Wouldn't it be great if you could wear your sweatpants and zip-up hoodies to work?
Turns out, you might be able to.
You may have been noticing more brands like Fablectics, Outdoor Voices (sold at J. Crew), Lululemon, and Beyond Yoga falling to the trend of "athleisure" clothing.
Athleisure clothing is a trend in fashion consisting of active wear that is worn outside of the gym but perfectly acceptable for running errands, heading in to the office, or attending any other type of social occasion.
When women are shopping for athleisure wear, what exactly should they be looking for?
Image and Fashion Consultant, Lori Ann Robinson, joins HER Radio to discuss the latest trend in fashion and how you can make this trend work for you.
RadioMD Presents:HER Radio | Original Air Date: May 14, 2015
Host: Michelle King Robson & Pam Peeke, MD
Dr. Pam Peeke, New York Times best-selling author and founder of the Peeke Performance Center and Michelle King Robson, leading women's advocate, entrepreneur and founder of EmpowHer.com host the show everyone's talking about. It's time for HerRadio.
PAM: Hi, I'm Dr. Pam Peeke. Michelle is off today. Have you seen this new trend where people put on workout outfits--you could hit the Lulu Lemon thing, whatever, it doesn't really matter--and you basically live in it? You go to work like that.
Probably going to sleep like that. You hang out like that. What is this trend? I saw a word. It was called "athleisure". Really asking the question are you dressing for work out or for going to work? Our 'go to' expert on this is image and fashion consultant Lori Ann Robinson. Her website is larconsultants.com. She is a Los Angeles based imagine and fashion consultant and multiple Emmy nominated costume designer.
Lori, what is going on with this athelisure thing? Help! What is this stuff?
LORI: I know, Dr. Pam. We're going down a slippery slope of a road here.
PAM: Uh oh. Uh oh.
LORI: I think this is going to backfire at some point. I think we're getting so incredibly casual and we are missing the fine points of dressing well and dressing for success and being respectful of our surroundings where we are with this ultra-casual look. Here in Los Angeles, it is incredibly ultra-casual.
People have been doing this 'go to the gym-go right to work' look for a while. It is sort of a norm, especially in the entertainment industry where things are incredibly lax. But when you start getting into more of the financial industries, the law industries, more of the traditional types of business, I think this is really missing the mark. It is not going to bode well. Nor does it look well. It looks sloppy. It doesn't look like you are well put together. It doesn't make like you've put any thought into your dressing. It doesn't make you look successful. It just makes you look like you ran from the gym.
PAM: Let me throw something up to you, Lori. What if a young woman out there in HerRadio land is listening and she says, "Oh, she just sounds like an old fart". Swing with the program. Everyone is doing this now. It is just comfortable clothing. Get over it already. What are you going to tell her?
LORI: There are other versions of comfortable clothing. Athletic clothing needs to stay where it needs to stay—with athletic clothing. I don't think it translates well into the workplace. If you want to do stretch, there are other options. There are other fabrications of pull-on, like a trouser or a straight leg pant, or jegging, or something like that versus wearing the hard-core right from the gym athletic line. I think you can bump it up if, indeed, you want to keep within that sort of feel about it. But wearing the exact things that you are wearing to yoga and TRX class, or whatever you're doing, there is a difference there. There is definitely a line.
PAM: Isn't there like a spectrum? Okay. So, you have the hard cord: I've just been to Gold's Gym and I have a doo rag on my head; and, maybe you have that Flash Dance look, with the shoulder bared and the ripped up sweats; and all the rest of it. You've got that thing. Then you've got the absolutely well put together big suit thing going on. You're a lawyer, or a physician, or a CPA, or you're some MBA-type or whatever out there. Then there is all this stuff in between. If you're in Silicon Valley, everyone is doing the jeans thing, right?
PAM: It's really uncool to be dressed up there. I mean, not even Steve Jobs did anything more than a black turtleneck and black pants for like a gazillion years. The real question is you've got comfort. I get the comfort thing. You're absolutely right; there are some very nice looking clothes out there that are ridiculously comfortable, like the jeggings and things that you can also make look very attractive with a nice outfit. But is it uncool to wear Lulu Lemon 24/7?
LORI: I think it is. First of all, from a hygiene standard, you have just been working out in at spin class or something. Do you really want to go to work in those same pants? That's my thought. For starters. Do you really want to be in those same pants all day long from when you worked out at, say, 6 a.m.? That opens a whole other can of worms. I think we've gotten a bit too comfortable, lax, lazy, for lack of a better word. Just lazy and it's just easy. I understand busy people, busy lives.
But ,getting that lazy where you're wearing your workout clothes the entire day, or going to a cocktail event still in your workout clothes? I think there is something wrong with that.
PAM: There is something else, too. As a physician, I have seen so many women who are very dissociated from their bodies. What they do is they wear lots of elastic.
PAM: So that they don't have anything form fitting because (A) they don't fit in anything form fitting that they really like (B) they are not doing well with the body image thing. So, they tend to do the elasticized and loose kind of clothing. There is no question, it's comfortable, but are you really taking care of yourself, too? I think I told you once, Lori, that one of my patients once who had come to me for help because she quite lost, in taking care of herself.
She fell of her own radar screen. Bottom line is, I was taking down baseline data and I said, "Roughly, what is your size right now?" And she looked at me quizzically and she said, "Hmmm, umm, my size is elastic." It was like, "Oh, my gosh. I said, "When was the last time you had a size-size, so you just kind of know where your body is?" She said, "Well, it's been a long time." And what I worry about is that women need to celebrate their bodies. Be fit and happy.
LORI: Exactly, they are working hard.
LORI: Yeah. They're working hard for it. So many of the fashions that are out there now are geared towards a very fit body. So, why not celebrate it—and being able to wear some of the latest, greatest trends that are out there depending on your age range. Why hide it? Not hide it but why not celebrate it and choose some of the more fashionable items?
PAM: Exactly. Yes, I've seen this. A lot of my patients, who do that. Who are able to achieve higher levels of their own health and well-being want to be able to celebrate it with their body. It's what we have been doing for a gazillion years since we were paleolithic cave women. We go out there and we paint our bodies with colors and we stick feathers in our head and do this whole thing. We don't neglect it. We don't abandon it.
So, I think that there is a place in between. We have plenty of wonderful clothing fabrics out there that make us look absolutely fabulous. Once again, Lori, your wit and wisdom have helped guide us to a place of, "Okay, let's not get lazy here already!" Yes, there is a place in between and we can look fabulous and fit and healthy and well. If we just put a little bit of thought into it. Lori, you are the guru of all things image and fashion.
PAM: Lori, thank you so much for being on HerRadio. Her website is LARConsultants.com. We've been talking about athleisure. Are you dressing for work or what are you wearing to work? Sweats? Ugh.
I'm Dr. Pam Peeke with Michelle King Robson.
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