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The Testing Lab: Our favorite exercise dresses for workouts (or brunch)

Exercise dresses are an all-in-one garment that combine a dress, shorts and sports bra. Be aware that wearing this one-piece means you'll need to get fully naked to use the restroom.

Written by Ana Sanchez

Exercise dresses are fashion-forward and comfortable

In 2018, Outdoor Voices birthed the exercise dress with an explosion of hype. Now, many of the brands that manufacture your favorite yoga pants have caught on and make dresses out of the same stretchy material.

You can wear exercise dresses to play tennisroller skate or grab a coffee while walking your dog. We've tested the most popular exercise dresses to see which are actually practical for your boxing class, and which are just for mimosas. 

Shop this article: Outdoor Voices The Exercise Dress, Girlfriend Collective Juliet Strappy DressHalara Everyday Cloudful Backless 2-in-1 Flare Workout Dress

What our testers looked for in an exercise dress 

When testing exercise dresses, the BestReviews Testing Lab rated each dress on 10 key points: if it's true to size, its comfort level during exercise, breathability, versatility, extra features, fabric quality, price, ease of care and what size and color options are available. 

The most pressing concerns for exercise dresses are if you can bend over in them without flashing the whole studio, and whether they're supportive up top. All our picks have shelf bras or padding, built-in shorts (with pockets!) and adjustable straps for these reasons. 

Best exercise dresses 

Outdoor Voices The Exercise Dress

This exercise dress set the standard for all to follow. Made from quality fabric, it consistently hits top marks in all our ranking categories. Its comfortable design is most conducive to working out and is flattering. Our tester basically lived in it on a road trip because it's so wearable. 

Sold by Outdoor Voices  

Girlfriend Collective Juliet Strappy Dress

A big selling point of this brand is that the fabric is made from recycled plastic bottles. Besides being sustainable, this strappy dress is cute and well-made. Because the material is thick and compressive, however, you may find yourself wearing it more to the farmer's market than to workout classes. 

Sold by Girlfriend Collective 

Halara Everyday Cloudful Backless 2-in-1 Flare Workout Dress

At a fraction of the price of our other picks, this exercise dress has garnered a cult following. It offers the same versatility as the Outdoor Voices dress, and the fabric is just as good as higher-priced options. There are lots of colors to choose from but the material is on the thick side. 

Sold by Halara 

Alo Alofsoft Courtside Tennis Dress

This high-end dress features a sweetheart neckline and short hemline. Unfortunately, it doesn't stand up to heavy exercise. Our tester felt it was only suitable to "play cornhole in," which she did. If you're only looking to sport this style for fashion, then it's an appropriate choice. 

Sold by Alo Yoga 

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Ana Saldamando writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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