Warrior Woman - Taking Off: How Kylie Laskey’s Activewear Brand MKM Active is Empowering Women
TIRED OF LEGGINGS THAT SAG OR SPORTS BRAS THAT DON’T DO THEIR JOB?
KYLIE LASKEY HAS YOUR BACK.
Article from Perth Now written by: ARYLENE WESTLAKE-JENNINGS
It’s all about being #squatproof.
Nobody likes their leggings going sheer in the backside with every child’s pose, every sumo squat, or every deadlift. And god help us if they ride down and get stuck under a roll of belly fat mid-rep.
And if it isn’t a belly roll, every woman probably has a wobbly bit on her body she doesn’t really like.
Mother-of-two Kylie Laskey battled with those jiggly reminders for years, notably when she was about 35kg heavier and five dress sizes larger than she is today.
“I knew that I was not alone in feeling that way,” she says.
“I’m not just talking about the ‘mum tum,’ but true weight loss and what effect it has on our skin as well as our wellbeing.
“Obviously, you can’t just hide it or take it away instantly; all you can do is squish it smaller, but you can never shake it away.”
And as she embarked on the journey to discovering her healthier self, Kylie also convinced herself she didn’t need to waste money on expensive leggings because, “well, I’ll lose the weight”.
“To my horror, turns out buying cheap ones means you buy a pair every few weeks because they stretched so much, would rip easily and go see-through,” she recalls.
“That’s when I decided that kind of mentality should stop.
“If I didn’t have to feel embarrassed about stopping midway through every set to pull up my leggings, I would train harder and feel more confident, so why not create something while considering the needs of other women and how they can benefit from it.”
In 2017, when the 37-year-old was still living in Bendigo, Victoria, she had already dabbled in designing her own range while running her own activewear store, Street Fit Clothing, which stocked other Australian brands.
But it wasn’t for another two years until she started MKM Active — named after daughter Mia, herself and son Max — solely with her own designs.
During that time, the family had not only moved to Perth to be closer to husband Brock’s work but Kylie also amassed some very important suggestions from her former customers who felt the activewear available at the time left a lot to be desired.
“I love creating something that would make the person wearing our brand empowered, capable and confident inside and out,” the Gooseberry Hill resident says.
“This gives me the greatest sense of achievement knowing that I can be the reason someone gets up, puts on their favourite activewear and goes through their day being proud of who they are.”
And it doesn’t take much more than a look on Instagram under #mkmactive to see all the proud, smiling faces — going into the thousands — donning Kylie’s curve-friendly range of crop-tops, leggings and T-shirts.
Her fans include health and fitness gurus, gym junkies, pilates devotees and those just wanting to be comfortable and stylish.
“Being only four weeks postpartum, I felt so supported in your beautiful leggings,” reads one post.
“I didn’t have to touch my tights the whole time; that’s walking, running, squatting, everything. And same with the sports bra — I didn’t have to adjust the girls at all!” gushes another.
“Thanks MKM for boosting our confidence and making us feel fabulous and fearless,” a third review declares.
Kylie is simply thankful for the kind words.
“I have been known to cry from a beautiful post, a story shared or a private message from a customer,” she admits.
“I believe the only way to really help another is to truly open up and share your common struggles to give perspective on the truth.
“That it is not easy but definitely achievable if you surround yourself with like-minded people.”
As MKM Active launches a new colourway for their range, a tropical print with accents of teal and peach, Kylie has the simple hope to empower even more women with a collection of leisurewear, as well as expand her Kalamunda showroom.
“One thing happening soon will see me incorporate my passion for art with my brand, with the help of an Australian artist to create our own masterpiece,” she reveals.
“I also want to host events in our showroom to help bring women together for ladies’ nights out, talks with guest speakers, yoga nights while also involving other small businesses as well.”
Showroom Suite 10, 11 Barber Street, Kalamunda
Shop online mkmactive.com.au