Whether you’re looking for stylish or affordable alternatives to lululemon for men or women for activewear, athleisure or workleisure, try these fashion brands on for size. These lululemon dupes sell comfortable performance clothing perfect for everything from yoga to working out to working from home.
The Short Answer: 15 Best Athleisure Alternatives to lululemon
This is a deep-dive post, so here are my conclusions up front. Among the dozens of alternatives to lululemon in this article, I recommend you begin with these:
The best way to discover new athleisure brands at home: Wantable’s Active Edit
Gymshark makes a wide range of affordable and comfortable lululemon dupes for women and men.
Sustainable fashion brand Pact offers a small but excellent range of affordable and truly amazing organic activewear and athleisure basics, making them a great alternative to lululemon.
Encinitas, California-based Vuori makes a wide range of thoughtfully-designed premium athleisure apparel for women and men with a commitment to ethical manufacturing and sustainable planet.
Outdoor Voices doesn’t overwhelm. The “anti-lululemon” offers a straightforward selection of premium, minimalist-yet-colorful athletic and athleisure gear for women and men including shorts, leggings, training jackets, hoodies, and sports bras.
With a huge selection of labels from Adidas to Sweaty Betty to Vuori, and a fabulous customer-friendly free shipping-and-returns policy, Nordstrom is my favorite one-stop-shop to discover new activewear and athleisure brands like lululemon.
For men, Huckberry is one of my favorite digital department stores. Huckberry houses an incredible selection of athleisure and activewear brands like lululemon including Ten Thousand, Vuori, Tracksmith, Outdoor Voices, Free Fly, Ciele Athletics, ON, Roark, Sitka, and its house brand Proof.
For women, Carbon38 carries an eye-popping selection of athleisure and activewear designers including Beyond yoga, Eleven by Venus Williams, Electric and Rose, Free People, Isabel Marant, LNA, Nike, Paco Rabanne, Reebok x Victoria Beckham, Skin, Splits59, Sweaty Betty, Terez, the Upside, and WeWorWhat in addition to its own line.
The Best One-Stop-Shops for Luxury Athleisure: Net-a-Porter and Mr. Porter
For women, Net-a-Porter features an outstanding selection of luxury athleisure alternatives to lululemon. Look to Net-a-Porter for sports bras, luxury fleece, sporty knit polo shirts and up-to-$500 leggings from brands like Balenciaga, Canada Goose, Fendi, Pucci, Jetset, Moncler Genius, Eres, Lacoste, L’Etoile Sport, and Sporty and Rich.
Mr. Porter is one of my favorite luxury alternatives to lululemon for men. The online luxury retailer stocks elevated brands like lululemon sorted by running, outdoor, training, cycling and golf. It’s a great place to get to know high-end athleisure from brands like Zegna, Nike Running, Goldwin, District Vision, and On-Running.
Ministry of Supply makes supremely comfortable work clothes for women and men “backed by science.” (It has started producing a tight lineup of technical athleisure and workout tops and bottoms for women and men.) Get 15% off your purchase with code MF15.
While M.M. Lafleur began life selling a simple, upscale collection of traditional workwear for women, it has pivoted nicely during the pandemic to offer a versatile range of “power casual” clothing. Look to M.M. Lafleur for comfortable dresses, blazers, cardigan tops and work-appropriate joggers made from OrigamiTech, “Eco-Soft weave,” Everstretch, “washable ponte,” and tencel performance fabrics as well as natural “performance” materials like silk.
Mizzen and Main is a fantastic option for workleisure for men for dress shirts, polos, chinos, quarter-zip sweaters and more made from a range of carefully-crafted athleisure performance fabrics.
Depending on whether you prefer water-resistant, ethically-sourced wool (Allbirds) or 100% waterproof knit made entirely from vegan materials (Vessi), the Wool Dasher Mizzle and Everyday Move are excellent complements to your athleisure attire. (Both Allbirds and Vessi make shoes for women and men.)
About lululemon and the Rise of Athleisure
Canadian businessman Chip Wilson founded Lululemon Athletica in 1998 and is widely credited with sparking the rise of athleisure and workout wear laced with stretchy technical fabrics. (He’s also sparked controversy over the years for saying things like, “Quite frankly, some women’s bodies just actually don’t work” in Lululemon’s pants.)
