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Exclusive: Lululemon and Barry's Bootcamp Just Launched a Collab for Your Toughest Workouts

Christine Flammia
Photo credit: Courtesy

From Esquire

The power of good workout clothes cannot be underestimated. Nothing makes a workout easier to coast through—or straight-up skip—than clothes getting in the way. We're talking sneakers that give you shin splints, shorts that ride up, and shirts that get soaked and heavy with sweat. Lululemon has transformed the workout clothing industry, making pieces that just don't get in the way. It's easier said than done.

Next week, Lululemon is taking that skill to the next level, launching a joint collection made with Barry's Bootcamp. Barry's, which is a high-intensity fitness class consisting of running and lifting, brings the expertise in movement and form, while Lululemon brings its mastery of clothes that help you get the workout done. The collection will be available to shop starting July 23.

"Honestly, if two brands could be soul sisters, Barry’s and Lululemon would be it," says Corey Malanga Hartnack, Barry's chief retail officer. "We are both celebrating 20 years and have each changed the fitness landscape along the way. We share so many of the same core values and philosophies, so it’s been natural and smooth from the beginning."

Among those values: sweat. Inducing it. Feeling it. Wicking it. Barry's classes are known for their supreme intensity, and Lululemon has been developing and refining technology to best air out and wick sweat. That's important because sweat complicates clothing, especially in intense episodes.

"Fabric needs to dry, wick, and not feel heavy," says Hartnack. "Clothing should never be in the way; it should be a solution and help you hit your goals. For women, that means no metal on the back of your clothing. For men, it might mean a compression liner that is just right."

That's kind of the whole idea behind the collection, and the point of investing in good workout clothes to begin with. Your clothes should never be the thing that makes a workout less-than.

"Quality workout clothes allow you to get the most out of your training and perform at your peak," says Ben Stubbington, SVP of men's design at Lululemon. "When you minimize distractions associated with your apparel, you’re able to focus on performance."

What's especially great about this collaboration is that Barry's is itself a kind of all-encompassing workout. Most classes include running and some form of strength training for legs, abs, upper body, and whole body. Clothes made specifically for running might not hold up during the strength portion and vice versa. But because Lululemon went into this design with the Barry's experience in mind, the final pieces are ones that work for multiple situations, workouts and beyond. Notable details include sweat-wicking fabrics, abrasion-resistant panels, and anti-smell elements.

"In this collection, you’ll find abrasion-resistant panels in some of our bottoms, which is integral for a Barry’s class," says Stubbington. "These panels are specifically placed on the silhouettes to combat any abrasion between your apparel and your weights. Specifically in our tops, we incorporated our Silverescent technology, which inhibits the growth of odor-causing bacteria on the garment."

The right clothes make the whole workout more enjoyable or, at least, suck less. Being able to move freely and comfortably even as you sweat is essential. And beyond just the workout itself, the clothes simply last longer than clothes without the technical foundation. A cotton T-shirt might cover your body, but it'll look ratty in a few wears' time.

"There has been so much research and development in this area, and the technical properties of the clothing Lululemon makes is the best in the world," says Barry's Hartnack. "I’ve never met a man who has made the investment and gone back. Once you experience the difference, looking hot is just a bonus."

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