My hair color is fitting, because I’m such a Goldilocks when it comes to workout outfits. That girl who must see what the WOD is before she engineers her wardrobe accordingly. So here’s the thing. I’m not sure if I should be proud of the size of my full length pants pile, or embarrassed by it, given the proportion of it that I ACTUALLY work out in.
Crops are usually my go-to, but when it comes to full length tights, I’ve historically had trouble. My quads and rear end are bigger than my waist and calves, so it’s a challenge and a half to find a pair that fits the peach… that doesn’t gape around the waist and fall down, because the lower leg just isn’t tight enough to stay put.
All I can say is… FINALLY. My interest was piqued by the Zoned In Tight *27″, a pricier-than-usual pair that uploaded in mid October. A little to afraid to pull the trigger online, I found them hanging in the NYC flagship as I was doing my usual ‘lulu tourism’ back in November.
I tried them on, and the rest was (expensive) history.
Review: Lululemon Zoned in Tight ($148) in black
Note: I am 5’9″ and wearing a TTS size 10.
Fit & Length
On me, the Zoned In Tights are perfect: just shy of full length. I wouldn’t want them any longer or shorter. As for the rise? It’s a bit higher than usual. Usually a lululemon hi-rise (like WUP or Aligns) come just below the belly button, but this pair comes up to my natural waist.
Compression and breathability are the design priority in these run tights. For air flow, there are laser cut holes placed strategically near the knees and ankles. Fear not, they’re not large enough to feel an uncomfortably cool breeze if you choose to take your workout outdoors. They’re nothing to worry about sticking a finger through, but I advise against including any bras or clothing items with hooks in the same load of laundry.
The knit varies throughout, hence the “zones” in the tight’s name. While most of the tights are a thick knit, the knees feature an almost honeycomb-esque pattern. There’s more airflow and slightly less bulk behind the knee when your legs are bent.
There are no side pockets that could add any bulk. Casually worn, I love tights with side pockets. When I’m training, they’re an annoying layer of extra fabric. With the Zoned In Tight, I am not upset with their absence. Additional seams would ruin that second skin feeling.
“But Katy” you ask, “If there are no side pockets where am I supposed to stash my stuff?”
So there’s only one zip pocket in the back, and it’s enough for me. The only things I ever stash are keys (house or hotel room), both which take minimal space. A FlipBelt takes care of my phone if I choose to run with one.
One of my favorite surprises are the ankles. Sounds strange, but a big reason I don’t wear full length tights very often is that loose ankles don’t stay up, and inevitable movement means the tights sag down and there’s too much room in the waist to resist gravity. The ankles are a bit tighter than your usual lulu tight (but not constricting), and managed to stay in the same spot for a full 6-mile run the other day.
The big deal about these tights is what they’re made of. This design incorporates a new technology trademarked as Senseknit, which focuses on providing compression and/or breathability in the areas you need it most.
A writeup appeared on SHAPE Magazine’s website (read it here), and includes snippets from Lulu’s SVP of Whitespace (the in-house R&D lab):
“This new silhouette offers the tight sensation through a fully engineered fabric that has specific areas of support, compression, and breathability knitted in,” says Tom Waller, senior vice president of Whitespace. “This means you’ll feel additional mobility around your joints, specifically the hip and knees, and higher support around muscle groups like the glutes, calves, and thighs.” – SHAPE.com
My two cents? Whatever they did… IT WORKS.
As for their durability, that is to be determined. I get the feeling that the fabric may snag or fuzz easily if you sit down on a rock/rough surface, so don’t hike in these unless you plan to avoid all brush, bark and other assorted scratchy surfaces.
Despite my fear of scratches and snags, I don’t want to take these tights off. They stay put and IMHO, have your back (and front) in all the right places, even moreso than the aptly named All the Right Places Tight.
I’ve now owned them for a month, and am no less excited about them than the day I brought them home, which is something coming from the Queen of Shiny Outfits.
While on the higher end of the price scale (even by lululemon standards), these tights are a standout among all others I own. Top 3, easy. Probably top 2, TBH. Aside from the Fast & Free Tight II, I’m hard pressed to name another tight on the fly that I would instantly recommend as an all-around winner.
So, yeah. If you celebrate Hanukkah and end up with a gift card in the next week or so… recommend. If you’re waiting for the jolly fat man to come down the chimney in the next few weeks, consider adding the Zoned In Tight to your Christmas list.
If you celebrate another holiday this season, or don’t celebrate any at all? Just try the pants already.
They’re my new ‘OMG YES they make me feel skinny’ pants and they could very well do the same for you. CONFIDENCE FTW, y’all.