I am a lucky girl – my “work clothes” consist of a workout tank, black workout pants and some type of zip up or sweatshirt. Do I work out everyday? Ummm….not so much. Do I have the intention to work out everyday….. Ummm…. sort of! But, regardless, this is pretty much what I wear most days.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I do work out about 3 times per week (YES Adam I do!!!) . My current passions are tennis and Pilates – I can’t get enough of them! For ever I swore by inexpensive workout clothes – I was always so proud when I would be wearing one of my Target tanks and someone would say “Love that…. is it Athleta or Lululemon?” and I would proudly say “nope, Target… 1/3 of the price and works just the same.” Then, I had a conversation with one of my friends who swore to me that I MUST try some of the other, better made athletic clothing. WHY would I spend so much more on workout clothes – Unless it is going to actually do the workout for me…there couldn’t possibly be that big of a difference.
So, I took the challenge. It wasn’t overnight. I probably went to the store at least three times, tried on the pants and tanks, stood in the dressing room for about 1/2 hour, looked at the price tag at least 10 times (I swear the sales associates probably thought I was taking up residence in there). Then, I would leave and come back, and try them on again. The last time I went in saying to myself – “self… you wear these pants all the time… you would spend this on a pair of jeans or a trip to Target. You are going to buy a pair and try them out. Then you can tell your friends, see, the Target knockoff IS just as good – so there!” (don’t know if I actually said “so there”, but let’s go with it.)
So when Athleta asked me to review a few of their most loved items – I decided to put them to the test. I would do an article comparing their tank and capri pants to my favorite Target tank and capris. Could they really be THAT much better?
Here is what I discovered… I wanted to compare apples to apples (as much as possible). I looked for tops that supported my chest (I am blessed in the chest area). I like a built in bra to hold the girls right where they should be. I also prefer a loose fitting tank to cover those annoying mid-area trouble spots that I am working to get rid of. For the pants – pretty simple, black capris! So here is the skinny – no pun intended:
Tank to Tank:
- Target Tank – I was SO excited when I found this! It is loose fitting, which I love. built in shelf bra – check. Comes in a few different colors. Cost $22. While it met all of my criteria, the bra does not provide much support and the thin straps tend to dig into my shoulders a bit. The stretchiness is ok. It covers my mid section, which I love and hits lower to cover up my thighs (also a bonus). I found the more I wash it, the less stretchy it is. Not so happy about that.
- Athleta Tank – Cost – $64. I kid you not, I put this tank on and was like “wow” – it sucked me in! The support in the top is better than any other workout tank that I have worn (I have always been a huge Lululemon tank fan too, but for larger breasted women, I like these better). The wide strapes are one of my favorite things – they don’t cut in at all and really help hold everything in place nicely. One of the best parts about this tank is that it is tight fitted with a loose overlay. I like the tight feeling, but the overlay hides my not so “special” areas. The tighter, more fitted layer comes longer and again, covers up my thighs – which I am all about. The material is mositure wicking and did a great job keeping the results of my hard workout away from me (I worked it!!!) I have tried a LOT of different workout tanks – this is by far my favorite to date.
Capri to Capri
- Target – How different can black capri workout pants be, right? Wrong! Here are my biggest problems with these pants the stretchiness isn’t all that stretchy – I had to do a workout to get into the pants. The other major problem is the waistband – I had to keep hiking it up while working out. Listen, I have enough to worry about when I am working out and pulling my pants up should not be one of them!!
- Athleta – Again, the biggest difference is the stretchiness – they were easy to get on and felt great once they were on. These pants hold everything in where it should be. It keeps the jiggle to a minimum without making you feel like you are wearing Spanx. What I really love is that the waist band stays in place. It doesn’t roll down or fold over – it also didn’t contribute more to my muffin top (don’t need any help there, thank you very much!)
Bottom line – while Target does a great job with the cuteness factor, if you are really going to work out in these clothes and not just look the part, invest in some better items. The Athleta brand may be a bit more costly, but you will not be replacing them as often, as they hold up better after many washes.
My Target workout clothes sit lonely in the closet only to be worn when all of my Athleta stuff is waiting to be washed – they went from the “go-to” gear, to my back-up! Target, please forgive me. I am a slave to you and pledge my undying love to you – but hands down, spend the money, go for the quality athletic apparal. It will treat you well in the end!
A VRY SPECIAL thank you to my great friend, Suzanne, for taking these pictures of my and reminding me to suck in and flex so I don’t appear as mushy as I may be!!! xoxo – love you, Suz!!!!
*DISCLAIMER: Any opinions stated are strictly my own – I always write totally unbiased reviews. I was sent the above item by Athleta to help facilitate my review. I would never recommend anything that I don’t personally use and love!
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