Anjhe Mules, founder of high-performance activewear brand Lucas Hugh shared her insights on the booming activewear market at the Drapers Fashion Forum.
Premium, performance activewear is an untapped market
“It struck me that there was nothing on the market that really combined fashion with a technical approach. We were really one of the pioneers in the market.
”The athleisure market is very saturated. For Lucas Hugh, we focus on the high-end and best-quality product at premium prices. That’s really an untapped market, making up 5% of the spend.”
Athleisure isn’t forever
“I think the trend of wearing activewear in the day will wear off. People are considering whether activewear is replacing ready to wear, but as a technical product, our focus is on creating something that supports you while you work out. People buy the offers from established brands in order to buy into the trend rather than for the support.”
Performance is paramount
“We’re a small company, so we’re nimble and can test technologies that others cannot. Performance is the number one consideration for us – if it’s not functional, it’s not practical. The fashion aspect is there to help the outfits transcend the athletic context. We move too quickly with innovations to patent.”
Innovation attracts talent
“The team is bigger now and we have a very strong design ethos. We’ve been really lucky, and we’re creating such an innovative product we’ve attracted a lot of design talent.
”We have seen a change in number of applicants since the Brexit vote, which has made us look overseas and further afield – which could be a good thing!”