Plain Tiger Spotlight: Anima Active

Run, but with a lighter footprint

By Renee Fortune

Running is my oldest friend. It has taught me to persevere to the end and to never stop, but rather to slow down. 
Pilates is my newfound love. It has taught me to be present and aware of the movements of my body and the engagement of each muscle.
Barre is an ode to my childhood. The ballet-inspired movements teleport me back to when I did ballet as a little girl. Through it, I reconnect with my inner child. 
Hiking is my grounding force. It has taught me to observe and deeply appreciate the beauty and tranquility of what surrounds me. 
~ Raquel Telo, Founder: Anima Active ~
The best way to describe Anima Active is to refer to it as a ‘brand born out of lived experience.’ Because for founder, Raquel Telo, activewear is something she has worn and tried and experimented with in her own life as a multi-disciplinary wellness fanatic. 

Like many entrepreneurs, the idea for Anima Active arose out of a need for fitness clothing that served its function, was comfortable to wear, boasted uncompromising quality and was in line with the movement towards more conscious fashion consumption. 

You could think of Anima Active as ‘fitness without the frills.’ The range is unmistakably minimalist – a design style that Raquel refers to as being “lyrical and abstract expressionism.” As she explains: “each garment is a token of my interpretation of the world today and the changes we need to make to build a secure, more sustainable future.

In a sense, each garment represents a piece of me as well as a piece of the ‘bigger picture.’ Anima Active is not about conformity or the regimented sense of style that can often be associated with the regime of fitness. 

Instead, it’s about impact. It’s about acknowledging our need to stay healthy and fit and holistically well-rounded; and for us to realise that the earth has that very same need. The collection as it currently stands consists of staples that are bold and hyper-functional. As we grow, we will expand and play with different designs. But ultimately, as the famous minimalist painter, Frank Stella once put it: ‘what you see, is what you see.’”

Anima Active garments are manufactured from recycled Tencel fibres that are produced in Austria. This textile is produced from wood taken from trees that are cultivated without chemical fertilisers and in sustainably managed forests. The wood is a raw and renewable resource. Ultimately, this means that Tencel’s climate change impact is 60% lower than that of generic lyocell. 

It’s fully biodegradable under both soil and marine conditions, as well as completely compostable – everything anyone could ask for in a brand that’s built around impact. Amongst many other amazing features of this textile, Tencel is naturally resistant to odour and is anti-bacterial, meaning that you don’t have to wash it after every single workout; saving water, energy and time, and ultimately ensuring the longevity of the garment. 

To explain her philosophy that “buying cheap costs more,” Raquel references the ‘times worn theory’ – a method of weighing up the long-term value of a product rather than fixating on its immediate cost. 

She provides an example of a sports bra that costs R700. If you wear it twice a week for exercising, you will end up wearing it 6 times a month. Multiply that by the 12 months of the year and that equates to 72 annual wears (or ‘times worn’). Therefore, at R700 (a cost that may seem like a large initial outlay) you get 72 wears a year at less than R10 per wear. Good quality products will last for multiple years, so the value derived in the long term is far greater than that of a cheaper alternative that expires faster and costs more to make in terms of its social impact and carbon footprint. Food for thought. 

Raquel is fully aware of the fact that in building an activewear brand so firmly rooted in sustainable design principles, she is creating something that many people may not yet understand. But she’s in it for the long haul and committed to what it would mean if more designers followed suit. 

Hers is an investment into the future she hopes to play a role in creating. 

We believe in that vision. We embrace that same mission. And through Plain Tiger, we can share it with the world. 
$88.00 USD
$88.00 USD
$47.00 USD
$47.00 USD