Looking for a detailed, honest Barbell Apparel review? Here's everything you need to know about the brand.
If there’s a paradox in the clothing industry, it’s in athleisurewear. As the professional way of life continues to change, so will dress requirements.
We’ve been consistently moving toward more casual wear and Americans are seeking options that offer both fashion and function.
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Athleisurewear offers that solution: something you can wear to the gym but also to run errands like running to the nearest Whole Foods on your bike.
In some cases, it make even be work appropriate. Despite the fact that this subcategory is growing very fast, there seems to be a lack of brands committed to dressing the man of modest height.
About Barbell Apparel
Barbell Apparel is just one brand that might be able to fill that void. It’s a company that is the story of vision and dreams coming true.
As the possessor of 23”+ thighs (on a skinny day), I’ve always struggled to find shorts and pants that fit.
In addition, even size small shirts are too baggy in the waist area leaving me looking like a box.
Barbell Apparel was one of the first companies to bring ‘athletic fit’ into vogue with their stretch jeans. They were the second most funded fashion project on Kickstarter and went on to present on ABC’s Shark Tank where they crushed it with their Athletic Fit Havok Polo.
Given all the hoopla, I had to investigate…
After reaching out to the owner, Karl Workman, he was all too confident to let me try a variety of items and ensured they would be some of the most comfortable and best fitting garments I’d ever put on.
Barbell Apparel Shorts
Its front pockets are also slanted forward off from the hip seam and the waistband is two inches compared to the standard 1.5.
Both shorts are 16” long but the Ranger has a 11” rise and the Phantom 10”. What I like best is the thigh fits perfectly, not too baggy or tight and the length is just right for me when it comes to squats and deadlifts.
Neither pair of shorts have a built-in liner and that may be a preference that separates some guys from a purchase.
I wore the RibbedTee G3 underwear and they were the perfect complement in the gym. Overall, these are a solid buy and better than most in the current marketplace.
I was able to get a pair of the Patrol Pant in Black which went to Kickstarter on May 6th but are still not available on the site as of this writing.
I consider such a pant to be joggers on steroids as they are more flexible and waterproof. With a 10” rise and outseam of 40.5”, they are the tightest pants I have ever owned and slightly long.
At first, I didn’t like them but after a few wearings to the gym, they grew on me. They have draw cords at the ankle with standard front and a rear pocket.
Barbell Apparel Casual Shirts
Next, I tried the Havoc Short Sleeve Tee in Black and Ultralight Phantom Tank in Slate. Both shirts wash easy and fit very well. Usually shirts are too long and too big through the body. That was not the case here.
What I liked about each of these items was the ability to be comfortable but also the sweat wicking while I was on the stairmaster.
Moving out of the gym and onto the street, one piece that I was excited to get was the Scout Henley in Slate. When I’m not at work, you can always find me in a Henley on the weekends, especially during the cooler months.
Traditionally, I wear J. Crew but the cotton is of inferior quality. This shirt is 88% polyester and 12% spandex. It has a neck opening that is larger than most but the baseball style cut of the shoulders is what makes the fit better than others.
The stretch also doesn’t feel like compression which is important to me in this new athleisure space.
Barbell Apparel Jeans
The jeans are where the rubber meets the road with this brand. While my waist is 32” and I normally wear 30s, Karl sent me Straight Athletic Fit in Dark Distressed and the Slim Athletic Fit in Medium Distressed, both in size 28.
All pairs come in a 34” length inseam which is common for luxury brands but note, men’s legs do not come in increments of 2”.
A standard hem will run about $20, however, you will lose the stone washing at the bottom. The original hem can be relocated but it will be costly. Being 5’7”, I had both pairs shortened 6” to a 28” inseam.
Both have a rise of 10” which is just perfect to keep you legs looking long without binding in the crotch.
The straight cut have a 14” opening and the slim cut 13.5”. Both pair are 95% cotton, 4% polyester and 1% spandex but they have so much stretch, you would have thought otherwise.
Although a fan of the Levi’s 541 Athletic Cut, Barbell jeans put them to shame. They are comfortable and wash easily.
Barbell Apparel Polo
I really liked the unique alignment of the shoulder stitch and how it was offset from the yoke on the back. Both garments felt great but I wasn’t a fan of the 17” neck of each shirt.
It was far too big for my 15” neck and was emphasized by the short 1.75” collar.
The shirt originally came with one button on the cuff but they have since modified it with two so that the shirt doesn’t eat one’s hand. The sleeves are also long which is often expected with dress shirts that come in basic sizes.
All in all, Barbell Apparel is a good buy. All of their products fit correctly where it matters most.
From the length of shirts and shorts to the perfect rise, this is a brand a Modest Man can wear with few if any concerns. Barbell Apparel offers free shipping and returns so what do you have to lose?
If you’re going for the perfect fit, this brand is worth a try.