Have you heard of the latest style sweeping women’s fashion: athleisure wear? You’ve probably seen women in your everyday life sporting fashionable and functional athletic clothing that can easily transition from the gym to the brunch without missing a beat. This sporty chic style is called athleisure.
Women’s athleisure wear is comfortable clothing and footwear that is designed for everyday wear and exercise so that you can juggle all of the different activities in your day without needing to swap clothes. Women’s athleisure shoes are designed with both support and style in mind, though as with any other type of footwear, it’s important to know what to look for to make sure you find a great option of athleisure shoes for your feet. You’ll want to make sure your athleisure shoes are a good pair of comfortable walking shoes for women. At Vionic, we believe you never have to choose between support and style, you can have both! We’re here to help to make sure you can take advantage of the athleisure trend and the many benefits this running shoe style offers women.
In this guide, we’ll explain what athleisure is, how to pull off an athleisure look without looking like you just came from the gym, and our top picks for the best athleisure shoes to take your outfit to the next level without sacrificing style or support.
What is Athleisure, Exactly?
Before you can get to shopping for the perfect pair of athleisure shoes, first let’s take a moment to cover what athleisure is and why this style is making an incredible impact on women’s fashion.
If you’ve ever felt like women’s fashion ignores the realities of a woman’s life in the name of style, you’re not alone! We’ve all been there: you want to look cute and on trend with the latest styles, but they just aren’t functional for the realities of your day-to-day life. As women’s roles in the world have continued to grow and blossom, clothing and footwear have had to evolve with them to meet the changing needs of women’s fashion. High heels and a fitted skirt look great, but they just aren’t practical when you’re heading straight from dinner to the gym. To make many outfits in women’s fashion work, you find yourself having to pack a bag filled with all of the different clothing items you need to fit the different activities in your life. Athleisure is an answer to the need women have to have clothing products that are both functional and stylish and can transition seamlessly between activities without requiring a full clothing change, because really who has time for that? We know you don’t!
So, what is athleisure? Athleisure is an incredible fashion movement that has made a sweeping change in the tides of fashion with athleisure looks beginning to make appearances on designer runways. Women are integrating healthy lifestyles into their lives and need fashion that is functional across the activities they are doing each day. We know that comfort is of the utmost importance for everything from a workout to drinks with friends, and athleisure delivers to make sure you can easily transition between every activity in your life without constantly needing to haul an extra outfit with you. At Vionic, we are passionate about staying abreast of the latest in fashion and the most cutting-edge science in the foot health industry to make sure you never have to choose between style and support again. To make executing the perfect athleisure look a breeze, we’ve done the research to make sure you know how to pull off an athleisure look without looking like you just left a fitness class (even if you did).
How to Pull Off an Athleisure Look (Without Looking Like You Just Came From the Gym)
One of the beautiful aspects of athleisure is that it gives you the ability to head straight from the gym to other events without needing to change clothes, but how do you pull off an athleisure looking without looking like you were just sweating in the gym? We know it can be challenging to properly execute new fashion styles, which is why we’ve compiled our top tips for integrating athleisure style into your life without the awkward phase you’ll look back on and think, “What was I thinking?” At Vionic, we believe that when you are equipped with information, you can choose footwear and clothing that meets your unique needs. After all, everyone deserves to have shoes and clothing that makes them feel and look great! To help you find the best athleisure shoes and master athleisure style, we’ve compiled our top tips below.
Pick the Right Shoe for Your Activity and Arches
We believe that every great outfit begins with your shoes and that picking the right shoe for your activities (and arches) is one of the most key aspects of executing a perfect athleisure look. We create iconic footwear that has the supportive features and infrastructure needed to make sure your foot is properly aligned with your body and you are comfortable no matter where your favorite shoes are taking you. In athleisure shoes, women’s comfort is highly dependent on the amount of support their foot is receiving, which is directly tied to your arch type. Before diving into our top picks for the best athleisure shoes, we want to give you a quick introduction to the different arch types so that you can find the perfect lightwear athleisure shoes for your feet. When it comes to arches, there is no one-size-fits-all, which makes arch height incredibly important for achieving true comfort. To help you determine your arch type, we have compiled a list of basic information about the three types of arches below.
- High Arches: Did you know that roughly twenty percent of the population have high arches? High arches mean that you have a well-defined arch that is higher up off the ground that people with low or medium arches. If you have a high arch, more pressure will be placed on your rearfoot and forefoot, which causes these areas to absorb more impact and shock when you run, step, or walk. Because of this shock absorption, the surface area of your foot absorbing the impact is decreased. If you have high arches, you are prone to developing heel pain and plantar fasciitis because your feet have increased pressure exerted on them.
