What are Bala Bangles and Are They Worth It

Table of Contents

Do you know your bangles? Do you know that the first bangles were for cultural ornamentation? That their first evidence was dated back to 2,600 years, BC and was found in the villages of Mohenjo-Daro on the banks of the Indus River in what is now Pakistan. Then, as now, it is of circular and rigid construction. Today, however, bangles have long forfeited their cultural significance to become fashion and physical fitness accessories.
So go deeper into this article to find out its interesting metamorphosis.

All About Bangles

Before getting too deep into Bala Bangles, it is necessary to know that they are not the same as traditional bangles fashion-conscious people love to wear. Their differences can be gleaned from the following:

Traditional Bangles

As jewelry, bangles are rigid, ring-shaped wrist or ankle ornaments that are usually made of metal. Traditional bangles are closed circular designs without clasp closures and are either bare or adorned with diamonds or other precious gemstones.

In this part of the world, bangles started as parts of the traditional solah shringar for Indian brides to signify good fortune and prosperity. They are either made from glass, gold, or other metals.

Indian bangles

For Indian women, bangles signify health, luck, and prosperity. Red bangles signify energy and prosperity while green bangles signify good luck and prosperity. Bangles are a part of an Indian woman’s identity and are either worn solo or with other bangles.

Types of Bangles

“Bangle” came from the Hindi word “bungri,” meaning glass. They are traditionally worn by women in India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Bangladesh where they are part of wedding rituals and considered treasured heirlooms.

In the West, bangles are staple items in men’s and women’s jewelry collections. They are worn for aesthetic and ornamental reasons, rather than cultural symbols. Regardless of what part of the world bangles are worn, there are generally three types grouped according to the structure, metals used, and styles.

Structure
Where structure is concerned, bungles fall under any of the three:

  • Solid cylinder bangles: These are solid cylinders that slide over a person’s wrist. This is probably the most common type.
  • Cuff bangles are modern versions of the traditional cylindrical bangle but sturdier in structure and design.
Bangle metals
Today’s bangles are mostly made of metals – both precious and semi-precious such as:
  • White, yellow, and rose gold: These are alloys to give the product strength and durability.
  • Silver: This metal is often used for price reasons; making them affordable to young people. Silver bangles are mostly worn plain or heavily layered. They were iconic in the 1980s when teenagers wore them over their long sleeves.
  • Platinum: While platinum and titanium have the same white sheen, the former is lighter and cheaper than the latter.

Bangle styles
Bangle styles are infinite and one of the reasons why fashionable people love this jewelry item. Here are a few of the best-sellers:

  • White precious gems: These came about in the European Art Deco period – bangles embellished with rich, and opulent designs.
  • Interlocked bangles: They are similar in design or the Cartier trinity ring – usually interlaced in sets of three and tend to be plain but the combination of metals and styles may vary. This style creates an interesting and eclectic look.
  • Plain: Plain bangles are a great jewelry item to complement an outfit. It can serve a similar purpose to cufflinks.- to give the overall look of an outfit sophistication.

On top of these all, never forget to have a perfect fit so your bangles don’t become a nuisance (refer to the chart below to get the right fit).

Bangle size chart

Bangles vs. Bracelets

Most people take bangles and bracelets are the same. Well, they are not for the following features:

Bangles

  • Are solid pieces of jewelry
  • The word came from the Hindi word, bangri, meaning ring-shaped anklet
  • Origins can be traced back to as early as 2,6000 BC.
  • Widely used by women in Southeast Asia.

Bracelets

  • The word “bracelet” came from the French word, “brachialle,” which means armpit.
  • Bracelets are more flexible, usually in a chain or strand with a clasp.
  • The origins of bracelets can be traced back to Ancient Egypt at around 5,000 BC.
  • Traditionally, it features a row of beads, links, threads, or hinged pieces linked together with a clasp.

Bala Bangles

Bala bangles are nowhere near the traditional bangles. Yes, they are worn on the wrists and ankles like traditional bangles are. But they are worn neither for cultural or purely personal ornamentation reasons but to add glamour and flair to people bent on physical fitness.

Bala bangles set

In an age where physical fitness has almost become a religion, Bala Bangles adds a constant but comfortable resistance to your workout. They are versatile and can be worn on the wrists or ankles for athletic, recreational, and domestic activities.

Bala Bangles come as a kit with the following features:
  • Weights for yoga, aerobics, boxing, pilates, walking, home workouts, core training and rehabilitation.
  • Made of the highest-quality fitness materials – stainless steel wrapped in baby-soft silicone.
  • Athletic elastic and hook fasteners allow a perfect fit.
  • Comes with Bala Bangles 2 lbs set in a nifty color-matched carrying case.

Bala Bangles: Something from a Napkin

Bala bangles started from a napkin.

Max Kislevitx and Natalie Holloway were both advertising executives who were feeling crushed by the demands of giant clients like Google and Starbucks. After a decade of dodging spears and arrows, they were on the
verge of a burn-out. So they did what other people would do in such a situation – take time off from work.

Bala founders, Max and Natalie (far right)

Max and Natalie went on a year-long binge throughout Southeast Asia. Being physical fitness buffs, they took daily yoga classes – something impossible to do considering their busy workload in New York.

On one of their yoga trips, they fell into a conversation regarding the wrist and ankle weights used in the mid-1980s and started toying with the idea of making them more functional and fashionable. They brainstormed how to do it, writing them down on bits of napkin.

Birth of Bala

After crossing out dozens of ideas, they settled on one and, in 2017, invented the Bala Bangles. It was launched the following year taking on the retro concept of the 1980s wrist and ankle contraptions Jane Fonda used in her workout videos at the same time designing them for modern fitness fanatics as well as style-conscious fashionistas.

