Lululemon's Founder Made A TikTok On How He Named The Brand & Not Everyone Is Impressed

He said there are a lot of "lies" and "made-up stories."

​Chip Wilson. Right: Chip Wilson talking to the camera.
Staff Writer

Chip Wilson. Right: Chip Wilson talking to the camera.

Lululemon founder Chip Wilson recently started making TikToks and is sharing with the world how he came up with the popular brand name — Lululemon. However, some people weren't very pleased with his account.

On July 8, Wilson posted a three-part video to his TikTok, @chipwilson.official, explaining "the most asked question" he ever gets: "How did you come up with the Lululemon name?"

He said there are a lot of "made-up stories" and "total lies" about how the brand name was created.


Reply to @jonpas PART ONE. Follow for part two. #chipwilson #lululemonfounder #lulufounder

Wilson said the name's origin story can be traced back to his first company, Homeless Skateboards, which was "highly successful" in Japan and Europe. He eventually sold the company to a Japanese distributor for more than he expected and had a theory as to why that was.

"They must like 'Homeless' because it has the letter 'L' in it, and the 'L' doesn't belong in the Japanese language — so to a Japanese person, especially a teenager or someone in their early twenties, it sounds way more authentic," said Wilson in the second video.


Replying to @lifeofellefit Leave me a comment if you’d like part three. #chipwilson #lululemonfounder #lulufounder

So he decided to put his theory into practice.

"The next time I come up with a company's name, I'm gonna put three 'L's in it and see if I can get three times as much," he said in the third video.


Replying to @kenziedwalsh Thanks for tuning in. Here are some original sketches from when I was deciding on the name, lululemon.

However, some people were quick to point out comments he's reportedly made in the past surrounding the brand's name.

In an interview with National Post Business Magazine in 2004, Wilson was quoted saying, "it's funny to watch them [Japanese people] try to say it." While the original interview is no longer available online, Business Insider and the Financial Post quoted the story.

Wilson denied ever saying the comment in a 2015 interview with The New York Times.

But some TikTok users haven't forgotten.

"You quite literally are quoted in Canada's National Post magazine stating that 'it was funny to watch them (Japanese people) try to say it' but ok," said one TikToker.

"This is starting to sound a little racist," another commented.

Wilson did not directly address the controversy in his recent TikTok videos.

Ashley Harris
Staff Writer
Ashley Harris was a Staff Writer for Narcity Canada's Western Desk focused on restaurants in Vancouver, and is based in Vancouver, British Columbia.