- Medium Arches: If you have medium arches, you’re in good company as this is the most common type of arch with sixty percent of the population having medium arches. Medium arches are considered biomechanically efficient and are characterized by a defined arch and less flexibility than feet with low arches.
- Low Arches: Just like high arches, roughly twenty percent of the population has low arches, which have very little defined arch and sit very low to the ground. Did you know that low arches are considered biomechanically imbalanced? If you have low arches, it’s important to be aware that you are more susceptible to over-pronation, which is when your foot rolls too far inward with each step.
Knowing your arch type will guide you to finding the right athleisure shoes that will boost your style and give your feet the support they need. Now that you’re an expert on arches, we want to introduce you to our picks for best athleisure shoes and how these workout shoes can help elevate your athleisure style.
If you are looking for a classic athleisure shoe, a pair of trendy sneakers are a staple that should be in your closet. A comfortable sneaker is great for everything from running errands to going for a long walk with friends or your pup. If you’re wondering how to wear sneakers fashionably, just know that a pair of sneakers can easily be dressed up or down. We recommend finding a women’s casual sneaker that comes in a classic streamlined style to pair with your favorite athleisure clothing. From slip resistant work shoes to casual and classic sneakers for everyday wear, always make sure your athleisure sneakers have built-in arch support and cushioning to make sure your feet feel like they are walking on clouds.
If you like to mix up your workouts with walking and studio workouts, athletic shoes are a great addition to your athleisure wardrobe. When you’re looking for athleisure athletic shoes that can transition from the gym to brunch without giving away you were working out, look for simple, classic running sneaker styles that feature neutral tones. Despite their elevated exterior, make sure your athletic shoes still have all of the support and infrastructure your feet need to be properly supported and aligned no matter where they are taking you.
If you’re an avid walker, walking shoes are a must-have for your athleisure arsenal. When you accumulate a lot of steps, your feet will be pounding on the pavement. To absorb the shock your feet will be experiencing, it’s vital to find walking shoes that will absorb the shock of the impact. Finding the perfect pair of comfortable shoes with the right supportive infrastructure can help you avoid many common ailments, such as stress fractures, tendinitis, shin splints, heel pain, and other common issues in walkers and runners. Plus, you can easily find a stylish walking shoe that perfectly complements any athleisure outfit.
Who says slippers are just for indoors? We’ve worked to create the most comfortable slippers that can withstand outdoor walking without losing their cushion. Throw them on before your next workout class and hit the streets in comfort and style.
If you’re just going to be taking your comfortable shoes off as soon as you arrive at the gym or studio, it’s better to have a simpler option that doesn’t require all of the tying and untying of laces. Women’s slippers are one of our top picks for athleisure shoes because they can easily slip on and off without sacrificing the support and style of their counterparts.
Choose Unconventional Fabrics and Materials
One simple way to achieve athleisure style without looking like you just finished up your workout is to incorporate clothing and footwear that uses interesting materials to elevate your look. Spandex is a classic athleisure fabric used for leggings and shirts because of its stretch and comfort, but more designs are integrating unconventional fabrics into their athleisure clothing to help keep you looking fashionable and ready for happy hour, even when you just finished up a kickboxing class. We recommend mixing and matching clothing with interesting materials like breathable mesh or stylish faux leather to take your athleisure aesthetic to the next level.
Stick with Neutrals
One dead giveaway that you are wearing workout clothing is bright colors and loud patterns that are distracting. If you’re trying to pull off a truly sophisticated athleisure wardrobe, we recommend focusing your sights on neutral clothing and footwear to make sure you always look elegant and put together. That’s not to say you can’t also have fun, vibrant clothing to mix and match into your wardrobe, but if you’re going to head into the office after your workout and want to look professional, it’s best to have some classic, neutral options to make sure your athleisure style is at its most efficient and effortless. We recommend having monochromatic palettes as the foundation for your athleisure wardrobe to make sure your vibe stays chic and your clothing in style, even once trends have changed.
If you are looking for the best athleisure shoes to incorporate into your wardrobe, look no further than Vionic’s workout shoes. Our mission is to create footwear that hugs your arches like a natural footprint and gives you the comfort and style you need for your busy everyday life. For more on the best athleisure shoes and casual sporty outfits for women, check out this athleisure style guide!