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To serve their purpose, workout clothes need to hit a handful of markers: namely, they should be supportive, durable, and breathable. Ideally, they also look good and don’t cost a crazy-ton of money.
One brand that’s worth getting excited about right now is ADAY, a direct-to-consumer athleticwear line that’s straight-up geeky about technical fabrics and functionality (their best-selling waitlisted leggings, for example, have Olympic-standard bonded seams and side pockets. The pair also comes with its own one-pager.).
When I met Meg He, one of the brand’s cofounders, at ADAY’s New York showroom last week, we spent most of our time talking about two things: what everything’s made of, and each piece’s intended function. For example, a tank top with a mesh back allows for ventilation (without veering into “club clothes” territory), and sports bras with stretchy armholes prevent your skin from getting pinched in the wrong places.
“We’re passionate about infusing technology into fashion in a way that’s seamless and still allows for the emotional and authentic connection that we want to have with our customers,” He explains. “So in a way, technology is just the enabler for a better customer experience.”
You can shop ADAY straight from its website right now. Below, He explains why the brand has opted not to go wholesale.
How have you benefitted, so far, from a direct-to-consumer model — what’s the biggest benefit for you, and for the shopper?
We’re a very young brand — we launched in June 2015 and firmly believe that by going direct-to-consumer, we’re able to build the best experience for our customers by establishing a direct (real and authentic!) relationship.
This also allows us to test out what works with a fast iteration cycle — for example, dropping a product, seeing how the customers react, then iterating off that. We can listen really closely to our customers and have meaningful conversations with them. We know exactly what gets returned and why, and we know what our customers love and what they would improve.
We’re set up to do relatively small production runs with short production cycles, so we have the ability to act on feedback, which means we can constantly improve and innovate, all while providing our customers with a fair price point.
You have a season-less approach that’s having a pretty big moment right now. What’s that all about for you?
We love Marie Kondo's The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up because we believe that a few staples are all you need. Each of our pieces is technical, long-lasting, and has numerous purposes, so it can be worn anywhere, anytime. It’s smart apparel that simplifies life. This has a conscious impact, too, as we eliminate the need to replace wardrobes every season. We also know our audience is global and always traveling, so seasons are very relative.
We launched last year with eight styles, and we introduce new ones every other month — our next launch, which we’re very excited about, is our “Technical Tailored” capsule (a button-down shirt and cigarette pants), which begins in December.