Here's why everyone wears exercise dresses

“Just being outside is a workout today,” said Arianna Gaujean, 18, browsing the sales display at Awoke Vintage in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. ...


“Just being outside is a workout today,” said Arianna Gaujean, 18, browsing the sales display at Awoke Vintage in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. It was a scorching July evening and Ms. Gaujean, a student at St. Francis College, wore a short black racerback dress – the perfect outfit, she said, to do just about anything in the kitchen. heat.

In the parlance of those 35 and under, it was an “exercise dress,” an all-in-one outfit that depending on your browsing habits can haunt your social feeds, with ads touting its comfort. (stretch nylon and spandex!), versatility (built-in shorts!) and a universally flattering silhouette (who doesn’t feel right in an A-line dress?).

One of the more popular versions was launched by Outdoor Voices, a sports brand, in 2018 and updated this year with pockets, elastic leg darts and adjustable shoulder straps. Several other companies, including Reformation, Nike, Girlfriend Collective and Halara (a label apparently built around the garment), sell their own takes, most of which are marketed aggressively on Instagram and TikTok.

Compared to last year, sales of sportswear almost doubled, according to data from the NPD Group, a market research company. In turn, the sportswear, for those who are ready to notice it, has become something like the Amazon coat: a discreetly omnipresent cultural object.

Indeed, over a period of two weeks in mid-July, not a day went by that this journalist had not spotted one. Dresses were everywhere: on the dance floor at a party on the rooftop of Chinatown, at the laundromat in Greenpoint, while cruising the streets of Manhattan and Brooklyn.

“Before the pandemic, I wouldn’t necessarily have had the dress. But now that we’re the athleisure type all the time, it’s more acceptable to always wear that, ”said Amanda Hayes, 27, who works in marketing, while wearing a lavender Outdoor Voices dress at a picnic. picnic in Washington Square Park.

A growing sense of boredom induced by sweatpants may be partly responsible for the sales. “People are fed up with only wearing sweatshirts and leggings,” said Jaehee Jung, fashion psychologist and professor at the University of Delaware, adding that boredom tends to drive many fashion trends. consumption.

Ease and versatility are also key selling points. “I like the simplicity of a dress, only having to think of one piece of clothing,” said Michaela Brew, 25, who lives in Manhattan’s Gramercy Park neighborhood and works in real estate banking. “I love how easy it is to just put on.”

People also want to be able to dress for any event, all in one. “A few times I got dressed in my workout clothes and went to study and then got caught up in a Spikeball game,” said Zoee D’Costa, 24, Rutgers medical student Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. “It’s nice to be able to combine things that make me look and feel good with being functional. “

Several people were reluctant to wear the dress for a full exercise. “I don’t really wear it for practice work out, ”said Brianne Sabino, 27, who works in the media and picnics with Hayes. “I wouldn’t go running in that dress.”

“I wish there was a bra look, even just a shelf, maybe with removable cups, as that doesn’t offer any support and therefore makes it difficult to exercise without a sports bra.” said Ms Brew, owner of Outdoor Voices. Dresses. “I would also like there to be a flap or some sort of attachment for the shorts so that you don’t have to take the whole dress off when going to the bathroom.”

“It tries to be training wear, but it’s like that dirty little secret that people don’t really work in,” said Christina Nastos, who lives in Chelsea and is an account manager for Peerless Clothing, 24 years.

Well, maybe not everyone. Sarah Moser, 35, who lives in Sunnyside, Queens and works in human resources, wore a navy Outdoor Voices sports dress on Train 7 as she recently drove to a race. “This is my favorite running outfit during the warmer months,” she said. She bought her first before a half marathon. Now Mrs. Moser has them in a dozen colors and patterns.

She’s not the only one who has so many of the same dress. On Reddit, a user job a photo from their “exercise dress collection”, which included about 20 different colors and patterns. Ms. Brew and Ms. Gaujean each have three.

And while most of the people spotted in these dresses tend to be Gen Zs and Millennials, the marketing of these dresses emphasizes that they are for everyone. In a TIC Tac Sponsored post for Halara’s dress, for example, an elderly woman says the dress makes her feel “30 years younger.”

“The impact of social media is undeniable for business fashion and style trends,” said Dr. Jung. “It’s like everyone is watching something at the same time when and where.”

“I think part of the appeal is also seeing the influencers in them make them look great,” said Ms. Gaujean, who first discovered the garment on social media. “I’d be lying if I didn’t say seeing them on others via TikTok or Instagram wasn’t the biggest push to buy one.”

That’s not to say that everyone is completely happy with the fit of these dresses. Molly Kipnis, 27, a social media marketing executive who lives in Chicago, really wanted an athletic outfit, but couldn’t immediately find one that suited her. “I went to Outdoor Voices for the third time to try on this sports dress that everyone was wearing, and for the third time it doesn’t look good on me,” she said.

In an act of service, Ms Kipnis ordered all versions of the dress she could find and then reviewed them on Instagram. She found the Girlfriend Collective dress to be the best for her. “The material was really nice, compared to the others I’ve tried, and I thought the sizing was very inclusive. It was also ethical in origin, compared to other brands. “

All scruples aside, the dress was a hit this season. “The dress of summer,” Ms. Brew said. “I was walking by my apartment the other day and, I’m not kidding, 50% of the women I saw were wearing sportswear.”

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Newsrust - US Top News: Here's why everyone wears exercise dresses
Here's why everyone wears exercise dresses
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