Leggings have become a wardrobe essential for many women due to their comfortable wear and stylish look. Unlike tights that offer sheer coverage, leggings are opaque and can be worn as pants. A lot of women also find leggings to be versatile pieces of clothing. They can be paired with different kinds of tops and worn for multiple occasions—even outside of the workout setting. 

It can be challenging to style leggings if you get too used to wearing them in just one particular way. This is a common predicament for individuals who want to experiment with how they can maximize their leggings and wear them with different articles of clothing. Knowing what your options are can affect your decisions when buying cotton leggings or selecting the right fit. If you are uncertain about how to style your leggings more creatively, here are some ideas on how to best wear them.

Styling Leggings for Different Activities

Leggings are comfortable alternatives to tight skinny pants. They are made from more lightweight and stretchy material so they are very easy to wear whether you are working out or running errands. With the right pair, leggings can also be suitable workwear. Below are some styling ideas for your leggings, depending on the activity you engage in. 


Leggings are popular apparel for all types of workouts because they are lightweight and don’t absorb sweat. These stretchy pants provide lower body support and also promote flexibility and movement. Whether you prefer to jog around the block, practice yoga at home, or lift weights at the gym, these bottoms can keep you comfortable and stylish at the same time. They also come in a wide variety of colors and designs that can help you express your personal style with vibrant hues and interesting patterns.

When styling your activewear, the easiest way is to coordinate your tops and bottoms. Most active lifestyle brands offer matching leggings and sports bras, or you can wear tanks that have a similar design or color. This is a great way to have some fun in your workouts. If you are selecting between low-rise and high-waist leggings, keep in mind that the latter gives extra support to your midsection and works best for high-impact workouts because you don’t have to keep adjusting them.

Another great thing about wearing leggings to your workouts is that you can look fashionable in them before and after exercising. If you need to stop by somewhere, you can just throw on an oversized hoodie or sweatshirt over your workout gear and you are all set. You don’t even have to change out of your workout sneakers to run some errands. 

Casual Events

Whether you want to hang out with your friends or go out for coffee, there is a pair of leggings for you. Denim and cotton leggings are the popular options for achieving a stylish casual look. They look great with a variety of tops including basic white tees, tunics or loose blouses, and long button-up shirts.

If you want a flattering silhouette, make sure to consider what would work best for your body type. Women with a narrow waist and broad hips can opt for high-waist denim leggings or cotton leggings in darker shades as these types of leggings can have a flattering and slimming effect. To achieve an elongated look, make sure to select leggings that end just above your ankles. It’s best to avoid wearing leggings that can make your shins look cut off.   

While sneakers are popularly worn with leggings, you can also use sandals or flats—especially during the spring season. When the temperature starts to dip in autumn, you can match your leggings with some ankle booties or high boots. This can also be the best time to play up your outerwear. 

Wear your leggings with denim jackets, oversized cardigans, bomber jackets, or leather jackets. For an edgy look, you can pair your leather jacket with faux leather leggings. Remember to accessorize and complete the look by putting on a pair of hoop earrings. Such an outfit is an appropriate daytime look that can easily transition to a chic evening look for casual events.

In the Office

When leggings first gained popularity, they were mainly considered as workout attire. Now that numerous styles have become available, some designs are considered acceptable pants to wear in the office. To ensure you select a suitable pair of leggings for work, pay close attention to the material. Choose leggings made from thicker fabrics that won’t look see-through under the bright fluorescent lights most offices have.

Faux leather and dark denim leggings can look fashionable and professional. You can complete the look with a crisp white button-down shirt and high heels. A long blazer or trench coat can also create a sharp and polished look. If you have a busy day ahead, you can go for an easy yet classy pairing. One example is wearing black from head to toe. This ensemble creates a chic look that can give you a boost of confidence throughout the day. 

Finding the Right Fit

Leggings must properly and comfortably hug your body to achieve the style ideas mentioned above. While buying leggings can be a daunting task due to the number of options available, here are some quick ways to find the perfect pair for you.

  • Start with your pants size – This is a usual way to begin when looking for the right pair of leggings for your body. For your own comfort, you want a pair that conforms to the shape of your body without feeling too tight or too loose.
  • Take your measurements – While pants size can give you an idea of what to look for, the best way to determine the best fit is by taking measurements. The parts of the body you need to measure include your waist, hips, below the hip bones, and around your backside. Doing this is especially helpful when you are shopping online and can’t fit the garments in person. 
  • Know when the leggings are ill-fitting – Observe how the leggings hug the bottom part of your body. First of all, they must be opaque and provide ample coverage. If you see your skin through the fabric when you stretch or bend, they may be too tight. Go for a larger size instead. You also want to check if more fabric settles in the crotch area. This means the leggings are too loose. On the other hand, if you see an unflattering pelvic outline often referred to as a camel toe, the leggings are too tight and you need to size up.
  • Make sure they are comfortable – Leggings should have a snug and comfortable fit. They should not pull or pinch your skin regardless of your activity. 

There are many different ways you can style your leggings. You can easily achieve a sporty, edgy, chic, or professional look by mixing and matching various tops, footwear, and accessories. Start by getting a pair that properly fits you then build up a look that enhances your body and suits your style. 

Published on Holr Magazine