Why TikTok Made Me Purchase The Viral Aerie Leggings
Like so many others last November, on my “For You” page I came across a viral TikTok video of a young woman, Hannah Schlenker, who was casually dancing to Justin Bieber’s song “Drummer Boy” in her kitchen. To my surprise, the video’s virality wasn’t due to her why-bother dancing style – it’s like she’s marking the choreography instead of fully engaging in it, and she even jokingly joked the clip titled, “Yes Queen, give us nothing ” Mistake. It turned out that the video’s popularity was actually down to her blue Aerie leggings. The pants, known as Real Me High Waisted Crossover Legging, are made from a lightweight mix of 88% nylon and 12% spandex that serves as a second skin. According to the website, it feels like the real you when you wear it. At Schlenker, the V-shaped waistband of the leggings was incredibly flattering to her waistline (for the record, it’s very small regardless of the leggings), and the world took note.
Within a week of the TikTok, Aerie’s crossover leggings sold out across the country, sparking a new series of videos in which women of different body types put the leggings to the test in their own TikToks, demonstrating the garment’s flattering capabilities. And so the cycle went on: the leggings were refilled, flew off the shelves and the waiting list kept growing. “We sold out more than six times and collected over 156,000 emails from customers asking to be on the list of notifications,” said Jennifer Foyle, chief creative officer at AEO Inc. and global brand president at Aerie .
The hype wasn’t over when I got my hands on a pair of plain black crossover leggings in February. After seeing Schlenker’s video for the first time, I didn’t give in to the madness straight away, but countless crossover legging TikToks later got the familiarity principle – people develop a preference for things they see often – ultimately the best of me and me bought the leggings. And I wasn’t alone; “Our community is eagerly awaiting the latest collection of tie-dye designs to be released on March 18th,” added Foyle.
Leggings are a wardrobe staple that, while polarizing (opponents claim the pants are too revealing and even launched campaigns against them), has made a comeback in the midst of the pandemic: they’re simple, chic, comfortable, and go well with you oversized button-up. As adjoining yoga pants, they also serve as a reminder of the training. I hadn’t bought new leggings to wear outside the gym in years, so I figured if I tried a new pair it should be Aerie.
After putting on the leggings, I immediately understood the appeal. The V-shaped waistband indeed offers a flattering cut (although my waist wasn’t as dramatic as I hoped it was) and the fabric is more comfortable and lighter than I expected. I’ve worn these leggings for workouts and long walks, but I’ve mostly enjoyed wearing them on days I’ve worked at home when “real pants” aren’t on the menu. I would call them the perfect all-purpose leggings.
Here you can buy the black version of Schlenker’s now famous Aerie crossover leggings. And if you want more color, Aerie is launching a brand new batik collection in pretty pastel shades and an exciting brown color tomorrow at 8 a.m. EST, which will be sold out.