Athleisure: From Seasonal Trend to Profitable Lifestyle

By Rebecca Kennedy

When leggings in funky prints and matching stretchy hooded jackets started to show up in all the clothing stores, people called the groovy new trend nothing more than ‘a fad’.

But now years later, the athleisure trend is still alive and kicking (sometimes literally). While the idea of ‘fashionable fitness’ started years ago, it quickly evolved and reached unexpected levels: it became an actual lifestyle for the woman-on-the-go.

From the gym to the office and after-work drinks, athleisure is versatile, hassle-free and easy to wear – and, moreover, it doesn’t require keeping up with the posh magazines or a hiring a personal stylist and shopper in order to pull the look just right.

Celebrities have readily jumped in to cash in on the popularity and impact of the athleisure phenomenon: from Rita Ora and Selena Gomez to Beyonce, every pop star queen these days seems to have an athleisure line, whether for high-street names like Topshop or Missguided, or as part of collaborations for sportswear brands.

Like the divas of the music world, the catwalk queens are also promoting their own sporty lines these days: from in-demand models like Jourdan Dunn to veterans like Heidi Klum.

And the reason for that: athleisure is where the money is right now. Following a massive boost in sales since 2015, athleisure is the fastest growing clothing market – and experts say its sales will reach non-athletic apparel in just a few years.

Hollywood’s finest aren’t the only ones dressed head toe in the hippest athleisure picks of the season – a major component of the trend’s overall success came when the new batch of social media stars arrived, complete with their curated organic meals, healthy living inspiration and fitness-sculpted bodies.

Mesh leggings with peek-a-boo designs, hot pink hoodies with zipped pockets galore and trendy sneakers became all the rage, especially when worn by #goals Instagram models and influencers.

Infographic courtesy of shoecarnival.com