This post is in collaboration with Modibodi.
I sweat a lot. Even the easiest workout leaves me dripping and while I’m not ashamed of my sweat, I worked for those wet patches, spending hours on end in damp kit isn’t the most fun. The word squelchy springs to mind. Which is probably a more triggering word than moist. Sorry for that.
Sweaty workout gear isn’t only uncomfortable, a sweaty crotch can lead to all sorts of nastiness. Rashes, ingrown hairs and infected sweat glands (I have a lovely scar from an ingrown hair on my bikini line), as well as issues like staph infection, bacterial vaginosis and yeast infections, amongst other delights. When you train as much as I do (5-6 days a week, twice on some days) this just isn’t a nice thing to contemplate, and with some big events just around the corner I really don’t have time for issues around my nether region.
Just writing this is a bit triggering. There is nothing worse that feeling uncomfortable and clammy ‘down there’, so I was pretty excited when Modibodi asked me to try out their new leggings during a sweaty workout at The Refinery.
I’ve worn Modibodi’s undies while for awhile, using them on those days when I reckon my period is lurking around the corner, on days when my flow is a bit lighter and when I’ve been doing extra sweaty workouts. I really like that they remove the need for pads or liners and wick moisture away so I can workout without that squelchy feeling. You know that feeling.
I wear leggings every day, and I’ve got so many thoughts on what makes the perfect pair. They’ve got to have a bit of compression for support, be high waisted and ideally hit the ankle (nothing like a bit of ankle) as well as pass the squat test (because some dignity is important).
Modibodi’s leggings are a slightly different fabric to the undies I have. While my undies are a merino blend (which I LOVE, so airy) the leggings are a much lighter lycra with 4-way stretch designed to move with the body during a workout. Slipping on the leggings they felt lovely and silky against my skin and fitted well across the leg, but while the fabric was nice and stretchy it didn’t offer much in the way of compression and my chronically achy legs didn’t have quite as much support as they’d have liked.
Although I’m normally not a fan of a 3/4 legging - they make me feel a little dumpy - I found these leggings really flattering on the leg. They fell at a nice point on the calf and the fabric clung just the right amount, but I was a bit disappointed they didn’t come up higher on the waist, and I found myself hiking them up a few times during my workout. Maybe next time I’ll size down so they’re that little bit tighter and less yanking is required.
The big selling point of these leggings is Modibodi’s leak-proof technology. According to a poll of 1,900 women conducted by Netmums for the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) suggests that one in three women (34%) develop urinary incontinence during pregnancy and the same number said the problem continued one year on from having their baby. It’s fair to say leaking is a pressing issue for many, many women, and I do wonder how many of those women aren’t working out because they’re concerned about leaks. While wearing leggings that protect from leaks isn’t the long term answer (women ought to be speaking to their doctors and working with properly qualified professionals to treat the underlying issue) it can offer a little bit of reassurance when you’re not feeling all that confident. No one wants pee rolling down their leg mid-squat.
I don’t have pelvic floor issues, so I can’t test out whether the leggings really are leakproof, but I do know that the technology has worked really well for me during my period and the special moisture-wicking fabric in the gusset did exactly what it was supposed to during my sweaty workout. I definitely felt less clammy and sweaty after 40 minutes of circuits than I would normally and it was reassuring knowing that bacteria was being kept at bay. However, there is a cost to all of this. The absorbent liner as relatively bulky and when you first put the leggings on it can feel a little bit like you’re wearing one of those old school pads your school nurse used to hand out in emergencies. Similarly, to accommodate the liner the seams run up the pelvis, which kind of reminds me of a pair of Y-Fronts and isn’t all that flattering.
Overall I think Modibodi are on to a good thing with these leggings, but I think they still need a little work if they’re really going to live up to their potential. A higher waist, thicker compression fabric across the legs and some attention to the seaming to make them a little more flattering would take these leggings from a good idea to an amazing product. However, even in the right now Modibodi offers women a solution to a really common problem that could be holding them back from doing everything they enjoy, and that can only be a good thing!
Modibodi Activewear 3/4 leggings are available in sizes 6-16 and retail at £67.50 and you can find out more here.
*Modibodi invited me to workout with them at The Refinery and gave me a pair of leggings to try out, but all opinions are my own.