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Exercising doesn’t need to be complicated, and yet in the modern age of smart gadgets and endless optimization, there’s always a new piece of fitness equipment that promises to help you reach your goals better than anything that came before it.
So, naturally, when I heard about fitness mirrors I wasn’t sold. They seemed too futuristic for how I like to work out, aka on my Peloton bike or under a power rack, and unnecessary. Their exorbitant price tags rendered them a splurge at best in my mind. Couldn’t you just as easily stream those classes on an iPad or iPhone via an app? After my MIRROR review, my perspective has shifted.
A few months prior to trying the MIRROR, I had only tried one other brand and was skeptical of the utility of the entire product category. The ProForm Vue wasn’t as impressive and felt like a bulky waste of space when compared to other top-notch fitness equipment that’s available at similar price points. I found the design, usability and quality of the MIRROR to be much higher.
On top of that, since originally publishing my MIRROR review in January 2022, I’ve tested additional smart mirror systems, and the MIRROR is still just as impressive to me. Keep reading for our full review of this innovative smart gym.
What Is the MIRROR?
The MIRROR was one of the first fitness mirrors to hit the market in 2018, and it has since been acquired by Lululemon and become massively popular amongst the luxury home gym crowd. When I was offered the chance to try one, I jumped at the chance, especially since I had just finished testing the ProForm Vue, and wasn’t thrilled with my experience.
The MIRROR delivers on the promise of its name: it’s an unassuming mirror that looks just like a sleek reflective surface when turned off. I’d recommend mounting it somewhere with plenty of space in front of it so you can complete the workouts, but know when it’s turned off it won’t disrupt your design scheme like other fitness equipment can.
It’s very thin, and comes with a carbon steel frame and a bronze powder coating that’s neutral enough to match most decor. It’s got a 5 megapixel front-facing camera so you can see friends during a workout if you choose to and get live feedback from instructors.
MIRROR Specs — At a Glance:
- 1080p 43-inch full HD display
- 4x15W high-fidelity stereo speaker system with six drivers and two woofers for sound
- Bluetooth capability to connect with your chosen headphones
- 178 degree wide viewing angle so you and a workout partner can grind at the same time without missing anything
- 70 pounds
- Can be wall-mounted or lean up against the wall via a stand
MIRROR: The Review
For my MIRROR review, I tested out this fitness mirror over a period of 60 days. While I didn’t use it every day, I used it multiple times weekly. When reviewing gym equipment for SPY, I try to determine how likely you are to incorporate a given device into your daily workout routine. In addition, when reviewing fitness mirrors, SPY always considers the following five criteria:
- Design of Machine
- Quality of Functionality
- User Friendliness
- Instructors + Variety of Classes
- Health Routine Factor
Overall, I wanted to see how practical it is for the home of the average fitness enthusiast, how easy it is the use and how likely it is that you’ll use it often after purchase. With a large, high ticket piece of gym equipment, the question most people ask is — “Will I actually use this?” My answer for the MIRROR is yes, if you’re an active person who loves variety. Continue reading to find out why.
Setting Up the MIRROR
Getting the MIRROR set up in my apartment was a bit of a debacle. First off, it’s designed to be mounted on a flat surface. Since most of my apartment is exposed brick, this presented a problem for the installation team. You can also attach the included stand, essentially an extension of the carbon frame, and lean it up against a wall, so that’s what I ended up doing. It worked just fine.
The problem came when trying to turn it on. The MIRROR is not a touchscreen, you control it via an app on your phone, and in order to sync with your phone the MIRROR creates its own WiFi network upon booting up for the first time, which you then connect to with your phone. If this process sounds clunky and a bit complicated, it’s because it is. My MIRROR’s WiFi network would not show up on my phone for about an hour or so, and we had to completely reset the MIRROR’s system in order for it to work.
The reason they do this is so you only have to connect your phone and MIRROR once, as after they’ve synced your MIRROR, it connects to the same WiFi network as your phone every time. This has continued to work for months, so I understand the design. It’s a shame the initial installation wasn’t smoother.
