Lulu Is A Lemon

Posted: November 18th, 2013 by Paula

I hate Lululemon.

Everything about that brand makes me want to knock down an end-aisle display of Vitamin Water with my yoga mat.

The name bothers me. The price bothers me. How great they make the asses of women half my age bothers me. Their cult-like following of Lulu Lemmings bothers me.

It’s the Juicy Couture of gym culture. Although the swooped-hairdo logo is not as obnoxious as the giant JUICY stamped across the voloured bottoms of MILFS a half-step behind, it’s just as insidious.

So I’m not ashamed to take perverse pleasure in the buckets of bad news leveled against the Lemon. I mean when it rains, it pours.

Me and my personalized SOLOW stirrup leggings, hanging in there after five years of downward dog.

Me and my personalized SOLOW stirrup leggings, hanging in there after five years of downward dog.

To wit:

This past March, the $98 yoga pants were recalled because they were too sheer, especially in the butt. Men of course began to hyperventilate and follow Lulu’d lassies around like dogs, hoping to catch a glimpse of this wardrobe malfunction. In July, Lululemon responded by launching a reinforced product dubbed “Full-On Luon.”

Last week, Lululemon debuted yet another version of the faulty pants, this time a recycled and reinforced version dubbed “Second Chance pants”, which were a patched-up version of the recalled inventory. They tried to make light of the situation in their communications and turn it into a positive social media conversation, even including this on the hang-tag, “These pants were inspired by the need to find functional and beautiful design solutions for our sheer pants. This is what celebrating failure looks like.”

“These pants were inspired by a need to find functional and beautiful design solutions for our sheer pants,” the tag reads. “This is what celebrating failure looks like!” – See more at: http://madamenoire.com/323065/lululemons-second-chance-pants-may-genius-marketing-move-customers-buying/#sthash.iNvkN4Km.dpuf
“These pants were inspired by a need to find functional and beautiful design solutions for our sheer pants,” the tag reads. “This is what celebrating failure looks like!” – See more at: http://madamenoire.com/323065/lululemons-second-chance-pants-may-genius-marketing-move-customers-buying/#sthash.iNvkN4Km.dpuf
“These pants were inspired by a need to find functional and beautiful design solutions for our sheer pants,” the tag reads. “This is what celebrating failure looks like!” – See more at: http://madamenoire.com/323065/lululemons-second-chance-pants-may-genius-marketing-move-customers-buying/#sthash.iNvkN4Km.dpuf

Meanwhile.

Many women have been complaining about the “pilling” that’s happening with their “Groove” and “Wonder Under” products, only to have the founder of Lululemon, Chip Wilson, say this in an interview with Bloomberg TV: “Quite frankly some women’s bodies just don’t actually work for it. They don’t work for some women’s bodies…it’s really about the rubbing through the thighs, how much pressure is there over a period of time, how much they use it.” Ladies, this is what actual failure sounds like.

All hell has broken lose. As it should.

By alienating pretty much every woman without perfect thighs, which is almost all of us, we should all celebrate what failure looks like: him.

This is going to be a fascinating story to follow.

In the meantime, may I offer an alternative?

SOLOW Stirrup legging. Comfortable and alluring.

SOLOW Stirrup legging. Comfortable and alluring.

I’ve been doing yoga now for almost five years, and had to switch from slouchy Adidas sweats to more yoga-appropriate garb and found myself hating the overpriced options, including Lululemon. And then I had an epiphany: why not wear my favorite leggings by SOLOW and call it a day? I had a pair of these SOLOW Stirrup leggings that I wore everywhere ($55) that never bagged, bunched, bound or behaved badly.

The stirrup elongates the leg and provides warmth against cold studio floors, and looks cute when you toss on an apres sandal. And for ladies like me of a certain age, the higher rise provides better coverage and comfort. To help with my knee alignment in Warrior One (and frankly, to give them my unique spin) I cut the knees out. Viola. They are all I wear. The army-green pair I’m sporting in the above photo is five years old and still kicking into handstands and relaxing into Child’s Pose with no piling, sheer spots, bullshit or drama.

Back to Lulu. Chip Wilson has come out with this apology, which can be viewed below. Are you buying it? Will you ever buy Lululemon again?

Discuss, please. And Namaste.

13 Comments

  • Jennifer
    November 18, 2013 - 5:36 pm | Permalink

    Chip’s apology would have been more authentic if he didn’t have to read it from the teleprompter. Another poor performance. Happy to say I don’t own one item from Lululemon.

    • Paula
      November 18, 2013 - 5:42 pm | Permalink

      I know. The apology was hard to watch. xo

  • Kelly Pagnac
    November 18, 2013 - 6:29 pm | Permalink

    I live and do occasional studio yoga in Portland, OR where Lululemon is ubiquitous; there’s even a Lululemon shop in the the tony “Pearl” shopping district. In a city that prides itself in the unique and the boutique, I have been flummoxed how the namaste set, while seeking themselves on the yoga mat, lose themselves in the same-same status of their yoga gear.

    I do not own any Lululemon and your post has solidified my stance on this soulless retail giant.

    Rock on Paula and thanks for the tip on the stirrup leggings!

    • Paula
      November 18, 2013 - 6:40 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Kelly! I love your comment, especially your brilliant observation, “seeking themselves in the yoga mat, lose themselves in the same-same status of their yoga gear.” In San Francisco where I practice yoga, 80% of all of the women wear Lululemon. They all look the same. Part of the reason I was so turned off by the idea of yoga, at least at the Bay Club where I take classes, was the whole Lululemon scene around it. Thanks for the support! And you will LOVE SOLOW. They are simply awesome. xo

  • Dani
    November 18, 2013 - 9:15 pm | Permalink

    Go Jslow!
    I too, will now boycott the Lemon. You are the Ralph Nadar of fashion…..keep it up!!
    Love, Dani

    • Paula
      November 18, 2013 - 10:57 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Dani! We so appreciate your support! xo

  • November 19, 2013 - 2:34 am | Permalink

    Paula is the true Ralph Nadar of fashion. I’m just along for the ride. xxjslow

  • Ashley
    November 19, 2013 - 11:35 am | Permalink

    Could not agree with you more!!

    • Paula
      November 19, 2013 - 5:28 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Ash! They’ve never made their way into a LBS. xo

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  • November 20, 2013 - 6:27 pm | Permalink

    I was so excited to read this post. I bought a pair of Lemonheads pre-peekaboo sheerness and although they’ve held up, they’re extremely short waisted which is not forgiving on a midlife midriff. I’m constantly trying to pull them up in class. I’m so stoked to try out your SOLOWs. Great post Paula!

    • Paula
      November 20, 2013 - 6:46 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Stacy! I know, I hate too-low wasted workout gear, so uncomfortable and so unforgiving. I swear by Solow, and constantly have people ask me about them (the cut-out knees help!) They even fade well like an old pair of Levi’s, yet hold all of their stretch. And they are super slimming. xo

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