3 Ways to Wear Workout Clothes Not For Working Out

Because who has time to go to the gym when your clothes want to party?

05.26.16

This is not a confession so much as it is an admittance of habit, but I’m going to share a discovery and the findings may surprise you: there is no current reality in which I choose regular clothes over athletic wear. None. Unless, of course, I can wear Gucci, in which case, bring on the Sanpietra von Gufftenshaefen!

I’ve been trying to reconcile the rapport I’ve built with stretchy pants and have decided: gym clothes got really cool. No, really cool. I know this is not new information: there’s been a conversation fluttering around Outdoor Voices and Tory Sport and Lisa Marie Fernandez for a while but man, that textured compression fabric on leggings? Arguably the new denim.

They suck you in, tighten you up and evince the spirit of a job well done, a weekend spent completing important errands and better than that: done efficiently.

If you’re someone who identifies as invested in their personal style, athleisure presents a unique challenge when you’re wearing it to not work out: how do I make this me? And of course, there’s always an answer: excessive earrings, too many bracelets, a jacket (or robe!), sparkly socks and footwear that concerns itself not at all with ankle support. You can even take this a step further, which I did, and integrate your hero pieces into a week of work outfits. See below.

Your Favorite Leggings are Also Your Favorite Capri Pants

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Isa Arfen jacket — similar here, Vilshenko top, Beyond Yoga leggings, Paul Andrew sandals

I know, I know, Carrie Bradshaw called, she wants her look back. But she can’t have it! I want to keep it! Here I’m wearing a pair of Beyond Yoga knee cap leggings with an embroidered button down blouse and a starchy silk jacket that swiftly covers that sausage making that is a shirt tucked into leggings. Heels are kind of the key here — there’s something about this knee-cap length that makes them look like amplified versions of themselves.

That Thing You Wear Running While it’s Raining? Great with Brocade!

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Tory Sport track jacket, Marques Almeida skirt, & Other Stories socks, Chanel shoes and bag, Gentle Monster sunglasses

Bring on the color and be super weird about it. You might recall this nylon hoodie as one akin to the kind you wear while long-distance running in the rain but it also pairs great with a counter color and printed mini skirt (though shorts or high waist pants would suffice). What’s great is that it is so thin, it will effectively tuck into anything. Including–yeah!!!–leggings.

A Sports Bra is Just Another Layering Device

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Laain sports bra, Rosie Assoulin top

So treat it like one! Give your off-the-shoulder tops a reason to exist! Wear it over a button down shirt or t-shirt. Try it as a crop top — why not? Show your breasts that even though they’re being compressed, you admire and respect their willingness to comply, so give them the night off by dancing in your living room while topless.

Photographed by Krista Anna Lewis.

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