MIRROR Review: Using the Machine
While testing out the MIRROR, I found the fitness mirror incredibly easy to use. All you need to do is pick a class using the MIRROR app, press play and follow along, all while looking at your reflection in the mirror itself. They don’t call it the most narcissistic piece of exercise equipment for nothing.
Searching For, Filtering and Picking a Class
Selecting a class, pressing play, adjusting the volume and the music all happens on your phone in the app. They have over 50 different types of workouts from barre to dance, strength, HIIT, kickboxing and more. Within each category are sub-categories, and you can filter by instructor, difficulty, length, equipment and even impact if you’re recovering from an injury. Their search filters are some of the most granular and extensive I’ve seen, definitely a pro for this product if you like options.
Experience During Class
On the screen during your workout is what’s called a “Health Score,” basically a numerical judgement of how well you’re doing. If you connect a heart rate monitor, or a pair of MIRROR’s smart weights, those help with this calculation. I did neither, so the MIRROR just gave me an estimation of my score during each of the classes I took during my MIRROR review. I’m someone who doesn’t need a lot of metrics to push myself during a training session, so I didn’t mind not having this particular gauge of my progress.
You can also see the name of the current exercise above the instructor, a timer counting down in the upper right, with time remaining for the whole class as well as the current exercise. You can see your estimated calories, and a running stream of members who have also taken this class. You can adjust and customize your class screen via the app easily, and add or delete certain information based on your preferences.
Music During Class
You can also opt for the MIRROR’s playlist for any given class, or stream your own playlist from Spotify. This is a nice feature for folks who are regular gym-goers using the MIRROR to supplement a gym routine they can no longer keep up with. If your gym is too far away or you’ve simply become too busy to travel to and from due to lifestyle changes, the MIRROR is a great alternative.
Overall Design of the Machine
The MIRROR is beautifully designed. It’s simple, easy to use, the syncing with the app is seamless and it’s super thin. You could mount it almost anywhere in your home and it would fit in. During my MIRROR review I got used to using it as a real mirror before heading out the door to check my outfit. It’s definitely a stylish piece of furniture, in addition to being exercise equipment.
Leaning it up against the wall is also a solid option, and the frame it comes with makes this an aesthetically pleasing option too. The app is designed very intuitively, and selecting a class is very straightforward.
The simple, sleek design means it won’t stick out design-wise against your other decor like other workout equipment can. However, this also means it an blend into the surroundings of your home more easily, and exist as an everyday mirror, as opposed to a piece of regularly-used equipment. The look of it won’t guilt trip you because you really can just use it as a mirror.
The clunkiest part of my MIRROR review was the setup process, but MIRROR’s customer service was very helpful, and we were able to solve the problem quickly. The MIRROR is ready to meet you where you’re at with your fitness journey — whether you’re new and have zero equipment or a seasoned professional with a full gym in your house.
The MIRROR app feels very similar to other fitness apps, and it makes it easy to filter for classes based on the length of time you have, the difficulty you’re looking for and the style of class you’re interested in.
Upon installing the app, it asked me what equipment I had, which classes I was interested in, if I had any injuries and how often I exercise. Then, they built a recommended program for me as well as a “Weekly Drop” of classes for me to check out. This weekly selection of classes means you don’t have to pick and choose if you don’t want to, and would rather let someone else decide. You definitely don’t need to be an expert in the fitness world to use and love MIRROR.
Overall, I was impressed with the class selection (more on this below), personalized recommendations and user-friendly app.
Instructors + Variety of Classes
You almost can’t ask for more from the MIRROR when it comes to variety. They’ve got classes for almost every type of movement under the sun, and subcategories underneath each general class type. For example, you can filter by kickboxing classes, and then select strength classes underneath that umbrella. So you can take kickboxing classes with a strength component in them. It’s that granular, and it’s impressive. It also amounts to a fitness library of thousands of classes, and they add new ones every week. It would be tough to get bored.
