diy: silicone grip for spandex shorts
All of my thick-thighed friends, this one is for you. It may no longer be shorts season for running, but when your workouts head indoors, shorts are still relevant, are they not?
(Heads up, this is gonna read like one of those damn recipes that tells someone's entire life story before getting to the good stuff. Sorry, man.)
when thighs are frenemies + booties are poppin'
I'm not a large woman, per se, but I have some junk in my trunk, and that includes having thundah thighs that are frenemies. They are close, but they rub each other the wrong way, you know?
When shopping for running shorts, I can't wear those cute, breezy styles that other ladies can, so I stick with spandex shorts. For me, they MUST have at least a 5-inch inseam. This is just enough length for the shorts to cover the top of my turkey thighs, keep them from chub-rubbin' against each other, and stay put once I start moving around.
But sometimes I don't want my booty out for the world to see when I'm recreating. It's then that I love me a skort, or some layered shorts that look like the cute, breezy shorts but with a spandex layer underneath. I don't know what the deal is here, but the shorts underneath are never tight enough, and I am inevitably picking wedgies every five steps. Don't even get me started on the chafe.
how to: adding silicone grip to your shorts
I've always wondered why all spandex shorts don't have a silicone grip inside the hem as a standard feature. This should just be a thing. Let's petition the athletic-wear industry, yes? Until then, I figured out how to DIY a silicone grip to the shorts I already have.
Buy silicone caulk. I picked up a tube of DAP clear silicone caulk from the home improvement section at Target.
Cut cardboard pieces to slip inside of each leg of your shorts. Make them juuuust wider than the hem so that it holds the fabric taut while you apply the silicone.
Have an extra piece of cardboard handy for scraping excess silicone off, a card (I used an old gift card), and a pin or unbent paper clip to clear clogs in the silicone applicator.
Grab your shorts, flip 'em inside out, and tuck the cardboard pieces inside.
Grab your silicone and give it a solid squeeze to see how fast it comes out. I found that I need to sit on the tube for a few minutes before applying to warm up the silicone so it comes out easier.
Apply the silicone right on top of the seam at hem of the shorts.
Take your card and squoosh (this is serious work we're doing here) the silicone into the hem to flatten it out. It will spread out a little bit. I found that I prefer that it covers a little more area than just the seam. More holding power! By flattening out the silicone, you're less likely to see a strange line at the hem of your shorts when you're wearing them.
If there's a lot of excess silicone on the card, take a second pass to make sure you've filled in all of the gaps.
Scrape off the card onto your spare cardboard and then touch up spots where you don't want the extra silicone to stay. If you have any globs or chunks around the hem, that might show through when you wear the shorts, so just scrape them off with the card before they harden up.
Hang your shorts up to dry. A dusty, unused spin bike is the perfect spot.
Click through the images to get an idea of what the heck I did. Ignore my busted manicure. :)
waiting is the hardest part
The silicone will need 24 hours to fully dry, so you won't be able to silicone the other side until the first side is dry, unless you're working with some really fancy setup that enables you to hang and work instead of lay flat. If that's the case, good for you.
I've washed all of the shorts/skorts that I've applied the silicone to in cold water, air dried, and worn with minimal slipping. A small investment in time and money to fix what you have beats spending tons of money on new shorts!
If you try this, let me know how it turns out! If you hate it, don't @ me. I'm just a gal doing her own thing and sharing knowledge. Good luck!