This post may be the most "controversial" one on my blog. Actually, probably the only one... But it's hard to avoid when you give an honest opinion about a very popular thing, even when you're just trying to be helpful! 😊 So before you read, please know this: I don’t want to tear moms down over their clothes… I want to build them up. If you like what you read here, great! If not, that’s fine too. We can still be friends. 😉 The body is more than clothes (Matthew 6:25) 😊 Ok, mamas, hope this helps you out if you were on the fence about LuLaRoe. ❤️ Corina
You all probably have that friend on Instagram or Facebook that posts a selfie of her crazy leggings, caption replete with words of utter glee and enchantment, finished off with silly celebration emoticons. If you're like me, you're left with a confused frown, squinting at the screen, reading people's comments of admiration, and absentmindedly whispering, "What am I not seeing here?" It's okay, sister. You're not completely off base with your bewilderment. Because it's not so much what you're not seeing but what you're not feeling. Your friend is sitting in a cloud-like envelopment of buttery material. And if you appeal to her with a reasonable question such as "but... isn't that pattern kind of childish?" She will probably grin instantly. Her eyes will light up with amusement and she will respond, "Oh my goodness! You're right! That's why I love them so much! I. LOVE. LULA....ROOOOOOOOOOOEEEE!!!!" And you'll still be sitting there scratching your head.
Take my hand, girl. Let's explore this together.
Joking aside, I'm seriously excited to dive into a super-duper honest opinion post about LuLaRoe. And if you happen to be one of the ladies who has slipped into their leggings and become spell-bound, this post is for you too. Because though I jest as a complete critique, I actually have a lot of positive to say about this company and several suggestions for how to rock their clothes. So stick around!
Let's get started. The LuLaRoe craze is sweeping the nation. It’s become an absolute sensation among many women, especially moms. You've probably heard it too: that once you try on their “butter leggings” you’re hooked. Based on my observation of women around me, I think that’s very true. And not only do they get hooked… they become raving fans.
What is LuLaRoe? It’s a new-ish company making clothing styles that uses stretchy fabric in unique patterns. Their clothing is only sold via consultants who offer “pop-up parties” in homes or on Facebook. LuLaRoe claims to offer ultimate comfort without compromising style. We'll explore the validity of that statement below...
It’s time to talk about this huge fad on the blog. Because while many women swear by it, many others are left scratching their heads wondering: “What about those pattern crazy leggings and spandex dresses is SO sensational? Did I miss the memo about the mama circus train coming to town?” You gotta wonder why leggings with pizza and ice cream or cats and dogs is getting these women so excited.
Many of you may have wondered whether it’s a fad you should pay any attention to. Are you missing out or playing it smart by staying away?
Some of you may have fallen in love with it and just want some inspiration for styling it well.
In stating my opinion and offering some styling insights, I want you to know: I didn’t partner or collaborate with a LuLaRoe consultant for this post so that you can be sure I have no vested interests. You should also know that I still don’t own any LuLaRoe pieces. I’ve only tried some on. (I haven’t bought any yet because it either hasn’t been in my monthly budget or on my shopping list.) So what I share is based on my observation of how others wear and style their LuLaRoe finds. But trust me, as a blogger, I've had plenty of exposure.
And I’ve definitely been in the “scratching my head wondering…” camp of women ever since I joined my first LuLaRoe facebook group last winter.
But I think I’m starting to understand why it’s caught on like wildfire.
There are pros and cons to this popular brand. There are ways LuLaRoe can enhance your wardrobe, and ways it can weigh it down.
Here’s how I break it down.
Pros: Why LuLaRoe is Popular
Comfort. I list this first because it is the most popular feature about LuLaRoe, and in fact, it’s their motto: “Simply Comfortable: Where fashion meets comfort.” Moms need to feel comfortable while feeling stylish, and LuLaRoe has the potential to offer that. Their leggings, for example, are soft and excellent quality. But they aren’t the only items made with elastin (or something stretchy like that)—all their pieces are. From their shirts to their dresses it all feels like butter.
Quality material. The fabric is surprisingly thick. You may be surprised that no undershirt is necessary, even with the lighter colors. They are also wrinkle resistant—a huge plus for busy moms!
Positive mission. By purchasing LuLaRoe, you’re supporting an entrepreneurial woman. The mission of LuLaRoe, as expressed on their website, is to provide freedom to women who want to work from home. Being a successful consultant isn’t easy; it requires dedication and smart work. But lots of women are trying it out as a way to make an income for their families. When you attend a pop-up party or shop their items in a Facebook group or event, you have fun shopping and your friend gets the benefit because you are supporting her business.
Unique prints. Only 2,500 pieces of any one print is manufactured, meaning your pair of leggings or dress is unique and you won’t see it repeated. I'm not necessarily excited by this feature, but many women are. So I'm listing it here.
