We strive to bring our members the best gear to help outfit them for a life outdoors. That’s why we’re thrilled to announce we’re now offering an Athleta collection—featuring hike, yoga and swim apparel—in selected REI stores and on REI.com. We explore how this partnership came to be and what you can expect from the collection.
Athleta and REI have been admiring each other for years. “It comes down to two words: common values,” said Chris Samway, chief financial officer and head of strategy and business development for Athleta. “Athleta was created for women who love to get outside and take on new adventures. Twenty years later, that remains core to our brand.”
We share a similar commitment, evident most recently with our Force of Nature initiative—our stake in the ground to declare gender equity in the outdoors.
Another shared value: protecting and caring for our outdoor spaces. At the co-op, we do this through advancing gear sustainability and creating outdoor access for all. It’s a sentiment Athleta echoes.
“We care deeply about the planet and its resources. We have a goal to get 80 percent of our fabrics made of sustainable fibers by 2020. We’re halfway there. It’s not easy, but we think it’s the right thing to do for our customers and the planet,” Chris said.
Athleta earned our respect with its apparel as well its business practices. “This product is designed by women for women. They’ve done a lot for innovation in fabric. Basically, once you use their product, you become hooked,” said Susan Viscon, senior vice president of merchandising at REI.
Our co-op staff agrees. “Every time we shared that Athleta is coming to REI internally, women in the room got so excited. Our own employees love it,” Susan said. We know our members will too.
Take the Tahitian Salutation 7/8 Tights. These tights feature Athleta’s newest fabric designed for yoga called Powervita, which somehow feels both hugging and barely there at the same time.
Or the Trekkie Jogger 2.0, another fan favorite for hiking, that is now made of recycled nylon while still offering the same fit, feel and durability for hikes or adventure travel. According to Athleta, the switch to recycled fabric is already making an impact, helping divert 32 tons of waste from landfills this year.
“We design [product] with intent—not only how it looks, but also how it performs,” Chris said.
The Athleta team also excels at creating athletic swimwear that actually stays put. “They’re leaders in innovation in the women’s swim space. They do an incredible job,” Susan said.
With four collections coming up, one for each season, we can’t help but look forward. Susan said, “We’re excited about the future and what’s to come.”
To celebrate the power of this partnership, Athleta and REI will hold free Vinyasa yoga events taught by Athleta ambassadors at selected stores in late February and early March. Visit https://www.rei.com/learn.html to find an event near you.
Trekkie Jogger 2.0: A fan favorite for years, these durable, stretchy pants are made of recycled fabric and have four (actually usable) pockets.
Baha UPF Jacket: This relaxed-fit, UPF 50+ jacket is made of recycled poly with unstinkable technology (i.e., wear it more, wash it less), making it perfect for hikes in the sun.
Fully Focused Bra: So light and so supportive, this mesh-lined bra features removable cups for extra coverage.
Sunlover UPF Tank: Why not stay cool and look cool on your hike? This semi-fitted tank is light, breathable and (best yet) rated UPF 50+.
Tahitian Salutation 7/8 Tights: Barely there yet fully hugging Powervita fabric offers the kind of freedom you seek from your yoga pants.
Criss Cross Sweatshirt: Modernity meets sweatshirt. The crossover front hem adds the cool factor while the Nirvana fabric keeps you super cozy.
Organic Daily Cowl Tank: Supersoft organically grown cotton has an open-back cowl drape for good looks and added airflow.
Surf and Swim
Offshore Reversible Bikini Top: Paddling, sunning or finding the perfect set, this bikini top offers full coverage and a reversible print.
Offshore Reversible Bottom: Switch up your look whenever you want with this reversible bikini bottom.