Your complete guide to wearing leggings - from the rules to the biggest fashion mistakes.
Rule #1: Leggings are not pants or tights…but they can be.
Leggings are wonderful in so many ways, including their ability to blend style and comfort in one clothing item. For so long leggings have been constricted to activewear. However, in current times leggings have become so much more than just a pair of workout pants.
Being mindful of where you wear your leggings is still super important (not to a wedding, duh!), but that doesn’t mean to shy away from being creative with them.
Rule #2: Mix it up.
Let’s talk how amazing and versatile leggings are. You can wear them with a button-down long shirt belted around the waist and ankle boots, or with high boots and a long blazer for a sharp and classy look.
Rule #3: Accessories, accessories, accessories.
It’s safe to safe that leggings on their own are super trendy, however, with some accessories your look can go from a seven to an 11 in no time.
Try accessorizing with a baseball cap and a pair of sunglasses for a street style vibe, or lots of jewelry and a purse for an upscale runway look. Trust us on this one!
Rule #4: Length matters.
Leggings should fall just above the ankle—anything shorter automatically creates a stinted silhouette by cutting you off at the shin.
Rule #5: Wear bold prints cautiously.
A few words about colourful and floral-print leggings: As fun as they are, they can be dangerous. Try sticking with a basic colour palette for ultimate utility. But once again that doesn’t mean you can’t experiment and find your own style with this wardrobe staple.
Rule #6: Wash your leggings. Seriously.
Unlike denim, leggings need to be washed regularly. The elasticity relaxes as your body heats it up and the washing helps it to go back to normal. Leggings are partially or totally synthetic and so they don’t breathe as well and they do need to be washed at least every other wear.
But they don’t need to be hand-washed to keep them looking their best. We suggest a delicates bag so they don’t get stretched around in the machine, and avoid any form of heat—hot water, warm dryer, iron or steam— because heat breaks down the elasticity over time.
Rule #7: Consider your footwear.
For a Sporty Spice vibe, try accenting your leggings with a pair of chic sneakers. You can even wear some socks and sandals for a super on-trend look. Have fun and be versatile with your footwear pairings.
Rule #8: Consider the occasion.
Generally speaking, it’s best to avoid wearing leggings for a job interview or holiday parties, and formal settings like a wedding or meeting the parents for the first time.
Rule #9: …Or wear them anyway.
Since there’s always an asterisk to every rule in fashion, if you can make the rest of your outfit work around your leggings, then go for it. Someone with a great eye can probably style them in a way that they can be worn anywhere, but it’s really, really tricky.
Rule #10: The world is your yoga class.
Whether you are currently in a yoga studio, at the mall or out to dinner, workout-wear has finally become day-wear. Both comfortable and stylish, leggings can be worn anywhere and have the possibility of being elevated into a runway look. Just put a blazer on, you’ll thank us later.