New fitness fashion brand: JoyLab by Target review

Target has been sniping successful brands and making their own versions for a few years now, but this spring they’ve really stepped on the gas in the fashion brand style-biting department…

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I get that they have to follow trends, but it’s a little blatant. And as a card maker who’s had one of her designs low-key copied by Paper Source and who has a few other maker friends who this has happened to…I can only imagine how these big, established brands feel about Target copying their whole entire vibe. Eeeeeesh. Not very cool. Anyway. Tabling the issues of brand-swiping and business ethics and moving back into FITNESS FASHION REVIEW LAND…

Target now has a fitness fashion brand called JoyLab that’s kind of like Outdoor Voices + all the other cute fit fashion brands rolled into one trendy package.

JOYLAB REVIEW

The quality is pretty good. Better than Target’s terrible Champion/ C9 stuff (so thin, so clingy, makes me so angry), but not as thick as “real” fitness brands. Then again, what do you want for under $35 per piece? Basically, if you have cellulite, you might be able to get away with their pants, depending on the color and how few fucks you give. But I only found one pair of pants that I felt OK in, and they have a distracting pattern.

But the bra tops are all really cute. They cover a lot of different trends in color, pattern, and cut. Mostly I noticed a lot of “long line” bras/ bra tops which means they go further down towards your waist and *some* people can wear them as tops with high-waisted leggings. ICYMI, this is my formula to find out if you are one of those people. (From my post about jog bra trends from a while back.)

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And JoyLab has a lot of cute jackets and sweatshirts. A few different takes on bombers (mesh, scuba, sweatshirt, etc.) and a lot of cute sweatshirts. But the sweatshirts are mostly pretty cropped, so I only tried on the (totally predictable for me) big baggy long one. I’d put pictures of the jackets and sweatshirts here, but the pictures online don’t even come close to doing them justice. You have to see them in person.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT JOYLAB BY TARGET

  • Affordable. Pants $35. Bras $20.
  • You get more than what you pay for in the style dept.
  • You get about what you pay for in the quality department.
  • 900 times better than C9.
  • Check out their jackets.

Here are some JoyLab things I bought:

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Here are some other JoyLab things I tried on:

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Here are some other cute JoyLab things:

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And Imma just put this here…

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Outside Lands is nigh! Get festival fashion ready with a free HIIT workout from Beach Body

Lalapalooza was last weekend. Outside Lands is this week. It’s a busy time for music festival-goers. And Beach Body and Stub Hub put together a HIIT bodyweight work out you can do anywhere with no equipment to get in “butt cheeks hanging out of your cut-offs” shape. Because apparently, that’s the only thing you’re allowed to wear to festivals this year. No I’m not kidding. About either of those things.

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Yes, ass cheeks out is a thing. And so is a pre-festival workout. I know because I participated in one last week with Beach Body Master Trainers Joel and Jericho. If you’re a Beach Body fan, they’re the ones who did Core de Force, and they’re friggin’ adorable IRL. And totally diesel. And friendly and nice.

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The workout is called Ready Set Live, and it was created by Beach Body and Stubhub. It had a not-too-serious festival prep-theme: each move was picked to help you get better at something that would be useful at a show like: pop up to your feet quickly if you trip, jump up to see your friends in a crowd, hover squat in a port-o-let…you get it. Cute.  Fun.

But it was a good workout, too. Simple, nine exercises, three rounds, 25 minutes, and I had quivering jelly legs by the end. Ass totally kicked. Also, it was on a rooftop. In the city. At sunset. Which is kind of the best.

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Also the best? The workout is available for free, for you and all the world, here.

And if you want to go to the live event in SF TONIGHT, go to the StubHub and Beachbody socials, you might still be able to get in. Woo hoo!

So if you’re going to Outside Lands, tell the bay I miss it, and give the Ready Set Live workout a shot. I love HIIT body weight workouts, and this one is great.

Post-workout Pretty-Sweaty

Red-Faced Super Sweaty Proof

Those fucking festival shorts, though…not a fan.

Pretty-Sweaty.com Lolla Shorts

 

Workout pants: Will they stay up????

Pear-shaped problem:

Any pants that fit your ass are usually too big in the waist, and slide down as you work out.

OR, if you buy pants that are stretchy enough to fit your ass and not be baggy on your waist, that material is too stretchy to stay put during any kind of real workout, and they slide down. (Athleta Chaturanga and LuluLemon Wonder Unders are two examples of such pants.)

I recently convinced myself it was OK to get a few fresh pairs of workout capris and was picky about the stay-up factor. I bought three pairs from Athleta (currently not feeling LuluLemon at all) and get this: I KEPT ALL THREE. Whattttt?

Here are the three winners of WILL THEY STAY UP?

Athleta Shine Stripe Sonar Tight:

WILL THEY STAY UP? YES!

Higher waist. They have that double decker waist band thing that Athleta does on their training pants which does add a little bulk to the midsection but not THAT MUCH and if that’s what it takes to have pants that stay up, that’s fine. It’s not like I’m wearing crop tops for fuck’s sake AMIRIGHT? haha. Crop tops. BWAHAHAHAHHAHA. Those are for young people. Stupid stupid young people. Anyway, I ran in them. Outside. And YES! THEY WILL STAY UP! They will also look stupid with any shoe that’s not plain grey or black, but oh well. THEY WILL STAY UP.

Next up…

Athleta Laser Mesh Sonar Capri

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WILL THEY STAY UP??? YES! THEY WILL STAY UP!

The seams near the hips are a little weird, and I almost took them back because I thought they look a little bit like someone drawing circles around and pointing to my saddle bags, (Notice how the model has her hand in front of hers? Not an accident.) but…meh! Nobody in boot camp is looking at my shit, so fuck it. I like the polka dot cut-outs and I’m too lazy to find another type of pant that won’t fall down but has a modern detail on it so IMMA KEEP EM.

AND YES THEY WILL STAY UP!

last but not least:

Athleta Circuit Capri

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OK. These are the weird one-offs I was curious about a while back. (See post here.) They are less expensive than any other pant from Athleta, and aren’t a line like the Sonar or Chaturanga, but they’re high-waisted and their description said they were for high intensity training, so…I had to check them out.

What’s different about them is the fabric: it’s a little thicker than the normal Athleta fabric (which is good, because Athleta’s fabric is a little on the thin side) but it’s really slippery. Like, slipperier than a bathing suit-slippery. Slipperier than 80’s shiny purple spandex-slippery. I don’t know why. And I thought that would make them fall down, but…they didn’t, so I’m keeping these guys too. Who knew?

The only bad news is they only have them in pink, and in XS or XL now…so I’m sorry that I brought you late news on that. Maybe they’ll bring them back for the spring catalog.

But what have we learned? If you’re a pear and/or have trouble finding workout or running pants that stay up, try the Athleta Sonar line. And no, they’re not paying me. But seriously, they should probably start, right? AHEM.

Good luck getting your workouts in over the holidays! I’ll be using Aaptiv / The App Formerly Known as Skyfit. I’ll let you know how it goes. MERRY ALMOST CHRISTMAS!

 

 

Can we talk about strappy bras? / The Sports Bra Report

2014 was all about the pants. (Patterns! Colors! Laces! Mesh!)

2015 and and 2016 so far: it’s all about the bras.

What are my thoughts on sports bra fashion? This is a very important question in the world today. Obviously. Let’s dive in.

I like a deep arm hole, so I appreciate a cute sports bra.

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But I’ve learned from experience that the bolder the bra design, the less you can wear it with.

I don’t really understand why every bra isn’t made for high impact, and have lining or padding. Who wants saggy nipply sacks showing through their shirt during sweat yoga? I don’t want to see that shit. This is not NatGeo. Get a real bra.

I instantly don’t like anyone who doesn’t wear a top over her sports bra, either. I mean, come on. You know exactly what you’re doing and it’s not powerful or cool. Save it for Instagram.

Long bras or bralettes or short tanks or whatever Taylor Swift wears are somehow OK, though. There’s probably a formula.

APPROPRIATE AB EXPOSURE =

YOUR PALM WIDTH minus IF YOU EAT CARBS divided by IF YOU HAVE ANY SHAME

or something like that.

But the big trend in sports bras right now is the super strappy bra. I’m sure it was inspired by the cage/harness bra trend, which I find edgy, but generally kind of unflattering.

Oh, and skanky. That shit is skanky as HEY-ull. But I think that’s why it’s appealing. Everybody wants to skank it up sometimes and that is your goddess given right (in the bedroom or near water, and only if you’re young enough, for fuck’s sake, please) so whatever. Go get it.

Right now, every athletic wear site has a strappy bra for its main image when you click on “sports bras.” Don’t believe me? Try it. I’ll wait.

There are wide straps and skinny straps and rib cage straps and holy shit is that a spider web? straps. And that’s all good and fine, but I’m not buying any of them.

