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What are workout colors?

What are workout colors?

Fitness fashion has come a long way in recent years. Gone are the days of wearing old t-shirts and ratty shorts to the gym. These days, workout clothes are just as much about style as they are about function. A key trend that has emerged is the use of color to make bold statements and coordinate your activewear from head to toe. So what do the different workout color palettes mean and how can you use them to make a statement with your gym style?

Neon Brights

Neon bright colors like hot pink, lime green, and highlighter yellow have become popular gym staples. Wearing these eye-catching shades is a great way to show off your confidence and personality. The bold neon hues pair well with both black and white for maximum contrast. They also look great when coordinated together, allowing you to create unique color-blocked outfits. Neon activewear lets you stand out from the crowd and showcase your vibrant spirit.

Jewel Tones

Deep luxurious shades like emerald, sapphire, and amethyst have a sophisticated, upscale look perfect for the gym. Jewel-toned workout clothes allow you to make a polished fashion statement even when you’re working up a sweat. From rich purple yoga pants to a jewel-colored sports bra, these regal hues project elegance and style. Complementing the decadent colors with metallic shoes and accessories gives your gym ensemble an extra dose of luxury.

Earth Tones

Natural earth-inspired colors like tan, olive, and rust orange connect us to nature. Activewear in these grounded, neutral shades promotes a zen, balanced energy perfect for yoga, pilates, and meditation-based workouts. Pairing earth tones together creates a harmonious, soothing palette. Olive leggings with a matching tan sports bra gives off a peaceful, organic vibe. You can also mix earth tones with bright pops of color for contrast.


Pretty pastel colors like blush pink, mint, and lavender offer up a soft, feminine gym look. The lighter shades are less harsh than neons, giving off a more delicate, graceful appearance. Pastel workout clothes feel sweet and charming. Pairing them with white creates a clean, ethereal look. For those seeking cute, flirty activewear, pastels are the way to go. They bring out your inner girly side.


Sticking to one solid color from head to toe is a dramatic, fashion-forward statement. Monochrome outfits in shades like black, red, navy, or gray project confidence through their simplicity. Mixing up textures like a gray cotton t-shirt with shiny gray leggings and sneakers adds visual interest. Or layer gray with white for contrast. Monochrome is ideal for minimalists who want streamlined activewear that seamlessly fits their lifestyle.


Shimmery metallic colors like silver, gold, and rose gold add glitz and glam to your workout wardrobe. They give off an edgy, rock n’ roll vibe that stands out. Pair metallic leggings with a basic black or white top for stylish contrast. Or go all-out with a matching metallic bra and leggings combo. Add some sparkling jewelry and you’ll shine brighter than the disco ball in your favorite exercise class.


Electric, hyper-charged shades known as fluoro or hi-viz colors like lime, magenta, and orange make a wildly energetic statement. Their unnaturally vibrant, glowing tones demand attention. Fluoro activewear energizes your workout, pushing you to maximum intensity. It also adds visibility for outdoor activities like running at night. Pair fluoros together or with black for an edgy, futuristic look inspired by dance and rave culture.


Groovy tie-dyed activewear taps into psychedelic 60s and 70s vibes. The hand-dyed effect results intrippy colors blending and swirling together. No two tie-dye patterns are exactly alike, giving your workout wardrobe a one-of-a-kind feel. Tie-dye leggings, tops, sneakers, and more spread laidback peace and love energy, whether you’re taking a yoga class or going for a retro-inspired run.

Animal Prints

Unleash your wild side in activewear covered in animal prints like zebra, cheetah, and leopard. These fierce prints add exotic flair to your fitness look. Mixing animal patterns together or pairing them with solid colors creates a bold, adventurous style. Opt for an edgy cheetah sports bra with black leggings. Or rock a fierce leopard print jacket over solid colored workout clothes for extra sass. Animal prints let you showcase your confident, untamed spirit.

Camo Print

Camouflage print has migrated from hunting gear to mainstream gym attire. The earthy green and brown camo shades blend exercise and outdoorsmanship for a rugged workout style. Pairing camo leggings with a solid colored top balances the look. Mixing shades of green camo together doubles down on the tactical vibe. Add combat boots instead of sneakers for extra grit. Camo activewear lets you unleash your inner warrior during training.

Bright Graphics

Eye-catching graphics in bold prints and colors is an emerging workout trend. From geometric shapes to abstract smears, vivid graphical styles liven up your activewear. Mixing graphics with solids creates visual depth. All-over graphic print leggings or tops make a lively statement. Add some graphic socks or shoes to tie the artistic look together. Graphical activewear lets you express your fun, creative side at the gym.


You can never go wrong with an all-black workout ensemble. This classic color projects sleek style and sophistication. Black leggings or tights paired with a black top or tank is a timeless, flattering choice. The slimming neutral works for any body type. Mixing black with almost any bright color creates a stylish contrast. Add pops of color through shoes or accessories to prevent all black from looking too goth. It’s an effortlessly cool, confidence boosting choice.

Choosing Colors Based on Your Workout

Beyond just style preferences, choosing activewear colors that suit your workout type can optimize performance. Here are some examples of strategic color choices:

  • Yoga – Pastels or earth tones promote relaxation
  • HIIT classes – Neons reflect high energy
  • Running outdoors – Fluoros increase visibility
  • Dance cardio – Metallics add flair
  • Pilates – Monochrome for focus
  • Cross training – Camo for ruggedness
  • Weights – Jewel tones project luxury
  • Martial arts – Black for empowerment
  • Spin class – Bright graphics visualize rhythm

How Color Affects Workout Performance

Research shows that color psychology can directly impact athletic performance. Here’s an overview of how colors affect energy, mood, and motivation during exercise:

Color Effect
Red Increases strength, energy, and motivation
Yellow Boosts optimism, alertness, and concentration
Green Promotes healing, harmony, and emotional balance
Blue Instills calmness, reduces anxiety and fatigue
Pink Soothes mood and invokes self-compassion
Purple Inspires imagination and creativity
Orange Energizes and reduces lethargy
Black Makes you feel empowered and authoritative

Keep these color pyschology effects in mind when choosing your activewear hues. The right colors can give you a mental edge to push harder and feel energized. Avoid hues that don’t align with your workout goals.

Mix and Match Workout Colors

Once you’ve picked one or two dominant hues, get creative mixing and matching to make the colors work cohesively. Some examples of color combos that complement each other include:

  • Black leggings with a neon orange top
  • Jewel-toned purple tank with neutral gray shorts
  • Lime green sports bra under earth-toned olive jacket
  • Pink leggings with blue sneakers and headband
  • Gold metallic tank with black leggings
  • Red shorts with a yellow t-shirt

Don’t be afraid to experiment until you find activewear color combinations that make you feel confident, focused, and ready to push your fitness to new levels.


Workout colors today go far beyond basic black – they make bold statements and empower your performance. Whether you gravitate towards energizing neons, edgy metallics, or peaceful pastels, use color strategically to enhance your workout mindset. Seek shades that will inspire you to work harder while also expressing your unique personality. With so many options, you can create fitness wardrobes as vibrant and varied as your exercises themselves.