It’s totally possible to stay cool and dry, even after the sweatiest workout of your week. In collaboration with UNIQLO.
In the long(ish) list of excuses I make to avoid working out, schlepping around the city in damp, sweaty clothes ranks pretty high. Ditto carting them around in a little plastic baggie in my yoga bag or tote. All together now: ew.
The whole athleisure thing is a subtle blending of street clothes (not streetwear, those categories are, in fact, not the same!) and workout wear, meaning that most “athleisure” pieces fall into neither category completely—not totally suited for a hot yoga class, yet also not entirely appropriate for a meeting. Well, most athleisure, that is.
There are a few exceptions, UNIQLO’s AIRism line being one of the main ones. AIRism is a pretty even blend of items that are meant to be worn wherever, whenever—think classic white tees and bomber jackets, and straight-up athletic wear like leggings and sports bras. All of it designed to keep you cool. Think of it as the polar opposite of HEATTECH—layering one of the line’s whisper-thin camisoles under your summer dress will *actually* help keep you cooler than if you just wore one layer. It’s quick-dry, too, so if you do happen to wear it to hot yoga, by the time you’re back on the street you no longer look like you just fell in a pool. It’s genius.
Given that it’s just beginning to be hot as hell in New York, and I desperately need anything other than a bucket of ice water over the head to keep me from overheating, I tested out UNIQLO’s offerings, going from three of my favorite workouts to other parts of my life without looking too much like I just came from the gym.
Lyon’s Den to Lunch
Sweat factor: 100
I’m a massive fan of Lyon’s Den in TriBeCa. My Coveteur work wife got me hooked on it, and I’ve been trying to go three or four times a week since. The one thing I don’t love about the hot power yoga class? The fact that I can literally wring out my clothing after, I sweat so much. (TMI? Eh, we’re all friends here.)
Deviating from my usual uniform of sports bra and leggings for a 90-minute Saturday morning class, I wore an AIRism tee over a sports bra from the line, along with some comfy grey pants. Part of me was nervous about wearing grey to something so sweaty, but in the name of research, I went for it.
After class, surprise, surprise, the tee was dry enough to wear on to lunch with a girlfriend! I swapped out the grey pants for an equally comfy pair of green linen trousers, and tossed a denim jacket over everything because…the AIRism tee was SO effective at keeping me cool, I was actually chilly. Technology, people. It’s incredible.
MNSTR Cycle to Errands
Sweat Factor: 70
Allow me to preface this by saying I never do a spin class. I’m a die-hard fan of Physique 57 and yoga, so this was out of my comfort zone, but yolo, I guess, right? Because I wasn’t really sure exactly how sweaty and hot I’d get, I went for ankle-length AIRism leggings with a black tank and sports bra, and I brought a long-sleeved AIRism tee as well, just in case it was chilly in the studio.
The class was way more fun than I thought, and while it wasn’t the sweatiest hour of my life, it was close. I had a full day of errands to run with my husband after, including a visit to The New Museum and a drink with my brother and his girlfriend (we really like to pack it in on the weekends!), and I didn’t have time to run home and change. I left the leggings on—the navy color and subtle dot pattern is so cool, I hardly minded being in workout gear all day—added a navy bomber, my ’80s-style Carrera aviators, and a pair of pool slides, and I felt ready for *whatever*. One of the easiest styling tricks to looking pulled-together is staying in the same color family from head to toe. So even when you’re wearing leggings, a monochrome outfit keeps you looking polished.
Bari to Dinner
Sweat Factor: 65
I’ve been doing Bari’s trampoline classes since I subjected myself to their transformation program earlier this year, and it has yet to stop being challenging, or sweaty. In case you’re not familiar, during my favorite class, you bounce-dance aggressively for an hour on a personal-sized trampoline in the dark. It’s insanely fun. I love it. I usually wear cropped leggings, a tank, and a sports bra, and shed my tank somewhere mid-class, and marvel at the illusion of abs the studio’s dimmed blue-tinted lights creates. Maybe *that’s* why I enjoy it so much?
While I love the class, typical of most boutique fitness studios in NYC, the shower situation is touch and go. There are two fabulous showers, but their fabulosity is predicated on the fact that you have a massive, gigantic bathroom all to yourself. Which means, 9 times out of 10, there’s a long wait to get in there.
On this particular day, I snuck in a class between work and meeting my husband for a dinner date, and I wore a pair of AIRism Yoga Trousers along with a black camisole, black sports bra, then tossed a silver bomber over the whole thing. Considering this is a class quite popular with TriBeCa moms who work in creative fields (meaning some of the most glamorous women in the city), I felt totally pulled together, but also really cool.
After class, I was having a hard time cooling down, so I left the camisole on, and tossed on a sleek navy jumpsuit, a pair of heels, and my favorite colorblocked bag. There was no hint of the fact that I had just worked out, and I looked not at all out of place out to dinner.