By now, I'm sure we're not the only ones who have embraced the athleisure lifestyle.
Even if you haven’t joined the trend yet, you’ve got to admit that comfortable and sporty pieces are all over the place these days.
Our editors have tried many brands and discovered that one of the biggest problems is that many companies can’t find the right balance between functionality, style, comfort, and price.
With so many options to choose from it’s tough to identify which brand is worth the investment. Believe us, we know from personal experience how disappointing it can be to have to replace those joggers you bought only a few weeks ago because the quality wasn't up to scratch.
So we set out to see which brands deserve our seal of approval. The top 3 brands that kept popping up were Lululemon, Sweaty Betty, and Gym+Coffee.
Once we put them all head to head, here’s who won our vote:
- All 3 carry athleisure wear
- All 3 use premium fabrics
- All 3 offer a range of sizes
- All 3 have retail stores across the UK
- Gym+Coffee is powered by their community and hosts fantastic free, in-person events
- Sweaty Betty only offers a women's-line while Gym+Coffee and Luluemon cater to men and women
- Gym+Coffee uses recycled materials in 30% of their line
At first glance, Gym+Coffee (Gym Plus Coffee) may seem like just another workout brand offering tees, joggers, and performance leggings. But after we tried them, we can tell you they’re so much more.
Many brands overlook their customers, which is why we’re in awe that everything Gym+Coffee does is powered by their community. They’re on a mission to make life richer for everyone who slips into their clothes. The brand hosts monthly yoga classes and sponsors big, exciting events like the Great North and Great South Runs, Wellfest, and Summer Social.
Gym+Coffee has functional apparel for both women and men. Their Swift High-Rise Legging in Black and the Bua Jogger 2.0 in Grey are incredibly soft, yet durable. Bonus - we felt comfortable in everything - nothing was too tight or too loose, no matter where we were or our activities. Yes, you can really wear Gym+Coffee anywhere and look amazing!
You’ll not only look good, you’ll feel good about wearing Gym+Coffee since the brand is committed to offsetting 100% of their carbon footprint. They use compostable packaging, recycled materials in 30% of their line, and are striving for 50% by 2025.
Their athleisure wear is so functional and built to withstand anything from long runs to last-minute coffee dates.
The Gym+Coffee lineup ranges from £25 for essentials to £85-100 for their premium jackets.
Who hasn’t heard of Lululemon? Who hasn’t watched influencers flaunt their luxury yoga pants across our Instagram feeds? So we gave their athleisure line a try to see if their clothes lived up to all the hype.
Of course, we had to start with Lululemon’s infamous Align leggings. While they were cute and comfy, we couldn't put our finger on what truly set them apart from the essential leggings already in our closets.
Like Gym+Coffee, Lululemon features products for both women and men. Although it's clear there's more focus on women's gear. While we had no complaints about the variety of their women's apparel, most of their offerings for men come in bland, unappealing colors.
With a limited and uninspiring men's section, uninspiring leggings, and prices that start around €25 for an essential tank top, we can't say we’ll be shopping here for our athleisure wear anytime soon.
Sadly, Sweaty Betty’s athleisure line is only for women. So don't plan on scoring any matching outfits with your male mates.
However, we loved that everything they offered came in various swatches and colors that are ideal for both cardio workouts or catching Inventing Anna on your sofa.
We tried Sweaty Betty’s Power Gym Leggings with stretch technology and pockets - perfect for everything you need before a run! But they fit a bit too snug for our liking. Compared to other brands, the fit was comfortable enough. But we’re unimpressed by the 'bum sculpting' and the material didn’t feel . No one wants to buy workout clothes they'll have to replace within a few months.
Unlike Lululemon, Sweaty Betty's product prices aren’t falsely hiked up by influencers. They range from £18.00 for basics to £95 for leggings.
After comparing Gym+Coffee, Lululemon, and Sweaty Betty in terms of comfort, functionality, design, and quality, our fashion editors simply had to go with Gym+Coffee. Plus, we love it that they’re so much more than just another athleisure line. Gym+Coffee is a company looking to bring athletic people together and support their healthy lifestyles.
Next time you go searching for new workout threads, remember that with Gym+Coffee you not only get high-quality, stylish, and functional athleisure wear, you're actually joining a community of like-minded individuals looking to help support you.
For anyone looking to look and feel great, Gym+Coffee is a savvy investment no matter whether you're hitting the gym or meeting up with friends for a morning cup of coffee.