Calling all yogis, midday power-walkers and people who like rocking athleisure 24/7: I’m here to debunk what may be the perfect pair of leggings. Lululemon’s Align pants have been a bestseller since their launch in 2015 so when the brand announced that they were bettering what I — and pretty much everyone in my weekly yoga classes — deem my go-to workout outfit, I was intrigued. Align pants are buttery soft and ultra lightweight. Because of the material they’re made with (Nulu, a mix of 76% nylon and 24% Lycra elastane), the brand positions these pants in its 'Naked Sensation' category: Nulu is sweat-wicking with a four-way stretch and a high level of coverage so you feel comfortable and confident, not restricted and cramped.
I got my first pair of Aligns in 2019, the first of many promises to myself that this would be the year I finally got into a regular workout routine. Since then, they’ve become my go-to for WFH, sporadic yoga obsessions, hikes, running errands, moving house and, when injured in early 2020, my daily uniform for several months. They fit just as great now as they did back then.
To compare, I tested out two pairs from Lululemon’s new Align collection: the Align High-Rise Pant 25", £88, and the Align High-Rise Wide-Leg Pant 31", £98, alongside the Align Tank Top, £58. The first is familiar — they have a similar design to my OG Align leggings — while the second, a pair of wide-leg yoga pants, is a new Align design. Read on to discover how each pair fit, felt and fared while getting active. I am surprised to say that one pair has become my new do-it-all favourite. (Writer’s note: while Lululemon sent me these pieces to test, my review is honest and true with no prompts or approvals from the brand.)
I’m used to the material of Aligns but still don’t understand how it holds up so well — it really is buttery soft and so lightweight, it barely feels like you’re wearing anything. Once on, there is no way these bad boys are falling down. I christen my new Align leggings with a particularly intense 'rocket yoga' flow. I’m sweating buckets by the end but there’s no need to adjust midway through nor are there any awkward sweat patches. Because Aligns are so lightweight, they’re super breathable and perfect for summer workouts. Saying this, I warn against VPL. I started my period the week I started testing and my period pants were well visible through the thin material. Luckily, my dark chocolate brown Aligns didn’t show this up too much, though I wonder about the lighter colours (Lululemon has designed its white and lighter colour Align leggings with a second lining to combat this). For more intense workouts, like running or HIIT, I would probably recommend a different Lululemon line, like the Fast & Free High-Rise Tight, £94, which has thicker material and a compression fit.
The 25" length is the perfect fit for my 5'2" frame, though if you’re taller there are also 28" and 31" options. Size-wise, the leggings come in US 0-20 (UK 4-24), which I’m hoping is expanded for plus sizes soon.
I wear the leggings with the Align Tank Top for yoga and while I love the fit — it’s longer than your typical sports bra, which makes me feel more comfortable when leaving the studio — I do have to adjust it several times as it rises up. It’s lightly padded, which I like as it stops any awkward hard-nipple moments, but mine arrived with the padding slightly twisted on one side and needed some coaxing into place. These are small-fry criticisms though for a tank that fits really well and keeps my boobs supported without sucking them in uncomfortably.
Say hello to my new favourite lounge trousers/yoga pants/WFH wear. These combine the best of Align leggings — that super soft, lightweight material — with the ease of wide-leg trousers. Plus, they have pockets! Two properly deep side pockets that easily fit an iPhone, keys and card carrier.
At 31" I was worried these would swamp my frame but they’re the perfect length, just hitting my ankle so I don’t trip up when walking or working out. The waistband is definitely high, hitting my lower ribs, but my bloated, period-crampy tummy was very glad of it. My verdict: worth the hype, whether you work out or not.
For those shorter than me, I would recommend the cropped version of the style.
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