The 15 Activewear Brands Every Guy Should Know
By Paolo Sandoval
15 Activewear Brands Every Guy Should Know:
Year Launched: 2014
The Skinny: Founded in Connecticut by an ex-NFL employee and a former NCAA lacrosse player, the company famously spends big on fabric, weaving its duds with SilverTech threading, an antimicrobial fabric initially developed for American military operations in Iraq. Rhone also has one of the best examples of logo subtlety in athleisure — three interlocking X’s stitched into the side hemming, meant to signify the strength found in numbers.
Year Launched: 2014
The Skinny: A joint SF venture by the founders of Huckberry and Taylor Stitch (who are all friends, by the by), Myles Apparel was named for both the first king of Sparta and the miles (duh) you knock out during a run. While running is a clear focus — they began by trying to create the perfect athletic short, and currently host a running club — their clothes are successfully activity-agnostic.
Myles Apparel
Year Launched:2013
The Skinny: Whereas most athleisure skews pricey, Fabletics bills itself on quality makes at ridiculously affordable prices. While you can get cozier, higher performing pieces, there’s zero denying the convenience that FAbletics provides, which probably explains why they’re they’re currently the “largest digitally native activewear brand in the world”.
Year Launched: 2010
The Skinny: Put a multiple-time Ironman winner (Oliver Bernhard) in a room with some Swiss engineers, and magic is inevitable. OR began with a superfoam running shoe that was scientifically proven to lower blood lactate levels in runners, and hasn’t looked back, since expanding its line to technical hoodies, lightweight shorts and performance vests, all equipped with rear vents and subtle zip pockets.
On Running
Year Launched: 2014
The Skinny: The name references Malcolm Gladwell’s prescription for perfection, and Ten Thousand seems hell-bent on supplying perfect shorts and tees to its customers. Proudly DTC, the company eschews the “BS marketing” of the big boys and has a simple line of products: three shorts (one for versatility, one for durability, one that’s super lightweight), two shirts (one for durability, one that’s super lightweight) and a few base layers.
Ten Thousand
Year Launched: 2013
The Skinny: Based in Encinitas — a San Diego County beach hamlet with an average year-round temp of 72 °F — the folks behind Vuori know a thing or two about getting outside. Their clothing balances SoCal’s access to nature with its “do as you like” MO, offering a blend of high-performance attributes (moisture-wicking, quick-drying and anti-odor) with a colorful nonchalance. Find bright pocket tees, outerwear with camo shells and even board shorts, a bit uncommon for the industry.
Year Launched: 2014
The Skinny: Austin-based Outdoor Voices is a brand for women first. Pay a visit to the brand’s Instagram page and you’ll scroll through 12 or 15 photos of yoga pants before finding photos of their men’s offerings. But don’t worry, there are enough joggers, shorts and tees in male cuts for men to post their own #DoingThings photos in OV gear.
Outdoor Voices
Year Launched: 2015
The Skinny: Satisfy Running is a love letter to running, and it’s innovative (if not pricey) designs speak to that admiration firsthand. Crafted for performance with an eye for aesthetics, the brand marries iconic athleisure looks that span generations (i.e. their infamous moth eaten “running cult” cutoff) and insanely luxurious merinos, cottons and synthetic materials for an elite running package. Of course, their activewear is perfectly good for everyday errands, too, and the pinnacle of sporty-chic.
YYear Launched: 2007
The Skinny: Though located just miles away from Lululemon’s HQ in Vancouver, Reigning Champ gear feels completely original in the athleisure sphere. Its interlocking “RC,” lightweight terry crewcuts and satin varsity jackets all evoke a sort of restored corner boxing gym.
Reigning Champ
Year Launched: 2014
The Skinny: Borrowing their design cues from vintage running gear, Tracksmith’s collection of shorts, tops and sweats looks like it fell out of the back of a truck headed to the 1975 Penn Relays. Modern materials (water-repellent “dryskin”) and features (zippered card and key pockets) seamlessly wed with old-school flourishes like stirrups and four-inch inseams to create impeccably stylish but functional silhouettes.
Year Launched: 2017
The Skinny: Huckberry’s in-house brand, Proof’s tees and henleys are constructed with an assist from Global Merino, a leading textile manufacturer that sources its merino wool from three sustainable farms in New Zealand. Mix that merino wool with a little nylon, and you’ve got a tee that literally stayed crisp (and odorless) during three straight days of use in Iceland. You can watch the adventure, which includes a near-5,000-foot glacier, here.
Year Launched: 2015
The Skinny: Public Rec blasted onto the scene in 2015, raising $180K and selling 2,000 pairs of sweatpants via Kickstarter. That pant (the “All Day Every Day”) is still their crown jewel, and effortlessly embodies the spiritual soul of athleisure today. Good for the gym, couch or Casual Friday at work (if you have them in black or navy). But the Chicago-based brand is far from a one-hit wonder, branching out from sweatpants into weekenders, beanies and beyond.
Public Rec
Year Launched: 2007
The Skinny: Cult athliesure staple Alo Yoga has long been supported by a cabal of celebrity worships, ranging from Taylor Swift to the Jo’ bros; the athletic apparel brand, which is recent years has expanded into menswear, is far more than a yogi-centric outfitter. As it turns out, Comfortable, breathable and movement-forward clothes make for good athliesure, period, especially given the attention to detail Alo puts into their designs.
Alo Yoga
District Vision has made a name for itself as the stylish running brand to rock. They also have all of the technical features that we love like stretch, moisture wicking, temperature regulation and durability.Year Launched: 2016
The Skinny: With a focus on streamlined and sleek running gear and accessories District Vision has made a name for itself as the stylish running brand to rock. Their apparel has all of the technical features like stretch, moisture wicking, temperature regulation and durability. The brand is also known for their top of the line collaborations with Salomon, Reigning Champ and much more.
District Vision
YYear Launched: 1998
The Skinny: The oldest and best-known activewear brand on the list, Lululemon was founded in 1998 as a yoga brand for women. And while the brand’s yoga pants are still beloved by suburban moms everywhere, lululemon has greatly expanded its offerings — making gear for running, cycling, training and other sweaty activities meant to be worn by women and men. That’s right — lululemon has a serious collection of handsome athletic and lifestyle pieces with sweat-wicking, anti-odor properties that remain at the top of the athleisure heap.We've put in the work researching, reviewing and rounding up all the shirts, jackets, shoes and accessories you'll need this season, whether it's for yourself or for gifting purposes. Sign up here for weekly style inspo direct to your inbox.