Versatility. All of LuLaRoe’s collection are “basics.” Their leggings, shirt, skirts, dresses and kimonos can be used as anchors in an outfit and built upon to create many variations. This makes their clothing very versatile—as long as the patterns and colors your choose match well with other items in your wardrobe. Their maxi skirts are also popular for their ability to morph into different clothing pieces. This is a cool feature that many women love experimenting with. And because they are stretchy, most of the pieces work as maternity as well. A big plus for moms who want their clothes to worth through their pregnancy and beyond.
Cons: Why I Haven’t Gone Crazy Over LuLaRoe
The spandex look. While the spandex material used to make LuLaRoe pieces make it supremely comfortable, it comes with drawbacks as well. For one, women wearing only LuLaRoe as their complete outfit often look quite frumpy. The leggings + tee look is so casual that, unless accessorized well, it kind of looks like pajamas or a very modest swimsuit. YES, it’s super comfortable. YES, the funky patterns might tickle you pink. But is it classy? That’s where I think LuLaRoe misses the mark. UNLESS, you are smart about how you wear it. (More about that in the next section.) Which leads to my next point:
It can tend to look like pajamas or a modest swimsuit. Just stating that again in case you missed it in the first point. Pajamas and modest swimsuits are great. But I don’t think that’s what you’re going for in your day-to-day. I think many women look somewhat childish in some of their patterns/outfit combinations. Especially middle-aged and senior women... it just doesn't look right. (They do have children's clothing as well by the way. And those little models, in my opinion, always look adorable in LuLaRoe.) I don't know if it's the herd mentality at work or what... but it's astounding how many women are convinced everything they put on from LuLaRoe is "cute" and "stylish," when in fact it's not. Just like with ANY other clothing brand, you still need to use your aesthetic intuition to decide if something really does look cute. And if you're not sure, just ask a friend. Let me clarify. Ask a friend who doesn't already own any LuLaRoe. I'm sure they'll be glad to have the opportunity to speak on the subject.
Favors skinny figures. Something that has become quite obvious from seeing people wear LuLaRoe online and around town: it’s not flattering on heavier figures. In fact, if you have any thickness at all, it really shows through the fabric. So you have to be pretty skinny to look good in it. (All my extra flab looked awkward in the pieces I tried on, even though my usual size is “6” and “SM” for most clothing.) It frustrates me when I see LuLaRoe touted as clothing that flatters everyone. I have simply not observed that to be the case. Just because it feels good on you, doesn’t mean it flatters your figure. In fact, I think it often does the opposite for many women. (See my tip below for how to wear it if you're bigger than size 4 or 6.)
Laundering requirements. From what I’ve heard, LuLaRoe clothing gets damaged in the dryer, so you are supposed to hang dry it. That’s an added step that I tend to avoid with my clothes… because inevitably everything ends up accidentally going in the dryer eventually. Because I hate finding a place in the house to hang clothes to dry. Because I love my dryer.
Sizing. For some reason, LuLaRoe pieces of the same size don’t end up identically sized. Perhaps this is part of the “uniqueness” factor, but it could prove annoying if you’re a frequent customer. If you’re shopping in person at a pop-up party, this isn’t an issue because you can try everything on before buying it. But it gets tricky when you’re ordering from a Facebook group and aren’t ever sure how well your “usual” size is going to fit you. Whereas your first classic tee might fit perfectly, the second may not. Not a huge bother, but worth mentioning in the “cons” list.
- Price point. As boutiques go, LuLaRoe isn’t necessarily in the “expensive” tier, but neither is it cheap. Leggings are the cheapest at $25 and their most expensive item (a knee-length cardigan) is $70. Here’s the thing, I’m willing to buy some NEUTRAL color leggings or a very versatile dress because I will find LOTS of ways to mix and match them with the rest of my wardrobe, making the price-per-wear worthwhile (I do have my eye on the Amelia). But I would not be willing to buy patterned leggings or other pieces on repeat just because they’re “fun” when they end up taking up room in my closet and not giving me a return for my investment. I’m all about creating a flexible wardrobe, so only the most versatile pieces are worth the buck for me.
Okay, now that I’ve shared all the ways LuLaRoe falls short in my mind, let me say this:
I still think you can rock the LuLaRoe trend if you’re smart about it.
Opportunity: How to Make LuLaRoe Work For You
Avoid Frumpy and Look Fabulous With These 5 Styling Tips
#1 Mix and match LuLaRoe with the rest of your wardrobe.
