I’m not the first person to have floated this theory, but I’m certainly resolute in my belief: fun activewear makes you more inclined to go to the gym. My theory is rooted in some very unscientific evidence, namely that when I did the leggings-and-retired-from-regular-duty top to work out, I worked out less, and now that I’ve invested in some Nike, I’m a regular. Is it foolproof science? Nope, but the receptionist at my gym knows me by name yo, ergo, QED.
I am also pumped for the insanely sexy selection of shit on offer to go sweat in. I am less pumped for the insane accompanying price tags, but there’s an ongoing battle between me and me about how I can actually get away with wearing a lot of it even when not working out, so the me that’s inclined to just get it all is winning. With athleisure becoming acceptable wear almost everywhere, the cost-per-wear on these things suddenly became really compelling.
In general, my MO when it comes to workout gear is all-black-everything, although you’ll find some distinctly not-black highlights in the list below. Here’s a list of the online retailers with the sexiest gear to sweat in, all of whom deliver to India. Customs extra? Possibly. I did forewarn with “insane accompanying price tags”, you’ll remember.
Good for: Yoga, duh.
As its name implies, Alo was created by and for yogis, but their line is as at home on the streets as it is in the studio. It is also the most Instagrammed of all the yoga lines (just have a look at the #aloyoga hashtag on Instagram, where you’ll find all the biggie yoga instructors through to slebs Gigi Hadid and Kendall Jenner doing yoga or just schlepping about in their Alo). Their mens’ section is a little more limited, but there’s lots of lovely grayscale goodness in there. Women, Their leggings and tanks are the thing, and If you’re getting only one thing from them, make it the two-tone Goddess leggings.
Currently eyeing: The stability 2-in-1 pant for men, the high-waist Moto legging, the Interlace legging in rich navy, and this glossy black Warrior mat.
ASOS Activewear edit
Good for: Budget style seekers
The Activewear section on the ASOS site (for both men and women) houses Nike and Adidas and all the bigwigs, at their standard prices, but there’s also a slew of other, less well-known brands who do leggings, sports bras and tanks that’ll work as well for the street as they will for yoga and studio classes as well as running and strength training. Quality varies, so it’s worth doing a little review-checking, and I always watch the videos, which will show you what the material’s really like. If it’s unbelievably cheap, there’s probably a reason.
Currently eyeing: These South Beach bralettes for yoga, this mesh body for barre (or just the bar), and this Y.A.S. leaf-print bra because it is cute-as.
Good for: Style-led Activewear
Bandier’s got all the bigwigs in their stable, from Nike and Reebok to fashion-forward brands like Michi and P.E. Nation. You’ll find lots of technical, well-cut seamless tanks, zip-up hoodies, incredible leggings, trainers, and other workout accessories. Can run fairly expensive but a very fun splurge and I’m making eyes at their structured, color-blocked leggings as well as a pair from Ultracor that’s festooned with sparkly stars.
Currently eyeing: These glossy Koral leggings, this pair from P.E.Nation, and all their shoes.
Good for: Showing off your booty
Everytime I’ve looked at someone and thought, ‘hey those are nice leggings’, they’ve been Lululemon. Fact. Expensive? Er, yes. But even the simplest of their black tights have little bits of detailing that make them just that little bit more flattering than everybody else’s. They’ve got tights and bras and mats and tops in a dazzling array of fits, fabrics, and lengths, and enough cutaway tanks and strappy bras to add a little dazzle to any outfit, whether its intended for class or the club. They might’ve started with gear for yogis, but their range now suits all activities and all levels.
Currently eyeing: These tie-back tanks in every colour they have and these leggings with cool ankle detail.
Good for: Everything, really.
Nike will always be the big daddy of activewear, no matter what the activity. The brand continues to innovate and stay ahead of the game with its performance and street wear, Nike gear is always great quality as well as unbelievably comfy. Their compression gear feels super supportive and taut, and they keep their shape over washings, which some other brands don’t. I don’t really use things only for their intended…activity, in that their training gear works as well for yoga and runs as it does for pilates, but that’s really how it should be. Who has time to create capsules even within their workout clothes? Plus bonus points for high-rese options, because I really hate having to pull my leggings up mid-burpee.
Currently eyeing: everything.
Good for: Yogis
It is, if the name didn’t give it away, it is all yoga clothing, accessories, and props, a one-stop shop for those looking to stay as stylish as possible while they sweat through a series of postures. It’s not all clothing either you’ll find everything from mats, blocks, and straps through to aromatherapy products and swimwear here from brands like AloYoga, Manduka, Dharma Bums, and more.
Currently eyeing: These printed leggings and this pair of stripey ones.
Good for: Responsible consumers
If you want to buy responsibly-made yoga clothing, Satva is for you. All organic cotton, they’re all about sustainable production and have launched an initiative that sponsors the education of young girls in villages where organic cotton is cultivated for Satva garments. Plus a portion of all proceeds are invested back into its local communities and agricultural programs. Bonus, their clothes are NICE.
Currently eyeing: this tshirt, this tank top, and this sports bra.