Leggings, They are not Pants.

Leggings are not pants.  They never were meant to be pants.  And, yes, when you see them advertised they show them with a short top, but they also show them with NO top…would you replicate that style?  They show bras without a top over them, would you wear the bra without a top?  It is simply photographed that way for you to see the how the legging is made, is it a high waist that goes all the up to the bra line because it will smooth out the torso; is it to the waist; is it just below the waist.  That is why they photograph it that way. 

Leggings are relatively inexpensive, and there are those that perhaps see them as a cheaper pair of pants.  If you need to do that for budgeting purposes, then get a tunic to go with it.  Many inexpensive dresses can double as a tunic (because in reality they really are too short to be a dress!).  The top should always come at minimum an inch below the crotch in the front and completely cover the behind in the back, with several inches to spare.  The stylish high-low tunics (or mullet tunics, as some call them), are perfect for leggings, assuming they do cover the crotch in the front. 

The general public just doesn’t need as much information as a legging with a crop top or short top provides.  We really don’t need to know exactly where your underwear is; or terrifyingly the lack of underwear.  We don’t need to see your little rolls of adipose tissue, or the wrinkles of cellulite, or the exact outline of your female nether regions (also called ‘taco pants’).  It is just not pleasant.  And, no, the men do not want to see it, either.  I’ve seen many men turn away from such a sight; laugh between each other; roll eyes; or mouth the word ‘seriously’.  For the one or two men that might be attracted to such a display, they are probably not the men you want to attract.  I’ve seen posts of one of my young female friends’ on Facebook post over and over, “Women, you don’t want that type of attention!” 

Body type can come into play with leggings.  A high hip does the best with leggings and tunics, they can do any type of tunic.  A tapered hip should do a full tunics, an aline tunic, a princess cut tunic, basically any tunic that has lots of room from the waist down.  If a tapered hip uses a straight tunic, they will achieve close to the same affect as wearing a crop or short top with the legging.  There must be room for the top to move, and it should not tuck under the behind, or under the tummy.  For a wonderful look, the top should glide gracefully over the tummy and the bottom. 

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I purposefully showed slender women wearing leggings the wrong way, the blue one and the gray ones; and the right way the black ones and the brown ones; because I wanted to make a point that just because you are slender still means these rules apply to you.  I’ve heard slender women, while wearing leggings incorrectly, say about a larger woman wearing incorrectly, that they should never wear leggings…..not realizing that they look just as bad.  Just face it, leggings are not pants!!

One last note about leggings, they are NOT office appropriate for Corporate or Communicative business. how to wear red jeggings for curvy women Even on Casual Friday.  They are not appropriate.  Even worn correctly.  They are not appropriate.  In a Creative busniess environment, worn correctly, they will work.

Do the same rules apply to Jeggings?  Absolutely.  Postively.  See the red jeggings……

Published by Carolyn Bendall

A fashion and image expert, presenting seminars, classes, and individual consultations. Monthly makeover column in the Commercial Appeal, hosts a radio show on fashion, beauty, image, and entertainment, writes a blog reviewing products with complete honesty, and trains image consultants from around the world.

9 thoughts on “Leggings, They are not Pants.

  1. this is so great! thank you for such a great explanation. I would be interested to hear your thoughts on leggings or tights as workout wear.

  2. As work out wear, they should really be a type of yoga pant. Why? Because the yoga pant will not have as much spandex, it will be looser and not as confining. The yoga pant, if super tight, will be just as indecent if worn with a short top. Yes, they do make crop tops for work out wear. That is an entirely other article!! Yes, you do want clothing that is close fitting so as not to get caught in the machines. However, please spare the public too much information. So, if you normally wear a Large, I’d get an Extra Large pant. Does that make sense?

  3. Yes, thank you. My initial thoughts were that the same principles would apply. But i see so many out running and going to gyms in work out tights that are just as bad as the leggings. I understand that in they can be very functional for exercise, but it’s a shame people don’t have a greater awareness about it. thank you!

  4. If you have ever done a strenuous workout you would understand why women wear tight Capri or compression workout clothes. They keep your legs compressed which helps with giggling and rashes. I also have bad varicose veins in my legs which hurts when doing a hard long workout and wearing compression capris help tremendously. Hope this helps you to understand why some women wear tight clothing for workouts. Thank you!

  5. Well yes I read the comments, that’s why I was giving the previous person Beth some info on why she might see women wearing tight workout pants or capris to run outside or go to the gym in.

    1. As someone who is no stranger to exercise, strenuous workouts, and many many miles of running, I understand why people where leggings, spandex etc. They can be very functional. But the same principles apply to workout wear, keep your stuff covered. Throw a skirt on over top when you leave the gym, or wear a longer shirt.

  6. H Carolyn, Great article and my thoughts exactly the same. I would like to know you thoughts on wearing leggings with kurtis (the article of clothing which Indian ladies wear ) .

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