Meet the Bergen County mom changing the activewear game with her chic and affordable leggings

emily-hsu-1Emily Hsu

Bergen County mom Emily Hsu is giving you a reason to quit skipping the gym. The avid yogi’s fabulous line of high performance activewear, Emily Hsu Designs, is not only perfect for the studio or the street, but it’s also super affordable. If you’re looking for a little extra motivation to hit up that early morning (and grueling) workout class, Emily’s signature bold-printed leggings, will do just the trick.

The professional dancer, singer, and actress who has appeared in over a dozen Broadway musicals over the past 15 years, tells me she created her activewear line in 2014 after doing a lot of yoga over the years and not being able to find anything that fit her the way she liked.

“I used to sew a little bit and I decided to try and see if I could make something for myself , and I started out picking out fabrics that I liked for myself, and I made my daughters some stuff,” she tells me. “Really it just started out of making something for myself. There was really nothing in the market that I liked, especially with the high-waist.”

Designer Emily HsuEmily Hsu

Designer Emily Hsu

Although she doesn’t have a design background or any formal training, the mom-of-two started out making her leggings by hand, and they just started taking off after her Broadway dancer friends began showing them off on social media.

“I have friends in the city who wanted some and they posted on Facebook, and then people starting emailing me, and then The Rockettes started wearing them, and it just grew from there.”

The Michigan native describes her designs as fashion forward and fun, yet sophisticated. Her choice of prints reflects her belief that your clothing should compliment your many moods and personalities. She also chooses flattering prints with movement, so that your eye is drawn to the motion of the pattern on the women’s body.

“I’m very specific about how a print falls on the body, and wanting it to look flattering, and I believe in having something for all your moves,”  she says. “Someday you feel super fun and want to wear donuts, and another day you feel you want to look really sleek and you wear the animal print. You can transition from workout, to you can throw on a sweater and a pair of boots and wear it out to dinner.”

emily-hsu-3Emily Hsu

What sets her leggings apart from the competition is her signature high-waist, which creates a sleek, smooth line and stays in place, so you don’t have to worry and instead spend your time and energy getting the most out of your workout.

“It is high. Some other lines, they have a high-waist but in my eyes it’s still low-rise. It really does go over your belly button on most women, and it really smooths,” she tells me. “There’s no elastic, and you can also fold it over easily and it will stay put. It’s all four-way stretch, quick drying, and high performance.”

The Upper Saddle River resident also prides herself on her line’s price point. Her leggings range in price from $54 to $65. It was very important for her to make sure it was affordable. She tells me she doesn’t believe activewear should be your investment piece.

“You’re getting a great quality, awesome product, made in the US, but at what I feel is a very affordable price point. Most women can’t afford to spend $150 on a pair of leggings,” she says. “You want something cute and fun to wear everyday that inspires you to work out, and my price point allows you to do that.”

emily-hsu-4Emily Hsu

You can purchase Emily’s leggings at boutiques and yoga studios throughout New Jersey, as well as on emilyhsudesigns.com.