The athleisure trend has taken the global fashion landscape by storm, invited by consumers interested in high-end comfort. Athleisure is the fastest-growing category in fashion, in part driven by celebrity endorsement on social media and a growing wellness culture. Partly inspired by streetwear with a nod to the 80s and 90s, the athleisure market is expected to double in 2020, exceeding $83 billion. According to Allied Market Research, by 2024 the global activewear market is projected to reach nearly $547 billion.
Athleisure typically consists of hoodies, fleece, joggers, yoga pants, sneakers, t-shirts, and sweatshirts. Celebrities like Beyonce and Kanye West have adopted the trend and exploded it into the luxury clothing market as designers. Others like Billie Eilish, Dua Lipa, and Rosalia also sport the trend across their Instagrams wearing athleisure trends that will dominate in 2020. Less dictated by runways and more by streetwear, athletic wear has even caught the eye of historic fashion houses like Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Lanvin, launching their own lines of luxury athletic wear, logos emblazoned across garments.
However, brands like Bella + Canvas, Champion and Russell Athletic have entered the athleisure scene with more affordable, but still luxurious, options focused on high-quality fabrics that offer a more tailored look than the baggy tracksuits of previous decades. These brands, though more accessible to buyers offer luxurious comfort at a price most can afford.
Streetwear Apparel Styles
Frequently athleisure styles have become more unisex not only in cut but also in color, more brands choosing to blur the line between men and women’s styles, especially for street fleece and joggers.
Whether we’re talking about men or women’s fashion, athleisure has blurred the line between what was once thought of as popular for either. More men are wearing leggings and bicycle shorts, as well as joggers that accentuate the leg, while more women are wearing joggers in place of leggings. Women’s street fleece, or sweatshirts, and over-sized t-shirts can be cropped and paired with joggers or leggings, though sleeves remain long and baggy.
Oversized or Rounded Drop-tail T-shirts
Dictated by streetwear, 2020 trends in athleisure emphasize oversized everything, particularly t-shirts, which women, like Eilish, have been buying in extra-large sizes rather than the fitted versions that were more popular in the mid-90s. While women’s t-shirts have also become more boxy or cropped, men’s t-shirts have adopted a rounded drop-tail bottom hem, like the ones Bella + Canvas makes through their 3006 Long Body Tee.
Logos Everywhere, Architectural Technical Patterns
Logos have also spread across t-shirts, from Adidas to Champion, each brand riffing on the trend with bold letters appearing across clothing. Not just projected across the front of the clothing, different brands have printed their logos in unexpected directions, as stripes down the back of sweatshirts and sides of t-shirts.
Consumers will also see more embroidered, custom designs or large screen-printed graphics, which can be paired with joggers, yoga pants or tight bicycle shorts. Fabrics will continue to reflect designs that are indented or embossed into them. They might also feature subtle structures, architected into the fabric, like honeycombs or futuristic technical patterns that layer different types of fabrics to offer special effects.
No longer made of the frumpy fabrics of yesteryear that would pill after one wash, today’s athleisure features elegant drape and softer fabrics made of new poly-blends that didn’t exist before. Because consumers are wearing luxe athletic wear even into boardrooms beneath blazers or in place of them, they expect fabrics that transition from the office to home, or from day to night. For example, Bella + Canvas’ signature sponge fleece fabric is made from high-quality combed and ring-spun yarn that’s mid-weight, but still soft.
Neutral or Neon Colors
Speaking of unisex, consumers’ growing tastes in athletic wear, though still focused on classics like black, have graduated to more neutral colors like sand, cement, light gray, rust, brown and burgundy in both men and women’s athletic wear. Brands like Yeezy, Isabel Myrant, and Supreme all offer similar colors to these, among other brands. Bella + Canvas offers a whole range of similar hues that speak to
Neutral colors look particularly striking when paired with vintage white or monotone colors; for instance, a sandy top coupled with cement bottoms. Vintage white, a slightly off-white version of the classic white t-shirt, also dominates where black used to reign supreme, whether in hoodie or jogger form, offering a fresh, even futuristic look when paired with neutrals and lace-free sneakers.
Athleisure has also made poppy and neon new again across both men’s and women’s styles. In 2020, expect to see neon and
poppy increase in use not only across sneakers but also across oversized t-shirts and sweatshirts, recalling retro styles that millennials grew up with through brands like Fila and Hilfiger.
More companies are choosing to incorporate sustainability in the luxury athleisure sector as consumers grow more concerned about where and how their clothing is produced, as well as how their clothes contribute to greenhouse gases. Part of the wellness movement, sustainability has become a mark of several clothing manufacturers. More companies are becoming transparent about how they source and manufacture garments, taking into consideration the environmental and human impact of those choices. Some companies are even making clothing from upcycled, artificial fabrics that feel luxe and are dry-touch, breathable, and lighter than previous athletic wear fabrics. Adidas recently came out with a high-end sneaker made from recycled plastic trash from the ocean. Many clothing manufacturers are starting to create sustainable athleisure pieces that are gradually dismantling fast fashion.
The luxe athleisure trend is sure to continue to dominate the fashion landscape in 2020. To keep on top of these trends and how to style them, consider these insights from Clothing Shop Online!