From luxe hoodies to retro sports socks, these athletics-inspired designs make perfect gifts for people who want to be as comfortable as they’re cool.
Buying clothes and accessories for other people is always tricky. But if your friend/sibling/partner has an affinity for hoodies, T-shirts, trainers, trackies and leggings, you might be fooled into thinking your job is a simpler one. It’s all pared-back, comfy and casual; that’s impossible to mess up, right?
Wrong. Athleisure is a notoriously exacting style, despite its laidback appearance. (We live in a world where ‘sneaker blogger’ is a legitimate job, and new collaborations between streetwear brands prompt queues round the block.) Even if the sweatshirt-lover in your life isn’t fastidiously particular about the brands they will and won’t wear, they’ll still want their clothes to have impeccable style credentials – as well as being supremely comfortable.
Feeling intimidated? Don’t be. Below, we’ve put together a comprehensive edit of items that will tick all the boxes of the modern athleisure-wearer – from ridiculously cool sports socks to a super-soft hoodie. Thank us later.
Acorn Tapes Long Sleeve Blue T-shirt
This cornflower-blue long sleeve top will leave music fans seriously impressed. Not only is it pyjama-levels of comfy, it also gives a shout-out to Acorn Tapes – a small UK label specialising in cassettes and digital releases by hip-hop and jazz artists from around the world.
Zola Amour The Softest Cotton T-shirt
Got a friend who’s constantly hunting for the perfect basic cotton T-shirt? They’ll thank you for introducing them to Zola Amour. The ethical, sustainable Brighton-based brand calls its organic tees The Softest, and they more than live up to the name.
Scotch & Soda Corduroy Baseball Cap
Who’d have thought that brown corduroy would look so good on a baseball cap? For your 90s-inspired friend who wants a winter option in their cap collection, look no further.
Stepney Workers Club Canvas Trainers
Independent east London label Stepney Workers Club make lovely unisex kicks. With a neutral ecru shade and cushioned rubber soles, these classic canvas trainers will suit just about everyone.
Lefrik Bum Bag in Black
A classic bum bag, but make it sustainable. Eco-friendly label Lefrik has turned plastic bottles into a handy accessory that’s ideal for travelling, festivals or simply dashing about the city. There’s even a safe back pocket to stash the stuff you just can’t lose.
Missoma Gold Chain Necklace
A solid piece of everyday jewellery should be simple but interesting, and Missoma’s Aegis chain is just that. An investment piece that will work with every outfit, it’s the perfect gift for someone who prefers their jewellery minimalist and industrial-inspired.
Ninety Percent Organic Cotton-Jersey Hoodie
Athleisure fan or not, everyone deserves at least one gorgeously soft, high quality hoodie in their wardrobe (trust us, the right one can even make a trip to the supermarket feel luxurious). If this scarlet version by sustainable brand Ninety Percent is too bold, never fear – it also comes in cream.
Nudie Jeans Sport Socks
No longer the preserve of 80s tennis stars, retro sports socks suddenly feel right again – especially this organic cotton pair by chic Swedish denim label Nudie Jeans. They’ll make for a seriously cool Secret Santa present (and for under £10!).
Angela Roi Travel Pouch
People who live in trackies and sweatshirts have automatically got airport attire nailed – but do they have somewhere stylish to stash their travel documents? Made in Korea from vegan leather (it’s both cruelty and sweatshop-free), this cream pouch will make them want to get organised well before the night they leave.
Universal Works White and Black Scarf
Nottingham-designed, Italian-made menswear brand Universal Works create high-quality, long-lasting pieces like this simple double-sided scarf (which, of course, will look good on all genders). They also make deluxe versions of classic football scarves, which are guaranteed to delight Premier League obsessives.
Ganni Silk Mix Scrunchie in Leopard
Whether we’re exercising or slobbing on the sofa, we all sometimes need to get our hair out of our face. The trusty scrunchie is key – and this luxe version is ideal for anyone who likes to jazz up sporty outfits with bold-but-casual accessories.
Penfield Highgate Gloves in Charcoal
These dark grey gloves by sporty outdoor clothing brand Penfield look sober at first. But on second glance, you’ll see that they’re flecked with rainbow threads – like a serious cake with a handful of sprinkles. And who couldn’t do with that on their cold morning commute?
Rains Msn Backpack
There’s something very satisfying about the smooth matte finish of Rains’ waterproof products. Even their simplest designs give off a distinctly expensive vibe – which makes it all the more pleasing that they’re not outrageously expensive. This roomy, lightweight backpack will withstand even the most torrential downpour – making it the ideal gift for the cyclist on your list.
Skagen Black Steel-Mesh Watch
There’s nothing slicker than black on black. This simple, sporty watch comes courtesy of Danish brand Skagen, and features a steel mesh strap that can be switched out for other materials whenever the mood strikes.
Café Leather Green iPhone Case
Café Leather’s products are handcrafted by artisans in the Spanish town of Ubrique. It claims to be a company for “the modern gentleman”, but we think this (very classy) forest green phone case has a universal appeal.
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Main image: Getty. All other images courtesy of brands/retailers
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