In January, scrolling through my TikTok FYP, I began to spot the same pair of leggings over and over again. I saw them on Abbie Herbert. I saw them on Brooke Ashley Hall. Normally I wouldn’t be swayed — my gym clothes are usually strictly gym-only — to the extent that I normally change out of my clothes after my workout for the walk home. Previous athleisure splurges had left me relatively underwhelmed, such as the Lululemon “Align” crops, which for £60 felt suspiciously similar to my everyday Primark pairs and had developed a fluff only Mona May could style. But the leggings kept following me. The deciding moment came when my FYP showed me the TikTok leggings again — this time being worn by a very enthusiastic Lizzo. A quick google revealed that they were very conveniently available on Amazon for less than half the price of my failed Lulu investment. Sold, I primed a pair in a simple matte black.
When they arrived the package was absolutely tiny; I held the leggings against my body convinced that I’d accidentally ordered a pair for children. I was pleasantly surprised that I couldn’t taste my kneecaps in my throat when I slipped them on. In fact, they were quite comfortable. Vigorous testing on leg-day confirmed that they pass the true test of any gym leggings, remaining reassuringly opaque even in the deepest of squats. The honeycomb pattern was exceedingly flattering — and for once I didn’t wince at the shape of my bottom half without a long tee thrown over — thanks to the shaping effect.
After reaching for the leggings for a few solid weeks, snarling when laundry day meant I had to revert back to my old pairs, I decided to pop another style into my basket — a tie-dye pattern this time. A business pair and a party pair, if you will. Unusually for TikTok-endorsed brands that aren’t specifically geared towards plus-sized women, there is a great choice of sizes: from XS to 4XL. Lizzo’s comment section was abuzz when she wore hers: “I just got the XL — and I’m obsessed!.” I’ve also seen reviews from Abbie Herbert and Brooke Ashley Hall on both sides of the pregnancy journey (pre- and post-partum) suggesting that the leggings are democratic in their sizing.
There is a downside. My workout time has dwindled, as I bounce around in self-admiration in front of the mirror, and my group chat is tired of me sending photos of my bum in the leggings (and prompting one of my friends to end her online-shopping hiatus). The black ones go with absolutely anything — but on days when I’m feeling a little more jazzy, the tie-dye pair complement my “noughties bangers” workout mix gloriously. They’re warm enough to venture out in (sometimes), so they’ve also made me one of those people that confidently nips to the shops in athleisure — a metamorphosis that I hadn’t predicted on my own personal bingo card. But then again, these are strange times. So strange, in fact, that I’m even seriously flirting with the idea of posting a TikTok in them myself.
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