The retail business has always had its ups and downs with the recession leaving many businesses struggling. One retail sector that has shown a substantial amount of promise since the recession is activewear. Also referred to as athleisure, this term refers to clothing that can be worn in a variety of situations, both fitness and otherwise. A sneaker you could sport to the gym and also wear to dinner, or a sweatshirt that looks nice enough for a casual meet up.
Sales Are Up
Retailers selling athletic footwear and activewear have reported booming sales in recent years with NPD, a consumer market research organization, noting that they outpaced those of all other forms of apparel in 2013. Movement is driven in part by an increased interest in living a healthier lifestyle, and people wanting their clothing to be multi-functional. As consumers are busier than ever and want to fit a workout into an already packed schedule, having clothing that is dual purpose is a great advantage.
Many Non-Athletic Brands Are Jumping Onboard
Due to the increased consumer demand, several companies that traditionally haven’t had an athletic apparel line of clothing or accessories have decided to join the crowd or risk being left behind. These brand names include Tory Burch, Juicy Couture, Free People and Old Navy, among others. Also noteworthy is the fact that some brands known solely for athletic apparel are linking up with luxury designers to create functional pieces that boast great style.
Benefits for the Consumer
Activewear is versatile and accessible to all. Whereas in the past it might have seemed untoward to wear gym clothes outside of a fitness environment, now it is commonplace. Today you can find a great look that can take you to yoga and onto brunch afterwards. If you have been trying to motivate yourself to work out, buying some cute apparel can be a great way to encourage and/or reward your efforts.
Wearing the Look
To try out the athleisure trend, consider purchasing some new apparel with sporty elements such as racing stripes or neon colors. Take your inspiration direct from the runways, where even if specific looks seem a little too bold for your style you can borrow certain parts to influence your look. Today you can even buy customizable activewear, with brands such as Sportswear Unlimited offering unique custom designs. The market for this type of clothing is huge, with options to suit all budgets and styles and it looks like it will only increase in popularity as more and more people try the trend.