THE IDEA of a fitness clothing subscription is enticing. For about $50 a month, if you can keep your wits about you while shopping online, you get a new outfit every month. You can bypass months if you want, but your fee covers an outfit (depending on the outfit), and who doesn’t want a whole outfit for $50? As someone who spends a significant amount of my life in stretchy pants, I would not judge. And considering the prices of other popular brands, it’s worth a look.
Fabletics has two elements in its favor — actress and spokeswoman Kate Hudson, and affordability. Sports bras are available to members for $19.95. Fabletics gives you a quiz asking about favorite activities, color palettes and body type, among others, and offers recommendations. After putting in my preferences, “My Picks” were flowy tops and black yoga pants. Am I that predictable?
The site also emails its picks for you on the first of the month. I was more interested in Kate’s closet. Fabletics offers some fun prints, but its top sellers are fitness staples.
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Ellie’s prices are higher, though members still can nab a pair of capri pants for $39.99, and nonmembers pay $54.95. Ellie’s styles feel fresher. The site describes clothes using designations such as “hottie alert,” “anti muffin top” and “private perfecter.”
Ellie selects for personalities like “Miss Independent,” which are fun to shop. Unlike Fabletics, which gives you a credit if you don’t want an outfit and forget to tell them to skip a month, Ellie will select an outfit and ship it to you. Both have return/exchange policies.
Both release new styles regularly, and both seem to sell out fairly often, so check before you subscribe.
Here are some of my favorite recent picks from both sites:
Ayni Sports Bra, $19.95 VIP, regular $24.95
This bra has a low back and looks comfortable. The High Intensity print would be a fun pop of color underneath a tank. And Kate likes it.
Gaviota Capri, $31.95 VIP, regular $39.95
This capri is one of my favorite Fablectics picks, with diagonal slashes of mesh across the thigh and shin in front and another slash across the back of your calf. Apparently others like the design, because the black was sold out in many sizes. You still might be able to nab charcoal. Full-price is so reasonable, I’d order it even without joining Fabletics.
Aventura tank, $15.95 VIP, regular $19.95
Sometimes you just need a solid, basic tank, and the Aventura fits that need perfectly with a pretty good assortment of colors.
Solarbeam shorts, $24.99 member, $39.95 regular
These shorts have a 3-inch inseam, a wide waistband and the “anti-muffin top” alert. They look cozy and short enough to run or work out in.
Zuma Canyon Tank, $29.99 member, $44.95 regular
This tank gets the “hottie alert” from Ellie. It comes with a built-in bra, and the mesh straps add an interesting detail to a fitted tank that can work for any activity.
Wave Runner Capri, $39.99 member, $54.95 regular
With a waistband cut slightly lower at the navel and a cute print, this one is an easy yes.
Yelena Jacket, $45.99 member, $60.95 regular
This French terry jacket looks beyond comfortable and will be a great layer for fall.
Nicole Tsong teaches yoga at studios around Seattle. Read her blog at papercraneyoga.com. Email: email@example.com.