Review of the Best Running Skirts (aka crotchless yoga pants) for Running or Running Around
Compression shorts: sadistic running wear that squeezes thighs like soy sausages. Warning: women who wear them risk bladder infections, therefore a course of sulfa drugs is recommended to finish a marathon.
During the Pensacola marathon last fall I became annoyed with compression running shorts. Because they kept creeping up in the middle of my lady parts I was focusing undue attention on yanking them back into place. As a result, I began to dread running altogether and was frightened that if I didn't remedy this problem soon I was going to fall into a depression that would leave me about as low as Lil Wayne's masculinity. But before I commenced to mixing codeine cough syrup in my 'drank' to get a running-like metabolic fix in a Weezy-like fashion (convulsions burn a crap-load of calories) I had to try something new. And since I live in the tropical paradise of the Emerald Coast in Florida my alternative to compression shorts had to be something lighter than compression shorts. Some of the top runners (mostly female) wear skirts to run. So I thought I'd try this option. No chafing, no camel-toe, a flattering silhouette, great ventilation, no sweaty shorts sticking to your inner thighs post-race (another contributor to the camel-toe problem), and no VPL (visible panty line). At the very least, my race pictures would be a bit more attractive, right?
Try on an extra small. Come on, it'll be extra funny.
The first ultra-marathon skirt I bought after tossing the compression shorts was from Moeben. This skirt became my all-time fave and sadly, it was discontinued as the ultra-marathon mom who made it is (seemingly) no longer in the running skirt business. When I learned of this I cranked up the angry 90's era white woman music on my iPod to permanent hearing loss levels, which is what I always do when I’ve reached my “no, you did not” level. I had just bought the one vital item that gives me more muscle than any other weapon in my lady arsenal to finish a 50 miler on the beach, the Moeben running skirt. Ultra-runner and designer Shannon Farar-Griefer's skirt was tested in numerous 100 mile ultras by the pros so it stayed put while the built-in wicking/anti-microbial panties worked their black magic. The minimalist style Moeben skirt has a drop waist with 1 side pocket. I scored the red and white striped skirt with flag starred panties underneath.
Sure, my skirt was just below my who-ha. However, the odd local laws of physics which apply to any super heroine's dangerously short skirt caused it to always cover everything regardless of what ridiculous things I may have been doing during the race, like falling legs first or hanging upside down in a water crossing. At any rate, this skirt concealed my modesty from the audience's point of view (even though race photogs were clearly in position to get an eyeful).
Moeben skirt kept in place by magic near the special bathing suit area.
Sadly, the small and medium in this one, or any Moeben skirt for that matter, are no longer available. Anywhere. I am thankful I have the last one just as I am thankful for kittens and rainbows and Butterfinger's and sweet crap like that. So on to the next running skirt while I preserve this one in my closet along with my original shiny aqua blue Hoka One One's with the crazy high heels that make me six feet tall and bullet proof(http://www.blogher.com/moon-boots-mad-flavor-review-hoka-one-one-kailua-tarmac). It's true the higher the heel and shorter the skirt, the more empowered one becomes. If you’re ever feeling down and codeine cough syrup 'drank' is not readily available, I highly recommend putting on crazy tall moon boot shoes and a short a Moeben running skirt prior to opening a can of name brand whoop @ss on the road, beach or trail. So while becoming depressed again that my new fave running skirt was no longer in production, I began looking for a replacement skirt. In the process, I happened upon several companies with skirts as boring as a conversation with the drummer I used to date from '06 to '07. The prints and colors I saw didn't appeal to me even though I did find zillions of running skirts all over the web in varying price ranges. However, before I spent a whole lot of money on another running skirt, I reminded myself this next skirt could be as fleeting as a pair of shoes in Oprah's closet. I'd love to just buy and try until I have enough running skirts in my closet for a charity auction but I don't have the riches and fame of the Oprah today. I'm more like Oprah back in the day. Come to think of it, Oprah and I do have a lot in common. Just like Oprah, I was born a poor, black girl in the south. Ok. I wasn’t so much a black girl as a white girl, but I was still in the lower income in the south. That counts, right?
You do see the similarities though, right?
So as I'm always watching my money and looking for a money saving deal on running stuff, I decided on a skirt from the sale bin at Runningskirts.com. This athletic wear line was founded by busy running moms, Cindy & Christy because they wanted to look cute while competing in races. And I totally get that because I would rather look cute than funny because in most of my race pics, I'd say if funny was a monkey, I'd be the monkey queen. So as I needed a little help in the looking cute category, I purchased a running skirt in the 'skirt news' print and another in 'black argyle' from their website. The first skirt is a yellow newspaper print skirt and the latter is a black, gray and white print with red stripe and heart accents complete with a flat waistband. Both skirts have two side Velcro-close pockets and an attached black mesh brief.
'Skirt News' and 'Black Argyle' running skirts via Runningskirts.com
I began running and training for ultra-marathons in these skirts immediately, because the breeze was breathtaking. Plus, these skirts had plenty of pee clearance for the long run (http://www.blogher.com/peeing-man-run-taboo-how-and-tee-tee-tutorial). Skirts make standing urination so much easier. Try for yourself and relax. I promise TMZ won't be parked nearby waiting for you to come out of the woods.
