LuluLemon Case Study

Lululemon is an athleisure apparel company who focuses on yoga. The brand has nearly 600 physical stores throughout the world. The company has stores in 13 different countries worldwide, with most of their stores being in the US. In the past few years LuluLemon has become increasingly popular and successful. 

LuluLemon’s Products

LuluLemon has a large range of athletic clothing for both men and women. They also carry many accessories that are great for everyday use and sports/activities. Their products include:

  • Coats & Jackets
  • Dresses
  • Hoodies, Sweatshirts, Sweaters
  • Pants: Leggings, Joggers, Trousers
  • Shirts: Polo, Button Down, Tank Tops
  • Shorts 
  • Skirts
  • Swimsuits
  • Undergarments: Underwear, Sports Bras, Socks
  • Bags
  • Sports Equipment
  • Gloves & Mittens
  • Hair Accessories
  • Hats
  • Scarves & Wraps
  • Water Bottles
  • Yoga Mats

Best Sellers

Some of LuluLemon’s best sellers for women include the Define Jacket, Align leggings, Belt bag, Scuba half zip sweatshirts, Align Tank Tops, and the Swiftly Tech Long Sleeves. 

Some of LuluLemon’s best sellers for men include the City Sweat jogger, Evolution polo shirt, At Ease hoodie, Pace Breaker shorts, and the Fundamental T-shirt. 

Women’s Legging Designs

LuluLemon has leggings of many different fabrics and fits that are meant for different activities. The following are the types and what they are meant for: 

  • Align: Designed for Yoga
  • Wunder Train: Designed for Training
  • Base Pace: Designed for Running
  • Instill: Designed for Yoga
  • Swift Speed: Designed for Running
  • Fast and Free: Designed for Running
  • Invigorate: Designed for Training

Using the specific type of legging for the activity it is meant for helps increase the life of the product. They are specifically designed for different activities to help your body move better and more comfortably while you do each activity. 

Hemming Service

LuluLemon stores offer hemming services on most of their tops and bottoms. These services are offered in store to new and used clothing (as long as it is clean and meets quality standards). Here are the steps to get LuluLemon items hemmed: 

  1. Try on the top/bottom 
  2. An in store educator will pin the hem exactly where you want it.
  3. LuluLemon’s hemmers will hem the clothing item
  4. Pick up your item as soon as 3 business days later (pop-up stores take up to 7 days).

Some items with cuffs, zippers, thumbholes, buttons, and/or drawcords may not be able to be hemmed. 

LuluLemon offers free hemming because they believe that clothing should fit you just right and not be in your way when you are exercising. This is a great feature that makes the price of LuluLemon worth it!

LuluLemon’s History

LuluLemon was founded in 1998 by Chip Wilson. It was founded in Vancouver, Canada and was originally a yoga apparel and equipment company for women. Throughout the years, the brand began to develop a wide variety of athletic apparel for both genders, this was a result of feedback from their customers, ambassadors, and athletes. The company’s designers are athletes as well, which is a big reason their clothes are so popular and comfortable to do sports in. Initially, it was also a yoga studio where people could go to workout, but through the years it developed to focus on clothing more. However, LuluLemon stores still offer yoga classes within the stores weekly, all the products and displays get moved and the store fills with yoga mats for complimentary classes. 

LuluLemon’s vision was “to create more than a place where people could get gears to sweat in, we wanted to create a community hub where people could learn and discuss the physical aspects of healthy living, mindfulness and living a life of possibility” (source). The brand also prioritizes the relationships they can build with their customers to be able to understand their wants and passions. They like to be able to help their guests celebrate their goals. 

The Rise of LuluLemon

The first pair of yoga pants sold by LuluLemon were made of nylon and lycra-synthetic elastic fibers which provided the softness and stretch that yoga demanded. Many people who did yoga started purchasing LuluLemon as a higher quality alternative to the usual cotton leggings that were always used. 

The switch in preference from jeans to leggings that occurred especially with teenagers in the 2010s helped LuluLemon capitalize on its potential of reaching non-yoga customers. Leggings began to be the most worn clothing piece for lounging around and daily errands, which expanded their use from being solely for sports and athletic activities. 

LuluLemon is definitely on the expensive side for athletic apparel but the quality of their clothing is what makes their prices worth it for consumers world wide. Also, the brand has a very minimalist look to it which is very appealing to customers with current fashion trends. Their clothes have a very timeless look to them that has helped the brand pull ahead in the athletic clothing industry. 

LuluLemon’s Value and Mission

LuluLemon strives to empower people to reach their full potential by making the necessary tools and resources available. They also encourage leadership, goal setting, and personal responsibility. 

LuluLemon’s “core values of personal responsibility, entrepreneurship, honesty, courage, connection, fun, and inclusion are lived by our people everyday and are at the heart of our unique company culture” (source). 

LuluLemon’s Sustainability Efforts

LuluLemon prioritizes the need for the world’s environment to get help. The brand has many sustainability goals and commitments for the next few years. They are adjusting their practices and coming up with solutions that will be better their products, minimize the negative impact to the environment, and help restore the environment. Their three many focuses are innovating more sustainable materials, creating circularity, and using less water. 

