“We need to become more fashion,” CEO Kevin Plank said during a call with analysts after the company’s latest quarterly earnings report. “The consumer wants it all. They want product that looks great, that wears great, that you can wear at night with a pair of jeans, but that also does perform for them.”
The company is admitting it completely misread the upmarket trend of athleisure, instead relying on copious logos and basic styles of sportswear.
The sportswear landscape is shifting, and customers no longer want athletic clothes just for working out. They want stylish athleisure—clothes fashionable enough that they can also wear them out to a movie or dinner.
The black sports bra and matching leggings that Under Armour began selling Monday don’t look particularly distinctive from the rest of the workout attire on its website.
But, in fact, the garments are different in a key way.
¨… leggings are not just on a growth tear: The volume of orders for these items actually surpassed orders of denim in each of the last three months. While there is a big push in the apparel industry this season to introduce fresh denim looks such as wide-leg styles and asymmetric hems, these findings might suggest these new aesthetics may not quite have captured women’s imaginations yet.¨
One of the most popular trends championed by top designers, models, and celebrities alike is athleisure. The word, recently added to the 2016 unabridged version of Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary, is defined as “casual clothing designed to be worn both for exercising and for general use.”
However, while many industry figures (and basically anyone else who wears clothing) are quick to support the trend, some are not so crazy about the word itself. “I hate that term. It’s the worst thing in the world. I can’t wait for it to die,” Tyler Haney, founder of lifestyle brand Outdoor Voices, told Man Repeller. No, she doesn’t think it’s the new “moist.” Haney feels there’s a disconnect between the meaning of the word and the activity associated with it. Haney produces apparel for those who make physical activity fun, and believes that often people sporting athleisure aren’t attempting any sort of physical activity.