I’ve run 10 miles at a clip with my phone in one of the side pockets without really worrying about it falling out. Of course, the terrain is pretty flat in my neighborhood. I also carry my fun size frozen Butterfinger's in the other side pocket during a hot, humid long run with no uber delicious melted chocolate mishaps.
The waistband is flatteringly low and wide when pulled down snug on the hips, so there’s nothing tugging on the side giving a “muffin top” look. I almost wish the top of the skirt was elastic and had a drawstring to help further customize how tight I want it. This skirt slid upward slightly in the beginning of a run, so I end up having to pull it down every now and then, until I'm sweaty enough that the skirt stays. Initially, I liked that the panties which are built into the skirt have these tiny air holes in the fabric like a Lycra cheese cloth which increases the air flow. It’s supposed to work like tiny air conditioners for your southern climes. I could tell from the looks of these panties that if they did not allow exposure to air, chaffing problems aside, it would lead to a post run removal of icky damp panties.
When giving these a few test runs everything worked fine except for my girlie bits. I was used to compression shorts, which you don't wear underwear with. But with the Running Skirts skirt, I had to cut the run short because of the chafing, tugging and rubbing. This seam-laden crotch held onto my butt and pulled me so close and so hard that were my tubes not tied, I think it’s reasonable to assume I could have been impregnated with the air hole fabric. I experienced mad irritation on the inside of my thighs while pushing my boys in the Duallie jog stroller so I let out tons of kid cuss words (like poophead and stupid head and booger head (http://www.blogher.com/doyenne-double-wide-strolling-bob-ironman-duallie-review). Upon first thought, I questioned if the irritation might have been from my legs rubbing each other (even though I applied plenty of baby butt paste in my crevices beforehand). However, the root cause of this turned out to be the internal seam of the built-in panties.
Image via Runningskirts.com
Remove before flight
Of all the Running skirts reviews on the web (the great majority are very positive) I found a few people who mentioned the seams bugging them so it's not a universal problem. I solved the chafing seams on the inner crotch issue by ripping this supposed no-ride mesh brief off with my handy crafting scissors. Now I wear the skirts with microfiber underwear with no seams from Under Armour underneath (http://www.blogher.com/runderwear-review-spinning-panty-wheel-wicking-wedgies). The wicking effect is wicked! The weather is usually warm here, but the running skirts skirts with cheeky Under Armour no-seam/no VPL undies have kept me cool.
Running Skirts argyle miniskirt. Maryjane’s and knee socks not included.
Of course, there are a few suggestions I could pass on to Running skirts to make these skirts even better:
- Add a zipper pocket or third pocket in back to the Running skirt like you have on 'Ultra Swift' skirts. I prefer to keep Butterfinger fun-size bars in a zipper pocket when I run. Nothing fell out of my leg pockets when I ran in this skirt but I still want my goods zipped up. When I wore this skirt I made sure to wear my race belt with zipper pocket for my treats. I also have a shoe pouch I can use to hold stuff but it makes my 6th toe aka permanent blister flare up.
- And of course, I'd also remove the inner crotch seams so they are not so intrusive to the lady garden. This would eliminate potential chafing issues.
- Also, a sale at Running Skirts isn't much of a sale in my cheap opinion. These skirts are pretty pricey at an average $59 a skirt (ouch!) but I have subscribed to the mailing list and do see occasional deals of the week.
By subscribing to their Facebook page I could've gotten in on some good deals that I totally spaced out on because I wasn't watching their page. I also noticed they just started making skirts for little girls - sizes 6-10. You can also find Running Skirts brand at a decent price through leftlanesports.com for as much as 50% off. The sizes sell out quickly there though so whatever you do, don’t let things distract you from your mission to score a good deal on the skirt you like. If the Mary Kay lady stops by, tell her thank you, but you don't need the Miracle Set because your skin is already miraculous. If the neighbor rings your doorbell to borrow a cup a sugar quickly tell her you’ve switched to Stevia. Or if a Mormon, Jehovah’s Witness, or anybody comes a knocking from the frozen meat truck, turn the water sprinklers on. You do have the time to watch out your window while they try not to get wet. Hey, everybody is entitled to a little entertainment. However, do your research online and read the various reviews before you invest in a skirt so that you get the best one for your body type and budget.
This skirt and I are in a long running relationship. "Relationship" has 12 letters. So does "Time For Shots".
As for my skirt pick, I will definitely be wearing Running Skirts more for marathons and ultras. All in all, it's a good running skirt find in my opinion. Just find your own panties so you won't impregnate yourself with that built in meshed-up seam business. Check out some other cute skirts soon at Runningskirts.com. It would be nice to say, “tell them that ultra-runner who pees like a guy sent you.” But who am I kidding, they wouldn’t have a clue who you were talking about.
PS: Every time you read one of my product reviews or blogs on this website, a tiny kitten gets a brand new tiny kitten skirt. Fact.