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Tom Clark

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Rockin' the Yoga Pants Full Time: What is Athleisure and How Did it Become

May 09, 2019

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Athleisure wear brought in nearly $9.6 million in sales in 2018 alone. Take one glance around at the yoga pants army that seems to have risen overnight, and it's easy to see that this fashion trend is here to stay. However, when did leggings become acceptable daily wear and when did gym tanks become okay anywhere outside of the gym?

If you're interested in the world of athleisure, are considering getting into this market, or simply want to know where these fashion trends began, read on for more information.

The History of Athleisure

While the rise of athleisure may seem to have been an overnight success, in reality, the trend can be dated back to as early as the 1970s.

This is when the rise of fitness regimes became incredibly popular. No longer did people need to visit their local gym to get a good workout, celebrity workout videos were on the rise and people were now willing to work out in the comfort of their own homes.

This trend hit a new level when actress Olivia Newton-John showed off her curly hair and athleisure in her "physical" video.

From here athleisure could easily be spotted in a number of music videos and TV series.

This prompted clothing brands to start offering athletic styles that were for more than simply working out. Fabrics like latex and spandex quickly became integrated with the materials we wear on a daily basis.

How Athleisure Became a Trend

Since the 70s athleisure brands continued to enhance the look and feel of their apparel. More focus was placed on creating clothing that was breathable, waterproof, and even fashionable.

As time went on a number of new exercise programs arose with the rising popularity of genres like yoga and pilates.

The two fit perfectly in hand with casual athletic wear, beginning to combine slimming and form-fitting ensembles that could be worn both on and off the mat.

Why Athleisure Continues to Be on the Rise

There are a number of reasons why this trend seems to carry on from generation to generation. This is mostly due to the number of benefits associated with this type of clothing.

Trending Styles

When it comes to athleisure, brands never cease to continue evolving and reinventing their incredibly popular styles.

Athleisure trends such as versatile pieces, intricate cuts, and bold use in colors create an atmosphere for the clothing trying to grow over time.

A Comfortable Lifestyle

Another major benefit of athleisure is that it can be worn practically anywhere and at any time. This is why so many people embrace athleisure as a one-size-fits-all solution to the wardrobe.

Since the clothing is durable and virtually wrinkle-free, people can wear it anywhere from the gym to grocery shopping, and even to pick up the kids from school.

Celebrity Endorsements

One major push behind the rise of athleisure is the fact that a number of celebrities use the clothing as a sexy and trendy style to be copied by everyone.

Everyone from Beyoncé to Kate Hudson has been found displaying their own line of casual athletic wear while creating a glamorous, behind-the-scenes image.

A Healthy Lifestyle Image

People are constantly on the lookout for trends that will send out a message of health and vitality.

Even those that have never stepped into yoga studio are likely to flaunt themselves in a great pair of yoga pants and matching tank to create the image of that "green juice loving" look.

What to Look for in Your Athleisure Style

If you're looking to incorporate casual athleisure into your daily wardrobe there are easy ways to create an incredibly chic athletic wear look without coming off to gym like.

First, you want to stick with a clean and neutral palette. while leggings can be found in some incredibly bold and vibrant styles, for the sake of your day-to-day wardrobe it's best to stick to more neutral pallets.

Look for more grown-up and monochromatic colors as they provide a streamlined and chic look.

You can also choose more interesting materials that go beyond spandex. You can now find a number of creative and unexpected athletic wear materials such as faux leather and mesh that can draw that by and with some flattering details.

Try to keep your pieces as clean as possible. When it comes to those essential white athletic sneakers or gym inspired clothing, try to avoid any of those holy T-shirts or scuffed up marks.

Try to keep each piece in as pristine condition as possible to create a polished look that is more professional and less college student.

Finally, you can feel free to mix and match. Simply because you're incorporating a few athletic pieces, it doesn't mean that your entire ensemble needs to be gym inspired.

You can easily pair leggings with a flowy tunic, or even a varsity jacket. Clean white sneakers also look stunning with a pair of fitted jeans and oppressed shirt.

Remember, athleisure is designed to complement your existing style, not to distract from it. Choose styles that can easily blend in with your existing wardrobe. 

If your closet is filled with my flowy clothing fits, look for athleisure pieces that do the same. Try to stick to a similar color theme as well.

Enhancing Your Life in All Areas

Getting the right ultra comfortable athleisure into your wardrobe is just one of the many ways that you can begin working towards a balanced and more fulfilled lifestyle.

If you're looking for more information on an inspired life check out our video section where you'll find essential tips and advice.