Shopping for yoga apparel is not that different from buying typical workout clothes. Both need to be "airy" and breathable, sweat-absorbent, and have a good, comfortable fit. One of the differences however is that yoga apparel needs to be made of material that has good stretch in it. Most yoga apparel are made of a combination of cotton and lycra; cotton is comfortable and does a good job absorbing sweat, while lycra provides the stretch in the clothes that students need to do bends, twists, folds, and other types of yoga poses.
Yoga Apparel: Shirts and Tops
As we said, comfort and fit are very important when it comes to yoga apparel. If the shirt or tank you buy has a snug fit and is light and breathable, but doesn't have enough stretch in the material, it's not recommended yoga apparel. It could work if you're at the gym doing rounds on the treadmill or lifting weights, but yoga apparel is different - stretch is just as important as comfort, fit, and sweat-absorbent material.
The choice of yoga apparel, clothing and accessories is also dependent on the type of yoga you're going to do. If you are going to a Hot Yoga for beginner's class, you might want to skip the tee shirt and go for a sleeveless top. Some women even wear midriff-cut tops for Bikram or Hot Yoga because these allow their bodies to cool off faster, which is important because you will be doing yoga poses in a heated room.
Yoga Apparel: Pants and Bottoms
Again, depending on the type of yoga for beginner's class you signed up for, you can go for bottoms like long or short leggings, skirts or shorts. For men's yoga apparel, most usually go for either shorts or loose hemp pants. More advanced yoga students can wear dance or jazz pants because these are also stretchable and will allow for a wide range of movement.
If this is your first time to go to a session of, for example, Ashtanga yoga for beginners, you might want to avoid yoga apparel and clothing bottoms that are too loose. This is because Ashtanga yoga is fast-paced and vigorous; wearing loose pants or capris may get in the way of the movement of your legs as you transition from one pose to another.
So to sum it up, what would constitute perfect yoga apparel would be clothes that are light and airy, has a snug or comfortable fit, can absorb sweat easily and have enough stretch in them to let you do all the types of poses you will learn at your yoga for beginners class. Also, a tip for those who tend to sweat a lot: if your hands and feet tend to get sweaty during a workout, consider buying yoga accessories like gloves and socks to give you better grip. It shouldn't be hard to find really good yoga apparel and accessories since there are tons of retail and online stores that offer these yoga products at a good price.