Athleisure Outfit Ideas: How to Create a Comfy Capsule Wardrobe

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If you follow me on Instagram then you likely have seen me post about my workouts. I always look forward to my time in the gym, whether I’m lifting weights or taking a hot yoga class. I know many of you value exercise as much as I do—and lots of you have just as busy schedules.

Whether you have young kids, an office job, or social activities that keep you occupied throughout the week, there are often times when you have to run straight from a workout to other responsibilities. 

Let’s be real: no one wants to spend their day in their workout clothes. While they certainly can be comfy, they don’t always look polished or elevated on their own. That’s where these athleisure outfit ideas come into play. 

If you’re headed from the gym or a spin class and need to look more put together, these ideas on how to dress up workout clothes are just for you. Below, you’ll find a complete guide to putting together an athleisure capsule wardrobe—so you always have easy-to-throw-on pieces you can reach for on jam-packed days.

Athleisure Outfit Ideas

Watch Here: Studio to Life Styling Ideas

Trench Coat + Leggings + Oversized T-Shirt

athleisure outfit idea with leggings, an oversized t-shirt, a trench coat, and white dad-style sneakers

I have always been a fan of a good trench coat outfit, but this year I found myself reaching for the layer on a regular basis. There’s just something about it that provides an effortless look—and it looks just as appropriate to wear with leggings and a tee as it does with jeans and a cute blouse.

This outfit is a particularly good option to wear during transitional seasons, whether it’s raining outside or it’s simply chilly in the early mornings. Throw on a baseball cap and slip into some dad-style sneakers and you’ll have a trendy yet ultra-cozy look.

Short and Tank Set + Slides

athleisure outfit idea with a matching short and tank set, slides, and a baseball cap

Athleisure wear can certainly be adapted to warmer temps as well—no leggings needed!

If you’re dressing for spring or summer weather, swap out your typical workout pants for some shorts or even a tennis skirt. I have a major love for the loungewear finds from Varley, and they happen to have a lot of quality short and tank options (many that pair together and create a matching set.)

This look is ideal for days when you might not necessarily be working out, but you plan on being active or running errands. It’s also a good resort-wear outfit. Tie a sweater or crewneck around your shoulders in case things cool off and finish with some sandals or slides—the result is simple yet chic.

Cardigan + Onesie + White Sneakers

athleisure outfit idea with a onesie, cardigan, white sneakers, and a hat

If you really want to play up the sporty vibes, give an athletic onesie a try. They come in both short and long options, so depending on the season, you can opt for either. Like I’ve done with several of the looks in this blog, I’d add a cardigan on top for a more everyday feel (rather than a post-pilates vibe.)

I’d consider this the ultimate spring-to-summer uniform since it offers just the right amount of coverage for sunny yet brisk days. Also, there really is no better shoe choice than white sneakers since they are fitting for a variety of occasions. Wear this out and about town or to meet friends for lunch.

Leggings + Sweater + Leg Warmers

athleisure outfit idea white leggings with leg warmers and a beige cardigan

I know this might seem like an odd concept at first, but opting for a men’s sweater when styling athleisure can offer a comfortable and chic look. Honestly, the women’s section from retailers can be really picked over but I’ve had good luck with shopping in the men’s department.

This strategy is obviously dependent on the piece you’re looking for (aka pants are likely a no) and the store you’re browsing, but one place that I’ve found success with doing this is Lululemon. Just remember to go down a size or two so it fits you properly.

For the rest of this look, I swapped out my running shoes for a simple pair of ballet flats. The exact shoes I’m wearing are very low in stock, but these are a great dupe. The flats offer a softer, more feminine look that would be appropriate to wear for a variety of occasions, whether you have an appointment or you’re grabbing coffee with a friend. 

Also, you may have noticed that I added some leg warmers to this outfit. These add visual interest and some dimension to my look, and they have the added bonus of offering some warmth during the cooler seasons.

p.s. Wearing an all-white workout set (like I’m wearing in the photo above) is a fool-proof way to make things look more high-end.

Leggings + Tank + Cardigan

athleisure outfit ideas white tank and leggings with gray cardigan and sneakers

Need to look more put together in a quick and effortless way? My signature move is to throw on a button-down cardigan. It might seem like too small of a detail to make an impact, but as you can see in the photo above, it really does take away that “fresh out of the gym” feel and instead offers a laid-back yet pretty look.

You can use any cardigan you have but two options I really love are this Jenni Kayne cardi and this more affordable dupe. Also, when choosing sneakers, go with a pair that looks trendy (like dad sneakers) so you don’t feel underdressed throughout the rest of your day. 

Another tip: Swap out your workout top for a basic white tank. Not only will this provide you with a clean  (aka non-sweaty) slate, but it can also tie your outfit together and make it look more styled. 

Which athleisure outfit idea is your favorite? Let me know in the comment section below!

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