While I love a pair of sky-high heels and a statement dress as much as anyone, I prefer easy, livable pieces for most of my daily sartorial needs. With the rise of normcore and athleisure trends in the last few years, athletic plus size clothes that are equally cute are more available than ever for those of us who dress for comfort first. From hot new fashion sneakers to major designer collabs with athletic brands, cozy, sporty pieces aren't just for the gym anymore.
Unfortunately, even with all the great new sport-inspired trends out there, plus size fashion retailers have sometimes lagged behind in this area. Maybe it's because of the rampant concern trolling in our culture that assumes fat people must all be inactive or clinically unhealthy. Or perhaps it's because, with all the pressure on plus size women to wear "flattering" clothing, the often oversized or skintight lines of athletic-wear seem like a risky proposition.
Either way, there's no reason that everyone shouldn't be able to enjoy the stylish yet wildly comfortable potential of athleisure trends, and there are so many amazing plus size sporty pieces out there now to experiment with. From varsity jackets to joggers to mesh crop tops, here are the best and brightest new styles that you'll want to live in every day.
1. Sporty Pullover
Equator Pullover, Sizes 10 - 28, $130, Universal Standard
This great sweater from Universal Standard gussies up a traditional pullover style with double zippers and super-soft French terry. Wear it with sneakers and jeans or heels and a pencil skirt; either way, you'll look put together while feeling super cozy.
2. Statement Jumpsuit
Side Stripe Jumpsuit, Sizes 14 - 28, $119.90, ELOQUII
Jumpsuits are the ultimate easy dressing solution. What could be simpler than a one-piece outfit? The bold side stripe on this jumpsuit from ELOQUII gives a simple design a bit of edge.
3. Cut-out Dress
Ponte Cold-Shoulder Dress, Sizes 14 - 28, $89.95, Lane Bryant
Sexy cut-outs make this simple LBD a stunner. Balance the drama with your favorite pair of comfy sneakers.
4. Graphic Tee
Pink Lotus Refresh Graphic Tee, Sizes 1X - 2X, $46, Nordstrom
If you like to spend a lot of time working on your fitness, this bright tee will make your priorities clear. Getting to the gym will be even more appealing when you look this good.
5. Mesh Top
Moyra Crop Top, Sizes 1X - 3X, $78, Monif C
For a less casual look, this mesh-paneled zipper crop top is perfect for taking athletic trends from the gym to evening cocktails. The bold, cherry shade will ensure all eyes are on you when you hit the dance floor.
6. Relaxed Joggers
Ava and Viv Leisure Joggers, Sizes 0X - 4X, $24.99, Target
Joggers: The pants that feel like pajamas, but can be dressed up any number of ways for a super-chic take on loungewear. Whether you accessorize yours with heels and a cropped jacket or slip-ons and your favorite tee , you'll love the ease these bring to your wardrobe.
7. Oversized Jumpsuit
Minimal Cami Jumpsuit, Sizes 12 - 24, $68, ASOS
This oversized jumpsuit is a great basic piece to layer with your favorite sporty outerwear and accessories. The generous cut allows for freedom of movement, and the cropped length is ideal for warming weather.
8. Bright Crop Top
Jonelle Crop Top, Sizes 2 to 24, $52, Rue 107
Add a pop of color to your athleisure collection. The fitted proportions and mesh overlay make this an excellent piece to balance the more voluminous silhouettes of joggers or track pants.
9. Soft Trench Coat
Avoir Trench Coat, Sizes 10 - 24, $160, Carmakoma
For sudden showers, this clean-lined trench coat will have you covered. Wear it with your favorite leggings and a crop top for an easy spring look.
10. Color-Block Dress
Two-Toned Knitted Dress, Sizes 0X - 3X, $190, Addition Elle
This dramatic dress mixes different proportions and bold color-blocking for a one-of-a-kind statement. Even if you're not usually a fan of dressing up, this effortless piece might just change your mind.
11. Zipper Joggers
Junarose Relaxed Jogger, Sizes 14 - 22, $51, ASOS
These relaxed lounge pants have a little something extra going on in the form of zippered details and a clean black and gray color scheme. Before you know it, they just might become your go-to weekend staples.
12. Mesh-Paneled Hoodie
Longline Hoodie, Sizes 14 - 24, $59, City Chic
Perfect for layering over leggings, this long, sleeveless hoodie will be great for any transitional weather. The mesh panels on the shoulders bring some extra fun to the mix.
13. Varsity Jacket
Varsity Roll-Sleeve Bomber Jacket, Sizes 1X - 3X, $29.90, Wet Seal
This bomber spices up a traditional varsity style with roll-tab sleeves and a slightly shrunken shape. Worn over a tailored shell and a pair of trousers, this jacket will add a cool new sensibility to your work wardrobe.
14. Paneled Leggings
Meridan Leggings, Sizes 1X - 3X, $98, Lysse
Leggings just might be the foundation of contemporary athletic style. Since this garment will likely get some heavy rotation in your wardrobe, make sure you pick a version with something special to set it apart, like these mesh-paneled leggings from Lysse.
15. Mesh-Overlay Skirt
Paris Skirt, Sizes 2 - 24, $76, Rue 107
Taking activewear textures in a ladylike direction, this fresh midi skirt is created from double layers of mesh. The inner lining provides shape and coverage, while the outer layer is semi-sheer and twirls beautifully.
16. Striped Trousers
Straight Seam Trousers, Sizes 8 - 20, $99.99, Mango Violetta
If your favorite trousers and the track pants you wore in high school had a baby, it would be this pair of seamed pants from Mango. The wide leg is easy for warmer weather, and the white and navy palette is crisp and cool.
17. Embellished Sweatshirt
Short-Sleeve Sweatshirt, Sizes 0X - 4X, $148, Mynt 1792
The basic sweatshirt gets a makeover with sheer elements and geometric embroidery. This piece is a perfect way to combine a love of sporty style with a more formal office dress code.
Whether you love sports and fitness or your favorite activity is binging on Netflix episodes from the comfort of your couch, athletic-inspired pieces will keep you looking cute and feeling cozy. What could be better?
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Images: Courtesy Brands