Should you shop Victoria's Secret for activewear?
Spoiler alert: You might want to save your money.
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When you think of Victoria’s Secret, chances are, the first things that pop into mind are bras, undies, and the bombshell Angels donning them. While that’s been the signature of the lacy, pink-striped brand since forever, the company is always iterating on new offerings. And so, the VS Collective was born, a tangent that focuses on collaborations with inspirational figures, including athletes, models, actors, and entrepreneurs. The VS Collective is the brand’s attempt to kiss the stereotypical sexy models goodbye in an effort to usher in “trailblazing partners” who have bodies that better represent the women across the world. (Think: actress and producer Priyanka Chopra Jonas, refugee and model Adut Akech, and LGBTQIA+ activist and professional soccer player Megan Rapinoe, among others.) In that way, the VS Collective is Victoria's Secret's shot to become part of the body-positive movement—and to become more inclusive as a whole. Will it work? Only time will tell.
To that end, the retailer has released its latest rebrand under the new direction: the On Point Collection, its new and supposedly improved sports apparel line, designed in collaboration with India Bradley, a dancer in New York City Ballet’s Corps De Ballet; Emily Chen, a yoga instructor; and Eileen Gu, a world-champion free skier. Now, if you’re someone who didn’t know that Victoria’s Secret ever even had sports apparel, that’s likely because the old silhouettes were more about appearance and less about functionality. This new class of garments, however, promises to be the opposite. In true Reviewed form, we decided to check it out.
What is the Victoria’s Secret On Point collection?
The VS On Point collection is the brand’s athletic and athleisure apparel offering. It’s broken down into three categories: Sweat for high-impact workouts, Flow for yoga, and Live athleisure. The idea is that whether you’re setting out to run a marathon, gearing up for an Orangetheory HIIT class, aiming to schedule in an Ashtanga Mysore class, or hoping to be cozy at home, there’s a garment (or set) for you.
What I like about Victoria’s Secret’s new On Point collection
The one item that I wholeheartedly like from the Victoria’s Secret On Point collection is the Flow On Point High Rise Pocket Legging. They’re high-waisted, moisture-wicking, and sold in a slew of colors and patterns, and come in women's sizes 2 to 16 and three lengths (though, the length filter randomly disappears from the site at times, so you’ll have to click through the duplicate colors to find the length you’re looking for).
These leggings are comfortable enough to lounge in and wear all day but supportive enough to run, row, and lift your heart out for an hour, too. For that reason, I may actually make room in my leggings drawer for a couple more pairs—especially because they have pockets, which come in very handy on dog walks and while running errands.
What I don’t like about the On Point collection
Several things, to be honest.
For starters, while the press release surrounding the On Point collection launch clearly states that it’s broken down into three categories, on-site the collection lives as one, with no obvious differentiation—apart from the user’s common sense—among what’s meant for yoga versus lounge versus HIIT workouts. (While categories aren’t clear on the site, it's possible to access the category pages, but I only know this because Victoria's Secret sent me the sub-collections' links, not because I was able to find them myself.) Of course, if you look closely beneath each image, you can see what the item is intended for, but given the collection is marketed as a triad, it’d be more user-friendly if consumers could easily shop by sub-category.
Beyond the interface of the On Point collection, I’m not a fan of the sizing. For starters, it’s numeric. While this is a personal qualm, I imagine I can’t be the only one irked by it. Many people buy athletic gear to work out; and, as beneficial as moving your body is for your mental health and general well-being, exercise is often used as a tool to get in shape and, in some cases, to lose weight. As such, adding a specific incremental number to athletic wear—something only a few other athleisure companies do—is off-putting because it creates one more number to fixate on.
Not only that, the sizes don’t always match up across different styles. For reference, I’m a 5’6” woman who normally wears a size large in leggings; in jeans, I’m a 12. Given Victoria’s Secret numeric sizing, I opted for a 12. Frustratingly, the size worked for one pair of leggings, the Flow ones that I liked, but not for another, the Victoria’s Secret Sweat On Point Pocket Legging—truly, they barely fit. While it makes sense that clothing designed for higher-impact workouts would be compressive and less likely to slip down while exercising, it also caused them to be completely uncomfortable when simply sitting down—in this position, they felt to me more like a sausage casing than a supportive second skin.
It’s not just the leggings, though. Again, for reference, I typically wear a size large sports bra, but in band and cup sizing, I’m a 36C or 34D depending on the brand. With that in mind, and knowing that I’ve had trouble with Victoria's Secret bra bands being tight, I opted for the larger band and smaller cup for the Victoria’s Secret Sweat Knockout Maximum Support Colorblock Front-Close Sport Bra, a padded, underwire, full-coverage sports bra. Let’s just say the cups runneth over. As for the band, it was so tight, even on the loosest setting, that I was more focused on how squished my chest felt than putting my full attention into the workout.
The sizing woes continued with the sweatsuit I picked, which comes in XS to XXL sizing: the Victoria’s Secret Cotton Fleece Lace Up Crewneck and the Victoria’s Secret Cotton Fleece Lace-Up Jogger. I got the joggers in an XL in hopes of them being a little loose, and they fit fine but they’re not necessarily something I’d go purchase multiple colors of. I also got the sweatshirt in an XL because VS tops are known for running small—and it's massive. With how long the sleeves are and how boxy the silhouette is, I could have gotten away with a medium for the fit I was craving.
Is Victoria’s Secret’s On Point collection worth buying?
If I had to be all in or all out, I’d opt out, given the lack of dependability of the sizing and the price range, typically between $40 and $60 per garment.
That said, I genuinely enjoy the Victoria’s Secret Flow On Point High Rise Pocket Legging, so if you’re going to buy anything (or everything) from the collection (hey, you do you), let that be the first garment you add to your cart. They’re sold in over two dozen colors, have deep pockets, a 100% cotton gusset, and a design that’s both slip-proof and comfortable. And, as you can currently snag a pair on sale for just $30 (down from $39.50), I might even join you.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.