Athleisure has gained tremendous traction in the years since lululemon was founded.
While the trend began with leggings, joggers, sports bras and t-shirts, today innovative brands are incorporating technical fabrics into everything from loungewear, hoodies and jeans to “workleisure” suits, dresses and button-down shirts.
(I had to add an entire section detailing where to buy technical fabric-laced performance button downs to my rundown of the best places to buy men’s dress shirts online.)
The popularity of athleisure and performance clothing has accelerated during the COVID19 pandemic, as people everywhere turn to comfortable clothes while working from home.
This guide lists innovative and more affordable competitors to lululemon, focusing on alternative brands that feature technical fabrics in workout, athleisure, business casual outfits and work wear.
For performance fabric sneakers to match, explore these great options for knit shoes from Allbirds to Cole Haan to Vessi.
What are Performance Fabrics?
As I wrote in Modern Fellows’ essential guide to performance fabric clothing,
Performance fabrics, also known as technical fabrics, are thread blends that are engineered for specific properties. For example, performance fabrics may be engineered to be anti-microbial, moisture-wicking, and/or waterproof or water-resistant. These fabrics are then incorporated into clothing for added comfort, durability and performance.The Essential Guide to Performance Fabric Clothing
While lululemon helped popularize the use of technical fabrics and the new athleisure category, innovative entrepreneurs have been using technical fibers for centuries.
As just one example, the original Macintosh coat company utilized performance fabrics way back in the 1820s by producing its raincoats with rubberized cotton.
Other materials commonly found in today’s athleisure-wear such as spandex and Gore-Tex have been around for years.
Comparing the Cost of Athleisure for Women and Men
Costs for athleisure clothing can vary wildly depending on the brand.
In an attempt to provide some benchmark for comparing prices between the various brands in this post, I’ve listed prices for women’s athleisure leggings and men’s joggers or trekking pants.
Comparing the cost of athleisure leggings for women
This list of lululemon dupes for leggings contains a number of affordable options:
Comparing the cost of athleisure pants for men
The chart below of joggers for men features several more affordable alternatives to lululemon for men:
|Wantable Active Edit for Men|
* Editor’s Choice
^ Get $25 off your first Wantable Edit
|Uniqlo Sweatpants for men||$40|
|Gymshark Crest Joggers for men||$38|
|Pact Off-Duty Jogger for men|
* Editor’s Choice
* Get 20% off your first purchase with code MODERNFELLOWS
|Zella by Nordstrom Pocket Fleece Joggers|
* Editor’s Choice
|Everlane The Organic Cotton Track Pant||$78|
|Vuori Sunday Performance Jogger (via Huckberry)||$98|
|Free Fly Breeze Pant (via Huckberry)||$85|
|tentree InMotion Jogger||$108|
|Outdoor Voices RecTrek pants for men||$98|
|Myles Apparel Storm Joggers for men|
* Enter coupon code MYLES10 to get a 10% discount
|Ten Thousand interval pants||$118|
|Banana Republic French Terry Joggers for men||$70|
|prAna Vaha Performance Pants||$95|
|Marine Layer Sport yoga joggers for guys||$98|
|lululemon Surge Joggers for men||$118|
|Rhone mid-weight joggers||$98|
|Oliver’s Apparel Bradbury joggers||$118|
|Tommy John Go-Anywhere quick-dry joggers||$128|
Brands like lululemon for Men and Women
The following brands are great alternatives to lululemon for both women and men.
Zella by Nordstrom
Zella, one of Nordstrom’s in-house brands, was “created with comfort innovation and performance technology for women, men and kids.”
Nordstrom’s Zella line is heavy on long sleeve performance t shirts, slim jogger pants, leggings, tank tops and sports bras, woven dresses and exercise dresses for women, and performance t-shirts and woven pants for men. Look for spectacular discounts off of Zella during Nordstrom’s anniversary sale.
Nordstom is one my all-time favorite retailers because of their superlative customer service, speedy delivery, free returns, terrific website and seamless integration of online and in-person retail experiences.
In addition to Zella, Nordstrom is a great place to discover a wide range of other athleisure alternatives to lululemon from brands like Adidas, Barbell Apparel, Beyond Yoga, BP, Calvin Klein, Champion, Free People, Good Man Brand, Nike, PJ Salvage, Sweaty Betty, SKIMS, Topshop, Ugg, Under Armour, and Vuori.
