Athleisure is a mixture of athletic and leisure wear (as you probably guessed). It’s been a growing phenomenon for quite some time now, to a point where it definitely bears talking about.
My personal interpretation of this style is basically this: you dress for the gym, but just a little too done up to actually work out.
You wear makeup and a few small accessories, for example. Perhaps fix your hair. The things you wouldn’t want to do if you were going to sweat.
As much or as little as you dress it up, athleisure’s main function is comfort. It’s like the younger, more fashionable cousin of wearing sweatpants all day. When you dress for the gym, you make a point to wear clothes that are as non-restrictive as possible. You can see the appeal of taking that comfort into other areas of your life.
An added bonus to this style is that athletic wear tends to be on the sexy side. Because maneuverability is important for exercise, gym clothes are usually stretchy and form-fitting.
Give me some good yoga pants and a sports bra, and I feel a bit like a superhero. And no great surprise, since latex bodysuits are the outfit of choice for so many fictional crimefighters.
Athleisure allows for just a little extra sexy in the public setting. You get the wow factor, but nobody is going to say you’re overdoing it, because hey, you’re probably on your way to the gym, right?
Now this, I wouldn’t quite call athleisure. Almost, but not quite. I can’t really picture this looking natural at the grocery store or the coffee shop. It’s an easy fix, though. She could put on a denim jacket, or tie a flannel shirt around her waist–it just needs one extra element to take it out of the purely athletic zone. A touch of jewelry wouldn’t be out of place either.
I think the most interesting form athleisure has taken is wearing biker shorts with blazers. It’s something you wouldn’t necessarily expect to work, and yet it does. This is a great look for spending the day in a big city, or going to a museum.
That being said, I advise against athleisure when it comes to business casual. In a professional setting, of course you should still be comfortable, but there are other options.
These days, the ban on jeans in the workplace is pretty archaic, but I would consider it fair to want to avoid athletic wear. It’s too out of place. But trust me, going to work doesn’t mean you can’t be cute. There are a lot of choices out there for people who want to look good on the job.
I’m also going to recommend that you don’t wear athleisure to church, or gatherings of that nature. I shy away from using the word inappropriate, because to be honest, the idea of women being dictated to about what is “okay” for them to wear makes my skin crawl. I straight up don’t even like the word modest, because somehow only women are ever held accountable to that term.
Adults should not be dress-coded.
But that being said, church is usually measured along the same lines as business casual.
To me, an optimal church outfit is… understated glam. Basically, you just want to look put together. As a rule of thumb, think business casual, heavy on the casual. Yoga pants aren’t the way to go, but a comfy pair of jeans is perfectly acceptable. Obviously, you can err on the side of comfort if and when you want to. Nobody’s going to fire you from church.
Athleisure is just one solid step above taking a pajama day. You can lounge all afternoon on the couch, or just as easily go out into the public eye if you feel like it. Run errands, meet up with some friends, grab lunch, just whatever. It’s the option for people who want to dress for comfort, but also want to look fly as hell.
A highly understandable desire.
This is a style that I still have very limited experience with. I’ve only tried it a couple of times. I like it, but I don’t really think about it much in my day-to-day. I’m the general opposite of athletic, for one thing. And I have a couple pairs of really comfortable jeans that I tend to switch between most of the time. So athleisure is seldom on my mind.
But as popular as it it, that could change.
Have a beautiful week.