  1.  Because it’s hard to style that shit. You always end up with too much going on.
  2.  Because it just looks hard to get into. ANGTFT
  3.  Thin-strapped bras dig into my neck and give me a headache, so mo’ straps mo’ problems?
  4.  In my old age, I’m realizing how quickly things become dated. And I’d rather drop $65 on a super supportive black thing that I can wear until it falls apart than a cute strappy thing that’s only going to be on trend for a few months. But, hey, that’s just me and my mood. If you like it, rock it. I salute any effort put towards feeling good about yourself while you do the work.

BUT, big picture, it’s a little “lingerie,” and I prefer more warrior / less princess for my power outfits. Same goes for anything that looks like lace. Just doesn’t feel right.

But Aimee, do you like anything? At all? Why are you such a hater?

OK fine. There’s one thing in sports bra land that I really like right now. OK two.

First one is the leather look. Or lustrous look. Holy shit. This is edgy and cool and bad ass and a little sexy, but more in a “I will slap you” way and less of a “please think I’m pretty” way. You know what I’m saying? There’s a huge difference. And it’s all in who has the power. To me, this leather look is something you wear for you, it’s very superhero, very strong. And strappy is something you wear for others. Who have peens.

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Second thing I’m digging in the sports bra world is this new (to me) brand, Panache Sport. I saw them everywhere when I was on my tour of every athletic wear store last month. Panache is a lingerie brand from the UK, and Panache Sport is their athletic side. They only make one bra, with or without underwire. They’re pricey, but they’ve got pretty good design, major support, they’re flattering, they’re high enough so your bits don’t fall out, AND they’re cute/powerful looking. They’re kind of everything. I’m not in spend mode, but I did find one for cheaper on Zappos or Amazon or something. It was cheaper because it’s a weird color. There’s always a trade off. You get what you pay for. It’s hard to wear with a lot, because IT’S BLUE AND ORANGE!, but it is a really solid bra. I recommend.

And that’s what I have to say about that.

Oh, and and also, camo is huge right now.

Later.

 

ALO Yoga Goddess Leggings Review

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Yeah, baby! Goddess leggings! Much ballerina. So cutes.

The first time I saw a pair of ALO Yoga’s Goddess Leggings was on the retail rack in the lobby of my local Dailey Method studio… I gasped. So pretty! So new! Such quality! And then I looked at the price tag… I snorted. So expensive! So not something I’m going to buy! And then I saw them on the body of one of my Dailey Method instructors (read: someone who’s paid to be thin and ripped) and …I sighed. So only-made-for-the skinnies! So not for me! Wah wah.

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But then, they went on sale this holiday shopping season and I was like, $60? WHAT? I have to give ’em a shot. Maybe every single one of my instincts is wrong! Maybe I can wear them!

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They are as nice as they look. The fabric is thick (doesn’t show cellulite), and it holds you in without sausage-ing you, and it wicks and breathes and all of that. The leg warmer part is stretchy and doesn’t itch or get in your way at all. The waist is a little low for me, at least at my current level of fluffiness, but I think the rise is pretty typical for any pant that’s not labeled as high waisted.

And, not for nothing, the packaging was really nice too. Even the tag is printed with a rubbery coating on the paper that makes it feel nice. Details, man. Details.

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But the big question: can a pear with thick-ass thighs pull these off? Let’s consult my magic skinny mirror selfies. (This mirror stretches things vertically ala  Paula Abdul’s Promise of a New Day video. I use it so I don’t cry.)

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From the side? Sure. Maybe. But you can’t deny that there’s a horizontal line running around said thick-ass thigh. Red flag, right there, y’all.

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Oh shit. There’s the truth. You can get away with almost anything from the side. You can convince yourself of something from the front. But there’s no lying from the back. That horizontal line stops the eye and makes it bounce around in the ass-u-lar area. If I was wearing all black, the eye would just skim down all the way to the ground. I might think “Fuck. I’ve got some work to do.” But I wouldn’t think “Holy fuck, I’m wearing 30 pounds of extra ass alone. AAAA!” Both are true. But the first thought is only upsetting enough to be motivating. The second thought can make me crumble into a self-hating pile. THIS IS WHY WHAT YOU WEAR MATTERS, PEOPLE. Your workout clothes need to give you confidence and make you feel capable. But the wrong ones can make you think your worst thoughts. Dress for success, not for sadness.

SO. The leggings are great. They’re high quality. And if I don’t look at myself from the back, they kind of make me feel all dancer-y, which motivates me to have even better form when doing barre shit. BUT, I don’t think I’ll be wearing them in public for a while. They’re not the best style for my body type.

Long story short:

ALO Goddess Leggings: if you have below-the-waist thickness, wear them at your own risk. If you have a thigh gap, first of all fuck you. Second of all congratulations. Bitch. And third, yes, you can absolutely wear them and you’re going to look fucking amazing in them. Grrrrr.

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