Everlane has been adding to its selection of activewear and athleisure, and also carries a ton of 100% cotton fabrics, making them another affordable alternative to Athleta and lululemon for unfussy basics and athletic wear for men and women.
Michael Preysman started Everlane in 2001 with an emphasis on “radical transparency” into the company’s supply chain.
Everlane, along with Pact, Girlfriend Collective and others on this list, is a great example of a sustainable fashion brand committed to reducing its impact on the planet and do right by the workers in its supply chain.
I like Everlane’s simple, relatively-affordable basics for women and men like t-shirts, cashmere crew and v-neck sweaters, fleece pants, shirt jackets (aka shackets) and chore coats, and backpacks.
For women, Everlane’s athleisure and activewear offerings include bodysuits, t-shirts and camis, and regular and cropped-length leggings.
The Everygirl review of Everlane’s Perform Leggings gives them high marks:
They fit … perfectly. They hugged my body in all the right places and were the perfect amount of high-waisted and were long enough but not too long. They are also the most unique material I have ever felt in a legging. They’re very thin but are not even slightly see-through. They don’t feel anything like a typical workout legging but are incredibly lightweight.
For guys, Everlane doesn’t have as many stretchy, rain-repelling or moisture-wicking options available, though they carry affordable 100% cotton French Terry Sweatpants, 100% wool track pants and 100% cotton waffle shirts and hoodies and long and short sleeve t-shirts.
Entrepreneur Ben Francis launched Gymshark from his parents’ garage in the United Kingdom while he was at university in 2012. It has since gone on to become a multi-million dollar industry leader in workout and athleisure clothing.
Gymshark prides itself on exceptional customer service and delivering a range of comfortable and affordable workout basics including shorts, leggings, joggers, shorts and tops for men and women. Their leggings are made from a stretchy fabric blend of polyamide, polyester, and elastane. For men, their shirts are made from 100% cotton or cotton blends, and their joggers are made from a cotton-polyester fabric.
Unlike Pact, the company definitely does not follow a zero branding philosophy. Gymshark is more like the B.U.M. Equipment of modern workout wear: Its name is plastered in bold capital letters across its leggings and much of the rest of its line.
In exchange for serving as a walking advertisement for the brand, Gymshark’s clothing is among the most affordable alternatives to lululemon on this list:
Mailchimp called athleisure brand Vuori “the biggest sports apparel brand you’ve never heard of,” and flagged founder Joe Kudla “activewear’s biggest unknown player.”
Vuori is a sleek and impressive affordable luxury athleisure brand for women and men that has slowly expanded its apparel offerings beyond leggings, joggers and sports bras (though they have plenty of those).
The company has also expanded its omnichannel presence, frequently sending me some of the slickest mail order catalogs around.
Ministry of Supply
In 2011, MIT students Aman Advani and Gihan Amarasiriwardena helped craft a business plan to re-engineer professional attire using technical fabrics for added comfort.
Their plans resulted in Ministry of Supply, which sells performance professional, smart casual clothing and athleisure for women and men with a dual focus on comfort and style. Their stretchy fabric shirts, suits, slacks, dresses, blouses, tees, tanks and outerwear are perfect for the home office, making them a great upscale alternative to lululemon for technical fabric clothing.
During the pandemic, Ministry of Supply shifted its focus to home office and everyday comfort and expanded its product line to include more casual options, including leggings for women and activewear shorts for men.
What should you try first? co-founder and CEO Aman Advani told me that,
“Our signature Apollo dress shirt is the place to start. Made with NASA phase change materials, the breathable, wrinkle-resistant shirt is 19 times more breathable than traditional cotton and regulates your core temperature in real-time.”Ministry of Supply CEO Aman Advani’s Advice on Buying Performance Professional Clothing
Ministry of Supply’s Women’s Joule Active Leggings for women cost $115 and Newton active shorts for men cost $95.
Ty Haney founded Outdoor Voices in 2014, focused on selling bright, colorful activewear, yoga attire, loungewear and athleisure clothing, including workout kits. Her brand took off from there, including through a partnership that put OV’s products in J. Crew stores, though has gone through some ups and downs since.
