Get full access to Outside Learn, our online education hub featuring in-depth yoga, fitness, & nutrition courses, when you sign up for Outside+.
As the Editor in Chief of Yoga Journal, I get to try a lot of yoga products—mats, blocks, essential oils. But at heart, I’m a leggings junkie. And between working from home and it being my actual job to know the best yoga gear, this year has given me a lot of time to indulge my obsession.
I’ve tried nearly every type of yoga leggings out there but still tend to cycle through my go-tos—Vuori’s Studio Legging, Athleta’s buttery soft Salutation Stash-Pocket II tight, and Sweaty Betty’s Super Sculpt Sustainable Yoga Leggings.
Recently, I heard about the new Exhale Collection, a collaboration between Puma and British actress and model—and it turns out, dedicated yogi—Cara Delevingne. When the brand offered a pair of the collection’s High-Waist Leggings to try, I figured there was no harm in going for it, but tbh, my hopes weren’t that high for finding a new favorite yoga legging.
That may be because I look nothing like Delevingne—especially not after this past year. I haven’t been as diligent about getting on my mat or hitting the pavement (I’m a keen runner) or gym as I’ve been pre-COVID. And the only runway I’m walking these days is the well-worn path between my home office area, the kitchen, and my kids’ rooms to check the status of their online learning.
But the moment I slipped on these high-waisted tights, I knew I’d found a new favorite to add to my rotation. They don’t have a ton of compression, but given the few extra pounds I’ve put on this year, that’s not a bad thing (neither are the few extra pounds by the way—I don’t define myself by the size of my thighs, but right now things with a looser fit feel a little comfier).
I have the leggings in ensign blue; a deep teal that goes surprisingly well with everything. I tend to gravitate toward basic black leggings because I’m pretty lazy when it comes to fashion (and also because I have two black dogs who shed all over the house), and in general, simple suits me best. That said, I’m digging the gold mesh side panels and cute gold moon phase accent on the back of the leg.
But the best thing about these leggings is that they’re eco-conscious. The entire Exhale collection features at least 70 percent recycled polyester; these leggings actually come in at 84 percent. Puma also partnered with First Climate to purchase credits toward the creation of small biogas plants in Vietnam, which is where the collection was produced, to offset unavoidable emissions. Given that Yoga Journal is carbon-neutral ourselves, this really resonated.
The rest of the collection includes a studio bra (which I’m also loving), knit cover-up, crop top, boyfriend-inspired T-shirt, leotard, and a jogger, all in a neutral color palette.
Lately my yoga practice is more Yin and restorative, but these yoga leggings would be perfect for a flowing vinyasa practice, given the amount of stretch in the fabric. And the high waist is ideal for doing inversions (after having two kids I appreciate a little extra tummy coverage, especially when doing headstand (Salamba Sirsasana) and handstand (Adho Mukha Vrksasana).
Puma even released a yoga session to celebrate the new collab. Led by British yoga therapist Colin Dunsmuir and Delevingne, it’s an accessible practice that you can do at home.