nylon cord. Some strings are made of a braided silk material and usually come as part of a high-fashion design.
Most, although not all, hooded sweats will have a front pocket. Whether the hooded sweats zip up or pull over, the front pocket design is popular. If the hoodie is a pullover, most often the pocket will be a uni-pocket, which means that it is one pocket that can be reached from either side. Sometimes the pockets on hooded sweats will have a zipper. Zippers are more common in those hooded sweats with separate pockets than with those with a uni-pocket. A zipper is added most commonly to a uni-pocket, not at either side, but in the center at the top.
Hooded sweats can come with a matching pair of sweat pants. These sweats are most often made of the same material and of the same color. There are some sets that contain a contrasting colored top and bottom.
Hooded sweatshirts find their beginnings in the Middle Ages, when garments closely resembling them were worn by monks for both warmth and to lend a stylized look to their order's required garb. Hip hop design largely defined the hoodie in the late 20th and early 21st century, making it no longer a garment worn by workers for warmth or clerics, but instead by those desiring to make a fashion statement. Hooded sweats are now featured in designs for infants, and they continue to be popular choices for colleges and universities to display their insignia and to be sold as fan wear for sports teams.