Outdoor Voices is definitely not the cheapest alternative to lululemon on this list. (In fact, it’s clothing lines are about comparable in pricing.) But Vogue calls Outdoor Voices the “anti-lululemon” for the brand’s minimalist wardrobe attire and focus on getting out and moving. OV sports a high-quality line of performance workout clothing for women and men featuring technical fabrics that are soft to the touch and wick sweat.
Their Fasttrack collection for women and men features technical performance cotton laced with “drirelease” tech that takes moisture away from your body. For women, Outdoor Voices offers sports bras and tops, sweatshirts, leggings, skorts, pants and the Exercise Dress, made of OV’s LightSpeed performance fabric.
Tentree is a great athleisure option if you are looking for for sustainably-produced fashion. The company commits to planting 10 trees for every item sold and minimizing its environmental impact and fostering ethical and safe workplaces.
The Vancouver, Canada-based company sells a range of activewear and athleisure for women (leggings, workout bras and tops, hoodies, bike shorts, scrunchies, headbands) and men (joggers, t-shirts, shorts, stretch pants, ball caps).
Sustainable fashion brand Pact is quickly becoming one of my favorite destinations for organic cotton basics, loungewear, athleisure and workout clothing and is an extremely affordable alternative to lululemon. Pact utilizes organic fabrics and relies on fair trade certified factories to produce its lines of functional, minimalist clothing for women and men.
For women, Pact features stretchy leggings and tights made from organic cotton and elastane blends, sweatshirt dresses, midi and tank dresses, loungewear, airplane cardigans and more.
I love that Pact adheres to a (mostly) Zero Branding philosophy, joining other minimalist brands like Oliver Cabell in not slapping their logo across all of their clothes (unlike some others on this list). Much of their clothing is also tagless. They offer free shipping on orders over $50 and free returns.
Get a coupon for a 20% discount off your first Pact order by entering in code MODERNFELLOWS at checkout. (Pact also has frequent sales, which you can keep track of via my separate post on the best online men’s clothing sales and coupons.)
Clothing for hummingbirds? Let Troop explain:
Flapping its wings faster than 80 times per second, the hummingbird appears perfectly still as it hovers through the air. Calm, but always in motion.
TROOP is a line of comfortable, versatile, sustainable core wardrobe pieces for those looking to find their calm throughout our busy lives. Inspired by the hummingbird, we create designs that work anywhere for effortless style that elevates your every day.Troop: Our Story
Co-Founded in 2021 by Jeremy and Rachel Segal, Troop offers a tight collection of refined and comfortable hoodies, tee shirts, joggers and leggings for women and men. Their clothing has thoughtful features like articulated knees in the joggers and thumbholes for hoodies.
Troop aims to be a sustainable fashion brand and is a member of 1% for the Planet.
Ok, perhaps it’s an odd-sounding name for a clothing brand, but Boody Ecowear sells remarkably affordable, eco-friendly activewear and athleisure apparel for women, men and kids. Dave Greenblo and Neil Midalia founded the brand in Sydney, Australia in 2011. (Don’t worry, they ship fast and free to the United States for orders over $49.)
Boody’s straightforward lineup of simple, understated activewear is crafted from naturally-grown, organic bamboo that the company notes is “skin-healthy” and sustainably produced.
The company offers many more options for women — like under-$40 sports bras, hooded activewear tops and extremely affordable leggings — than it does for men. Men can enjoy performance boxer-briefs, muscle tees, and short and long sleeve shirts, though no joggers or other pants options at the time of this writing.
PrAna is another great option for sustainably-made apparel for yoga, the outdoors and athleisure. Prana’s lineup includes yoga and bra tops, leggings, yoga pants and other basics for women and men.
Pam and Beaver Theodosakis first started prAna in the early 1990s from their garage in Carlsbad, California with the goal of selling sustainable clothing. Today, the company is led by CEO Scott Kerslake, who founded Athleta, another athleisure and yoga brand.
PrAna also sells smart and business casual apparel including foundation dresses made from TENCEL fabric, denim with a touch of spandex, 100% cotton button down shirts for guys, and outdoor Stretch Zion pants for women made with a woven fabric blend of nylon and spandex with a water repellent (DWR) finish. (I really like the look of prAna’s corduroy pants for men.)
