10 Best Running Leggings Tested
If you are on the hunt for some of the best quality running leggings, you have come to the right place. There are many options from length to color, graphics and style out there to choose from and you want to make sure to look for durability, comfort, weatherproofing and most importantly the right fit. You want a pair that will keep you firm and snug and work on those areas of your lower body that are in constant motion and get the most shock.
A faster recovery from swelling and post run injuries is key and if they help your core then that is an added plus. High tech engineered fabric backed by science is an absolute must for most and whether you are a short or long distance runner, a cyclist or a tough mudder, choosing the right legging will not only help your performance but will also establish a path to a healthier lifestyle and won’t break your bank.
10 Best Running Leggings
Compressionz Base Layer
Promotes circulation for increased endurance performance, reduces friction and decreases the chances of injury. The fabric is comprised of a four way 85% nylon, 15% spandex stretch technology retains its shape and can hold up to even the most toughest of wash cycles. Taylor made for tough and extreme sports and marathon running with both an anti odor and anti itch material.
An increase in oxygen base for a smoother and faster recovery from soreness, injury and swelling. A productive increase in muscle performance and support. They can be worn as a base layer for an array of sports and fitness routines. There also give great support to active individuals who are on there feet at work or for long distance travelers who are flying.
Cost or value :
Good moderate price for not just new runners and athletes but also for all who are looking for a great value. Buy in multiples to fit your personality and mood
- Amazing compression;
- Max temperature regulated for both coolness and warmth;
- Non see through;
- Seams are well fabricated;
- Best running tights on the market
- Size up for close to perfect fit;
- Too tight for some with larger quads;
- Not unisex compatible;
Moisture Control for all seasons is a valuable assets to tough competitors. The moisture sensing and quick dry time. The washability on this legging is incredible and holds up to numerous washes. The size variance is vast with four different extra small to choose from and three types of extra larges.
Special UVA/UVB protection from environmental elements is a plus, especially in year round warmer climates. The flex and mobility are impeccable, they are both breathable and soft. What is also great about Dr. Skin’s compression tight pant is that they are unisex and were made to fit all body types.
Not at all on the expensive side and worth buying several pairs just for the style and comfort.
- Compression is absolutely amazing;
- Stays in place;
- Better blood flow for a quicker cooldown and recovery;
- Good quality fabric;
- Fit nice and snug;
- Runs small;
- Must hang dry
- Ultra sheer and thin material
Tesla Thermal Compression P33
Tesla leggings are versatile and have moderate elasticity with a high performance air circulation that draws moisture away from the skin and dries the fabric quickly. They also have a high UPF 50 plus guard from UVA rays that shades up to 99%.
Moisture barrier and quick drying time for long distance runners and high intensity workouts. There is a build in odor barrier within the fabric to guard against sweat. Elastic waistband is comfortable and stylish. They are all around comfortable and can be worn for working out, lounging and running errands
Cost or Value:
Very affordable for the price. Buy in multiples just for the selection of fun and funky colors and patterns
- Fleece Lining for Warmth but breathable;
- Reflective for night runners;
- Increased circulation;
- Great fit and youth sizes for both boys and girls;
- Great pressure point reliever.
- Size up for perfect fit;
- Length varies on height;
One of the most important aspects of the CRX Stabilyx leggings is its support on specific areas for minimum injury and maximum performance and a reduction in post workout soreness and swelling.
Seasonal fabrics supported with an overall 80% in Coolmax fabrics keeps you cool in the summer and even warmer in the winter months. An added reflective material on the logo makes it a buy for safe and easy evening runs.
Above average pricing, but worth the cost for what you get.
- Outstanding two way stretch support;
- Wide array of styles and colors;
- Chafe resistant
- Non see-through;
- Sizing is inconsistent;
- Length varies.
The smooth design and material make them comfortable for running and other athletic activities. Moisture-wicking management technology to keep you dry and cool in any season of the year and helps prevent the infamous chaffing.
Perfect for those who want less compression, but still want a tight fit. They have a elastic closure on the waist so that they don’t come down during those longer runs and workouts. They are both comfortable to wear for yoga, walking and gym workouts
Amazing value, highly affordable you can buy several in one trip, long lasting through washings.
- Moisture lock
- Very comfortable
- Elastic waist closure
- Sizing is on the unpredictable side
- not many colors or style to choose from.
of performance with maximum compression and circulation.
Skins are backed by science and technology but also in comfort and functionality. In
fact, Skins are well known within the sports industry for their benefits in helping with overall
performance, and a quicker lower body muscle cooldown and recovery.
