I’ve owned—and worn—hundreds of leggings in my lifetime. While my peers have been buying houses and getting married, I’ve been tirelessly searching for the perfect pair of leggings. I tried cheap Target ones. I tried the ones everyone raves about from Alo. I even tried the Bandier ones that celebs wear. All of the above were great, but they weren’t “it.” The same adage that applies to finding your soulmate applies to finding your soul leggings: when you know, you know.
And I knew from the moment I slipped into my first pair of Lululemon Aligns. They were the ones. They were my happily ever after. They were the end to my search.
I’m not the only one who has seen the light that is Align leggings. Not only are many of my Reviewed colleagues big fans, but the popular pants have over 13,500 reviews and are beloved by style influencers and celebrities, including Meghan Markle, Hilary Duff, and Kristen Bell.
At $98 per pair, however, Lululemon Aligns aren’t cheap. While the price is comparable to other high-end brands (like Bandier or Alo), it’s much higher than many of the top-rated leggings on Amazon, which come in at under $30. To me, the Aligns are worth the price tag, but here’s what you need to know about these leggings and why they’re my favorite pair.
What I love about Lululemon Align leggings
I thought I knew what soft leggings felt like until I put on Aligns. Made of Lululemon’s proprietary Nulu fabric (which is a blend of nylon, elastane, and Lycra), they’re buttery soft and lay smoothly against your skin. I can wear them for an entire day and never feel like I have to adjust them—in fact, I hardly feel like I’m wearing pants at all when I’m in them.
The high waistband is wide and comfortable and doesn’t cut into my skin, even when I’m sitting down or bending over. Plus, the leggings don’t cause the dreaded camel toe (that is, unappealing creasing in the crotch area) and they’re opaque enough to be squat-proof yet breathable enough that I don’t feel suffocated or stuffed into them.
Lululemon Align leggings come in a variety of lengths, ranging from 21 to 28 inches. I’m 5 foot 5 and the 25-inch length hits right above my ankles, which is the equivalent of the standard 7/8 length that other brands offer. One of my colleagues is 5 foot 2 and says that the 21-inch length—which hits at my calf—is ideal for her height.
There’s also a range of sizes from 0 to 14. As someone who usually wears a small, I wear a 4 in Lululemon sizes. My weight has fluctuated 20 pounds since buying my first pair of the leggings, however, and I like that the Aligns are stretchy enough to accommodate all of my body’s changes without losing their elasticity or becoming uncomfortably binding.
Do Lululemon Align leggings pill?
I’ve only noticed pilling on two of my dozen pairs of Align leggings—the others have remained sleek and smooth. To be fair, this could be because I ignore the proper washing and drying directions and toss them in with the rest of my laundry (more on that below).
The pilling has also only occurred on two of my oldest pairs of Aligns. Subsequently, Lululemon tweaked the Nulu material of its Align leggings to be a little bit sleeker and, from what I can tell, more pill-resistant. On the newer pairs I’ve bought, I’ve had zero issues with pilling.
How to wash Lululemon Align leggings
Step one: Do not do what I do. Step two: Do what the care instructions say, which is to turn them inside-out, machine-wash cold with similar colors, and tumble-dry low. Our apparel expert, Jamie Ueda, also owns Align leggings and recommends laying them flat instead of putting them in the dryer if you’re especially concerned about pilling. She says if you opt to tumble-dry the leggings, avoid doing so with rough, heavy fabrics like towels. This can increase the chance of pilling and can also cause the leggings to wear out faster.
Are Lululemon Align leggings worth it?
If my go-to pair of Aligns really was my soulmate, there’s no doubt I’d be rushing down the aisle to say “I do.” I now own 12 pairs of the popular Lululemon leggings—you thought I was kidding when I said I had a dozen?—and they’re basically the only style I’ll wear.
As someone who previously scoffed at paying $100 for leggings, I can attest that they’re worth every penny and more. The leggings are easily the most comfortable, buttery-soft things I’ve ever put on my legs. But most importantly, I like how versatile they are—I wear them for lifting weights, doing yoga, running errands, and even, yes, going on dates.
However, just because Lululemon Aligns are my perfect match doesn’t mean they’re everyone’s perfect match. For example, the thinner fabric doesn’t offer much support or compression, so they aren’t the most practical for running or high-intensity cardio or for those who just prefer that supportive feel. The material also shows sweat marks so, unless you stick with black or are someone who doesn’t break a sweat while exercising, that might be a deterrent.
Overall, Aligns are one of those things that you shouldn’t knock until you try. I was very skeptical of the price tag at first but now I buy them even when they aren’t on sale—they’re just that good of an investment.