Don’t get swept away by all the excitement and assume that wearing 100% LuLaRoe all the time is a stylish move. Because of the spandex texture and appearance of these pieces, they should only make up a part of a well balanced outfit. Layer, layer, layer. Lularoe pieces are just the starting point. Don’t just wear their tees or their dresses, or leggings, or any combo of their items ALONE. Combine them with different fabrics and stylish items in your wardrobe. And don’t forget accessories. Use scarves, jewelry, belts, and shoes to create a complete outfit.
Here are some more examples of layering/accessorizing—instead of LLR leggings with LLR tee with LLR kimono, or LLR dress with LLR leggings, try:
- LuLaRoe Top + Vest + Skinny Jeans + Boots
- LuLaRoe Dress + Denim Jacket + Pendant Necklace + Flats
- LuLaRoe Leggings + Cotton or Polyester Tunic Top + Statement necklace + Gladiator Sandals
#2 Avoid ridiculous and abstract patterns. Especially if they don't flow with your color palette.
Why? It will make your outfit options very limited (not to mention you'll look silly). Go for classic patterns or solids that you can use as basics. It should combine well with many other pieces are in your wardrobe. The last thing you want is an expensive spandex dress hanging in your closet, and only coming out to be worn plain because nothing else in your closet really goes with it well. Sticking with classic floral, geometric, and line patterns insure you can enjoy the comfort Lularoe offers without making your outfits revolve around the pieces.
A few exceptions to this “don’t buy crazy patterns” rule would be if you just want to splurge on a fun, comfy piece of clothing. I mean there ain't no law against wearing WHATEVER you want in your own home. PJ's anyone? Just be honest with yourself and don't expect to look chic or classy going out with bald eagles, umbrellas or cupcakes on your legs or shirt.
The other exception is if your personality and style can pull of the crazy patterns. If you have a knack for wearing colorful prints and know how to combine them well, then the colorful LuLaRoe selection might need to be your go-to! For the rest of us though, buying everything with a pattern or bright colors will only complicate our wardrobe.
#3 Be selective in your shopping. Go for classy. Not crazy.
Like I've mentioned before, women (especially mamas) are falling head over heels for everything LuLaRoe. While some women are acing it with how they style it and the prints they choose, others are getting lost in a sea of silly spandex. I've noticed that the consultants and customer who model it best stick with somewhat classic or at least widely popular prints, and they also mostly avoid the leggings + tee combo and go for dresses + accessories instead. (I've seen the leggings + tunic pulled off well a handful of times.) Check out these examples:
Again, go for classy, not crazy. Unless of course, your style has always had a bit of "crazy" in it. Then go for it mama. You probably know how to pull it off well and it's congruent with your personality.
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#4 Choose pieces based on what flatter your body shape, not your friend's body shape.
Be selective about which cuts you buy. Really take an honest look in the mirror and decide whether it flatters you. I wear size SM/6 most of the time, and usually fitted dresses work great. But when I tried on their Julia, a very fitted (spandex, of course) dress, I was appalled at how it pronounced all the awkward parts of my figure. That cut is a no-no for me.
For plus sized women, I recommend going for the looser cut tops and pleated skirts/dresses. Get them so they hug your body comfortably but not so they stick to it like glue. Some suggestions for you would be: the Olivia skirt, Lucy skirt, Jill skirt, Madison skirt, Amelia dress, Carly dress, Irma shirt, and Perfect shirt. See examples here.
#5 Follow the rules of smart shopping... no matter how much buzz there is at a pop-up party.
As with any shopping you do, make sure what you buy at a Lula pop-up party will add versatility to your wardrobe. You know it will add versatility if you stick to the rules of smart shopping (covered in this post): you need to LOVE it, it needs to fit you perfectly, it needs to fall within your color palette, and it needs to be on your shopping list. If you keep to these rules every time you shop (whether that be at a Lula party or your local Target), you’ll consistently avoid the frustration of filling your closet with stuff that doesn’t work well together. (More about that here.)
Phew! I think I’ve pretty much said all there is to say about this trending topic.
Hopefully the pictures I included helped you see that there are adorable LuLaRoe outfits, and... not-so-great ones. It really comes down to which pieces you buy and how you style them.
If you got to the end of this post and are wondering whether I'm recommending you add LuLaRoe to your wardrobe, the answer is simply: if you want to. Regardless of the social pressure to jump on the LuLaRoe train, the truth is there are cheaper and safer ways to be stylish AND comfortable. (Remember I don't own a single piece of LuLaRoe myself?) But if LuLaRoe sounds like a fun way to challenge yourself, then go for it!
Now I want to hear from you… because everyone who’s come across LuLaRoe seems to form an opinion on it. Are you in the RAVING FAN camp or in the JUST DON’T GET IT camp?
Perhaps you’re in between the two. Not a raving fan but not completely bewildered by it either. An opportunist. I think that describes me pretty well. And I hope this post reflects that.