What to Wear to Yoga: Learn the Basics from A to Zen


Namaste, fashion friends. We welcome you to set aside a mindful minute to take a deep healing breath and relax your body. Did you feel any tension release from your shoulders, neck or jaw? Yoga has taken the world by storm as an excellent avenue for meditation and wellness. If you’re considering signing up for your very first Hatha class, you may be wondering what to wear to yoga. Whether you’re a beginner or embarking on a more advanced practice, get ready to harness your third eye. We’re here to enlighten you on how to make the most of your yogi outfits. We’ll tackle how to avoid see-through mishaps during downward dog, whether you have to go barefoot and more—stay tuned. 

History of Yoga

Before we decide what to wear to yoga, let’s begin with a brief understanding of what yoga is and where it came from. Yoga is a group of disciplines aimed at stilling the mind through meditation and specific body poses. Though practiced across the globe, many consider ancient India as the true origin of yoga. While traditional yoga focuses on the detachment of worldly desires, modern yoga hones in on stress relief and enhancing physical fitness. It’s no wonder why many serenity seekers partake in this Zen activity.

Did you know that there are multiple styles of yoga? The beauty of this variety means you can find a practice that best serves your needs. If you’re looking to improve joint mobility and overall flexibility, Yin yoga has your back. Restorative yoga can aid those who are under a lot of daily stress. Vinyasa and hot yoga are two popular styles practiced today which we’ll cover key clothing considerations for a bit later. First, let’s build off the basics before we get into any advanced yoga outfit advice. 

Yoga Style 101: 3 Essential Tips

They say you can never master the art of yoga, and you’ll always be a student learning new things. However, there are a few fundamentals to keep in mind to begin your yoga journey without a hitch. Check out three tips we love:

1. Avoid billowy fabrics.

Our first piece of advice when deciding what to wear to yoga is to ditch oversized clothing. Loose T-shirts can drape over your head as you bend over and touch your toes. This will help prevent exposing your stomach or parts of your body that you may rather keep under wraps. On another level, too much fabric can impede your instructor’s ability to correct your form, if needed.

2. Do a squat test on your leggings.

There’s no doubt that leggings are a popular choice of apparel. Before you wear your everyday pair to class, have a friend or family member help you perform a squat test. Put on your leggings and squat to see if there’s any unwanted sheerness. No helping hand nearby? No worries, simply stand in front of a mirror in a well-lit room.

3. Avoid comparison. 

Have you ever heard the expression that comparison is the thief of joy? Everyone is a beginner at some point, so give yourself grace and enjoy the process. All that matters is that you wear something you are comfortable in. You’ve got this.

What to Wear to Yoga for Beginners

Are you curious about what to wear to yoga as a beginner? The good news is that wearing yoga-inspired outfits has made our top list of 2022 spring trends. This means there are lots of stylish choices from the ever-trendy biker shorts to function-meets-fashion joggers. As a beginner, we understand it can get a little overwhelming. How much should you invest in proper clothing when you’re just starting out? Luckily, if you’re an active person, there’s a fair chance you already have the basics in your women’s wardrobe. Whether you’re attending an online class or hitting the yoga studio in person, we’ve got you covered. Keep reading to see which items to add to your list.

What to Wear with Yoga Pants

As we mentioned earlier, you likely have a trusty sports bra, athletic top and workout leggings on hand. If so, you’re at a solid starting point. Want to add a few new tops to re-energize your chi? This is your chance to support women owned clothing brands. Personally, we’re loving Sweaty Betty, Girlfriend Collective and Beyond Yoga.

Now, you may be pondering what to wear with yoga pants and how they differ from active leggings? We’re here to let you know they’re essentially the same. Just make sure they have great stretch, support and are meant for physical activities. Sorry, fashion leggings—you’ll have to sit this one out. The only difference is that yoga pants can come in wider silhouettes whereas leggings are traditionally skin tight. Either way, style your yoga pants just as you would leggings. Wear them with a knotted tank while you work out. After your sweat session, wear a lightweight women’s shacket and sneakers to take you from the studio to the street. Now you can focus on your self-affirming mantras. 

