What You Need To Know
- Quality gear lasts longer
- So stop shopping at the outlets for running gear
- Actually think about your style
- And support smaller brands
We review a ton, and we mean a ton, of gear here at Believe in the Run. We’re lucky enough to receive all this stuff to run in, take stock of, and put those thoughts to electronic paper for you to read and hopefully better inform your purchases. Granted, we try and keep our shoe and gear reviews nice and light. I mean, come on, we’re not the accounting department at the IRS.
But we’re pretty honest when we love or strongly dislike a shoe or piece of gear, so we get super pumped when the former happens and we get to write an impassioned review about it. Of course, everyone knows the big dogs of the running industry and what they bring to the table. But in this article, we want to highlight some brands that may not be household names but we think you need to check out. Focusing on apparel here, these are brands that we’ve come to love and appreciate for making high-quality pieces that are functional, good-looking, and tell a story. These are the five running apparel brands that you need to know right now.
› Roark Run Amok
Inspired by travel, Roark Run Amok aims to tell unique stories through its clothing and accessories. From elaborate patterns to basic solids, their apparel is classy and timeless with a style for almost everyone. We say almost because they do not appear to have any women’s clothing just yet, but this is a brand to look out for.
We admire their vintage-modern vibes (does that make sense?) as well as their commitment to sustainability. Roark is Fair Trade Certified as they’re passionate about ethical manufacturing, and they are set to make 50% of the materials they use recycled by 2022. Not only is this a brand that you feel good wearing, but you feel good about where your clothing comes from.Shop Roark
SaySky was born out of a passion for the sport of running. The Copenhagen-based company calls itself the “worldwide running tribe,” and it’s easy to see why. Their apparel has performance in mind first while an urban aesthetic and attitude. Bright colors pop and neutrals dazzle with subtle design elements that make SaySky’s clothing different from almost anything out there. A perfect example is the ‘Universe’ colorway of their Combat Singlet, featuring a deep navy blue splattered with a silver reflective pattern. This is just one example of how their apparel shines above the rest.Shop Saysky
› Craft Sportswear
You may remember Craft Sportswear from our review of their CTM Ultra Carbon shoe, featuring friend of BITR Kofuzi. That shoe was one-of-a-kind in a lot of ways, including the Zebraflage colorway. But Craft is best known for its performance clothing designed specifically with endurance sports in mind. The Nordic company’s main goal is to make sport enjoyable for everyone, whether you’re a couch-to-marathoner or 26.2 champ.
We, for one, enjoy the hell out of their clothes. Everything from their shirts, shorts, sports bras, and rain jackets feels so good to wear, we never want to take it off. Without naming names, there are definitely some people within the BITR sphere that wear their stuff multiple times before wash.
If you’re looking for top-tier quality, check out the PRO Hypervent line, made with recycled fabrics and plenty of mesh panels to keep you cool as the sun and your body begins to heat up. The split shorts are pretty incredible as well.Shop Craft – Men
› Ten Thousand
Ten Thousand came onto the scene with one goal in mind: create a better pair of workout shorts. And if you’re like me, your Instagram and Facebook ad spaces have been flooded with those workout shorts. Ten Thousand does it with simple, high-quality materials that perform well and last long, and their aesthetic very much matches the type of clothing that they make. Also, Ryan Hall wears them, so if he approves, we approve.
The Distance Short is one of the nicer shorts we’ve tried. It’s lightweight and breathable while promoting a higher range of motion. Plenty of storage in the back makes them uber practical too. While not necessarily the cheapest brand out there, you cannot argue with the quality of materials. Try out a pair of shorts or a t-shirt and you won’t be sorry.Shop Ten Thousand
Hey, another brand that rings a bell. Back in February, we reviewed Nathan’s RunAway collection of bags. We were blown away by the quality and relative affordability of their products. Some of them have even become mainstays around the BITR office, especially for commute running.
Little did we know, Nathan makes some pretty legit running apparel too, and they really focused on expanding their offerings in 2021. Both performance and casual based, Nathan’s clothing covers the spectrum of the runner’s wardrobe and with its thoughtful construction, was clearly designed by runners. Their technical shirts wick sweat like nothing on a hot summer morning, and we could live in their Weekender joggers. Nathan makes their products universally with running in mind, and as a publication that is literally named Believe in the Run, we love that. We’ve already advocated for their backpacks and fanny pack. Now, we suggest pairing them with a nice pair of joggers and a shirt.Shop Nathan – Men Shop Nathan – Women
Apparently not a huge fan of vowels or capital letters, and neither are we, because like srsly who needs them? But this palindromic company is a fan of sweet running accessories like hats, socks, and a few shirts. Their hats in particular exist in that Ciele wheelhouse that we love – 5 panels, throwback styles, truckers, etc. – and feature bold and fun colorways, from neon to tie-dye. Check out their full range of gear at the link below.Shop RNNR
Oh, also: Believe in the Run. You should buy some of our apparel too.Shop BITR