Durability and sizing is key when choosing a great long lasting legging and Skins
does that and then some. Skins precision fitting uses your body's measurements to ensure
optimum fit in key areas. Scientific fabric technology keeps you cool and dry, are long lasting
between washings, and have an added 50 plus UV protection.
A bit on the pricey side, but worth the money
- Amazing comfort
- Great Compression
- Cool neutral colors
- Perfect fit (follow size chart),
- Non-see through
- Key pocket
- Limited sizes
- More colors needed
- Non reflective
ASICS Thermopolis Tights
Its fabric is soft and well brushed to provide ultimate comfort and improve its warmth. This makes running quite easy as it takes care of you while you concentrate on your activities
Its two way fabric gives the runner an ample time when putting it on as you do not need to take time deciding which one is the right way of putting it on.
Just slightly costly,but the comfort and the two way face makes it worthy!
- The fabric is so soft and all weathers which enhances comfort and warmth.
- It has a logo that reflects which is good for times where there is low light like during the night.
- Its waist band is well figured to ensure a well-fitting figure is achieved to any runner who owns it.
- Quite expensive, but the quality is worth in the long run.
American Apparel Cotton Spandex Jersey
Talking of size they fit so perfectly if you order the right size for yourself. The waist is made of an elastic material that means no lose hanging cloth all over you as you run, no adjustment needed as you have them on, it’s like they were made just for you honey.
It has an appealing design that makes you want to own them even if you won’t be using them, I mean you can easily convince yourself to buy them with nothing in mind of how to put them in use maybe just to fill your stock of many leggings.
With its comfortability reigning supreme the price is totally fair and reasonable.
- Being cotton it has comfort running through it, with no doubt makes you feel at home while in the field.
- It has a perfect fit if one gets their size. This has a lot to do with its design that is form fitting taking the form of any athlete to make you look super.
- The elastic waist band makes it have a tight grip on the waist thus avoiding the adjustment issues some have in the long run.
- Take good care of them as they tend to pill if not handled with care.
Neleus 2 Pack Athletic Compression Sport
The seams are flat which helps prevent irritation and chaffing by moving very softly when in contact with your skin. Which makes it suitable for almost any type of sporting activity.
The costing of this leggings are absolutely affordable,having to consider all the benefits it bring on the table.
- The dri-fit material helps keep one very comfortable and dry as it keeps wetness at bay.
- It offers great support due to its compressible fitting.
- Technology being a priority makes it produce quality kind of leggings.
- One of the leggings that is suitable for all sporting activities be it outdoor or indoors.
- The seams are flat that helps prevent chaffing when it comes in contact with the skin.
- Size is key when it comes to this type of legging since it comes with Asian tag size which is 1- 2 smaller than US size.
Under Armour Mirror Luminous
It also is flexible with its 4- way stretch which gives you a good movement while keeping you in shape, when you want to carry an extra pocket or bag to keep your phone, you really do not need to bother once you have this, it has a small hidden pocket to keep phones or mp3 player to listen to music when running.
In terms of durability this type of legging is considered durable due to the fabric used in making it as well as the seams that are placed to ensure that pressure is administered on the right areas to prevent chafing.
Well thought out price for its features, very affordable and a must have kind of leggings.
- The under Armour is made of a material that provides full support and a smooth feel throughout.
- The seams are well placed to make sure the pressure is administered in the right places to prevent chaffing hence making it durable.
- It also has the material that helps tap out all moisture to help maintain a dry work out through your activities. No dampness whatsoever.
- It also is flexible in the sense that it gives a wide stretch that makes you feel comfortable during your running or gym time.
- Most clients complain of the size being small after making a purchase, be sure to make the right size order if possible measure with one legging that you own.
All of these hold up to their names in durability and comfort. They increase blood circulation and compress those areas that need the extra support from soreness and injury. Most manufacturers focus not only on the comfort and fabric but back it up with engineered technology and science for optimum mobility, increased circulation, post injury support, and a rapid cooling and recovery phase.
Moisture technology will keep you dry from the most extreme sport and will help prevent chafing. A UVA barrier keeps the environmental elements away from the body and the fit on most keeps you in place and prevents waist slipping.
The variety of colors, graphics and patterns will get you excited to put them and use them for running, high impact workouts, yoga and everyday lounge wear. Prices vary from expensive to moderate to affordable, buying several pairs is not just affordable but can be addictive for those Joggers, Cyclists, Cross Trainers, Tough Mudders, Football Players, Workaholics and Yoga Seekers.
