If something is going to touch your skin, it should be pure and non-toxic. OMALA, which means “source of life” in Sanskrit, designs hip, eco-friendly and feminine active-wear for women who just happen to be hip, eco-friendly and feminine and care about what touches our skin. The Long Skegging and Celeste Racer Tank are perfect examples.
The Long Skegging is a harmonic blend of fitted leggings that hit mid-calf with an attached skirt that cinches on one side for added style. They have a long and lean appearance that flatters the body without being tight and injects a shot of modernism into ancient yoga concepts to create a look that is fresh and hip regardless of your body type.
It’s symbiosis in its most primitive form.
I know what you might be thinking. A skirt? Why?
Why, indeed. It’s cute, it’s sexy, it covers your butt both inside and outside the studio. While inside the studio, I put the Long Skeggings through the paces (poses?): Garland, Half moon, Low lunge. Warriors I, II and III. Dolphin. Extended triangle. Wide-legged forward bend? No problem, no restrictions.
None of this was by accident, either. Kate Gaertner, the founder and designer of OMALA, says, “Literally, we’ve thought about the before, during and after of women’s active, busy and multi-tasking life and I set out to create feminine, non-slutty sexy and hip yoga wear for women with real bodies.”
The Celeste Racer Tank is as sexy as it makes me feel, but in a tasteful Namaste-Om kind of way. Sorry ladies, but while I believe “the girls” should be revered and celebrated, the gym and yoga is just not the place. The built-in shelf bra keeps ‘em contained in blissful, soft, silky comfort while the shirt overlay camouflages that attractive blob of sweat on your chest after leaving the gym.
The fabric of the Celeste and the Long Skegging is a unique bamboo/organic cotton/Spandex blend. Organic cotton and Spandex are nothing new, but bamboo?
Bamboo is what Giant Pandas munch on. Or an indigenous building material that Gilligan used to patch his hut.
It’s still that, but when OMALA blends 65 percent bamboo with 25 percent organic cotton and 10 percent Spandex, it’s like nothing I’ve ever felt. It’s ultra soft and silky, and because the bamboo has natural “pores” in the cellulose fiber its inherent moisture wicking ability is excellent (as I discovered during Pilates). The dominant natural fibers of bamboo and cotton also make it antimicrobial so as not to offend your fellow yogis.
And the biggie? OMALA’s business practices and products are good for the earth. Probably emitting less waste than a Giant Panda.
In addition to using recycled and sustainable processing, bamboo fiber grows fast (like a weed, although it’s a grass). It matures within four years and doesn’t require pesticides to grow to fruition, making it a sustainable, biodegradable and renewable resource.
This Fall, OMALA has even introduced a new fabric that is made from 90 percent PETE (recycled plastic bottles) and 10 percent Spandex.
The planet needs more companies like OMALA.
Two bummers: First, OMALA isn’t available at the retail level (yet), so you will need to order OMALA products online. Second, the color palette is limited. You have baby blue and gray. I would like to see black, a very dark gray or a deep maroon. Darker colors hide things better.
Still, with every bummer there’s a benefit. OMALA will donate 10 percent of specified bamboo-fabrication products to The Nature Conservancy to build awareness towards individual eco-conscious choices and demand for eco-friendly products. So each time you buy a bamboo-based product, you’re supporting the environment.
I suddenly have a new fondness and respect for Giant Panda cuisine and desert island hut building materials—and it comes with a comfortable shelf bra and adorable skirt.