Widely credited as the foremost pioneer in the athleisure trend that has rocked retail for half a decade, Lululemon is stepping away from leggings with a line that favors fashion over function.
The Canadian athletic apparel brand is bringing its minimalistic Lab line to 45 stores across the U.S., where it was previously only available at a few shops in New York and Vancouver.
Made for the “technically minded, and the aesthetically motivated,” Lululemon aims to broaden the line’s reach by offering it more widely online and in stores across the country, while still keeping the pricier pieces limited edition.
The Lab collection differs from Lululemon’s core line both aesthetically and functionally. Not unlike streetwear brands like Virgil Abloh’s Off-White, Lab employs a pared-down, utilitarian design sense, but blends it with Lululemon’s well-loved technical fabrics and functional details. Many of the pieces, while meant for statement-making rather than jogging, are constructed with the same moisture-wicking technologies as the brand’s athletic wear, according to the Lululemon website.
Lab’s white Reykur jumpsuit, for example, is oversized with large cargo pockets and an asymmetrical zip front, along with a host of small pockets and subtle design details. The product’s description calls out its ability to layer over workout gear. Lab’s Lahar dress is a sand-colored sheath that barely grazes the body, eliminating the feminine lines that are so accentuated by Lululemon’s compression-style leggings and sports bras.
Many of the Lab collection’s designs are unisex, with technical windbreakers, tees and sweatpants in neutrals and muted color ways. In fact, most of the items in the men’s collection are available for women as well, with the exception of several pant styles. Utilitarian details like discreet pockets add a subtle visual interest to the pieces, which feature minimal hardware. Prices range from $88 for a basic tank to $398 for a waterproof, zip-up jacket.