TALA Review: A Brand The Pole Dance Industry Can Learn From

This post is a review of active and louge wear by TALA, a sustainable and stylish brand that blew my mind. Here’s why you should consider trying it, and why the pole dance industry (and any brand, really) can learn from TALA in terms of sustainability and diversity.

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Wearing: TALA Vox Halter Crop & TALA Luna Legging

Disclaimer

I bought the activewear I will be review myself – TALA didn’t send it to me as a gift. I honestly love their products.

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Wearing: TALA Vox Halter Crop and TALA Ivy Trackies

TALA, the brand

As BA Journalism grads turned public relations / strategic communications professionals, my friend Andy and I love gossiping about the latest brands faux pas, as well as about brands that just seem to nail it. It was Andy who introduced me to TALA, a brand that I had somehow manage to be oblivious about.

Founded by 23-year-old Grace Beverley, an Oxford University grad who started a vegan-friendly resistance bands brand while still at uni, TALA seems like THE brand to be right now.

Sustainability

TALA is a slow fashion brand with a focus on sustainability. They work with clever materials like Q-Nova (regenerated raw materials) and Recovertex (rescuing plastic bottles from oceans and landfill and turning them into sustainable outfits), and they audit their suppliers for both sustainability and ethics.

Their factories, based in Portugal, Turkey and Morocco, have been audited by SEDEX, which checks that the business meets labour, health and safety, environment and business ethics. TALA also work with similarly audited factories in the Shanghai region for products containing bamboo, in order to source material locally and avoid shipping to another manufacturer, which increases carbon emissions.

Through their recyclable fabrics, TALA saves 4,817 litres of water per tonne of recycled cotton used compared to newly grown cotton. Their packaging is also 100% recyclable and – this is partly what blew my mind – their tags are plantable! Each of their product tags is filled with seasonal seeds, so you’ll get different plant with each tag you grow. Tags are bound with hemp twine, making them fully biodegradable. You can pop them in soil, water them and watch them grow – how thoughtful is that?

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Tala Vox Halter Crop + seeds

Diversity

A quick look at TALA’s website showed me the brand’s effortless diversity. I saw beautiful models of different backgrounds, colours, abilities, sizes. All models rocked the products, allowing me, as a potential customer, to see how the brand’s activewear looked on a variety of different people. This was reflected on Tala’s Instagram as well.

Knowing that a brand is effortlessly diverse makes me more likely to buy from them. Seeing products looking flattering on women with different skin colours, sizes or abilities shows me I could buy their activewear for friends who don’t look the same as me. If that isn’t a success, I don’t know what is.

Seeing TALA work with a diverse pool of models so effortlessly should be a lesson for all of us: diversity isn’t performative, or impossible; it’s just a reflection of what the world – and a brand’s clients – really look like.

After the online ‘battles’ of the summer, you’d think the pole dance industry would have learnt the hard way that it needs to be inclusive of more backgrounds, different body shapes, different abilities. However, even now, there’s a lot of talk in our industry about brands not being inclusive enough. From what I’ve been able to see, TALA is a brand that can inspire our industry to do that – and that should push us to be more careful about who makes our products, our suppliers and our impact on the environment.

Products review

Now, the actual review.

I bought TALA’s Vox Halter Crop, Luna Legging and Ivy Trackies. I used these during two hours of pole training at my pole dance studio, on a cold, windy early November day.

The Vox Halter Crop is perfect for pole, allowing me both to invert and to shoulder mount with no flashing or slipping. It’s very 90s, and not unlike Britney or Xtina’s crops from their first mid-90s videos. A mood.

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Wearing: TALA Vox Halter Crop and TALA Ivy Trackies

I fell in love with TALA’s Ivy Trackies. They are the warmest joggers I’ve ever worn, and they helped me feel my flowy, emotional fantasy as I warmed up with a spinning pole flow to drown my sadness about Lockdown 2.0 hitting the UK. They are also super stylish to wear out during a socially distanced walk and they count as slick loungewear for Zoom meetings in my book.

Last but not least, the Luna legging, form-fitting, high-compression leggings for maximum comfort without restricting your movement. I can confirm these are tight enough to be flattering while being super comfy. They’re the ideal fit for Exotic or flow classes that don’t require too much grip, and they look bangin’ with heels (exhibit A below).

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Wearing: TALA Vox Halter Crop and TALA Luna Legging

I wore them to make one of the latest choreo I will be teaching online, a sultry number from Ariana Grande’s latest album, and they helped me glide on the floor really easily. Some extra pictures because why not.

The Verdict

I’m by no means a sustainability / eco blogger, because I’m not educated enough about the environment to make this a constant topic I address on this blog. But I am learning, and I am trying to do my bit, and this is why I was so blown away by TALA’s sustainability promise and their brand identity, as much as by their products.

We all have a platform at the moment, and it’s good to see brands using it to showcase the different looks and experiences of people who work out. Couldn’t recommend them enough!

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