Whether you’re actually coming from a workout or just strutting the looks of it, the trend ‘Athleisure' has hit the industry through some of the most iconic fashion influencers in today’s media. Consumers ranging from models, Gigi Hadid and Kendall Jenner, to your college floor mates are jumping on this bandwagon, ditching converse and jeans for kicks and a mix of sporty and streetwear.
A passing fad? A temporary favorite? None of the above.
The increasing allure of athleisure is linked to the surge of fitness-conscious consumers who are redefining their perspectives of athletics as more than just a hobby, but an all-around lifestyle. According to the National Purchase Diary, the total athletic apparel sales reached $33.7 billion, representing nearly 20% of the total apparel market, and are forecasted to continue growing at a rate of 4.32% over the period 2014-2019. NPD chief industry analyst Marshal Cohen says, “consumers are drawn to its comfort and versatility, and the fact that it still makes a fashion statement. Activewear, by nature, also evokes a sense of athleticism and wellbeing, which only adds to its appeal.”
Mr. Cohen speaks truth in acknowledging that demand is naturally higher for clothes that are both comfortable and functional. But that’s not to say this style trend is an affordable one. Brands falling under this umbrella of “streetwear fashion” include: Huf, Opening Ceremony, Supreme, Stussy, and many more to join the market. Even Kanye West’s most recent Yeezy collection sports (unintended pun) this style as well. Runs in the family?