So…I don’t totally agree with Vogue on this one…
I confess, I do own quite a few pairs of Lululemon leggings, as well as a few of their jackets. But the truth therein is that my parents gave me a generous gift to the store, and my hunnie very generously tracked down a jacket for me. I never really shopped there prior, despite that I always loved their lines, cuts, fabrics and styling. The key reason? I go to the gym and I kick my ass! My clothes get beat up like no one’s business, and it’s more about the activities than wearing a perfect match.
Quality does make a difference, absolutely – as an athlete, I keep fabrications in mind because I NEED the breathability, moisture-wicking, and stay-cool technology.
The truth of it is, you can buy great pieces for a good deal less…that don’t fall apart…and that look just as adorable.
Lulu, just one example, is one of those brands that I adore – I love nearly everything in the store! But I also know many folks who can’t really afford their products…and they aren’t alone. The pricing is definitely higher-end, “bridge” type – it’s more haute-fitness than not, and that’s okay. But when you think about the heavy lifting (literally) and the sweat-soaking going on…you may not feel comfortable, or able, to drop $130 for a pair of leggings that Danskin has for $50 or less!
I grew up as a dancer so I have drawers filled to the brim with Danskin, Capezio, Bloch, Body Wrappers, DanZworld, Dance America and Chrisanne. The Ballroom brands can also get a little pricey, but the former few really aren’t. Not to mention, these days you have ton more brands offering fashion-forward styles at a lower price point, including H&M, Forever 21, Champion… Victoria’s Secret has some cute things nowadays as well, though, if you are fuller figured, keep in mind you may have a little trouble finding your size – many of their sportsbras aren’t offered in the size I need, and that does, admittedly, put me off a bit. Support is also way more important to me than the look of the thing – I’d rather not be marching around in a bikini top anyway!
Vogue, over here, however, is touting adorable but pricier brands such as Sweaty Betty, along with sportsbras that are 85 pounds (seriously?!)…
And leggings that cost more than some Lulu’s (kind of alarming for workout gear…!)
I’m not saying they aren’t adorable. They are. But maybe Vogue (wrongly) assumes that everyone reading their publication(s) are okay to drop a relatively large sum on fitness apparel, or that they care so much more about the fashion aspect than the part about flying under the radar, lifting weights, and giving the treadmill a good solid run…?
I don’t know, perhaps they feel they give showcase items people should to aspire to have, but I just feel it’s a bit over the top and pushy – there, I said it! I was in Fashion for many moons – we do look to magazines like Vogue and Elle and Bazaar to feature the luxurious, the high end, even the absurd… But when you are sharing an article about fitness, add a few things that are achievable…? I’d be more interested to read about new, more affordable brands myself, and I daresay it would have a much larger appeal (and advertising factor!)
Oh wait, they did include these Tron-inspired socks from H&M for only 7.99 Pounds a two-pair. (Still, in my opinion, heftier than the performance wear you can get at a sports store, but better than the 85 pound bra…)
I mean, I get it when it comes to your footwear, or your lifting gloves – those are tools that you rely on to assist with your performance. But apparel (unless you are swimming in Olympic trials and you need the aerodynamic edge) needn’t be as much as a big deal if you can’t afford for it to be.
You don’t HAVE to spend a fortune to feel great at the gym. Fashion doesn’t matter much to me personally when I’m there – I’m usually a shade of pink, purple, or red, and sweating so much I’m just in sweats and a sportsbra myself… BUT, I certainly understand that everyone is different and some folks like to put their best foot forward when they come in. In that case, you do have plenty of options that won’t break the bank if you simply don’t have the extra to spend there. Brands are really branching out, challenging their own fashion parameters – it’s really cool to see, and wonderful when you look at your receipt after leaving the store! 😉