As an entrepreneur, you never know where you might meet your next client: at the gym, in a yoga or barre class or even in the hotel gym at a conference. For those moments, you don’t want to be remembered as the sloppy woman in ratty shorts and an old t-shirt but the poised, pulled-together, successful female entrepreneur that you are. Yet the good stuff is not cheap.
Enter Santa Monica, Calif.-based activewear company Ellie. Their Fit Fashionista Club takes the price pain out of looking good at the gym, where potential or current clients may be putting in their treadmill time. For $49.95 per month, plus shipping, Fit Fashionista Club members get to choose two pieces of high-quality activewear, ranging from leggings to tanks with built-in bras. Ellie launches a new collection of a dozen pieces every month with a customized color palette, and each collection is on a limited run, so it’s unlikely you’ll run into someone in your yoga class wearing the exact same thing. Oh, and it’s all made in the USA!
After the case study I wrote on Ellie’s customer service, they sent me a complimentary outfit to review in exchange for my honest opinion. Keep in mind that I already have a selection of Ellie gear, and I’ve found that they all hold up nicely to runs, intense strength and conditioning workouts and normal gym routines. I selected the Vinyasa Tank and Namaste Legging from the Down to Earth collection, released in September, for something a little different.
I find Ellie apparel to be very true to size. I’m pocket-size, and their XS fits me well. The Vinyasa Tank was snug where it was supposed to be and loose where it was supposed to be, and the Namaste Legging fit well, although it was a wee bit long on my 5’1” frame.
Ellie apparel is made with high quality fabric, and these pieces were no different. Both the tank and the leggings are soft yet made of moisture-wicking, UV 50 block, 4-way stretch, pre-shrunk fabric that is soft enough to sleep in. In fact, I may do that the next time I travel so I can immediately spring out of bed and get in my workout!
I loved the details on the Vinyasa Tank and Namaste Legging. The Vinyasa Tank can be worn two ways, either forward or backward. The mesh fabric drapes beautifully from the bra top, and the top comes with removable pads, which I didn’t use. The Namaste Legging has cute ruched panels along the bottom of the legs, as well as a hidden key pocket in the waistband.
I packed the Vinyasa Tank and Namaste Legging for a trip to a conference in Boston, where I knew I would be taking an early-morning barre class since there are no barre classes near my home base. The first thing I noticed is that the Ellie apparel was just as cute, if not cuter, than the expensive logoed workout gear worn by the other women in the class. Next, I was able to stretch, bend and crunch easily and comfortably in the outfit, which is super-important. The leggings didn’t ride up or down or chafe, and the top didn’t gape weirdly. Finally, the outfit was so cute that I threw a tunic sweater over it (it was chilly that morning), slipped my ballet flats on after class, and wore it to breakfast on Newbury Street, and I did not get a single strange look. I felt perfectly at home and comfortable, both in the barre studio and out.
Even if I hadn’t gotten the test outfit, I would continue to be an Ellie customer. While I won’t wear the Vinyasa Tank for running because it doesn’t feel supportive enough, it’s perfect for yoga, barre or weightlifting. Most of the tanks with built-in bras are like that, and I prefer to wear my own sports bra for running. The leggings are cute enough to wear with a sweater and flats as well as to yoga, barre or for a run.
And I know that Ellie’s customer service is stellar now that they’ve hired so many new reps. Overall, I highly recommend becoming a Fit Fashionista because you can skip a month at any time, and the outfits are so cute and affordable that it doesn’t make sense to me to buy off-brand clothes anymore, unless I’m just getting a loose-fitting running tank.
Since Ellie made me an Ambassador, I’m also authorized to offer an exclusive 20 percent discount. Save 20 percent on Ellie! You’ll look great and feel great, and that’s motivation to hit the gym. And as all entrepreneurs know, hitting the gym reduces stress and builds stamina for all the long hours necessary to make their businesses a success. See the slideshow for some admittedly not-so-great photos of what are great clothes.