Fitness Brand Reviews: Born Tough Athletic Wear

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Summer Sides had the chance to review an outfit from athleisure brand Born Tough, check out her experience.
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New clothes are fun! There is something super satisfying about taking the tag off a new pair of pants or sliding a new shirt over your head for the first time (am I alone in that?). And when you live your life in exercise clothes, discovering a new athleisure brand just makes your heart fill with butterflies and rainbows (still just me?!).

So when I first heard about Born Tough I was excited for the chance to check out their clothes and see if they would be a new addition to my closet. Here is my take on the clothes.

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Selection

When I first landed on the Born Tough website I noticed that the selection for women was limited to just a few items and solid colors. While I was a little bummed there weren’t any fun prints, I opted for the Born Tough Contoured Tracksuit Bottom in black and the Born Tough Limitless Sheer Muscle Tank Top, also in black.

 

Price Point

I love a good deal, and this was one for sure. This entire look was less than $50! The pants came in at $34.99 and the shirt was $14.99. Sadly this doesn’t qualify for their free shipping of greater than $59, but you can’t argue with an athleisure outfit for $49.98.

 

Shipping & Packaging

The product arrived in less than a week and came in a standard flat package. When opening the mailer, the items came together inside another bag, that was sealed and included the shipping receipt. I always like it when companies pin their tags to the clothes and Born Tough had done this very nicely.

 

The “Touch Test”

Maybe it’s because I grew up with a mom who was a seamstress, but the feel of material in my hands is important to me. Which is why I fondle and feel all my clothes before trying anything new on, aka – I give it the “Touch Test”.

The first thing I noticed when picking up my new Born Tough outfit was the difference in feel between the shirt and the pants. The shirt had a very soft and light feel, while the pants were rough and heavy. The shirt felt like high quality material, while the pants seemed a bit lower in quality. But I didn’t let this cloud my judgement and proceeded to try things on with an open and excited mind.

 

Let’s Look at the Pants First

Born Tough Contoured Tracksuit Bottom

The Fit

I regularly wear an XS across athleisure brands, and as long as there is enough spandex to fit over my athletic thighs, this is typically perfect. Therefore, I felt appropriate ordering an XS in these pants.

However, when I tried them on the fabric (92% cotton, 8% spandex) did not give at all, and my super athletic thighs did not want to fit into the pants. After a few jumps and wiggles, I finally got them on, and they fit nicely in the waist. Sadly though, these jumps and wiggles and the unforgiving nature of the fabric caused a few seams to pop before I even started moving around.

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The next thing I noticed was that these were obviously made for people much taller than me. My 5’1 frame had the pants easily cover the bottoms of my feet, which made wearing them with shoes a bit complicated.

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In fact, I had to fold up nearly 6-inches and shove it under the bottom to put on my shoes and take this picture!

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The final thing I noticed was this ‘drawstring’ (which didn’t actually seem to adjust the fit on the waist) on the front of the pants, that left a bit of a ‘bulge’ near my crotch. As a person who loves flat front pants, this is just not a good look to me. I tried to remove the drawstring or find alternative ways to decrease the extra bulge it left….sadly I found no good solution.

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I was hopeful that the fit of the shirt would allow the bulge to be hidden a bit, but it actually just made it even more obvious and awkward.

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Squat Test Performed

I opted not to do a full workout in the pants out of fear of ripping. Instead I ‘squat tested’ them (you know, squatting to make sure the underwear don’t show through and your butt crack isn’t in full view). I can happily report they passed this with flying colors! BUT….the unforgiving fabric did make it a bit scary!

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They also did well in a few different yoga and barre positions in regards to not showing my underwear!

Conclusion on the Pants

If you don’t need the give of spandex for your athletic thighs, stand taller than 5’1, and don’t mind a bit of a bulge at the front of your pants, then the Born Tough Contoured Tracksuit Bottom might be great for you!

 

Now Let’s Look at the Shirt

Born Tough Limitless Sheer Muscle Tank Top

The Fit

I also ordered an XS in the shirt, and overall feel this fit according to size. It is cut a bit weird under the arms and you can see when I lift my arms the sides of my sports bra were showing – but this might be an intentional design of the shirt.

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It fit nicely across my chest and had a bit of flow at the bottom (I don’t like skin tight shirts, so this is a plus for me). There is a nice slit along the side that makes for a nice contrast to a typical shirt and gives it some character (I also like the look of the brand tag on the slit).

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I tend to prefer shirts that are a bit longer than this one, and I do wonder on someone taller than 5’1 how it would fit, but that is a personal preference. The shirt was soft to the touch and had a good feel on the body.

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Workout Tested

While the pants only got a squat test, I did wear this shirt while teaching a power yoga class (the best test of an outfit is if I can teach it without pulling or messing with anything).

As a yoga teacher, it’s always important for me to see how a shirt performs when doing inversions (such as downward dog). I want a shirt that stays in place, versus falling down towards my shoulders and flashing the class or requiring me to constantly pull down on the shirt. Sadly, because of the slits it did fall and I was forced to pull it back to place while teaching.

The lightweight nature of the fabric allowed me to stay cool and dry throughout my class. The soft shirt was also great for wiping sweat off my face!

Conclusion on the Shirt

Overall, I was satisfied with the feel and fit of the shirt. I personally don’t love how short it is and probably won’t wear it on a regular basis, but if you enjoy your shirts a little shorter than the Born Tough Limitless Sheer Muscle Tank Top might be a great option for you.

 

Overall Conclusion of Born Tough

You can’t beat their price points and the delivery time is wonderful.

Sadly though, sometimes you pay for what you get, and the quality of the pants wasn’t great. The shirt did come in with a good feel and looked nice overall.

However, this is not a brand made for my body or my activities. I opted to give the pants to someone else in need and while the shirt is in my closet, I haven’t found myself pulling it out to wear because of the length and the flashing element. With this, I probably won’t be a long-term customer.

That said, I do like the mission of the brand and know that the clothes might be perfect for other people.

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Know a Athleisure Brand I should Review?

As I said, I love trying out new brands and will always give a 100% honest review of my experience wearing the product. If you’re up for an honest review of your athleisure outfit, send me an email and let me try it out during a LIVE (on YouTube) class!

 

Summer N. Sides, M.S.

Summer N. Sides, M.S.

Summer N. Sides (MS, RYT-200, CSCS) is the Founder of GXunited, an educational resource hub dedicated to group fitness and the owner of Greensboro Downtown Yoga. For almost 20 years, she’s helped participants ‘stand taller, move easier, and perform better’ through science backed mindful movement experiences. She’s worked with companies such as NETA, Les Mills, IGNITE360 (a division of IMG Performance), and ACE as a national presenter, assessor, curriculum/program developer, and freelance writer. As a former Lecturer of Exercise Science, she aims to elevate the next generation of fitness professionals through fun and creative educational experiences.

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