Do You Want to Feel “Naked” or “Hugged” in Your Lululemon Leggings?

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Lululemon Pant WallNext time you stop by Lululemon, it's likely someone in the store will ask you a question you may not normally consider when shopping for yoga pants: How do you want to feel? (Note: "hot" is not an option.)

The activewear giant debuted a major overhaul of its well-known "pant wall" this week, organizing its selection of leggings and crops by what its calling "engineered sensation."

"If you feel a certain way, that is psychologically connected to how you perform," says design director Antonia Iamartino, explaining the reasoning behind the new system.

Iamartino says Lulu polled its customers and ambassadors for info on how they would ideally like to feel in their yoga pants and then used that information to decide on the sensations they would design for. The result is five categories that progress along a compression continuum—relaxed, naked, held-in, hugged, and tight. (And new price points up to $148, to boot.)

All of the brand's existing styles will fit into one of those, and they're also releasing four new styles, including one made with a brand-new super soft fabric, Nulu.

At a launch event for the new system, I tried the All the Right Places Pant, a new style that's in the "held-in" category. Its zoned compression and fabric paneling made for an incredible, flattering fit, but I was surprised at just how tight the compression felt, given I was two levels below "tight." ("Hugged" must be referring to an enthusiastic bear hug from a body builder?)

Of course, Lulu became a superpower precisely by providing women with pants that sucked them in snugly. Case in point: I overheard a woman comment on how intense the compression was in the Tight Stuff Tight she'd chosen (a pair at the very end of the spectrum). "I feel like a speed skater," she said, laughing, "and I really like it!"

Plus, now she can always grab an alternate pair for days when she's had enough and just wants to crack open a Curiosity Lager and feel naked. —Lisa Elaine Held

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(Photo: Lululemon)

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