I wasn’t able to try every instructor during my MIRROR review, but the ones I have worked with have been top-notch energy-wise, provided helpful cues throughout class and given clear instructions throughout the movements. Plus, the MIRROR’s design makes them very easy to see during your workout. In reading other MIRROR reviews, the quality of the classes is a common feature users love, and I have to agree.
Health Routine Factor
By “Health Routine Factor”, here’s what I really mean — how realistic is it that this machine will become a regular part of your health and fitness routine? When splurging on a piece of equipment, I think this is one of the most important questions consumers are asking themselves.
Admittedly, this category is a bit unfair, since I don’t think I can ever give a perfect score and guarantee you’re going to use a certain machine for the rest of your days. However, I will say the MIRROR does a great job of keeping you coming back. Their classes are fun, the music is well-curated and the design of the machine makes it easy to use even in small spaces.
If you’re a self-disciplined person who will be motivated by a hefty investment, it’s a great smart gym.
If you love or like working out already, I’d say MIRROR does everything it can to make sure you get your money’s worth and use it consistently.
Price: Is It Worth the Investment?
The MIRROR has a high price tag, but it’s still half the price of a Peloton, and nearly a quarter of the price of smart treadmills. That being said, because it’s not a touchscreen, you could get a similar experience streaming a fitness class on your iPad. Granted the “mirror” part of the MIRROR is a big selling point, and being able to see and adjust your form alongside the instructor is extremely helpful. However, if you’re someone who needs to see the practicality in everything, this might seem like an unnecessary luxury.
It is possible ti find the MIRROR on sale occasionally, but usually, you’ll need to invest about $1,500 to add this fitness mirror to your home gym. As someone who has used and loved other smart gym machines (Peloton, Hydrow, Tempo Move), I can verify that this machine absolutely justifies its high price tag.
Extra Costs Associated With Owning a MIRROR
Currently, MIRROR is offering free delivery and installation with your purchase, which definitely makes setting it up easier.
You also have the option to purchase additional equipment from MIRROR, like a heart rate band and smart weights, or you can use your own for essentially the same experience. The MIRROR membership does cost $39/month, and your purchase of the MIRROR comes with an automatic one-year commitment.
The Verdict: The MIRROR Convinced Me that Fitness Mirrors Aren’t a Fad
After my MIRROR review, I have to admit, I love this machine. While I was getting to test it, I easily made it a regular part of my home workout routine, which was already pretty regimented to begin with. If you’re someone who loves to move and wants an easy way to do HIIT cardio, strength work and other workouts you can’t get on a bike or treadmill, it’s a great option. Due to the larger screen size, it is more immersive than an app on your phone or tablet, and the reflective surface really does help improve form and keep you present during the training session.
I still used my Peloton app for many non-cycling workouts during testing, but I interspersed MIRROR ones in as well and didn’t regret it. The two programs are interchangeable when it comes to quality.
- Large, sleek screen that can truly double as a mirror in your home
- Large selection of thousands of classes covering nearly every area of fitness
- Flexibility when it comes to length and difficulty of classes
- Easy-to-use app
- Great sound quality + Bluetooth capability
- Expensive price tag
- Setup and installation can be a pain
- Not a touchscreen
Should You Buy It? If the MIRROR seems a bit frivolous to you, and if you’ve already returned to your go-to gym, then I’d say no. However, if you love working out at home, are design-oriented and like variety, then it’s a great option. Overall, I think it’s a worthwhile investment.
MIRROR Basic Package
About the Author: Taylor Galla
Taylor Galla is the Senior E-Commerce Editor at SPY.com, where she writes about health and fitness products, home goods, eco-friendly products and other trends in the online shopping world. She’s a certified yoga instructor who genuinely loves to work out and try new exercise machines. In addition to reviewing the MIRROR for SPY.com, Taylor has also reviewed the Hydrow Rowing Machine, the best spin bikes, dozens of massage guns, treadmills, and so much more.