If you haven’t tried them, give compression leggings a try. Just remember to size up and have fun with the colors and patterns, they are worth every penny.
The Criteria Used when choosing the best running leggings
What material are they made from?
Equally as important, what are they NOT made from. Most people are surprised by the recommendation that cotton be avoided at all costs. Cotton and thick fleece can be heavy and even cause chaffing from the friction that comes with running.
Additionally, it can hold in moisture like sweat and become heavier. This is why you want to steer clear of those old sweatpants and look for something made for running. Blended fibers such as spandex, nylon, or polyester are the selection of choice in terms of material. You’re going to get a moister wicking, stretchy feel that will be comfortable in both short and long runs alike
Style and a size that is true
Of course, we all want a flattering overall look to our running apparel and selecting running leggings is no different from what we normally look for. Gender specific styles not only look better, but they also tend to fit better as well.
The best possible options will be ones that are specifically designed to contour and form in the right places. Sizing can be tough because it will involve you checking a number of boxes, including length, waistband, and tightness or compression. If your ankles are bare, look for sizes labeled “tall” or “long” (for taller runners). Likewise, you don’t want your waist to be too tight.
Although you’re not going for a loose fit with leggings, you should make sure that your waist feels comfortable, especially if you have a shorter torso. Compression doesn’t just show off your glutes and gams, but they serve the functional purposes of keeping you dry while providing for unrestricted movement. It’s ok for running leggings to feel a little tight as long as the length and waist are comfortable.
Choosing a run-specific function
Keep in mind what type of runs and the climate when considering which running leggings to select. Runners in a cold climate should look for a thermal weight or lined construction. Testers agreed that running leggings with fleece lining will be your best friend in cold environments.
Furthermore, if you frequently run in snow or rain it’s essential that waterproof or water resistant running leggings are part of your arsenal. In fact, you should pick out several pair if you run several times a week to ensure that you always have a dry pair.
How much compression is offered?
Compression got its start in the medical field and runners have since then embraced it with open arms. The running leggings featured in our buying guide that have compression have been found by runners to offer great stability to their knees and reduce muscle vibration.
Choosing a legging with adequate compression will provide you with increased circulation and even increased efficiency. You may be thinking that compression is a pseudo science that doesn’t apply to the running world, but you may want to reconsider, especially if you suffer from swelling or edema. Runners praise the ability of compression leggings to minimize their swelling while improving their performance and recovery times.
How much protection is offered?
Aside from protection against the climate and running conditions, runner safety is another form of protection that is crucial when considering running leggings. Manufactures offer a variety of options that have reflective panels in strategic places to help runners remain visible in low lighting conditions.
While this is something that is easily overlooked, it’s very important and can make a world of difference. Additionally, leggings offer protection from injuries when they have higher compression in problematic areas. Running leggings with tough compression around the knees are a frequently looked for feature by runners.
Quite simply, runners tend to run more and run longer the easier the entire process is. Small conveniences like a key pocket can make the overall experience less of a burden and more of a joy. Not to mention eliminate the need to bring additional equipment with you while you are out on the run. Just grab your key and go.
Important Things to Consider When Buying Leggings For Running
Selecting the right pair is essentially an investment. After all, picking the right shoes takes a considerable amount of time and the same should be true for your running apparel. That being said, we have put together a brief list of things that you should consider when selecting the right pair of running leggings for you.
You will find that matching material to your personal body composition will give you the most efficient and comfortable run possible. We know that picking leggings that offer both style and function can be tricky; especially with the flattering styles that have made our list.
Shopping for running leggings with your environment in mind will also serve as an educated basis for your selection. Let’s take a little time and go over the most important considerations that you should be making.
If you live somewhere that experiences hot summers and cold winters, you’re going to want to select different running leggings for different seasons.
For the colder months, look for options that offer fleece lined interiors that will keep you warm and snug while you are out in the elements. There are also a variety of thermal constructed leggings and tights that provide a more tailored amount of warmth when it gets cold outside.
For those summer months, the ideal way to go are synthetic fabrics that are designed to keep sweat away from your skin and allow it to evaporate more freely. Additionally, leggings with a strong moisture barrier tend to help runners increase their endurance one run at a time because of their added comfort levels.
Your individual comfort needs
Every body is different. It’s important to make a selection that best matches your individual needs. Most runners experience chaffing in different regions of their bodies, and the right pair of leggings or tights can significantly help.
If you’re like the majority of runners with chaffing issues and experience thigh discomfort, there’s great news! This can be easily eliminated by selecting leggings that offer compression to the thighs (tighter around the entire thigh). Once you run in compression leggings, you won’t run in standard shorts ever again.
