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Amp Up Your Athleisure Without Looking Like You’re In Pajamas

Amp Up Your Athleisure Without Looking Like You’re In Pajamas
The “athleisure” fashion trend — wearing activewear when you aren’t planning to do anything super-active, hence, leisure — started out as a functional way to go from a workout to a social function by throwing on another layer to look presentable, and is now acceptable as everyday wear. After the quarantines that began in 2020, most everyone realized that being comfortable all day long is awesome. But now that we’re crawling “back to normal” – we’re offering a few athleisure outfits to amp up your casual looks.

People love this trend because it allows you to have a presentable, put-together look whether you need to sit comfortably cross-legged on the couch or slowly meander down the aisles of the grocery store.

I can almost hear you thinking, “How do I wear athleisure without looking like I’m in pajamas?” These outfits will help you look stylish and on trend while being effortlessly comfortable all day, too. The best part: you don’t need to work out to rock the look. Consider it high-performance activewear for laying on the couch. Yoga? Sure. Soccer game? Of course. Shopping? Why not. Dinner party? Definitely.

Athleisure Outfits: Styling Tips

There are some simple ways to avoid looking like you just rolled out of bed. Think function and comfort, but elevated.

“What I love about the athleisure trend is the ability to mix and match styles,” says Renee Fuller, lead stylist at Zulily. “If done right, it feels like nothing is off the table. Blazer and biker shorts? Cute! And throw on an oversized button-up to add a sophisticated element to any casual look. Think layering under sweatshirts or wearing one as a lightweight jacket.”

Pair your athletic clothes with your favorite accessories or jacket. You can run around and do all your errands, yet still look cute.

  • Pick a flattering fit for your body type.
  • Pair casual pieces with your athletic wear: Add a cropped hoodie, denim jacket, Birkenstocks, or a baseball hat.
  • Work in higher-end pieces to elevate your outfit: Add a leather jacket or trench coach and a designer cross-body purse.
  • Layer on jewelry: Add statement necklaces, hoop earrings or a stack of bracelets.
  • Pair your look with sneakers that come in all shapes and colors.

Fuller’s favorite part about this trend? “Adding statement accessories like a cross-body fanny pack, bucket hat, oversized sunglasses, or bold gold jewelry to finish the look!”

Finish with fresh, fast 5-minute-makeup: Strobe highlighter, mascara, concealer, and a statement-making lip color.

Start With A Base Layer: Leggings and A Sports Bra or Tank

Think of your leggings and top as the base of your outfit, and then add on from there.

If there is one piece of clothing I could live in forever, it would be leggings  and not just to work out in. With leggings, you can change your whole look depending on what kind of top or shoes you put on. They flatter every single body type, and they’re typically made of easy-to-keep-clean fabrics.

Leggings usually come in different rises and lengths like flared or cropped (or 7/8 length). Or maybe you prefer the tapered look of joggers? Seek out interesting details like pockets, patterns, mesh panels, or colorblocking. For warmer months, replace your leggings with bike or running shorts, depending on which inseam length you’re more comfortable in.

On top, go with a form-fitting sports bra or cropped tank in moisture-wicking fabric. Choose a supportive fit that can double as a tank or serve as a first layer. Match with your bottoms, or pick a contrasting color for a bold look.

Most importantly, find what looks best on you and go with it.

No-Brainer Athleisure Outfit Ideas For Every Day

Use these fashion formulas to style your own athleisure for everyday looks. Add statement accessories, play with colors, and of course, be you. Nothing is off the table! 

From Drop-off to Coffee Shop

Go beyond basic black 

Blonde woman in colorful athleisure outfit holding hands with with blonde child in blue and green outfit

Colorful leggings + contrasting hoodie + layering jacket + neutral sneakers

Chasing a toddler counts as a workout, doesn’t it?

From soccer fields to grocery aisles

An all-day look for all-day comfort

Athleisure Look featuring Shorts, Hoodie, and Baseball Hat

Comfy shorts + hoodie + sneakers + baseball hat

Be ready for anything the day throws at you, from out-of-bounds soccer balls to rogue shopping carts in the parking lot.

From the Dog Park To A Friend’s House

No jogging required

Athleisure Look featuring Joggers, Tank Top and Hiking Boots

Joggers + crop top + crossbody bag + boots + hoop earrings

Pair your favorite dog park shoes with comfortable joggers and a crossbody bag (for dog treats, of course).

From yoga class to video meeting

Business on the top, lounge on the bottom

Woman wearing blue bike shorts, white sports bra, and blue button-up

Bike shorts + sports bra + button-down shirt + sneakers + hoop earrings

Working from home but need to squeeze in a yoga class before your next meeting? When you’re done downward dogging, add a button-down shirt, earrings, and a pop of color on your lips for added visual interest from the waist up.

Upgrade Your Athleisure

From airport runway to sidewalk sightseeing 

Comfort takes flight
Woman wearing rust joggers, tank top and white jacket

Joggers + tank top + vest or jacket + sneakers

This travel-ready look will be comfortable enough to wear on the airplane and at your destination without the need for changing outfits: Sneakers you can slip on, layers for the different temperatures on the plane and a tote bag with lots of pockets.

From Go-go-Go to Slow-Mo

Monochrome for minimalists

Athleisure look with matching eucalyptus green sweatsuit

Coordinating sweats + layers + sneakers

Make yourself comfortable in a matching set for a put-together look in head-to-toe cotton, great for power errands or at home on the couch. Grab a fleece vest or jacket in a complementary color for cold weather days.

From Farmer’s Market To Backyard BBQ

Everyone loves a matching set

Pink Coordinating Sweat Suit Set

Coordinating sweats + button-up + sneakers + baseball hat

You’ll get compliments left and right in a coordinating outfit that also looks sharp and put-together. Play with a bright color for the set, then stick to neutrals for your accessories and button-up. Try a half-tuck for a more fitted, cropped look.

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About The Author

Becca Luna

Becca Risa Luna is a senior creative copywriter, designer and content strategist for Zulily's blog, The Find. Becca's work has been published on many sites, such as HuffPost, Seattle Met, and Seattle Refined. She spends her free time traveling, advocating for mental health awareness, and writing about her passions: content marketing and designer handbags. An alumni of California State University at Chico, Becca currently lives in Seattle, Wash., with her partner and their rescued mini schnauzer, Huxley.

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