If you’ve ever been intimidated to walk into a luxury boutique or department store—in case you encounter a sales associate as mean as Patsy Stone:

Patsy Stone, courtesy of WENN

Or those jerks on Rodeo Drive in Pretty Woman:

Pretty Woman, courtesy of AP

Well, here’s a tip: You’ll get the best service of your life in a high-end store by wearing sweatpants. For real.

Celebrty in sweatpants, Getty Images

“It’s been found that under certain conditions, non-conforming behaviors, such as not following the expected dress code or the appropriate professional conduct in a given context, can signal higher status,” Harvard Business School Associate Professor Francesca Gino wrote in a study quoted by The Observer.

“In our research, shop assistants working in boutiques luxury brands in Milan assigned greater status to the woman wearing gym clothes and a jean jacket rather than to the woman properly dressed,” Gino says. “When the deviant behavior appears to be deliberate, it can lead to higher status inferences rather than lower ones.”

Guess it makes sense that the less you appear to care, the more important you are.

What do you think about this Harvard Business School study? Have you ever experienced better treatment in stores because you were dressed down?