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Are Lululemon's see-through pants actually sexist? With company blaming women's thighs, questions are raised

Are Lululemon's see-through pants actually sexist? Weird thigh rant

Lulumon women wearing tights workout pants bottoms up yoga position
Women of all shapes and sizes practice yoga, and according to Wilson, not all of them are meant to wear Lululemon pants. Photo by asterix611/Flickr
Chip Wilson of Lulumon head shot
Wilson, the founder and chairman of Lululemon, believes that the problems with the company's yoga pants lie with the women who wear them. Lulumon/YouTube
Lulumon women wearing tights workout pants bottoms up yoga position
Chip Wilson of Lulumon head shot

Lululemon's founder, Dennis "Chip" Wilson, is bringing the repeated consumer complaints about the company's yoga pants back into the spotlight by saying that the problem lies not with the pants, but that the pants simply "don't work for some women's bodies."

Wilson made the statement during an interview with Bloomberg TV when asked about frequent quality concerns from customers.

Lululemon has been making headlines since March due to the "increased sheerness" of their black luon yoga pants, a pair of which will cost you about $100. This was an understandable cause for concern to many women and ultimately led the company to pull 17 percent of the pants from stores and its website. Within weeks of the incident, ​Lululemon chief product officer Sheree Waterson stepped down from her position, and in June, CEO Christine Day announced that she would be leaving the company as well.

 "It's really about the rubbing through the thighs, how much pressure is there over a period of time, how much they use it." 

Day's decision to leave came right after the company chose to restock stores with newly redesigned black yoga pants that "have more fabric across the bum" according to NPR. By the time the new pants were available to customers, Lululemon's stock had fallen by 17 percent.

In spite of the redesign, the company continues to receive complaints about the pants, this time involving pilling of the fabric and issues with seams in addition to problems with fabric thinness. Instead of addressing the problem as the company's founder, Wilson simply stated that the issue was with the consumer and not the product.

"It's really about the rubbing through the thighs, how much pressure is there over a period of time, how much they use it," Wilson said of the pants.

In addition to the litany of product complaints, the company has been criticized for shunning plus-sized women, as larger sized items are often poorly displayed, seldom restocked, and are sized far smaller than other retailers.

When asked if Wilson's statements implied that not all women can wear Lululemon yoga pants, he replied, "I think they can, I just think it's how you use them."

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