Where to Find Modest, Inexpensive Women's Yoga Clothes

by kajohu

Why spend a fortune on high end, expensive designer yoga clothing? Here are some ideas for finding practical and inexpensive women's yoga clothes.

Contrary to what the designer yoga clothing industry seems to be telling us, you don't need to spend a fortune on yoga clothes to enjoy your yoga class or to be a good yoga student.

Simple, practical, and inexpensive (even cheap!) activewear and exercise clothes will work great for your yoga practice and classes.

Then you'll be able to afford more yoga classes and workshops. And isn't that more important?

What Kind of Clothes Do You Really Need For a Yoga Class?

Practical and modest clothing that allows you to move freely

In a nutshell:

Clean, neat, modest, and affordable clothes that you can move freely in, without obscuring your alignment, work best for yoga classes. 

You don't need a $52 designer yoga tank top,  $88 yoga pants, and matching $102 hoody for your yoga classes.   Sure, they're undoubtedly cute and they may get you compliments (on your clothes, not your yoga poses...).  But maybe I'm just cheap, because I can think of a number of other things I'd rather spend my money on....such as taking more yoga classes and workshops.  

I also teach yoga, and I prefer to have enough yoga clothing to get me through the week without having to wash them.  

I'd spend a fortune in yoga clothes if I went the fashionable yoga wear route.  It's not necessary!

Here I'm wearing a pair of inexpensive bike-style exercise shorts from the thrift store, and a semi-fitted t-shirt from one of my favorite yoga studios.  Total cost less than $30.

Where to Find Cheap, Practical Yoga Clothes

Search for "Activewear" not "Yoga Wear"

Wherever you find more specialization in clothing, you'll also find that the prices are higher, whether it's for yoga, pilates, Zumba, or any other form of exercise.  If you shop at a specialty store that features brand name fashionable yoga clothing, you'll pay more for your yoga attire.

If you'd prefer to save money, you can often find suitable clothes for yoga in the Activewear section at department stores such as Kohls, JCPenney, Target, or Walmartfor much cheaper prices than specialty sports and exercise stores.

You may also be able to find good sales for higher end yoga fashion clothes. 

Thrift Shops, Resale Shops for Cheap Yoga Clothes

"Gently used" t-shirts are great for yoga!

I wear semi-fitted and fitted short-sleeved t-shirts while teaching and practicing yoga, since I prefer to cover my shoulders most of the time.  Loose t-shirts get too floppy and look sloppy on me, especially when I turn upside down.

My best sources for my yoga t-shirts have been at our local thrift shops and  "gently used" resale clothing shops.   I can often find almost new t-shirts in many styles and colors for $2 - $5.    If I get them home and decide they're not right for yoga, I use them for casual wear or for cleaning the house.  I'd say 75% of my yoga shirts are bought this way.

I've also found nice long-sleeved shirts at thrift shops that I wear as cover-ups before and after class.

I've found a few pairs of bike-type exercise shorts and semi-fitted knee-length sports pants at thrift shops that have also worked well for me, although I generally "splurge" on new (but still relatively inexpensive) pants for yoga.

(Image is my own)

Choose Modest Clothes for Yoga Class

You're at class to learn yoga, not to pick up a date (right?)

You've probably seen advertisements for fashionable yoga clothing that show scantily clothed models in provocative poses.   That certainly draws attention and probably sells the clothes to people with bodies who can carry it off, but scantily clothed yoga students are a distraction for the rest of the yoga class.  

Even bare midriffs, which are in style for certain sets of people, are a distraction in a yoga class.

No, Not This for Yoga Classes

I mean, really?
Mrs. Bright Side
Mrs. Brig...
Bikram Yoga - with Bikram Choudhury
Bikram Yo...

You're there to learn yoga, not to show off your body.   Really.   But I'm in my mid-50's, not my 20's or 30's, and I admit that my mind works differently than the younger crowd.   Still, you're not doing anyone a favor who's there to actually learn yoga if you come to class showing a lot of skin.

Granted, the style of yoga I teach (Iyengar Yoga) is generally taught at room temperature -- not in super-heated rooms, so there is no practical need for just the bare minimum in coverage.   For hot yoga, yes, you'll probably want to wear less.   But most yoga classes are not "hot yoga" classes.

Yes, for Yoga Classes

Modest, practical
Un po' di yoga prima di ricominciare...
Un po' di...
Run Yoga Fusion Class at lululemon West 4th
Run Yoga ...

Also be mindful of what you inadvertently might be showing.

Running shorts and other loose fitness shorts are comfortable to move in and are modest enough....until you turn upside down or sit with your legs wide.   Then they may show more than what  you've bargained for, whether your a woman or a man.    Consider wearing compression shorts underneath, to keep everything "contained".

Practical, Inexpensive Yoga Pants and Shorts

Women's Yoga Pants

Check out a few of these options for use in your yoga class.   My preference is for shorts with inseams 5" or longer, knee length (Bermuda-length) and capri pants.    I don't advise buying really long flared-leg pants for yoga unless you're tall enough not to catch your toes in the hems and trip. 

Also, if your teacher does check your alignment, knee length or shorter pants, or tight-fitting long pants work better than loose flowing pants.

Affordable Yoga Pants from Department Stores
Women's Running Capri Pants
Women's Running Cap...
Danskins Women's Performance Capri
Danskins Women's Pe...
Double Piped Workout Capris
Double Piped Workou...

Practical and Fun Yoga Shirts

Women's Yoga Tops

If you don't like the idea of buying yoga tops from thrift stores, as I recommended above, here are a few other good options.  

Sleeveless tops and tank tops are good for greater freedom of movement in the arms, and to stay cooler while you're working in your yoga asanas.  

Short sleeved tees are a bit more modest, and a little warmer.  

The sleeveless tops shown here are from Amazon, while the short sleeved tees are chosen from some fun Zazzle.com designs.  

Also See This for More Great Yoga Shirts

Fun Yoga Tees
Wear these fun yoga t-shirts for yoga class, or for every day wear. Many of these designs come in both men's and women's styles and in short-sleeved and long-sleeved tees.
Updated: 05/20/2014, kajohu
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What Kind of Clothes Do You Wear for Yoga Classes or Other Fitness Classes?

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kajohu on 01/06/2013

Yes! It's cold here too in the winter, and I often wear a simple long-sleeved shirt over my regular t-shirt until I warm up some.

terrilorah on 03/21/2012

I haven't been to a yoga class yet, but this is great to know. Being able to find what I need if I were to go(and my co-workers are working on me) would be great to get at a thrift shop.

kajohu on 02/27/2012

I'm happy that you like the information here, katiem2. From my own experience, what I choose for my own yoga and workout clothes make a big difference in my freedom of movement. And the best clothes don't have to be all that expensive!

katiem2 on 02/27/2012

Great selection of yoga gear, and yes it is so true the work out clothes and gear you choose makes all the difference. I love yoga and its a must to have clothes that cling your body, plus the comfort and support of yoga clothes is amazing. Thanks for doing all the leg work to bring great yoga clothes onto one web page.

kajohu on 02/27/2012

I'm with you, ohcaroline -- I want my clothes to be comfortable, modest, and practical. Nothing too fancy or pricey!

ohcaroline on 02/27/2012

These styles of clothes for doing all fitness activities are just the thing. I don't have any expensive outfits. I just want to be comfortable and modest.

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