If you’ve been paying any attention at all to fashion these days, you’d know that the bike shorts trend has caused quite the internet chaos. Celebs like Emily Ratajkowski and Kim Kardashian West are getting behind the spandex shorts in a big way and (shocker) have been making them look actually appealing. Our first instinct? Swap them out for our regular leggings. See how one editor’s summer workouts went.
Since no one can seem to make up their mind about the trend, we went ahead and tested them out to settle the case for ourselves. Unsurprisingly, our editors had lots to say about donning a spandex-clad outfit without the intent of beelining to a workout class. After all, what is a good athleisure trend if not one that you can wear in situations that don’t normally warrant sports apparel?
Six of our editors—three in NYC and three in L.A.—swapped in the shorts during a full day of their regularly scheduled programming to see what all the hype is about anyway. Just below, find out what we really think about the trend and whether or not we’ll be jumping at the chance to try them out again soon.
“To be honest, I was on the fence about even trying this trend until I came across this pair of La Campeona shorts on Shop Super Street’s Instagram. Seeing as I’m a sucker for anything sparkly, I took the plunge and had a much more pleasant experience than I expected. I paired the shorts with Tibi sandals, a Reformation top, and an old oversize denim jacket, and I think the contrast of the more polished shoes and top helped to make them feel like any other pair of shorts. Overall, I’d totally wear them again—maybe just not to the office.” — Nicole Akhtarzad, market editor
If you’re not quite convinced on bike shorts, we’ll leave you with this immaculate Emily Ratajkowski look for further persuasion.
“At first, the thought of wearing bike shorts in public didn’t bother me at all. I grew up dancing, so I’m used to walking around public places wearing weird articles of clothing such as sweatpants I cut into shorts, mismatched tube socks, crop tops, and shirts tied around my waist (all at the same time), sans shame. Bike shorts? No problem. Except, there was a major problem. I decided to wear my shorts underneath a floral minidress. The dress buttoned all the way from top to bottom, so I thought it would be cute to leave the bottom half unbuttoned in an effort to show off the bike shorts. Apparently, to the rest of the world, it just looked like I forgot to button my dress and I went about my day walking the streets of NYC getting cat-called and stared down as if I had puke all over me or something. It was wild. My consensus? Not not down to try them again.” — Lauren Eggertsen, fashion editor
“I was in Oregon on a hike, so my outfit was especially ‘granola,’ but honestly, that’s my aesthetic anyway. I went with running shoes, a T-shirt from a recent SZA concert I attended, and an Outdoor Voices baseball cap. Function and fashion!” — Aemilia Madden, editor
“Athleisure is just about as far from my personal style as it gets, so if I can make it work, I’m certain anyone can. I opted for a sheer dress (I removed the slip) layered over a sleeveless top and, of course, the bike shorts. Clear heels helped me feel lengthier in the look while being a little more covert than your average pumps. We shot this look at the office, but I’d love to swap the top for a lacy bra to take it a step further.” — Kat Collings, editor in chief
“Let me tell you that I was thrilled to test this out-there trend. My style is nothing if not experimental, and I’m always down to wear something a little weird for sake of ‘fashion,’ so I was totally on board from the get-go and used this opportunity to wear a dress that’s too revealing on its own to the office. I layered a plain bodysuit underneath the shorts, and while my fully-clad-in-spandex bod was ultra-comfy throughout the day, I have to admit that it just felt wrong to be wearing so much of it at the office. Next time, I’ll be leaving them to my weekend wardrobe.” — Anna LaPlaca, assistant editor
“TK Quote” — Kristen Nichols, associate editor