A window display in Lululemon Bethesda’s storefront window has caused another PR problem for the Spandex-loving fitness apparel company that has already suffered a number of gaffes this year.
The window sign read, “Cups of Chai, Apple Pies, Rubbing Thighs?,” referring to founder Chip Wilson’s recent comment that his company’s yoga pants aren’t for everyone. In an interview with Bloomberg TV Wilson said the reason customers were having pilling and see-through problems with their yoga pants was because of their size: “It’s about the rubbing through the thighs, how much pressure is there over a period of time, and how much they use it.”
Lululemon hasn’t had the best year. First there was the see-through-pants debacle last March that led to a product recall and the resignation of the chief product officer and ultimately CEO Christina Day. In addition, Wilson has been chastised left and right for multiple flubs that have led to Lululemon ambassadors resigning and requests within the yoga community to boycott Lululemon products.
Twitter user Diana Russell’s photo of the window display was first tweeted December 2. The sign was removed that same day, and Lululemon tweeted an apology, saying, “We celebrate that thighs rub together—ours do too.”
Update 12/10: Lululemon announced Tuesday that Wilson will resign. The announcement comes on the heels of a number of PR gaffes for the fitness apparel company, including Wilson's most recent comment that wear-and-tear issues with Lululemon spandex was a result of women’s thighs rubbing together. In January, Wilson will be replaced by Laurent Potdevin, who has led a number of apparel companies including Burton, and most recently, Toms. This morning, Lululemon posted a video of Potdevin slipping off his Toms shoes and signing a letter as Lululemon CEO.