4 Must Have Style Tips for Winter Tights

No need to retire your favorite dresses for the cold winter, here you fill find inspiration to wear your winter tights! In 1939, Wallace Carothers invented nylon keeping our legs cozy ever since. Fashion tights are an accessory that never go out of style and assuming you invest in high quality tights, you can hold on to your favorites for several years. 

I love to mix patterns when it comes to tights and dresses. Patterned tights are perfect in the winter as they bring more interest to possible boring legs. The key to mixing patterns is to pair opposites: For example, I have paired a dot print paired with a gingham print. This means that one print is round and the other has straight lines. A good rule of thumb for mixing patterns is to think about the geometry: in most cases, too much of one thing will distract rather than complement.

1. Wear your Shorts & Skirts in the Winter

You don’t have to pack up all your short-shorts for winter either. Your patterned or coloured tights will be the focal point of any holiday party.

Pair them with a bootie (or a high heel if your party-host will allow you to wear your heels inside), a classic button down top and some glitter on the eyes- you’ll be ready for full holiday glam.

One of my favorite tights brands is called Swedish Stockings. I love them not only because they are Swedish, but because all of their tights are made from recycled fibers. They also use environmentally friendly dyes and solar power in their manufacturing processes. Sustainability is always in fashion, so these tights get an A++ from me. 

There is nothing more sustainable than a wardrobe that lasts through several seasons. So wear your shorts and skirts out in the cold, I dare you!

2. Picking the Correct Denier

What the heck is a “denier” you say? Well, it is the secret to keeping you warm. If you are not looking at the denier, it may be why your legs are freezing outside this time of year.

Denier is a unit of measurement in textiles. It refers to the coverage of your tights by which it counts how many threads are woven together. If you want something sheer, you would opt for a lighter den: maybe 10 or 20. Likewise, 100 den means 100 yarns have been spun together and is going to be almost completely opaque, so you won’t see any skin through at all. 

Leggings are not pants

3. What's The Difference between Tights and Pantyhose?

Pantyhose are a very thin denier, often 10 or 20 and are meant to give a sheer look to the leg without completely covering it. Pantyhose became popular in the industrial age when man-made fabrics were just starting out and nylon was all the rage. Dress lengths were shortening since the roaring 20’s and nylon was the perfect option to offer a more durable solution to cover the legs. 

Prior to nylon’s inception, hose were made from delicate silk. It was considered  sinful to leave the house in barelegs without your nylons, even if they were flesh colored. Pantyhose are most often still made from nylon, but there can be some different blends when it comes to thicker tights with cotton and even spandex added. 

Tights are much thicker and are often used for more than just fashion, but also for dancing, figure skating and gymnastics. Tights offer much more support and you won’t see any skin through them.  

Sport tights are very thick, but are not as thick as leggings, which are made to be actual pants (though, it was debatable for a while when they first came out- Who remembers the memes “Leggings are Not Pants?”). I tend to disagree with this statement, legs absolutely are pants. Just make sure you’re not confusing them with tights- which should not be worn alone.  What’s the Diff offers a great insight into the many definitions of leg coverings. 

4. Tights-Hacks

A few months ago, I filmed a concept video with my dance school and I was shocked at how many girls ripped their tights before they pulled them up. Luckily, I had brought 3 extra pairs so I could loan them out to the others, but it got me realizing that the basic tricks I know were unknown to many others. 

  1. Stretch your tights out before you put them on.  If you don’t give them a good stretch lengthwise before you try to stick your legs inside, you’re bound to rip them as you pull. Stretching them out before hand is a much safer way to get them ready to pull up your body. 
  2. Size up. I always buy tights in either medium or large, especially patterned tights. The reason for this being that when the tights stretch, the pattern will too and if they stretch too much- the pattern will be wonky. I also think it’s more comfortable on the waist line to have some more room to breath. For some more tips to finding the right size tights, click here
  3. Don’t wash them after every wear. A Pair of 10 den panty hose will not last several wears, so if you manage to wear them out without ripping them, save them from the wash as the heat of the machine will melt the fibers and make them weaker. For thicker tights, I would again suggest hand washing them because it will save the condition of the fibers, and always hang to dry. 

I hope you have enjoyed my tips for wearing winter tights! For more styling inspo, check out this post or this one.

Cosmopolitan has a great compilation of thoughts everyone experiences when choosing tights, which I also felt was pretty accurate. 

Let me know in the comments how you’re wearing your tights this winter season.

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12 Responses

  1. Tights have come such a long way since the heavy beige tights that we had to wear underneath our school dresses. I still love the look of sheer pantyhose with evening wear. I think they just elevate the elegance of your outfit. My favourite nylons are those post war sheer black with the pencil line up the back. Oh my!!

  2. I do favour all black, opaque thights for winter. I think they make my legs look good and they are quite good at keeping the cold out 👍 For dressed up purposes I love patterned stockings, preferably in a fishnet or lace pattern. 😍 And I can’t believe I’ve never heard of this Swedish brand, I’ll have to check them out!

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