SLUG Style: John Cottrell

Fashion

You may have seen John Cottrell at a yoga studio or even taken one of his yoga classes. On top of being a local yogi for over 25 years, Cottrell pioneered Mbody Clothing, a local yoga menswear brand, in 2010. His design approach is casual but presentable, minimal and flexible, clothing whose simplicity affords it repeat wears through the years.

Every month, “SLUG Style” features a distinct and unique member of the community and asks them why they do what they do. Exploring more than just clothing, SLUG Style is an attempt to feature the people who give Salt Lake City flavor through personality and panache.


"I was introduced to yoga in 2000 at a small, privately owned gym. I started practicing and was immediately hooked!"
Photo: @robtookthis

What are your stylistic influences? This could be a band, decade, fictional character—anything.

When it comes to style and fashion, I appreciate the simplicity of an outfit or trend. A casual attire, like a pair of jeans and a T-shirt, is quite appealing to me. It tells me that it doesn’t take a lot of extra adornment to make an outfit look presentable, appealing and attractive.

What’s your history in SLC’s/Utah’s yoga scene?

I have lived in Salt Lake City for over 25 years. I was introduced to yoga in 2000 at a small, privately owned gym. I started practicing and was immediately hooked! I practiced for over a year before I became a certified yoga instructor. I later worked in a well-established yoga studio, where I developed my craft as an instructor and improved as a student. My formative training encouraged me to pursue teaching yoga as a career. I’ve worked in several studios and started my own yoga business, Mbody, LLC. Under this umbrella, I offer group yoga classes, one-on-one instruction, yoga therapy, yoga retreats, trainings, workshops and more.

Which forms of yoga have you studied, practiced and taught?

I enjoy several styles of yoga. They range from dynamic practices like Ashtanga Yoga, Power Vinyasa Yoga and Forrest Yoga to Yin Yoga and Restorative Yoga. My favorite style of yoga to teach is Power Vinyasa Yoga. I enjoy the fluid nature of movement from pose to pose guided by breath. It helps to develop rhythm, balance, strength, focus, and more.

What needs did you identify for men’s yoga clothing?

The initial need was the awareness that there weren’t a lot of options for yoga clothing for men. Leading companies at the time were gearing their yoga clothing toward women. When items started to emerge for men, I found that the prices were quite high.

Of Mbody Clothing, Cottrell says, "I wanted to offer a simple yet stylish set of yoga clothing that was comfortable, functional and affordable."
Photo: @robtookthis

What inspired you to create Mbody Clothing?

I wanted men to be attracted to the yoga practice and have available options for classes, gear and even yoga clothing. I wanted to offer a simple yet stylish set of yoga clothing that was comfortable, functional and affordable.

What does Mbody Clothing bring to the table for men’s yoga wear?

I wanted to create a line of clothing that was multifunctional for the average guy. I wanted customers to be able to wear yoga clothing without actually feeling they are wearing yoga clothing! The styles of Mbody Clothing mimic casual mens’ styles—something guys would wear at the gym, out on the town, at the beach, as well as the yoga studio.

How has Mbody Clothing grown so far? Where can people find it?

Mbody Clothing launched in 2010. We are based in Salt Lake City, and our line of clothing can become accessed online: Mbody.com. We ship all over the world.

"Mbody Clothing is very versatile. I wear mine all the time."
Photo: @robtookthis

What are your other interests or hobbies? What is the hobby or interest that you have that no one would realize to ask you about?

A hobby that many people don’t know I enjoy is roller-skating! I’ve roller-skated ever since I was a kid. I still like to throw on a pair of skates and take to the streets or park for an active exercise.

Does yoga wear comprise the primary staples in your closet, or do you mix it up with other kinds of style choices when you’re out and about shopping, go to movies, etc.?

Mbody Clothing is very versatile. I wear mine all the time. I can easily put on a tank top with a pair of jeans, a muscle shirt with some gym shorts or a hoodie on a cool morning. I deliberately created shorts, shirts, pants and hoodies that are devoid of patterns and slogans. That way, the clothing can remain timeless and worn with just about anything.

"I continue to keep things simple with my style. I still enjoy a T-shirt with a pair of jeans."
Photo: @robtookthis

If you had to describe yourself in three words, what would those be? 

Creative, organized, fun!

How has your personal style evolved over time?

I continue to keep things simple with my style. I still enjoy a T-shirt with a pair of jeans. One thing I’ve noticed about the clothing line is that I really like hoodies. I grew up wearing them. Mbody Clothing has a vast array of hoodies all based on my attraction to them over the years.

How can people find out more about Mbody Clothing and what you have in store?

People can find and purchase Mbody Clothing easily by visiting Mbody.com. People can also follow us on Instagram @Mbodyclothing.