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Mara Menachem Headshot

All Asses Are Not Created Equal...

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But in lululemon yoga pants, all asses are. It's thighs that are not created equal. Can you imagine the CEO of Brooks Brothers blaming large testicles for the pilling of their cashmere blend trousers? No, of course you can't, because that would never happen. But that's pretty much what the founder of Lululemon did. Well ladies, if our thighs are slightly larger than Kate Moss's in the heroin chic 90's, then we are to blame for the pilling in Lululemon's yoga pants.

I am dissapointed. I believe in the Lululemon design team. I mean they were successful in creating an exercise pant that camaflouged the enemy of all women in spandex -- the dreaded camel toe, while molding the perfect shaped behind. So I would presume this kind of attention to detail, would make it easy for Lululemon to invent yoga pants strong enough to defend against, gasp.."fleshy thighs."

A few years ago my initial intuition about Lululemon was on point.  I kept hearing "the moms", (you know who I'm talking about, the moms who work out two hours daily, don't ever eat their kids' Halloween candy and are always proclaiming that food is nearly fuel for your body) rave about Lululemon. All I could think was, "Who the f**k is this Lulu Lemon, anyway?" and "Why are all these skinny women obsessed with her?" 

I quickly learned about Lululemon, and not by choice...my eavesdropping skills are involuntary, and if I am stuck surrounded by fork stabbing conversation about exercise clothing, I am forced to hear it.  What was worse is these women not only wore Lululemon, but seemed like they were part of a multi-level marketing scheme being paid to spread the gospel of yoga pants not just free of the dreaded "camel toe," but filled with the perfect deriere. 

When Lululemon made a wise business decision to open a store in Miami, it was the talk of the town.  My friends flocked to this store like they were giving out a secret serum which created bodies free of fat (which most of them didn't need anyway).  But this was no potion, it was $100 work out pants that make your ass look as if it were lifted and then injected with silicone.  And unfortunately for me, I continued to see these perfect Lululemon asses all over town, including on my own mother.  I refused to be another member of the flock and continued to wear my ratty t-shirts and Capezio dance shorts to work out (Capezio dance shorts are really cool in the fashion world, I'll have you know).
 
Have you ever gone into Lululemon? It's quite the sociological experience, if you're researching being the victim of corporate narcissism.  A salesperson greets you upon entering the store, usually in an overly enthusiastic tone.  Additionally, they are dressed in the tiniest workout clothing you can buy at the store, and all look like they could be on the cover of Self Magazine. 

But the sales staff is very helpful, especially around sizing.  Because we all know how fun it is when a skinny sales women wearing bootie shorts and a sports bra suggests you try the size "up", as Lulu runs "small".  After that fun confidence building exercise, you are brought to a dressing room where your cheerleader salesperson asks for your name, which is then written on the back of a black board behind your dressing room door.  What's not fun about hearing "Hey, Mara, how are the size XX pants on you? Do you need me to grab the larger XX size, Mara?" 

I knew that I could only be a silent observer as my friends shopped at Lululemon, we all know most egos, mine included -- can't take the dreaded "I think you need the next size up." 
 
But one summer day, I caved and took a bite out of Lulu's lemons.  I was heading for a workout in a Colorado Gym, and did what came naturally -- postponed the workout to check out the sale inside the small gym's boutique. A lonely pair of gray Lululemon yoga pants hung from the sale rack.  With no one to witness my hypocrisy, I quietly grabbed the pants and closed the door of the dressing room.  I stood in front of the three way mirror, and beamed at my perfectly shaped behind. 

I was annoyed that I looked good in these pants, mostly because they were still expensive and I didn't want to be "that person" who wears Lululemon as a fashion statement (oh the horror), and because in typical Mara fashion, I poked fun of the brand and its followers.  Now, I was one of them. Who would justify the price tag with the line, "But they make your ass look so good."   

But even if the pants make your behind look gorgeous, it can not defend itself against women's thighs, a body part intended to have fat in order to produce children. Does this sound a little too familiar? Well, it does to me. Once again, a women's body part, blamed for a man's failures. It is quite obvious to me, that Lululemon is not only manufacturing perfect pants, but the "perfect" body to fit them.

My thighs, a body part that has always been thin (I have my grandfather to thank for that), still causes pilling in my Lululemon pants. So what does the founder have to say about that?

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