How to Wear Leggings: 6 Essential Rules

New to wearing leggings? Or new to wearing them somewhere other than the gym, at least? No worries—we’ve got you covered. There are a few rules that can help you make sure you nail your legging-friendly looks. We’ve got the scoop below.

1. The Ultimate Neutralizer

One of the best things about basic leggings? You can pair them with absolutely anything when you’d rather another part of your outfit take center stage. Try a neutral color—black, brown, navy, for example—and wear a colorful top, a long peacoat, your favorite boots, or a bright pair of sneakers.

2. Get the Length Right

This rule is key to creating a polished look. Leggings should always come down to your ankle. When they’re too high, they have a chopped off look.

What to do when your comfiest pair of leggings lands somewhere above your ankle? Easy! Pair them with boots, or be a style icon and use a great pair of socks as an accessory that you can pull up over the bottom of your leggings.

3. Speaking of Accessories…

Now is the time to play. You can take any casual legging look and transform it into something special with the right addons. Feeling sporty? You need sneakers and a baseball cap. Create a glam look with lots of jewelry and a great handbag, or create an eclectic air with a headband, head wrap, or scarf.

4. Want a Smooth Look?

We hear you! Wearing leggings can be a little intimidating if you’re worried about creating a bulge here or there. But don’t worry—you can eliminate those fears by choosing the right fit and fabric. Start with leggings that fit snug, but not so snug that they pinch around the waist and hips.

Also make sure that you choose fabrics that create a soft matte look rather than shiny. Shiny fabric, because it reflects light, also amplifies shadows—and that can make every last little crease or bump seem bigger than it actually is.

5. Love Those Layers!

Layered looks were big in the early 2000s, right? Since then, they’ve kind of faded out of style. Or have they? Recent runway shows have been full of layered looks calling back to a couple of decades ago. So go ahead and pair those leggings with a skirt or wear them under shorts. Bonus points if they feature bold patterns or bright colors to make them stand out!

6. The Right Time and Place

We love leggings because they’re so cozy…but they can also be controversial in certain circles. The general rule here is to avoid wearing leggings to the super big, important things—like a job interview, or your first time meeting your partner’s parents. That’s especially true if you’re experimenting with looks or unsure how to style them.

Then again, if you’re a fashionista with a talent for putting together runway-ready looks? Then you do you—and forget about the haters!

Leggings: They’re comfy, they’re fuss-free—and when you know the rules for wearing them, they’ll be your best friend. Whether you’re looking for neutrals to help you build out a new ensemble, bright colors and bold patterns, or the perfect pair of workout leggings, we’ve got you covered. Shop Fabletics to find a great new look.

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