Athleisure style has been a go-to look in the women’s fashion industry for several years. While it was initially brushed off as a fad, the posh yet practical clothing trend held strong and remains at the forefront of the fashion world. It’s even an official word in Merriam-Webster’s dictionary now.
So what is athleisure and how do you dress accordingly? Athleisure clothing is cute, comfortable, and versatile. You can wear athleisure clothing while running errands, out to brunch, to the movies, on a shopping spree, to a party, and of course, while exercising. If you love the laidback outfit idea but aren’t quite sure how to pull off the athleisure trend, Vionic has you covered from head to toe. Find our favorite effortless athleisure outfits and the best athleisure shoes to match below.
Athleisure Outfit Ideas
Aside from being super comfortable, one of the best things about workout gear is that it’s easy to throw together a stylish ensemble. With a few key pieces—like running tights, an oversized sweater, neutral sweatshirts, basic tees, and women’s casual sneakers—you can curate virtually endless athleisure looks.
But you came here for some specific suggestions, so let’s get to it. Read on for six athleisure outfit ideas anyone can pull off.
1. Oversized Sweatshirt with Yoga Pants
Oversized t-shirts and sweatshirts are all the rage right now, and they’re the perfect thing to wear over a pair of slimming athletic pants. For a comfy-cozy athleisure look, we recommend an oversized sweater or hoodie with yoga pants. Though yoga pants come in almost any color and print you can imagine, lighter hues tend to look more like workout leggings. To nail a sporty vibe, opt for navy blue, charcoal gray, or black leggings. Underneath the sweatshirt, throw on a simple fitted tee, cami, or compression tank.
As for the sweatshirt itself, you’ve got options. With dark, neutral yoga pants, you can select a similar color or contrast with a lighter hue. We love the look of retro-style hoodless sweatshirts, but you can definitely wear a hoodie if that’s your vibe. For footwear, how about a pair of laceless active sneakers, like the fresh styles from Vionic? They’re easy to get on and off, not to mention trendy and totally functional. If it’s cold out, a knit beanie can really pull this athleisure wear together.
2. Bike Shorts with a Jacket
Stretchy bike shorts an athleisure piece that have made their way into women’s fashion—they’ve even been featured on the runway in recent years. Another athleisure look we adore is bike shorts with a jacket. With the right material, cycling shorts can be surprisingly comfortable and even slimming, as many are high-waisted and made with compression materials. A majority of shorts you’ll find will come in black, and you can’t go wrong there. Other colors are great too, as long as you’re mindful of clashing.
Similar to wearing an oversized sweatshirt with yoga pants, you’ll want to balance tight shorts with a long or boxy jacket. A knee-length raincoat, oversized denim jacket, bomber jacket, windbreaker, or a utility jacket are all excellent choices. Underneath the jacket, opt for a basic tee or tank in a complementing color.
For this athleisure ensemble, we strongly suggest wearing sneakers—even if you have no plans to get on a bicycle. Sandals, boots, or other footwear styles can throw off the look. Since you’re wearing shorts on the bottom and outerwear on top, you’ve got to create balance with your shoes. Having said that, active styles or fashion sneakers work for this outfit. Browse the athletic and casual designs from Vionic and see what stands out to you.
Need more style tips for pairing sneakers with your athleisure outfit? Check out our tips on how to wear sneakers fashionably.
3. Cropped Tee with Running Tights
For a flirty, athletic, on-the-go vibe, consider rocking a cropped tee with running tights. Many running tights currently on the market feature high-rise cuts, which is ideal if you’re wearing a midriff-baring top. Also, we love running tights in performance materials because they have a nice flattering sheen that makes you look ready for anything. For the crop top, you won’t have a hard time finding one online or in clothing stores, and activewear or casual styles work here. But if you’re feeling creative or are on a budget, you can also make your own with an old t-shirt and a good pair of scissors.
What about your feet? With this athleisure outfit, you’ve got lots of flexibility. Whether sneaker booties, fashion trainers, casual slip-ons, or athletic lace-up shoes are calling your name, almost any tennis shoe style will do. On the other hand, a pair of flat or platform sandals can also work if warm weather is on the forecast. Vionic carries an impressive selection of both comfortable women’s sandals and sneakers. If you need outerwear, go for a leather jacket, denim coat, or bomber.
4. Coordinated Tracksuit
One of the simplest (and coolest) athleisure outfit ideas is a coordinated tracksuit. Aside from an undershirt and shoes, this effortless look relieves you from making any additional fashion decisions. Coordinated tracksuits and sweatsuits are having a moment in both women’s and men’s fashion.
You can find matching sets in tons of colors, patterns, and cuts at varying price points. However, if you want to sport a retro look, you might consider a vintage tracksuit. And sure, you can definitely mix and match with tops and bottoms. Yet there’s something refreshingly minimalist and sporty chic about a matching set.
Tracksuits and sweatsuits are super comfortable and cozy—and the last thing you want to do is ruin the experience of wearing them with a pair of uncomfortable shoes. Sneakers are the way to go here, but not just any sneakers. Comfort and support are crucial, and with Vionic tennis shoes, you can count on both. Lace-up casual sneakers or bungee-tie trainers will complete the look.
5. Monochrome Athleisure
Speaking of matching, another go-to athleisure look is a monochrome outfit. This means your top and bottoms are the same color, and maybe even the same shade. You don’t have to wear an actual matching set or even pieces from the same brand as long as each piece is roughly the same hue.
With this look, the possibilities are endless. For example, you can wear black pants with a black performance top and a black jacket (AKA the tried-and-true athleisure uniform). We also love blush pink, muted green, dusty purple, gray, and navy monochrome athleisure outfits. Yoga pants with a matching sports bra and sweatshirt is a great option in any color.
As for your shoes, you can definitely opt for a pair that matches the rest of your ensemble, but you don’t have to. For instance, with pink, purple, or green attire, neutral footwear in gray, tan, or taupe will enhance your outfit without clashing. Conversely, you might want to wear a bold shoe color with all-black clothing, like red or hot pink. When in doubt, remember that white sneakers go with everything.
6. Accent with Animal Print
When you think of animal print, athletic wear might not be the first thing that comes to mind. But you can actually find a wide range of active pieces with leopard, cheetah, tiger, cow, or boa print. When you browse women’s sneakers from Vionic, you’ll find casual and athletic animal print shoes that make the perfect accent to an athleisure outfit.
Another idea is to wear simple tennis shoes with monochrome (or otherwise neutral) clothing and make a statement with animal-print accessories. A scarf, a hat, jewelry, or a handbag are all great options. As we mentioned, the athleisure look is all about balance, and the fierce elegance of animal prints are ideal for turning performance wear into streetwear.
Athleisure: The Best of Both Worlds
Combining athletic apparel with leisurely pieces, athleisure fashion is the best of both worlds. It’s perfect for busy women who want to go from lunch to a workout class and then to the supermarket without having to change clothes. The trend is comfortable, flattering, and a total time-saver.
Since you’re in loungewear and workout clothes, the key to pulling off athleisure is to make it look intentional and put together. You want to appear sporty, not sloppy. Making sure your shoes and clothes are clean and free of wrinkles will go a long way.
If you’re new to the athleisure style, try out a few of the looks we mentioned, but don’t be afraid to make it your own. Whether you go for a sweatsuit, running tights, a crop top, cycling shorts, or head-to-toe yoga gear, it’s easy to transform sporty apparel into everyday wear. As long as you’re comfy and confident, there’s not much to it.
To put the finishing touch on your sporty-chic ensemble, order a pair (or two) of comfortable walking shoes for women from Vionic.