Fashion Trends

Active wear for plus size women: The best styles to look out for

The gym is your runway.

By Jess Pullar

Lets face it, we've all struggled with the prospect of exercise at one point or another.

Whether it's the dreaded alarm at 5am calling us to that HIIT class we promised ourselves we'd get to, or simply the idea of feeling super uncomfortable at the gym next to those 'fitspo' gurus who make everything look easy.

But in a society where health, exercise and wellness is fast gaining popularity, it's hard not to embrace the trend and get on board.

There's just one last thing to consider when we eventually get our behinds to the gym - what to wear?

Active wear can be both practical and fashionable. *(Image: Instagram / [@jennatilemile](https://www.instagram.com/jennatilemile/|target="_blank"|rel="nofollow"))*
Active wear can be both practical and fashionable. (Image: Instagram / @jennatilemile)

Lucky for us, there are plenty of options out there for all body shapes - and it's only growing.

Active wear clothing company Running Bare, who cater for sizes 8-22 have seen the frenzy around active wear increase first-hand.

"Women are constantly on the go, and as such, one needs to look after the body and the mind," owner of Running Bare Yolanda Powell tells Now to Love.

"Its only natural, that by extension, active wear has seen a massive increase in popularity over the past decade to cater to this new way of active living that we all have embraced."

And by all, she means all - including plus sized women who might previously have felt too self-conscious to don active wear and hit the local gym.

But if you're still planning your epic entrance into the wide world of fitness and exercise and haven't yet sussed how you can dress your soon-to-be-toned curves, keep reading as we look at the best active wear styles to look out for when you're dressing a plus size figure.

Shape it up

When it comes to finding flattering active wear, it's all in the silhouette.

For leggings, Yolanda recommends keeping an eye out for waistbands that reach your abs.

"They hold everything in, smooth out your silhouette, sculpt the waist and elongate the thigh," she explains.

And don't push away the thought of a sports bra either! These days, there are plenty of plus size options that look incredible - the key is to look for a style that offers plenty of support, but in a fabric that is soft enough to avoid any muffin-top-esque mishaps (read more about fabrics below).

A sports bra with an underwire and band around the bottom will also keep everything in place, while also flaunting your form.

Sports stars like Serena Williams (pictured) have nailed it when it comes to finding active wear that is form flattering.
Sports stars like Serena Williams (pictured) have nailed it when it comes to finding active wear that is form flattering.

It's all in the fabric

While it's tempting to buy a pair of $10 spandex leggings and be done with it, the quality of the fabric can really be worth the extra splurge.

In fact, a decent fabric can make all the difference in shaping the form, according to Yolanda.

She recommends fabrics like supplex, which is both supportive and flattering by smoothing out your curves and wearing well, no matter how strenuous the exercise!

READ NEXT: Chrissy Teigen's refreshingly honest 'mum-bod' message

A good quality fabric will go a long way when it comes to active wear. *(Image: Supplied)*
A good quality fabric will go a long way when it comes to active wear. (Image: Supplied)

It doesn't always have to be tight!

If your workout is reasonably non-strenuous (read: yoga), a loose tee or singlet is a great option.

Again, aim for a fabric that wears well and doesn't feel uncomfortable even if you're sweating up a storm. Breathable T-shirt fabrics like cotton usually do the trick.

And if you're feeling particularly confident (as you rightfully should!), you can always tuck the bottom of your tee into your bra, turning it from a top, to crop!

Don't be afraid of colour!

While we might have seen the back of G-String leotards, the bright and bold colours of the 80s are well and truly in-vogue these days - so don't hold back!

When active wear companies like Yolanda's first started in the 1980s, wearing active wear as casual wear was all the rage.

"It was all about experimenting with colours and prints, and we have actually come full circle from the 80's with fluro colours, prints and bike tights - they're very much back on trend," she says.

"Women tend to break up colour with black but we love to see women be bold with their colour choices & match it up."

WATCH: How having a baby made Anne Hathaway more body confident: