Growing up, for almost 10 years, I had the same ballet teacher, Ms. B (whose last name, despite what my 5-year-old imagination told me, did not stand for “ballet”), and I coveted her style. I don’t think I ever saw her wearing anything other than a black unitard, an oversized cropped sweater, chunky mid-calf socks, and jazz shoes. It was all things ’90s, all things dance, and all things that are somehow back in style today. So, a decade later, I decided it was time to take the look for a spin.
I’m happy to report that not only did I wear a bodysuit to work out in public and live to tell the tale—and 6 times over, no less—but I’m actually now so into them, that I don’t know why it took this love affair so long to develop in the first place. The draw, at the most basic level, is all about convenience. I wanted to be able to slip into an outfit that needed zero work: no riding-up tanks or falling-down leggings allowed. I’m not sure it’s totally true, but I even felt like I actually got a better workout in a bodysuit. And isn’t how you feel really all that matters, anyhow?
Over the past month, I’ve pretty much tried it all when it comes to what I’m lovingly calling workout onesies. I’ve gone for thong leotards (with super-cute leggings to match, of course!), performance one-pieces that I’ve taken to yoga and out to dinner with equal ease, and full-body catsuits that make me feel kind of invincible. Ready for the same? Keep on scrolling.
1. Skin The Romy Catsuit, $140
For when you want to feel like you’re working out naked (in a good way): From the second I slipped into this unitard, I was hooked. I practically wanted to take it for a walk around the block, and coming from someone who was afraid to embark upon this jumpsuit-wearing exercise for a yoga class, that’s a big deal. It’s so ultra soft, but still makes you feel as though your whole body is supported and not on full display. Plus, it has a super simple and elegant tank neckline and low back that I’m all about.
For when you want to feel like a ballerina: Ironically, it was not a ballet brand that brought me back to my dancer days. It was cult favorite Lululemon making me feel as though I should have signed up for a Ballet Beautiful class instead of just yoga. This ribbed bodysuit stays perfectly in place and, with a thong bottom, doesn’t give you that unwanted panty-line when you’re wearing it with second-skin leggings (which I paired it with, BTW).
3. Good American The Modern Tank Body, $119
For when you’re going from a workout to dinner: I love that this super soft and tight-but-not-stifling tank bodysuit has a built-in. I’m all about a one-and-done when it comes to workout wear. And, while I was optimistic (I mean, few know bodysuits and workout wear better than Khloé Kardashian) that it would hold up in a workout, it’s technically from her mainline collection, so I wasn’t totally sure. Not so shockingly, this perfect work of art more than held up, no pulling, tucking, grabbing, or tugging necessary. And, what’s more, after a quick wash, I actually wore it a few days later to dinner and felt just as awesome.
4. Live The Process Corset Bodysuit, $188
For winter workouts—or skiing: Ok, a unitard might not be the best idea for a skiing under layer on the off chance that you want to—you know—pee without getting totally naked. But this unitard was a little extra thermal, so not necessarily built for a heated yoga class or super-intense boot camp. I loved the way it made me feel as though I was wearing a full-body knit and moved with me with zero hassle or adjustment.
For when you want something affordable that holds up: While many more splurge-worthy brands know how to craft a great catsuit, it’s hard to find one in a lower price range that still holds up—especially when it comes to your sweatiest, most intense workout moments. Target’s new brand JoyLab answers the call, with a size-inclusive option that rings up at $35.
6. Koral Jet Infinity Jumpsuit, $155
For the days you want a little extra support: This activewear brand certainly knows what a girl is looking for in activewear—especially when it comes to more exposed pieces like a bodysuit. This unitard boasts a super-cool open back that’ll help you keep your cool even during the hottest yoga class.
Originally published on February 11, 2019. Updated on August 27, 2019
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