Societal downtrend on dressing appropriately – wearing athleisure or workout wear (yoga/gym pants) everywhere.

Lot of women may disagree or not resonate with this topic and may give reasons to justify that this is the new comfort trend.
To top it on, there seems to be a designer athleisure boom as they are specifically designing athleisure wear in more style and colors, or the annual glut of New Year’s resolutions to hit the gym on the regular, but of late you can expect to see even more women than usual wearing workout gear.

Agreed that this is the new trend. Women of all ages are wearing their workout wear all day now. But can we not combine this practical and functional workout wear with a dash of style and elegance so that it appears appropriate as per your personal variations, place, and occasions that you are stepping out for. To give you an idea –  maybe you can combine leggings to a longer coat and a scarf, or someone younger wearing a cropped T-shirt with a denim jacket and some high-heeled boots. Then this casual outfit can be called smart casuals, which is totally acceptable.

Women shop for their workout wear thinking, “How can I wear this from the studio to the street?” Definitely this is a cost effective and practical approach.
But this is also a reason that workout clothes used as outfits are probably taking the idea of “it’s comfortable” a bit too far.

Today if you see around, be it on the school run, in the line for morning coffee, over a business lunch, or even drinks, performance wear as everyday wear for women of all ages is becoming de rigueur. It seems that it is now totally acceptable to wear your outfit all day, every day, even if you haven’t worked out (Ref Vogue, Jan 2016).

Prof Vandana Madan from all women’s JDM College, Delhi University – reiterates the same concern and shares that “Women have also begun to think dressing down is a way of being independent and feminist. And tracks and athleisure is a free statement of the free women.”

Well, this article is not intended to discourage anyone following this trend but rather a perspective for those who find themselves in the routine of wearing workout clothes everywhere. It is for those who feel it’s not important, or don’t have time, or maybe don’t know where to begin with regard to dressing presentably.

Hers are 5 points on why you should STOP wearing workout clothes everywhere:

  1. Workout wear is made of thin fabric and tends to be tight and clingy; it does not give a very flattering look.
    Dressing well shows you have self-respect. It is very important to know what type of clothes and materials are appropriate for different places.
    Better alternate will be to wear jeggings. Jeggings are a type of legging that look and feel like jeans. They are made of a stretchy denim-like fabric and have a real zipper and button closure. To wear them, simply put them on like you would any other type of legging. Jeggings are typically worn with tunics, blouses, or long sweaters to create a casual and stylish look.
  2. When we dress in workout wear for certain occasions we express a lack of respect-  Jennifer L. Scott, New York Times best selling author shares that this is one of the reasons “dress codes are implemented to maintain an air of decorum and respect.” Your clothing choices can be some of the important decisions you will make in your day-to-day life. Clothes are how we present ourselves and can be a fun way to show your personality. However, dressing inappropriately for certain events can make you feel uncomfortable and potentially make you look unprofessional. So, make sure you’re wearing the right attire, at the right times and in the right situations.
    The simplest code to dressing is to dress largely according to your body variations, time and season to keep alive the elegancy and comfort at the same time.
  3. When you are exercising whether that be at the gym, out in nature, or at home, you must wear workout wear, i.e. yoga pants or gym wear.
    For causal at home or casual outings, my suggestion would be to select comfortable and relaxed clothing – well fitted tracks, jeans, skirts, skirts, leggings and tunic, tops, or anything that makes you look appropriate and functional. You can definitely wear athleisure wear provided you combine it well.
  4. Wearing workout everywhere is also not hygienic. You can spread bacteria by touching weights, treadmills and lockers at the gym and not taking care of hygiene allows bacteria to grow. It’s also important to change as wearing sweaty clothes can invite a lot of health infections for your skin especially in the form of fungal and bacterial infection, vaginal infection, bad odour, low immunity, and rashes. According to The National Institutes of Health, wearing sweaty clothes can lead to the penetration of these pathogens into your skin. Due to the clogged pores (because of sweat), they get trapped in there, creating more skin problems. Itchy, patchy skin, and problems like athlete’s foot is also seen in people, who don’t get rid of their workout clothes ASAP.
    If you are unable to change after working out and want to step out for shorter duration, consider wearing a long sweater or tunic over your workout wear to prevent bacteria from touching shared public places.
  5. Workout wear worn out-of-context contributes to the ever-increasing casualness of our society. Research shows that actually the clothes you wear actually change the way you act, perform, or behave. Have you ever been part of a play or done theatre in school or college? Have you ever watched the rehearsal process of a play? Then you will understand the power or importance of clothes. The rehearsals include actors of carry certain piece of clothing that make them feel more like their character. And when they are closer to the opening, they will have an actual dress rehearsal with their real costumes. It is amazing to see how the right clothes bring the performances up to a whole new level and transform the actor into the character. We all can actually learn a lot from this.
    Believe it or not, your clothes and visual image communicate volumes about you as a person. The question is not whether you care about fashion or a trend, it’s more about what you’re communicating intentionally or unconsciously through your fashion choices. Just as the actor in the right costume moves and speaks differently, so does the everyday person. Your clothes tell a story about you.

Ladies let’s give this a thought and dress attractively, authentically, and appropriately “Looking like you belong, like you know what you are doing, nothing about your appearance is distracting”

Clothes set the stage for others to respond to you in a more positive manner. It applies to everybody of every age. Try it. After all, you are what you wear.