Since when has running been so fashionable? Arguably, since now. Competition drives innovation, and never have we ever had such exposure to a multitude of brands, all vying for our loyalty and enticing us to purchase their athletic apparel. They are relying on the same motivation we feel towards purchasing other clothing: fashion. Fashion-forward designs have extended past the traditional markets and now there are truly beautiful, stunning looks to be worn out on your run. And not only that, there are many different styles, so you can choose the fashion-forward look that suits you best.
That being said, the more choices available, the more opportunities you have for fashion failures. I’ve compiled a list of fashion faux pas for your review. Let me know if I missed any.
Fashion Faux Pas
Matchy-matchy. Gone are the days of the matching track suit pant and jacket. Thank goodness. Yes, many collections feature matching pieces, but please oh please don’t buy them and wear them together. Mix it up, people.
White. Off-white, beige, light grey… washed out colors are out. It doesn’t do anything for your complexion, honey, and it kind of just looks old, dingy, and tired. Not to mention the way a light colored garment takes to sweat… Opt for bright, vibrant colors, and if you’re worried about standing out, realize that everyone is wearing stand-out shades. You’re standing out right now by wearing that questionable beige.
Layered sports bras. Not sure that this was ever in fashion, but sometimes gals feel that the ladies need more support and stabilization. To that I say, get a real running bra, my dear! Please, please, please don’t wear multiple sports bras. It looks horrible and it just ain’t right. We can get you help.
Basic. Being fashionable in running means not blending in. Instead of wearing a basic outfit composed of very simple pieces, choose at least one stand out item to give your outfit a voice. Otherwise, it’s just not interesting, and therefore not fashionable. Add in a bold print or bright color. Spice things up with fun straps or a keyhole back.
Unintentional midriff exposure. Hey, if you were trying to get attention, you’re getting it! We’re all looking at you, sister, and not in a good way. We get it – crop tops are (sort of) in right now. But it has to be an intentional look. If your shirt is too short and just a little bit is showing, you’re wearing the wrong sized top.
The shortest shorts. Okay, you have two passes on this one: if you are an elite runner or a teenage girl. Because both require the shortest, most minimalist looks possible. Elite runners love to have the least amount of inhibitions in their running movement, so short split shorts and tiny Nike Pro Shorts are preferred. And teenage girls… let’s just say, if you’ve over 16, consider a more mature, more covered look.
Young prints. Unless you are a tween, small polka dots and cartoon-ish floral patterns are going to come of as you wearing your little sister’s outfit. With so many mature, beautiful print designs available, choose something that flatters you and makes you look like a grown up. And if you’re after something more striking and a little cray cray, there are plenty of options for you. (See photo to the right.)
Hydration packs for short distances. This is the equivalent to carrying your T9 calculator in your front pocket during the passing period before Algebra in high school. Or wearing a fanny pack to Disneyland. Nerd alert! Hey, hydration is so freakin’ important, I’m not knocking that. But if you’re running less than a 10k, you need to tone it down a bit. Hydrate properly before your run and you’re gonna be fiiine.
Dolled up. Oh, you fancy, huh? We’ve all seen that college-age girl out for a run, who has her hair in perfect wavy curls, her makeup on point, and her cutesie Lululemon outfit (that probably took a significant chunk out of her financial aid). And we all collectively roll our eyes. Girl, if you’re really out for a run, ditch the glam, because if you’re doing it right, you’ll be sweating off all that foundation, that hair will be flat and matted, and your mascara will surely have you looking like a silly racoon by the time you’re done. As far as the outfit goes… why not opt for something that doesn’t require you to completely drain your budget for the month? Fashion doesn’t have to break the bank.