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Photo: Instagram/@aerie
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Photo: Instagram/@hm

When it comes to activewear, there are a number of fit girl-adored boutique brands (think: Outdoor Voices, Koral, Aday, Ultracor, and P.E Nation), as well as fitness fashion giants like Lululemon, Athleta, Nike, and Adidas, that you probably already have in heavy rotation at home. But it’s possible you’re overlooking a few workout clothing gold mines at a handful of stores you shop at on the reg—that also carry seriously cool tops, bottoms, and sports bras, too.

Among the brands with underrated selections are mall staples: Aerie, Forever 21, H&M, and Old Navy. Each one offers affordable alternatives to the scores of splurge-worthy pieces on the market (plus, an easy option for test driving an athleisure trend you’re intrigued but iffy about). Hello, bold leggings.

Scroll down to see the super-cool activewear items to score at each of these unexpected places right now.
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Photo: Instagram/@oldnavy

1. Old Navy

The gist: There’s more than dollar flip flops and dependable basics at this chain—like affordable sportswear to stock up on, with a fun print or two thrown in the mix.

Don’t miss: Pretty floral, strappy sports bras, longer-line basic bra styles, and great prices across the board.

Standout picks: Go-Dry Light-Support Strappy Sports Bra, $20, and Go-Dry Mesh-Panel Leggings, $33

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Photo: Instagram/@aerie

2. Aerie

The gist: This cool American Eagle offshoot has become a reliable source of great lingerie (their bralette selection is particularly on point), comfy loungewear, and seriously expensive-looking swimwear since launching in 2006. Guess what? Aerie also has great activewear basics, plus a cool collab with Aussie label Lorna Jane.

Don’t miss: Fun patterns and retro-striped leggings and shorts.

Standout picks: Lorna Jane Geo Core Short Tight, $67, and Chill Striped Cuff Legging, $30

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Photo: Instagram/@forever21

3. Forever 21

The gist: Its workout-ready selection is worth a look thanks to some of the on-trend touches (mesh insets, throwback detailing, and sophisticated finishes) that can be surprisingly well-executed for how little you’ll fork over for them.

Don’t miss: Wide selection of edgier trend items like mesh tops and extensive sheer paneling on leggings.

Standout picks: Active Capri Leggings, $18, and Active Metallic Windbreaker, $28

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Photo: Instagram/@hm

4. H&M

The gist: The Swedish retailer’s new arrivals tend to steal the show. But its activewear offerings, which launched in 2013, deserve some time in the spotlight, too. It’s consistently turned out a mix of sporty, Olympics-influenced pieces and sophisticated options that look as good as designer offerings.

Don’t miss: Really slick, sexy black leggings and tanks with metallic insets and patterning, plus lots of feminine pieces in pastel shades.

Standout picks: Sports Shorts, $18, and Low-Support Sports Bra, $20

Other ways to supplement your activewear stash: Check out this summer’s bestselling activewear and Nike’s new millennial pink collection.

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