PrAna’s clothing varies between 100% cotton, recycled polyester, and stretchy and quick dry performance fabrics made from blends of hemp, polyester, and cotton.
(Last year PrAna hosted a great sale during Amazon Prime Day. You can try to hold out for discounts of 25-30% during Prana’s occasional sales.)
Uniqlo founder Tadashi Yanai built his operation as a technology company first. The retailer has increased its popularity in the United States over the past few years on the back of a well-deserved reputation for cheap-yet-durable wardrobe basics for women and men — an elevated alternative to fast-fashion options like SHEIN. (I love their super-warm winter jacket and extremely affordable cashmere sweaters.)
The Japan-based retailer has doubled down on its activewear and athleisure lineups. Uniqlo’s activewear often sports “Airism” or “Heattech” technical fabrics at its core, which are both meant to wick away moisture and boast other performance properties.
Athleta, Banana Republic, Gap, Old Navy and Hill City
Gap Inc’s portfolio of brands offers a variety of options for athleisure and activwear for women and men:
Scott Kerslake founded Athleta in 1998, the same year that lululemon was born. Athleta offers a range of simple, functional and attractive apparel for women only for activities from running to hiking to yoga to travel to sports like tennis, golf and swimming. While Scott sold Athleta to the Gap in 2008, the brand continues its focus on sustainability, and is now a Certified B corp.
Inspired by the success of Athleta for women, Gap launched Hill City, a performance athletic brand for men in 2018 as a certified B corp. Hill City carries a range of athletic outerwear, tees, sweatshirts, pants and more made from performance fabrics. However, buffeted by the COVID-19 slowdown in retail, Gap announced it would shutter the Hill City brand as of January 2021.
Banana Republic has enhanced its lineup of activewear and athleisure for men and women. (I was told by customer service that, in the wake of Hill City’s closure, Gap took some of what they learned to inspire Banana Republic’s athleisure offerings.)
Gap and Old Navy
Athleta’s Salutation stash pocket tights for women cost $89. Banana Republic Traveler Joggers for men cost $98.50. The Gap carries a range of joggers for men from about $50-70, and leggings and joggers for women from about $50-80 (and much less during their frequent sales). Old Navy sells leggings for women from $14.50 and joggers for men from $24.99.
Care Of by PUMA (Amazon exclusive brand)
In 2019, PUMA and Amazon launched an exclusive-to-Amazon brand of athleisure clothing and shoes for women and men christened Care Of. PUMA’s Care Of brand clocks in at one of the cheapest athleisure options on this list.
Check out Care Of by PUMA for leggings, joggers, terry crew sweatshirts, jogging and cycling shorts, running trainers and activewear t-shirts, long-sleeve fleece zip hoodies and low top leather sneakers and jogging trainers for women and men.
Tom Patterson and partner Erin Fujimoto founded Tommy John in 2008. They began their journey hawking undershirts out of their San Diego apartment, and have grown Tommy John into a multimillion dollar business.
Tommy John specializes in underwear and basics made from stretchy performance fabrics, making it a great alternative to lululemon.
For women, Tommy John carries everything from bralettes and bras to leggings, quick-dry joggers and terry shorts.
For men, think silky-soft boxer briefs and undershirts, workoutwear and polos, socks and button downs. Tommy John is also a great option for performance fabric dress shirts for men, and crafts their shirts with a ComfortStrength thread fabric of 72% Cotton, 23% Nylon, and 5% Spandex.
Tommy John also carriers well-regarded longjohns and loungewear for women and men.
Tom told me in an interview that, “more than ever, our customers are looking for a little extra comfort right now and our products are the perfect work from home uniform.” (He added that Tommy John’s clothing is “life changing — It’s the kind of comfort you need to feel to believe.”)
Get a 15% coupon off Tommy John by signing up for emails on their website.
Living in DC, I feel like Marine Layer is everywhere. The California-cool clothing brand maintains several stores in the area, including Bethesda and Georgetown, and I love that I regularly receive snail mail catalogs from Marine Layer.
Founders Mike Natenshon and Adam Lynch started out with the goal of making the perfect shirt. Today Marine Layer makes a variety of athleisure apparel for men and women, from stretchy yoga shorts and joggers in heathered gray for men to leggings in a deep cabaret red for women, made from performance materials including nylon, spandex, elastine and environmentally-friendly recycled PET.
