Lululemon has effectively cornered the market on brand name yoga and runner’s wear.

How? Why? And is it set on world domination?

Lululemon is an active wear behemoth.

Considering getting a sports top? Want some form-fitting, yet ultra-comfortable yoga pants? Your first choice, as a fashionable lady is, without a doubt, Lululemon.

You don’t really have to think about it. No other brand names pop in to your mind that convey both sport and trendiness so equally.

Not Nike – too Tiger. Not Adidas – too old school. TNA? Maybe, but it doesn’t have the same following as Lulu yet.

And that’s exactly what it is: a following. A devoted, religious following.

Why else would people convince themselves that the exorbitant prices are worth it? (I mean, $52 for a simple running tank top? Really?)

They believe Lululemon’s mandate, and you’ll see it if you Google their site: “We make technical athletic clothes.”

If you think about it, that claim is really nothing extraordinary — so do all active wear companies. But the followers I know would rip me to shreds for saying that. “No,” they would insist, “it’s different!”

In fact, I once went to a Lululemon with a runner friend who swears by the brand name. I was aghast at the prices, which were far past my student budget.

“It’s worth it,” she insisted, telling me that if I was serious about working out, these clothes were an investment that should be made.

I never did purchase anything, so I can’t be entirely sure she’s not right. But I have a feeling I’m happier, and richer, living outside the Lululemon bubble.

And this cult-ish behaviour does not simply permeate the Lulu buyers, it runs through the entire organization. In searching for a summer job, I handed a resumé to a store manager at Lulu. Without glancing at it, he looked me straight in the eyes and asked how committed I was to working there. “We’re really looking for people who are here to stay and eventually get promoted up through our middle management,” he said.

I was a little afraid – and also did not want to lie in the sacred house of Lulu – and told him I was only looking for a summer job.

I was quickly dismissed with a “Well, we’ll see if anything comes up.”

As much as I must admit that I do find Lulu-wear to be attractive and good-looking sporty stuff, it seems I’m destined not to be a Lulu-ite.

So where do I get my active wear, you may ask?

Wal-Mart, where a 3-pack of sports bras will only set you back $15. And that, my friends, is how it should be.

1 Comment

  1. Stacey (from What Not to Wear) on February 16, 2012 at 3:51 pm

    I don’t really care how much money one shells out for this product. What I do care about is you wearing those outfits outside … in the streets … in public … on your way to work or class. My preference is not to see a young woman’s hoo-ha at 8am – I’m usually a morning person but that image has set me back

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