Girlfriend Collective Spins Recycled Plastic Into Workout Wardrobe Gold

Who knew water bottles could make some of the most comfortable and stylish leggings and sports bras around?

By Carly Milne Aug 18, 2020 6:45 PMTags
E-comm: Girlfriend Collective

We love these products, and we hope you do too. E! has affiliate relationships, so we may get a small share of the revenue from your purchases. Items are sold by the retailer, not E!.

We never used to be workout wardrobe people. We were pretty happy wearing our worn-out sweats and trashed t-shirts to our sweat sessions. But then Girlfriend Collective changed all of that for us.

What initially drew us to Girlfriend Collective was their eye-catching seasonal colors, but what inspired us to become a loyal customer was their commitment to transparency and the environment. The brand made it their mission to be present in every part of their manufacturing process, from the sourcing and use of their raw materials to the facilities and partners they work with. From there, they set about creating athleisurewear that's comfortable, fashionable and long-lasting, with an eye toward the Slow Fashion movement. And the entire line comes in inclusive sizing, ranging from XXS to 6XL.

And they really do go the extra mile. Their packaging is 100% recycled and recyclable. Their compressive fabric is made from 79% recycled polyester (or RPET) and 21% spandex, with their compressive leggings made from 25 recycled post-consumer bottles and their bras account for 11. Their LITE leggings are made from recycled fishing nets and other waste using Econyl yarn, while their tees and tanks are made of cupro, which is made from waste the cotton industry leaves behind. Even their reusable pouches, which your order arrives in, are made of the same RPET as their bras and leggings.

Plus, all of their fabrics are made in a facility in Taiwan that specializes in eco-friendly, high-quality textiles, which are then cut-and-sewn in the brand's SA8000 certified factory in Hanoi, Vietnam, that guarantees fair wages, safe and healthy conditions, and zero forced or child labor. But that barely scratches the surface. You can read all about their practices and partnerships here.


These Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2020 Activewear Deals Have Our Hearts Racing

Our obsession started slowly, with a pair of their compressive leggings in a bright, seasonal orange last fall. We got them in the cropped option, and the minute we put them on, we knew we had to get the matching bra. That turned into nabbing the Paloma bra in the same bright orange, then getting a second pair of the compression leggings in a moody purple in the 7/8 length, with the Topanga bra to match. And then it snowballed.

Why? Because their gear is really that damn good. They're comfortable and stretchy, but hold you in well, whether you're going high-waisted or not. They're good for sweaty workouts, with sweat-wicking capabilities that somehow left us feeling refreshed, even as our heart rate was still coming down. And they move with you, whether you're doing yoga, running, pilates, or running from the couch to the kitchen when commercials are on. So when they expanded into offering essentials like socks and underwear, we got those too, and they're equally as comfy.

So if you haven't experienced the awesomeness of Girlfriend Collective, try out one (or some) of the essentials below. They might just help you enjoy your workout.

Girlfriend Collective FLOAT Seamless High-Rise Legging

If you like a lighter legging for workouts, or if you just want something comfy to lounge around in, these seamless high-rise numbers are ready for both. They're stretchy and comfy enough for your chill days, but durable enough for your sweat sessions, with sweat-wicking, quick-drying technology. Not only are they made from 90% recycled plastic bottles (RPET) and 10% spandex, but they're squat proof, offer sun protection up to UPF 50+, and come in a variety of standard and seasonal colors.

Girlfriend Collective Compressive High-Rise Legging

This is the first pair of Girlfriend Collective leggings that we fell in love with, and they happen to be the leggings that launched the brand. They have an extra high-rise and four-way stretch, with compression that holds you in without feeling overbearing. And while they're made for high-impact activities like HIIT or running, they're comfy enough to wear for studio sessions (or binge-watching). Each pair diverts 25 bottles from landfills and contains 79% RPET and 21% spandex. They come in five essential colors, like navy, plum and black, and seasonal colors, like the current sunny yellow and lavender purple, among others. Get them in three lengths: full, 7/8, and crops.

Girlfriend Collective High-Rise Bike Short

But if you prefer your compressive legging in a much more abbreviated form, these bike shorts have your number. They're made from the same compressive fabric as the legging, and feature a UPF 45+ rating to protect you from the sun's harmful rays. And of course, they come in a variety of seasonal and staple colors. 


Girlfriend Collective Paloma Bra

Girlfriend Collective offers two awesome workout bras, and we have 'em both. This one is more supportive with full coverage, a scoop neck and a racerback, made from their classic compressive fabric. It's made for medium-impact workouts, but it still offers substantial support thanks to its sturdy construction. And there's enough coverage that you could wear it as a cropped tank for running around town after you break a sweat.


Girlfriend Collective Topanga Bra

This bra offers lower-impact support with a high neck, but has an open back accented with adjustable crisscross straps. It's also made with their signature compressive fabric, making it an ideal piece for barre, yoga and other studio classes. It also works for everyday layering if you want something cute and a little supportive to wear under an open-backed top or oversized sweatshirt.


Girlfriend Collective Dune Florence Tank

Breezy, drapey and totally breathable, this loose-fitting crew-neck cropped tank is great for lounging and sweating in, whatever your preference. It's made of organic cotton and cupro, with is known for being ridiculously soft, in addition to being hypoallergenic, anti-static and 100% biodegradable. It also manages to regulate body temperature. Consider it a summertime staple.


Girlfriend Collective Hummingbird Half Zip Windbreaker

We've talked before about Girlfriend Collective's limited edition seasonal colors, and this jacket in this pretty Clay tone is a perfect example of what to expect. Just don't sleep on it if you love this shade, 'cause it's sure to sell out. Meanwhile, the jacket itself is water resistant and features a boxy, cropped fit, so you have room to move whether you wear it running, or just running marathons. It also has a hideable hood and waist-level pockets to stash all your essentials in, and you can cinch the waist in case the elements get a bit too much. Not only is it made from 100% recycled single-use bottles, but it's also part of their Girlfriend to Girlfriend content program, where the brand partners with girlfriends and small businesses to have them create content you'll love. Girlfriend Collective then pays them directly or donates to their charity of their choice.


If you're looking for a way to celebrate the 100th anniversary of women's right to vote, we have some feminist finds that might help! And if you'd like deals delivered directly to your in-box, sign up for the Shop With E! Newsletter!