What Lululemon’s revealing pants say about yoga


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When I heard about the scandal at Lululemon, the Canadian company that makes expensive yoga clothes, I immediately called my dear friend, Julie, a yoga fanatic in Santa Barbara.


Julie is one of these dual American/Canadian citizens who cannot discuss anything that is remotely Canadian without telling you so.

Jim Carrey? “He’s Canadian.”

Poutine? “French-Canadian.”

Steve Nash? You get the point.

It seems that Lululemon, the Vancouver-based company, had to recall some of its yoga pants because they are too sheer. This is not, it turns out, a minor problem.

The company’s profits are going downward, dog.

As theTimes’ Tiffany Hsu wrote, “The company lowered its expectations for an 11% increase in same-store sales and revenue between $350 million and $355 million for its first fiscal quarter. Now, Lululemon is projecting a 5% to 8% same-store sales range and revenue between $333 million and $343 million.”

Naturally, I called Julie.

“Have you heard about Lululemon?”

“It’s a Canadian company,” she replied. “They’re the Rolls-Royce of yoga clothes. Super expensive.”

As Julie pointed out, however, it’s not just the adorably named Lululemon that has a problem with see-through yoga pants. Many brands, when stretched just so, are sheer.

“One time,” said Julie, “I was in a class, and the woman in front of me bent down, and I was kinda thinking, ‘You should be wearing something underneath that.’ It’s not super offensive, and you won’t see it when they’re walking down the street. It’s only when they bend over and their butt’s in your face.”


I hate when that happens.

Which is why, despite my best efforts, I am not a big yoga fan.

But this could explain why yoga is exploding in popularity among hot-blooded American men. And Canadians.


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Twitter: @robinabcarian



[For the record, 7:49 p.m.: A previous version of this post incorrectly said that Robin Williams is Canadian.]