They also stock everything from outwear, sweaters and boxer-briefs for men to dresses, skirts, sleepwear and intimates for women — as well as a great selection of laid-back t-shirts.
Actress Kate Hudson teamed with fellow entrepreneurs Adam Goldenberg and Don Ressler to co-found Fabletics in 2013. Fabletics’ goal is to offer “high quality gear at an accessible price point” with a mantra of “live your passion.”
Initially, Fabletics focused exclusively on women’s activewear and athleisure. In June 2015, Fabletics launched its “FL2” lineup for men. The company has become a true omnichannel retailer, opening brick-and-mortar stores beginning in the fall of 2015 in the United States.
Fabletics can be a good value and there are plenty of reviews that swear to their quality, making it an interesting lululemon dupe. The wrinkle is that Fabletics offers a hybrid subscription retail model, which can be confusing at first blush.
The company provides heavy incentives for customers to subscribe to Fabletics VIP Membership program.
- When you subscribe, each month, you will automatically be billed $49.95 for a “Member Credit.”
- This Fabletics Member Credit can be redeemed for any two-piece outfit or single item up to $80 online or in-store.
- You don’t have to use a credit right away, though they expire 12 months after issuance.
- Fabletics allows you to skip a month by visiting their website between the first and fifth of the month.
You can also get a sweet deal to sign up: Women can score two pairs of leggings for $24. Men can purchase 2 shorts for $24 or $29 pants.
Is Fabletics’ VIP membership worth it? If you regularly buy athletic and athleisure clothing, then it’s a pretty good deal to get a new two-piece outfit or a new set of leggings or joggers for $49.95 a month.
But, if you don’t want to deal with the hassle of a subscription-based model, you can simply order a la carte from Fabletics’ website, though you’ll pay more than members.
For instance, Fabletics’ Courtside Sweatpants for men will cost a nonmember (aka “retail guest”) $79.95, while a Fabletics VIP member would be able to score the item with a “Member Credit” of $49.95.
It’s a similar story for women’s leggings. Fabletics’ Ultra High-Waisted PowerHold 7/8 leggings for women cost $64.95 for retail guests but can be had for a Member Credit of $49.95.
Fabletics leggings for women and joggers for men cost $49.95 with a reoccurring VIP Membership subscription. Without a subscription, Fabletics’ Ultra High-Waisted PowerHold 7/8 leggings for women cost $64.95 and Fabletics’ Courtside Sweatpants for men cost $79.95.
Boden, which styles itself as an “unabashedly British fashion” destination for women, men and kids, had, for a while, been a surprisingly solid option for fashionable athleisure and activewear for both men and women.
While the company features its brightly-colored and often stripy womenswear collections prominently, Boden started developing a shockingly deep selection of stylish men’s basics. For a while, men could find zip-up hoodies, super-soft sweatshirts, jogger shorts and sweatpants with a working fly.
For women, Boden offered stylish colorblock and camo leggings, form-fitting zip through jackets and long sleeve active tops, and workout tanks and bras.
Sadly, Boden’s selection of athletic and athleisure wear for women and men has dwindled considerably. I’ve kept them on this list in the hope that they decide to reinvest in their athleisure wear in the future, though I have removed them as an “editor’s choice.”
Alternatives to lululemon for women
Below are additional options for brands like lululemon for women.
Started by wife-and-husband co-founders Ellie and Quang Dinh, Washington State-headquartered Girlfriend Collective sells “ethically-made activewear.”
The brand puts a huge focus on sustainability, making their leggings, joggers, t-shirts and tanks from recycled polyester (aka RPET), nylon, post-consumer bottles, fishing nets (yes, recycled fishing nets) and other waste. They produce t-shirts and tanks from 100% cupro fabric, which is constructed from wastes the cotton industry leaves behind.
Girlfriend Collective maintains a long list of comfy, athleisure basics from track jackets, sweatshirts, bras and sweatsuits to leggings, skorts, unitards, trackpants, sweatpants and a line of maternity activewear. The company also models its clothing on women representing a variety of shapes, sizes and backgrounds.
Girlfriend Collective’s compressive high-rise leggings for women cost $68.
Tamara Hill-Norton founded Sweaty Betty out of London in 1998 after seeing an opportunity to transform the “dark and drab” activewear market for women.