Innovation Of More Sustainable Materials

“By 2025, we will achieve at least 75 percent sustainable materials for our products—including fibers that are recycled, renewable, regenerative, sourced responsibly, or some combination thereof, and/or are manufactured using low-resource processes” (source). 

Lululemon is working to design their products with a focus on long-lasting performance, beauty, and sustainability. To achieve these goals, they will begin to use better fibers, innovate manufacturing processes, create net new materials, and collaborate with the rest of the industry to evolve collective solutions. Their goal is to be able to trace where all of their materials come from and they assess impact by utilizing the Sustainable Apparel Coalition Higg Materials Sustainability Index. The materials they are focused on improving include polyester, nylon, cotton, animal-derived materials, and forest-based materials. Specific goals for these materials can be found on Lululemon’s website, here

Creating Circularity

By 2025 LuluLemon has committed to offer their consumers more options to resell, repair, and recycle their products which will in turn increase the lifecycle of the products. This is in attempts of creating a circular ecosystem and changing the linear approach of clothing to a circular one. Much less clothing will end up in landfills which decreases emissions being put in the environment. Circularity is a very innovative strategy and LuluLemon acknowledges that it will take a lot of creativity and collaboration, but they believe their business model is strongly positioned to complete this goal. They are also working on designing their products in new ways that will allow them to last longer, be recycled, and cause less harm to the environment during production.  

Using Less Water

By 2025, Lululemon commits to reducing their average amounts of freshwater use to manufacture their items by 50%. In order to do this, Lululemon is working on improving their manufacturing facilities to use more innovative processes that are much more water efficient. 

LuluLemon Studio

On LuluLemon’s website there is a feature called Studio. Studio has many different features such as workout videos, workout livestreams, partnerships with popular physical workout studios, and more. The brand also launched their Studio Mirror that allows customers to utilize all of Studio’s features in the comfort of their own home. 

Video Workouts

LuluLemon has over 10,000 workout and tutorial videos uploaded onto their website and onto the LuluLemon Studio App. These workouts are all in the yoga, running, or training categories. Some examples include strength, dance cardio, HITT, low impact, training for a 10k, power yoga, bedtime yoga, and many others. 

Workout Livestreams With Studio Partners

LuluLemon partners with popular workout studios to provide livestream workouts and more. Their partnering studios include AARMY, Y7 Studio, DOGPOUND, FORWARD_Space, Rumble, Pure Barre, AKT, and YogaSix.

LuluLemon Studio Mirror

LuluLemon released an interactive workout mirror called the Studio Mirror. The mirror is all encompassing of everything LuluLemon has to offer. It includes classes from trainers, studio partner’s streaming classes, accessories such as heart-rate monitor and smart weights, discounts at LuluLemon’s partner studio locations, and over 10,000 workout videos and classes. The mirror is $795 and comes with a 1 year warranty. Its most appealing aspect is how it provides the owner with convenience. Those who have the Studio Mirror can workout in so many different ways at any time they want and in the comfort of their own home. 

LuluLemon X Universities

LuluLemon has begun to partner with American Universities to make apparel branded with both LuluLemon and the University. So far, these universities include University of Michigan, University of Texas, Pennsylvania State University, University of Alabama, University of Florida, and Boston College. The apparel included in these collaborations were tank tops, t-shirts, long sleeves, sweatshirts, pants, belt bags, hats, shorts, and more. These collaborations have been so successful that an amount of items projected to sell in the entire autumn season sold in two hours when one of the collaborations launched in stores. These items are only available in the university’s stores. 

LuluLemon Ambassadors

LuluLemon has a very large ambassador program that is very encompassing of many different types of people. The program includes global and store ambassadors. Ambassadors are meant to connect LuluLemon to the community around them. Ambassadors get to try out new gear, get development tools and experience, and connect with people similar to them. Anyone can apply to become an ambassador by visiting a LuluLemon store to learn more. Many ambassadors are athletes, some even professional ones. 

LuluLemon’s Use of Tik Tok Influencers

LuluLemon uses Tik Tok influencers very well for marketing their products. They often send influencers clothing in hopes that they post an unboxing or try on haul of the items. Additionally, they also do paid collaborations with content creators to advertise their products in more creative videos. Some of these videos are adventurous vlogs that include getting ready and wearing the LuluLemon clothes. These videos are very smart and creative because they place the clothes in the environment they were created to be worn in. Tik Tok has become a very effective way of marketing products and the platform can often sell out new products very quickly, so LuluLemon using this strategy is extremely smart. 

Final Thoughts: LuluLemon Has Captured Consumer Loyalty And Will Continue To Do So

LuluLemon has utilized the rise of athletic clothes as everyday wear to their advantage. They have created more appealing athletic and leisure clothing that looks fashionable for both men and women. Their brands have caught the attention of millions of dedicated customers who thoroughly enjoy the company’s offerings. 

LuluLemon has also had some smart collaborations with universities, which is where their biggest demographic is. They also utilize Tik Tok marketing to its best potential and keep their products relevant and desired. Their services like workout videos and free hemming set them apart from other athletic clothing companies in the industry. Although the brand has been very successful, they are still innovating and working towards more success in a more sustainable way.

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