In 2012 it was unclear whether athleisure was just a fad or was the beginning of a meteoric rise. As the millennial generation, hyper-focused on health and fitness, began to mix the styles of workout clothes and everyday casual attire, a new category was created. There was a growing demand for apparel that was both practical for exercise, and comfortable and stylish enough to wear in a variety of social settings. This created an opportunity in the market that allowed other fitness apparel companies to expand their offerings and gain market share. Nike had long been a giant in the athletic-wear category. Now other niche brands Under Armour and lululemon expanded the market with their new styles and technologies. Under Armour had been known almost exclusively for their high-performance men’s athletic gear, but with the creation of the athleisure category they successfully transitioned into women’s apparel and athletic footwear. lululemon created a premium clothing brand for yoga pants which proved so popular that women were wearing it every day, everywhere. Other retailers like Gap and Victoria’s Secret started offering lower priced yoga pants to cash in on the growing market. Now that athleisure is a core category, demand for denim and khaki has declined in department stores and other retailers.
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Data sourced from monthly Verbatim datasets in 2015