This $15 Aldi item is not worth your cash
You can find so many great things in Aldi, but gym tights aren't one.
Several times a year the German supermarket drops a range of fitness apparel, and like many of the Special Buys the store puts on sale twice a week, the news sparks mass hysteria among squat lovers and running junkies.
Social media reviews for these pants were off the charts when they went on sale last year, with one marathon runner declaring them the best she's ever used.
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I cannot stress enough how much I love @aldiaustralia’s fitness tights. I’ve spent many hundreds of dollars over the years on various brand name ‘performance’ running tights, but none has ever come close to fitting as well, lasting as long or being as comfortable as these. They never get saggy or shapeless, the designs are cool, and the high waist is 👌🏻. They’re perfect for #teamthickthighs runners like moi. And the best bit: THEY’RE ONLY FIFTEEN BUCKS! I bought two pairs last year and wore them exclusively throughout my @nycmarathon training and the marathon itself. This year’s fitness gear has just gone on sale at Aldi today and I snapped up these beauties. This isn’t an ad or anything, I just really genuinely love them! If you’re an Aussie runner, do yourself a favour and give these a try! . . . #aldifinds #aldiaustralia #aldi #aldiloversau #runner #running #runninggear #runchat #runningmumsaustralia #runningmum #rundownunder #runningmom #instarunner #sydneyinstarunners #marathoner #marathonmum #nycmarathon #marathonmom #runhappy #runnerscommunity #inkedrunner #womenwhorun #womensrunningcommunity #runlikeagirl #igrunners #womenrunning #hibiscus #thickthighsthinpatience
"How good are the @aldiaustralia high waisted tights!?" another woman captioned a snap of herself sporting a pair.
The response was wildly unanimous: "I need to go to Aldi!"
At just $15 for a pair of functional pants, often in a jazzy print that screams: "Look at me, I'm in activewear" - I can see the initial appeal.
I'm a big gym fan, often choosing to hang out at a squat rack on a stressful day rather than turn to a tempting glass of wine.
As a result, I've spent a fair whack on gym wear. With a pair of leggings often setting me back over $100, the price-tag was incredibly alluring.
So when I was in my local Aldi last year just days after writing a story titled, "Aldi's $15 gym tights are so good, people are calling them 'perfect'" - I couldn't believe my luck.
The navy-blue pants were adorned with red flowers and obviously just what I needed to hit a new personal best at the gym. At the checkout I didn't think twice about handing over cash I had no intention of spending when I'd gone in for some groceries. I'd snagged a bloody bargain.
But when I wriggled into the skin-tight Lycra my fellow gym lovers had frothed over, I was left wondering one thing: Why?
The thick material was suffocating and nothing like the light fabric my usual pants were. Instead of being a "second-skin" that moves you - a handy trait when exercising - I felt like I'd been wrapped too tightly in cling-wrap.
I hoped the leggings would prove me wrong where it mattered, inside the gym, but during my CrossFit workout, these things were more stiff than a stale slice of bread.
The purely polyester/elastane fabric made squatting impossible and seriously lacked any breathing abilities, making me unbearably hot.
Running, like so many had suggested online, fared no better. Sure, the high-waist felt comfy but it had no grip, slipping with every step on the treadmill. And the feeling of overheating like a pot of potatoes forgotten on a stove is no fun.
So it should come as no surprise when I tell you the pants haven't made it out of my drawers again over the last six months. Instead they've become a constant reminder of wasted cash and unfulfilled fitness dreams.
When people rush to Aldi on January 25 to snap up the new batch of fitness wear that's hitting the shelves - I'm going to be sitting smugly on my couch, vowing not to get sucked in this time around (unfortunately I'm still not immune to skin care or heavy crockery pots).
GYM TIGHTS WORTH YOUR DOUGH
Price: $99 - $109
This brand are probably one of my favourite thanks to the snug but breathable fit of the pants. I've got several pairs of this Australian brand's activewear tights (and sports bras too) and can confirm they are fantastic.
During a Barry's Bootcamp class, which is a mix of running and weights, the signature high-waist pants don't do that annoying roll down that others do - meaning no awkward yanking up halfway through a sprint.
There's always heaps of bright prints options too for those who want to add a splash of colour to their workouts. The brand is also a leader in sustainable fashion with its trademarked fabric that is made from recycled plastic bottles.
Price: $89 - $139
Another firm fave in my activewear collection, not just because the fabric is super clever and not only allows you to breathe but also has a "naked" technology that feels like you're wearing "next to nothing" - so no stiff or rigid feels here.
One of the main reasons I love Lulu gear is because it makes me feel good too, it sucks you in where it matters but doesn't suffocate - and the quality is next level. I've had a pair of 7/8 pants with a sexy mesh panel along the leg for almost two years but looking at them you'd never know.
Price: $80 - $105
I stumbled across this brand thanks to a fitness influencer and I have been so surprised by the quality of these tights - especially for the price. The small Australian business is an ethical brand that produces its gym clothes in "small" local factories and the tights I have are just the best.
They are high-waisted, breathable and super comfy. I can just as easily wear my pair - which I've had for 12 months - to do my groceries or go for brunch and they won't dig or cut off my circulation.
I did find that being 158cms, the pants came up long on me so I had them altered but they've proved to be durable pants and well worth the investment. Can't recommend these enough.
Price: $84.99 - $149.95
A fitness brand co-owned by Rebecca Judd, how Jaggad stands out from the crowd is the on-trend designs that make them as functional as they are fancy. I really love how the pants are super supportive but don't restrict me from any form of squatting or roll down when I run.
Fabric wise Jaggad pants are next-level too, they feel soft and have a good amount of stretch. If you're looking for a good pair of gym tights, these are a really great option.
Price: $45 - $175
A trusty and reliable gym pant brand, you basically can't go wrong with any Nike offering. The real high point for me on the few pairs I have is how long they last. I swear, I've had one pair of pants for at least four years and they're still going strong.
They also make them in a variety of lengths - great if you are don't fit into average-sized styles. You can also pick these up easily, being sold online, in Nike stores and at retailers like Rebel.