This Former Triathlete Is Making Athleisure Wear Even More Versatile
Forged out of personal necessity, vyve Splashwear is the creation of a former triathlete and nationally-ranked U.S. Masters swimmer searching for swimwear that could keep her warm during her pre-dawn outdoor workouts in Southern California and could hold up in chlorinated water. After she couldn’t find anything on the market that met her needs, vyve founder Susan Gold created a prototype for what would later become the vyve splashpant.
vyve has created a versatile line of athleisure wear that go from from land to sea. (Photo by J.R. DeSouza for using Outex underwater housing for camera)
The multi-purpose capri can go "from land to water and back to land," making it a practical solution for active women who don’t want to be bothered by outfit changes. It also provides more coverage than a typical bathing suit.
The technology behind the splashpant is called PBT (polybutylene terephthalate) — commonly used in the electrical and automotive industries, but also can be made into yarn that results in a very fast-drying fabric for swimwear. It doesn’t absorb water, but it’s also not completely waterproof. Rather, PBT repels water quickly, keeping you dry, and the compression fabric never bloats in the water.
It’s "a fashionable choice to activewear," Gold says, but vyve is by far the first company to capitalize on the athleisure trend. The NPD Group states athleisure has been one of the primary growth drivers in the apparel industry, with activewear sales reaching $48 billion — 22% of industry sales — in 2017. Lululemon, one of the first major players in athleisure, reported fourth quarter net revenue of nearly $929 million and its expansion into menswear last month.
Similar to Lululemon in its earlier years, vyve’s retail and marketing strategy relies heavily on online sales, word of mouth, influencer marketing and social media. And that’s intentional, Gold says. She’s not chasing contracts with big-box retailers or rushing to open her own brick-and-mortar stores.