The name is intended to make it chic to sweat. Today, Sweaty Betty has grown into a global brand that offers a versatile selection of active and athleisure clothing for women including leggings, pants, shorts, skorts, dresses, unitards, long-sleeve jumpsuits, recycled-cotton hoodies, track jackets, sports bras, underwear, sports socks and ski and snowboard base layers.
Sweaty Betty also offers a line of online workout videos, fitness advice, podcasts, daily challenges and recipes. In addition to purchasing direct from Sweaty Betty’s website, you can find Sweaty Betty via Nordstrom, Selfridges and Harrods.
Sweaty Betty Power Workout Leggings cost $100.
Colleen Winter and Debra Cannon founded Lulu’s Fashion Lounge in Chico, California in 1996. The brand evolved into Lulu’s, an online-only destination for items like cute ruffled mini and bodycon dresses, rompers, swimwear, loungewear, shoes and bridalwear.
Like lululemon, many of Lulu’s clothing selections incorporate stretchy performance fabrics like lycra.
Lulu’s carries a solid selection of activewear including high-waisted leggings, tank-tops, racerback tops, shorts, joggers, and sweats. You can also find select Lulu’s labels in Nordstrom, which is one of my favorite shopping destinations.
Lulu’s MVP moves high waist leggings for women cost $48.
Reformation, also known as “Ref,” was founded in 2009 by Yael Aflalo as a side-hustle focused on sustainable and environmentally-conscious fashion. Yael has dramatically expanded the brand into everything from dresses to denim jackets to cute COVID-19 face masks.
Ref doesn’t carry the same wide variety of athletic clothing as some other brands on this list, but it peppers athleisure performance fabrics lines like “Eco Rib,” a stretchy-soft ribbed fabric made of 88% Tencel and 12% spandex, throughout its leggings and workleisure dresses, pants, and tops.
Ref’s Court high-rise leggings for women cost $58.
Yummie (formerly Yummie Tummie)
Founded by Real Housewives of New York City participant Heather Thomson in 2008, Yummie seeks to inspire self-confidence and embrace a variety of body shapes. (In its origin story, the brand says, “we embrace your curves, we embody your shape… We take pride in celebrating your silhouette. We’re here to boost your confidence.”)
Originally known as Yummie Tummie, the company rebranded in 2017 as Yummie following Heather stepping away from the brand. Yummie carries a range of affordable full length, ankle length and capri leggings, as well as shorts, bodysuits, and a range of shaping tanks, camis, shorts and underwear.
Try Yummie’s Gloria ankle-length cotton stretch shaping leggings for $49.50.
Alternatives to lululemon for men
Here are even more options for stores like lululemon for men. For even more options for performance clothing made from technical fabrics, see my essential guide to performance fabric clothing.
Miles specializes in performance fabric athleisure and activewear that supports a range of activities from golf, surfing, and jogging to working from, and lounging around, the house. Try Miles for lightweight performance workout shirts, running shorts and compression pants for men, thermal henleys, and polo shirts.
Digital menswear retailer Huckberry is one of my favorite online stores for men’s clothing. It’s a unique place to find striped t-shirts, modern chinos and clothing gifts for guys, because their founders do an incredible job of curating innovative and fresh menswear brands alongside house-brands like Flint and Tinder.
Huckberry turns out to be a phenomenal one-stop-shop for premium men’s athleisure labels (including many on this list) like Faherty Brand, Free Fly Apparel, Foehn, Fourlaps, Hill City, Houdini, Janji, lululemon, Marine Layer, Myles Apparel, On, Proof, Relwen, Reigning Champ, Taylor Stitch, Ten Thousand, Tracksmith and Vuori Clothing.
Founders Andy Forch and Richard Greiner have been committed since the beginning of their journey to telling stories behind the brands. I love how their product scrolls feature mini-reviews of select items. See my in-depth review of Huckberry and interview with their Co-Founder for more details on the brand and its athleisure and workleisure offerings.
Check out their joggers and shorts, mde from a water-repellant all-over-stretch weave of 88% nylon and 12% spandex; short and long sleeve t-shirts and henleys constructed from temperature-regulating 100% merino wool active jersey; comfy “passage pants” made from a proprietary blend of Cordura Nylon and Lycra and other workout essentials made from fabrics like french terry, ripstop nylon, and pique cotton tech.
