Forever 21 has the best-kept secrets in activewear (and nothing is over $30)


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There are a lot of differences between 21-year-old me and 27-year-old me. For example, one of us spent Saturday nights dancing on tables with her friends from college, while the other spends Saturday night on the couch with takeout and six straight episodes of Friends from College. But one thing we do have in common? We both love to shop for workout clothes at Forever 21.

Sure, the store is a utopia for sparkly going out tops and mini-skirts that my high school principal would have been positively horrified by, but it also happens to have some of the best activewear in the game. Not only are the shelves stocked with every iteration of black legging your heart could possibly desire, but they also have all sorts of fun, trendy gear like neon bike shorts, color-blocked windbreakers, and a whole lot of tie-dye. And because this is Forever 21 we’re talking about, you’ll be hard pressed to find a single article of clothing that costs more than $30.

While I wouldn’t necessarily recommend running a marathon in the merch (you’re probably better off sticking with some sort of performance wear for that, anyway), having spent the better part of  the last decade rocking F21 workout-wear to actual workouts, I can confirm that the pieces actually happen to be impressively functional. The leggings hold their shape without stretching out, and the sports bras offer enough support to keep my boobs from bouncing around in even the most intense spin classes. The best part, though, is that you get to leave your workout feeling like you stepped straight out of a paparazzi photo of Hailey Baldwin in Los Angeles. The clothes give off that same type of cool athleisure je ne sais quoi that all the cool celebs these days seem to swear by, if you know what I mean (I feel like you do).

Because wading through the offerings at F21 should be considered a sport in itself, I took the liberty of rounding up some of the best buys on the site, some of which I personally already own, for your purchasing pleasure.

Can’t decide which leggings to choose from? Try shopping by personality. Then pull ’em on and try this 7-minute at-home abs workout, care of Charlee Atkins. 

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