Additionally, if you tend to sweat more than the average runner, look for added moisture wicking materials. When shopping for your running leggings, ventilated materials will offer you a much cooler run. This is another example of how important a careful selection can be; if you don’t need insulation, don’t pick leggings that have offer it. Your comfort levels should be one of your top priorities and will help make your runs more productive and therapeutic.
Your personal recovery times
Are you like most runners and experience long calf recovery times? Are you about to embark on a goal of achieving higher levels of distance or time that will take a toll on your muscles? Then strongly consider where the compression is found on your next pair of leggings and how strong that compression is.
For years elite athletes have counted on the ability of compression materials to minimize the lactic acid build up in their muscles to achieve faster recovery times. You should give yourself the same advantage, so keep in mind what muscle groups will be getting the highest work out on your runs or training regime and select a pair of leggings that match you best.
How tight is too tight?
We all know that tight leggings can give runners a very visually flattering and athletic shape, but it’s important to not go too tight. Selecting the right size for you can be challenging because leggings should be snug and supportive.
Most runners agree that leggings and tights should be secure enough to prevent excessive bouncing and offer compression in the places where it’s needed the most. However, you should be comfortable and have proper circulation throughout your waist and legs.
It’s important to note that stretchy materials loose a little of their elasticity over time, so your waistband should fit a little snug without going full on muffin top. Additionally, check your self out in a mirror with high lighting conditions before you head out. Thin materials have a tendency of being quite opaque when they stretch, and you wouldn’t want to show off too much of your assets while you’re out on you run.
Here are some frequently asked questions that most runners encounter when making their decision. Hopefully, they will help you along your way when you are making your decision.
Q: Should I wear underwear with my running leggings?
A: It’s the number one question runners ask, and the resounding answer is no. Running leggings (for both men and women) are designed to be used without underwear. Runners report perfect support and comfort when using their leggings without underwear.
In fact, using underwear typically leads to an increased chance of chaffing because standard underwear is not meant to be used for running for long distances and time. If you would like to prolong the amount of time between washing for your leggings by wearing underwear, be sure to find specialized running underwear made from synthetic fabrics.
Q: Can I wear shorts over my running leggings?
A: It’s understandable that some runners might want to cover their derriere while wearing skin tight leggings. However, if you aren’t hanging out at your local coffee shop and actually using your active wear for activity, wear them with pride.
Adding shorts over leggings will increase friction between your legs and will be uncomfortable as you run. No matter what size or shape you might be, wearing your leggings with confidence should be your only concern.
Q: What other type of clothing should I consider wearing with my running leggings?
A: Runners that hit the road in warm climates usually gravitate towards a running visor that helps keep sweat away from their eyes and also helps against the sun and glare. The open top means increased breathability.
Also, just like leggings, women runners should consider a high impact running bra that provides the right amount of support for them. Another tip no matter you gender is to stay away from cotton when choosing your top. Cotton stays very wet and is bulky and heavy, so pick a fabric that matches your leggings.
Q: I’ve noticed that there are several different leg lengths when it comes to running pants; how do I choose the right one for me?
A: Runners tend to stick with leggings that cover the entire leg instead of tights or shorts for a wide variety of reasons. Beyond just protection from the cold, full length leggings offer the maximum amount compression and comfort to most runners.
As you can tell from our guide, selecting an option for warmer weather no longer means choosing to go with shorts or tights instead of leggings. As mentioned earlier, if you are taller of have longer legs, look for “tall” in the sizing description to ensure an adequate fit.
This was our approach when selecting the right running leggings for the job. Remember that size and fit can give you the perfect amount of comfort; while taking your environment into consideration will ensure that you body temperature remains at a perfect balance.
We hope this guide provided you with all the information you need when making you choice between form and function. Thanks for following along with us. Now get out there, and take on the road!
Here are some of the sources we used while conducting research for this guide:
It’s important to use a plethora of sources to ensure quality information. We like to utilize trusted clinical partners and manufactures when providing our readers with the most up-to-date statistics found in all our buying guides.
We are also very interested in taking what everyday users have to say about specific products, and we perform our due diligence to make sure that quality research goes into every guide. Here are some sources which helped us with this guide:
- The Best Guide to Compression Pants/Compression Leggings, Website focused on compression wear, Apr 24, 2016 ,
- Outdoor sports retailer, ,
- Running and Chafing: 5 Tips To Ward Off Unwelcome Irritation, Running website, Jan 18, 2016 ,