What Shoes to Wear to Yoga Class 

Are you all suited up and heading out the door but not sure what shoes to wear to yoga class? The answer is simple. Anything that’s easy to slip on and off because you’ll likely be barefoot in the studio. Slides, sneakers or sandals will certainly do the trick. Maybe you’re not comfortable showing your feet? Keep regular socks tucked away in the drawer and invest in a pair of yoga socks instead. They’re specifically designed with non-slip grip so you’re more stable on the mat. Plus, they keep your feet clean, which is a total win-win in our book.  

The Ultimate Accessories for Yoga 

Now that you have a better idea of what to wear to yoga, it’s time to talk about accessories. A yoga mat is a must, but if you don’t have one yet, don’t sweat it. Call the studio before your class and see if you can borrow one. When you’re ready to purchase your own, they come in a range of thicknesses suited to different styles of yoga. A towel is helpful to wipe away sweat as you’re progressing through the class, especially handy for hot yoga. Your beloved scrunchie will come in clutch to tie up your hair in a flash. Lastly, stay hydrated with a reusable water bottle no matter how intense your workout is. Remember, H2O is the way to go.

What to Wear to Hot Yoga

Hot yoga is another fitness-oriented practice centered around various postures. It’s unique in that it takes place in a humid studio with temperatures between 90 and 108 degrees Fahrenheit. Why heat and humidity, you ask? The theory is that humidity increases your heart rate and loosens your muscles. At the same time, the heat raises your body temperature and, therefore, boosts metabolism. Just like stretching, the balmy room can help prepare your body for exercise and prevent injury. Remember, it’s best to take it slow and listen to your body. 

If you’re ready to crank up the heat on your yoga routine, you might be wondering what to wear to hot yoga. Ladies, when selecting the proper clothing for your hot yoga class, there are two main goals to keep in mind. To start, you do not want to overheat. Pay close attention to the material in the clothing. Lightweight, fitted attire made with performance properties like moisture-wicking and antimicrobial are ideal. Breathable fabrics are important, but stay away from cotton since it holds onto moisture and will weigh you down. Instead, look for the workout workhorse of materials—polyester blends.

Next, prevent yourself from sliding all over the place. No matter if you’re a naturally dewy person or not, get ready to profusely perspire. Shorts may seem like the obvious choice, but slick skin on a yoga mat makes for a slippery situation. Full-length leggings will help prevent this issue along with a mat that absorbs sweat. Pair your leggings with a sheer or mesh tank top to allow for ultimate airflow. Comfortable in simply a sports bra on top? Go for it. Lastly, keep the sweat out of your eyes with an athletic headband and your water chilled with an insulated bottle. You’ll thank us later. 

What to Wear to Vinyasa Yoga 

Variety is the spice of life. If it’s time to level up your yoga skills, consider a more fast-paced flow that Vinyasa, or “power yoga,” provides. Unlike Ashtanga yoga with a set sequence of moves, each Vinyasa class will vary depending on the instructor. Not sure what to wear to Vinyasa yoga? Since this form of yoga focuses on endurance and strength training, reach for clothing that allows for ease of movement. Place an emphasis on your outfit having stretch since you’ll be transitioning from one pose directly to the next. 

Why not have a little fun with color play? Express your personality as you align your chakras by discovering which of your favorite colors goes well together. Are blue and pink your dynamic duo? Rock cobalt blue biker shorts with a baby pink bra top as you move from warrior one to warrior two. There’s nothing like wearing your power colors while doing a powerful pose. 

Are you ready to enhance your mind-body connection in a yoga-ready ensemble? Take your style quiz and request a Fix full of activewear designed for yoga. An expert stylist will do the work for you while you relax and wait for your items to arrive. Or, head over to Stitch Fix Freestyle™ to instantly buy pieces curated for your style and size. Shipping, returns and exchanges are always free. 

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