Photo: Beyoncé // Ivy Park
  /  04.12.2016

Are you actually wearing your athletic apparel to workout?

Since the introduction of streetwear, athletic silhouettes have been marketed as everyday attire. One significant change in this strategy is the targeted demographic. Streetwear has always been born and sold to the streets, or more “urban” communities. Considering that hip-hop serves as the lifetime muse of streetwear apparel, as the genre’s popularity has grown and matured world wide, so too has the market for streetwear apparel.

Enter Rihanna. And Beyoncé. And others.

The fashion industry is a chameleon that changes it’s style according to time. Historically fashion and music have benefitted from collaborative collections inspired by artists and sold to their fans. Major athletic apparel brands have scouted fashion’s lead designers to reinvent their products to market to a fashionable streetwear collector, notably dubbed “hypebeasts.” You know, the type that camps out for the flyest supreme T-shirt, Bape track pants, BBC hat, and Yeezys. The only thing these brands have in common is they are the designer labels for streetwear take this concept and apply it to adidas and Nike the you get Adidas x Stella McCartney, Fenty x Puma, Yeezy x Nike x Adidas x Louis Vuitton, Pharrell x Adidas, Beyoncé x IVY Park.

By the time you (1) hear your favorite artist is putting out a dope athletics line and (2) finished your scavenger hunt for pictures from the collection, then (3) decided on the pieces you want and (4) saved to get all that you desire… usually, none of this will grace a runway that includes a treadmill and lifting weights, instead they will be sported to every grocery store, soccer game, bar, and club (heels not included with purchase).

The idea of dressing up athletic apparel or just wearing them to look presentable on your “lazy day” makes these products hot commodities. This style is not limited to any particular demographic, so who is responsible for this undulant trend? We argue that comfort and convenience right are the two biggest CCs in fashion after Chanel. They’re the reason the athletic apparel industry thrives in America. For a country with a growing obesity rate of 35 percent and athletic apparel annual sales of $270 billion it clear it’s more important to us to be cute over healthy. But, just in case we’re hitting the gym we’re ready.


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