Wearing athletic clothes outside of the gym is the trend these days. And why not? What is better than a pair of hip sneakers, your most comfy leggings, and a moisture-wicking-but-still-snuggle-worthy, long-sleeved zip-up? Exactly. The SoHo apartments for sale at 70 Charlton incorporate fitness as part of the lifestyle, as does the surrounding neighborhood, which is why you’ll find our favorite “athleisure” stores near you, including Lululemon, Sweaty Betty, and Outdoor Voices.
Joseph Shivers of Dupont first developed Spandex (Lycra) in the 1950s, and in the decades following, we’ve witnessed it used in clothing of all types, including cycling pants, thermal layers, and even the wardrobes of a few glam rockers who surrendered leather leggings for its fashionably practical nature. However, we’d argue that it wasn’t until the 1990s when one of the most, if not the most, recognized name brands in the athleisure space, Lululemon, mixed a bit of that same Lycra with a bit more nylon to yield Luon: the material that helped make the company’s yoga pants legendary. Perfect in fit, perfect in comfort, and perfect in style, Lululemon’s yoga pants are the ones by which all others have come to be measured. Since then, it’s only gotten better, softer, and more flattering to the form with the addition of other proprietary creations like Full-On Luxtreme and Nulu, alongside traditional materials like cotton terry—each used in Lululemon’s vast selection of complementing tanks, tops, wraps, sweaters, and hoodies for women, men, and girls. Not to be missed: the Align Pant II made with moisture-wicking, ultrasoft, and uber-stretchy Naked Sensation Nulu fabric that cuts everyone just right at the hips.
Based on the vision of founder and creative director Tamara Hill-Norton, Sweaty Betty fuses comfort and confidence with a bit of London style. What does that mean for you? Casual offerings, sporty in concept but with textures and motifs that lean a bit more in their appearance toward the leisure end of the athleisure spectrum. But don’t let the trendy wrapping fool you. These clothes are comfy, ready for any adventure you can dish out, and athletically inclined. Hill-Norton’s own affinity for exploration is affirmed by her twice-a-year travel promise for her designers; she takes them places she has been or dreams of going to so that they can be directly inspired by what has inspired her. The dividend to you is that the collection updates regularly with constantly refreshed, chic-to-season choices that make every trip into the store a wonderfully new experience, even while maintaining the “studio to street” experience that is Sweaty Betty. That explains the pant waists that are cut for both the comfort and the shape of a woman, knit favorites that match (really match!) your favorite running leggings, and a full array of accessories that guarantee easy transitions for all your ensembles as you make your way from the gym to your favorite local café. Bonus points awarded: they’ve also designed one of the coolest looking stores in SoHo. Not to be missed: the warm and retro Infield Thermal Pullover with long sleeves, stay-put thumbholes, and discrete zipper pockets to hold a card or cash for post-run, on-the-way-home treats.
Outdoor Voices wants you to play. The proof is right there in its name, a clever antidote to the idea of the “indoor voice”—two words that have quite literally become synonymous with “don’t”. Well, Outdoor Voices is telling you “do”: go ahead and reinvigorate your inner child, pour frolic atop your exercise, and add as much joy as you can to all else with wardrobe choices for what they define as people who “like having fun.” For Outdoor Voices, that’d be “joggers, dog walkers, hikers, and dribble-dribblers — a community of Recreationalists who prefer a pickup game with friends to slashing seconds off a time.” People like us. Again, it’s all about cross-over appeal—clothes for every part of your life—with soft but high-performing fabrics that can take the rigors of the sweatiest workout and the toughest adventure but still keep the comfort that you crave. Shop by item (pants or tops) or by activity (did you know that “yoga-ing” is a thing?). Not to be missed: their three-quarter length Weekender Sweats over a pair of Warmup Leggings to keep you fashionably comfortable no matter the day or challenge.