Says Natalie Holloway, co-founder and CEO “Bala is the antidote to the ultra-serious world of fitness.” Then adds, “It’s less about intensity and more inviting and celebrates movement rather than feeling bad if we missed a workout or tapped out early.”

Bala Bangles’ start-up capital consisted of $40,000 borrowed from Kickstarter and $10,000 of their savings. Their bangles were made from recycled stainless steel wrapped in soft silicone and come in weights of 1/2 to 2 lbs. When worn on the wrist or ankle, they add some resistance in every step. For aesthetic reasons, they come in various colors to create signature branding. Available colors are blush pin, sage, and nude peach. In a sense, they look more like fashion accessories than for physical fitness.

Defying the odds

A year after its launch, Bala Bangles earned $2 million in sales through retail outlets such as Free People, Goop, and Bandier. They did a marvelous job in promoting the company and by 2020, Bala’s sales went up to $20 million.

Bala Bangles’ Shark Tank Appearance

In February 2020, Bala Bangles appeared in the Shark Tank. It was very fortuitous for the company because it secured a joint $900,000 investment from celebrities Maria Sharapova and Mark Cuban.

Maria Sharapova (center) in Shark Tank

Then the pandemic struck.

Bala Bangles must have a lucky star protecting it.  While studios and gyms were shuttered because of Covid-19, Bala’s sales continued to grow. With nowhere to go for their regular workouts, people started doing them at home, fueling the sales of Bala fitness kits.

To give you an idea of how lucrative this business niche is, before the pandemic, the demand for home gym equipment was relatively flat. Then in 2020, it peaked at 84% compared to the previous year, and the sales of weights, alone, grew by 78%.

According to Mark Powell, senior analyst for sports retail at NPD group, “My gut is home fitness will continue despite vaccinations due to national renewed interest in healthy living, and social distancing will remain the norm after vaccinations.”

The pandemic also opened another opportunity for Bala Bangles. With sales moving up, the moment they set up in a shop in Los Angeles, the founders dropped the word “Bangles” from the company name so they could introduce other items such as dumbells, and kettlebells into the product line. It also added Bala Bars, Power Rings, stylish riders, and resistance bands emblazoned with motivational messages.

Note: For those wondering where is Bala Bangles from, their head office is in Los Angeles, CA, U.S.A.

Looking ahead

At the outset, Bala’s tried direct selling. They soon shelved it in favor of retailing after observing that it was a better and cheaper form of advertising. Today, the Bala fitness equipment is carried by 500 retailers across the country – from department stores like Saks and Bloomingdales to specialty chains like Urban Outfitters, and Anthropologie. It is also carried by well-known e-commerce platforms like Carbon 38.

However, the surge in Bala bangles sales also created several look-alikes and outfight competition. For example, selling on Amazon is the surest way to generate counterfeits. The founders are fully aware that some of their competitors are bigger with larger kitties for promotion. This realization often has a demoralizing effect on them. Still, they fight on hoping to hit $40 million in sales by 2021 (Bala Bangles’ net worth as of the current year stands at $50 million).

Is Bala Bangles Profitable

Yes! With an impressive annual sales revenue of $30 million, it is very profitable. It owed its success to being there at the right time. For example, the Shark Tank appearance earned the company investments from celebrities like Maria Sharapova and Mark Cuban. Right after that, the pandemic forced people to look for alternative home-type workout accessories.

With excess money to spare, it has broadened its global presence and forged partnerships with more than 150 sports-related brands and
retailers.

Here’s a quick look at Bala Bangles net worth through the years:

Here’s a quick look at Bala Bangles net worth through the years:
– 2018 – $ 5000,000 (the year it started doing business)
– 2019 – $ 3 million
– 2020 – $ 10 million
– 2021 – $ 28 million
– 2022 – $ 46 million
– 2023 – $ 50 million

Is Bala Bangles profitable? Definitely!

Where do you wear Bala Bangles?

Bala bangles are worn on the wrists and ankles to add resistance to your workout. They are very versatile and can be worn for athletic, recreational, or domestic activities alike.

Nowadays, the world has become a gym with online lessons on yoga, boxing, pilates, walking, home workouts, core training, rehabilitation, and so forth. All these activities are good opportunities for wearing Bala bangles.

For example, added resistance to your wrists can increase heart rate, burn fat, and build muscle. While using traditional dumbells can accomplish the same goals, they interrupt your workout when you have to use your hands. While Balas don’t. You need not put them down and pick them up again because they stay fastened to your wrists.

Bala Bangles are Great Pieces

First and foremost, Bala Bangles look cool compared to the usual weights you can see in any gym. Second, they fit comfortably and are a convenient way to add a small amount of external resistance. They also work well for extra weights if a 10-lb dumbell is too light and a 15-pounder is too heavy. Third, you can lug them around even as you are doing other things.At any rate, Bala Bangles have become a necessary workout accessory for celebrities like Reese Witherspoon, Kim Kardashian, Selena Gomez, Hailey Bieber, Sofia Richie, Ashley Graham, and Rita Ora.Bala Bangles have become very popular for people who take physical fitness seriously. They are convenient, easy to carry, and can be worn even if your hands are doing something else. They don’t interrupt your day-to-day activities. Plus they come in dainty colors to match your daily attire or jewelry make-up. For women who are about to tie the knot, they complement whatever pre-nuptial wellness routines you are engaged in, Read How to Be a Shining Bride: Wedding Wellness Tips to get a broader perspective.
Related Post

Stay informed on our latest news

Sign up to receive the latest jewelry news and trends. Discover what’s new in the jewelry industry and more.