Fashion finds its way into every aspect of our lives, and the gym is no exception. The rise of fitness influencers on social media has created a new market for streetwear brands to tap into—the fitness-conscious demographic.
These brands merge the aesthetics of streetwear with the practical requirements of gym wear, catering to those looking to make a fashion statement while breaking a sweat.
One example is the “pump cover,” or an oversized garment designed to hide one’s “pump”— the temporary increased muscle size that comes after several rounds of weightlifting or similar exercises. Pump covers are typically oversized hoodies or t-shirts.
Although not all pump covers are specifically designed for working out, they have become a staple in gym fashion, often being worn as part of the pre or post-workout look. This trend has given rise to niche streetwear brands that cater exclusively to fitness enthusiasts.
But how do these streetwear brands gain visibility and reach their target audience? One word: influencers.
We’re going to explore the streetwear x gym influencer crossover today and explain how it has given rise to the “pump cover movement.”
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The Rise of the Pump Cover
Although the phrase “pump cover” has been around in the weightlifting community for a while, it wasn’t until recently that it gained mainstream popularity. With the rise of social media and fitness influencers, pump covers have become a must-have item for gym-goers looking to add an extra touch of style to their workout attire.
One of the earliest and most successful examples of a brand tapping into this niche market was Gymshark. Originally a gym apparel brand, Gymshark quickly became known for its line of “pump covers,” which they marketed as an essential addition to any workout wardrobe.
The pump covers were designed to not only hide the temporary muscle pump but also provide practicality and comfort during a workout. These garments were also heavily promoted by gym influencers, many of whom became brand ambassadors for Gymshark. This strategy proved to be highly effective, and Gymshark quickly gained a cult following among fitness enthusiasts.
Other brands soon followed suit, creating their own versions of pump covers and leveraging gym influencers’ reach to promote them. Today, the pump cover has become a staple in gym fashion, with many streetwear brands incorporating it into their collections.
How Streetwear Brands Leverage Gym Influencers
In the era of social media, influencers have redefined advertising. Fitness influencers, in particular, have become the face of gym-focused streetwear brands, promoting products to their dedicated follower base.
But how do streetwear brands make these influencer campaigns work?
Civil Regime is an example of a brand that has successfully leveraged gym influencers. The brand, known for its unique take on streetwear, targets fitness enthusiasts and bodybuilders through influencer marketing.
Here are a few of the ways Civil Regime and similar streetwear brands leverage gym influencers:
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Affiliate marketing is a strategic move clothing brands take to leverage the reach of influencers, particularly in niches like fitness and streetwear. The process begins when a brand enters into an agreement with an influencer. The influencer is given a unique affiliate link or discount code associated with their profile. Then, they promote the brand’s clothing items to their followers.
Whenever a follower clicks on the affiliate link or uses the discount code to make a purchase, the influencer earns a commission from the sale. It’s a win-win arrangement—the brand gains visibility and sales from the influencer’s audience, and the influencer earns a profit for their promotional efforts. This working model has shown to be incredibly effective, given the trust followers place in influencers’ recommendations. Brands can use the unique affiliate links and codes to track each influencer’s performance.
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Unboxing videos are a popular form of content on social media. Influencers film themselves opening a new product, and they share their initial impressions with their audience. These videos work on a psychological level—they tap into the excitement and anticipation associated with opening a new purchase.
Additionally, they allow the audience to experience the product through an influencer they trust, which can have a powerful impact on their purchasing decisions. These videos are particularly effective for streetwear brands because they demonstrate the product’s look, fit, and quality—factors that are difficult to convey through images alone.
As a result, unboxing videos serve as an effective medium for streetwear brands to showcase their products, and gym influencers play a pivotal role in this process.
Limited Edition Drops
Limited edition drops are an exclusive release of a product in limited quantities, often marketed as a one-time opportunity for fans to get their hands on unique merchandise. This marketing strategy has proven to be highly effective in creating hype and driving sales, especially among streetwear enthusiasts.
Civil Regime has mastered the art of limited edition drops, often causing their collections to sell out quickly. These exclusive releases are not just about rarity—they create hype and a sense of urgency among consumers that’s instrumental in driving sales.
However, the brand’s success in these limited edition drops isn’t just due to the product scarcity but also the significant role played by influencers. With their ability to reach large, highly targeted audiences, influencers amplify the release announcements, create anticipation for the drop, and contribute to the rapid sell-out of Civil Regime’s collections.
What is the Future of the Pump Cover Movement?
The pump cover movement shows no signs of slowing down, with more and more streetwear brands jumping on the bandwagon. As long as fitness influencers stay relevant, pump covers will remain a sought-after item in the gym fashion industry.
The success of pump covers serves as an example of how niche branding, coupled with strategic influencer marketing, can lead to a cult following among dedicated communities. With the rise of social media and influencer culture, it’s safe to say that this trend is here to stay.
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