Olivers also makes a “best in class” workout t-shirt treated with moisture-pulling hydrophilic and anti-odor microban finishes.
Oliver’s Bradbury joggers for men cost $128.
Founded by Keith Nowak and Eugenio Labadi, Ten Thousand makes premium workout essentials for everyday athletes. Their workout wear is “functional, not flashy,” and I love that they don’t overwhelm with endless products and colors.
Ten Thousand sells the basics that you need for workouts and sports, including foundation shorts, interval pants, versatile shirts, lightweight tanks, compression shorts, tights, no-show socks. Their gear is made from performance fabrics like nylon and spandex and feature a permanent silver ion treatment to combat odor.
Ten Thousand’s interval pants for men cost $98.
Founded by entrepreneurs Nate Checketts, Kyle McClure, Carras Holmstead and Casey Edgar in 2014, men’s workout clothing startup Rhone utilizes high-quality technical fabrics to create high-end activewear and athleisure clothing for men.
Rhone has an extensive product line for men that includes everything from workout gear like joggers, sweatpants, tights, athletic shorts and performance tees to performance business casualwear including button downs, henleys, polos and stretchy commuter dress shirts.
Mizzen and Main
Along with Ministry of Supply, Mizzen and Main is one of the deans of professional performance fabric clothing for men. Kevin Lavelle founded Mizzen and Main in 2012, and well-known for selling dress shirts with stretchy, proprietary-blend performance fabrics for the office (and home office).
Mizzen and Main doesn’t sell joggers or casual workout wear. Try their performance Baron Chinos for men, which cost $98.
Brady (as in, Tom Brady)
It’s true. NFL legend Tom Brady launched his own athleisure-focused clothing line Brady.
Several years in the making, Brady (the clothing brand) launched in January 2022. Tom Brady launched the company with Co-Founders Jens Grede of Frame Jeans and Dao-Yi, who owns the Public School clothing label.
Brady’s collection is split between the “Train System” (“built to move, breathe, and sweat,”) and the Live System (“designed to feel your best…whatever you do”). Look to Brady for athleisure-focused outerwear, tees, tanks, pants, shorts and knits.
As if it weren’t enough for you to pay to put Brady’s jersey on your back, you can now pay (dearly) for the privilege of having his name splashed across a pair of expensive sweats.
Are lululemon and Athleta Owned by the Same Company?
Lululemon Athletica and Athleta are two completely different companies with different founders and ownership structures.
Lululemon was founded by Canadian businessman Chip Wilson in 1998. Today, it is publicly-traded company domiciled in Delaware with a headquarters in Vancouver, Canada. Athleta was founded by Scott Kerslake in 1998. Athleta is now owned by the Gap, a separate publicly-traded company.
These Athleisure Companies Have Closed
Sadly, not every athleisure brand survives. Here are some of our favorites who have shuttered:
With its signature stripes, K-DEER specialized in attractive, affordable-luxury leggings and other activewear for yoga, cycling, barre and athleisure.
Entrepreneur Kristine Deer, a certified Barkan hot yoga teacher, founded K-DEER in 2012 to meet a need in her practice. “The ‘aha’ came from frustration and absolutely hating what I had to wear for hot yoga class,” Kristine told the PowHER Network.
K-DEER’s lines of leggings, skorts, bum-bum shorts, outerwear, sports bras, tee shirts and more are Made in the USA at factories in New Jersey and New York City’s Garment Center.
A friend of mine raves about K-DEER’s brightly-colored, striped leggings, which were recommended by her Pilates instructor who was sporting some of the company’s signature patterns.
Sadly, in 2022, Kristine “had to make the hard and important decision to close this chapter of K-DEER after colliding with pandemic related supply chain issues,” according to a post on the K-DEER website.
About JakeJake is passionate about exploring entrepreneurs' global journeys. He founded Modern Fellows in 2012 to get to know the entrepreneurs behind the innovative brands helping men dress sharp in the digital age. Jake has written about entrepreneurship, international business and/or fashion for outlets including Business Week, Forbes, Inc., Details Style Syndicate and Primer Magazine, and has provided analysis on international business for BBC Radio, NBC News, CNN and Time Magazine.
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