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What is the athleisure style and how can you wear it too?

Priscilla Greene |

If you already paired your black leggings with an oversized sweater and a pair of sneakers to go out with your friends, you have probably already sported the athleisure style without even knowing it. The love child of fashion and functionality, the athleisure style is a growing trend, blending in perfectly neat, fit, and stylish pieces with your streetwear and especially your gym garb. More than just wearing your slouchy gym pants to go shopping the athleisure style comes with its rules, mixes, and select accessories you can enjoy while looking both dashing and comfy! Let’s see today what makes the athleisure style and how you can wear it like a diva!

Athleisure Style: Mixing Sports, Function, and Fashion

Before you throw on your baggy jeans and a tank top to go out and meet your friends, we have to factor in the dos, don’ts, and rules of the athleisure style. Let’s see them now!

  • Mix sports pieces (leggings, cute hoodies, denim jackets, canvas sneakers, gym pants, cropped gym tops) into your usual fashion pieces for a balanced look. Never forget to accessorize: you can sport a cute, colorful drawstring backpack for casual outings or a stylish canvas tote bag for your day at the workplace;
  • Mix multiple pieces and layers – leather jackets and cotton leggings, skinny jeans and fleece hoodies, metal jewelry and boots/sneakers, etc.;
  • If you follow active-wear trends, make sure you do not overdo things. The athleisure style does not mean wearing your baggy home pants with your heels and designer bag. It involves wearing fit and neat pieces, combining sports bras under leather jackets or leggings under a chic coat; if you want to step up your game, do not forget to add a stylish camo bag. As we said numerous times before, camo prints are all the rage right now, and you can mix and match camo styles in hoodies, bags, sneakers, caps, and sneakers;
  • Denim and leather, cotton and elastic fabrics, wool and high-performance, sports fabrics are the main elements of the athleisure style;
  • Preserve your athleisure pieces clean and in good condition, and keep them for street wear; do not wear them in the house as casual items;
  • Never consider wearing as athleisure old garments you take to the gym.
  • Pay attention to the mixing of jewelry – one carefully chosen statement piece if you like, but don’t overdo things, as you do not want to look like a queen of bling on a stage.
  • You don’t have to forget about your usual casual sporty style, reinterpret it in an athleisure key. If dresses, leggings, and boots make your style of choice, keep them and try adding or removing only one or two pieces to turn your look trendy but comfortable.
  • The athleisure style does agree with prints and colors, but do not go overboard with them. For instance, if you pick neutral shades, spice things up with a vividly colored tote bag or some jewelry.
  • While some heels can work with the athleisure style, sneakers and slides are the go-to footwear in this case.

Yoga Pants (Leggings): The Core Element of the Athleisure Style

Women started wearing yoga pants to the gym, but their simple and versatile look and the comfort they offer soon turned them into a must-have streetwear item. Leggings with a dress and boots became synonym with casual chic not long ago, and the trend is rising.

The cornerstone of this particular fashion is stretchy cotton leggings. They have plenty of advantages over the synthetic ones (that you should preserve for gym activity only) as they allow you to move freely, also being gently for your skin all day long. They are not too thick, not too thin, come in a variety of colors and prints, and match any outfit.

Here is how you can compose an effortless chic attire to take you from your 9 to 5 or casual evening date:

  • First, pick a cotton pair of leggings in classic black, a light gray, a deep blue or a dark burgundy to build your outfit around them;
  • Pick cozy cotton knit or a classic cotton tank top for the cold season; take a graphic tee or cut-out one, layered with a soft hoodie, a denim jacket, flannel shirt, a boxy leather jacket, etc.;
  • Finish with a pair of canvas sneakers in solid colors or a pair of flats;
  • Make sure you pick a cute canvas tote bag in a solid color as well or a cute print working well with your pieces.

Dressing up the yoga pants is easier than you think, especially if you need a quick change from work to fancy dinners:

  • Make sure the leggings are stretchy and look neat, with no creases;
  • Change the sneakers with a pair of mules or low heels (some boots for the cold season work fine);
  • A patterned shirt – or an off-the-shoulder color-blocked blouse – makes a fancy addition to an otherwise sporty outfit;
  • For a stylish night out, add a small piece of jewelry – a pendant, a bracelet, something demure, sophisticated, and feminine for a balanced look;
  • As purses go, a two-tone felt shoulder tote bag will go amazing with your outfit.

What Else Should You about the Athleisure Style?

Don’t for a second think that athleisure revolves solely around leggings, however. As we said, some of the centerpieces of this style are skinny jeans, sneakers, fit tops, denim and leather jackets, and more. Remember to reinvent and dress up (or down) your style.

The good news is that if you have always been in favor of a more tomboy look, now it is the time to shine!

Make no mistake to confound the athleisure style with the hip-hop one. The latter has some common elements with the first but works more in the baggy, slouchy, untamed looks rather than on slim-fit, yoga-style, and street diva one.


Are you an adept of the athleisure style? Do you usually wear leggings and sneakers together with layers knits and leather jackets? Tell us about your interpretation of this trend, the accessories you wear, and the occasions you sport this trend the most!