How to Pick The Best Running Tights for Women

Good running gear should be relatively simple – you want comfortable clothes that allow for complete freedom of movement and that will protect you from the elements. That’s not too much to ask for, is it? Unfortunately, though, when you really start looking into it, it becomes clear that many running clothing items are far from ideal, especially when it comes to running tights for women.

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Good running gear should be relatively simple – you want comfortable clothes that allow for complete freedom of movement and that will protect you from the elements. That’s not too much to ask for, is it? Unfortunately, though, when you really start looking into it, it becomes clear that many running clothing items are far from ideal, especially when it comes to running tights for women. 

Some are just too tight, others awkwardly loose. Some will have you running back home to warm up, while others will have you overheating. 

Choosing the best running tights for women can be an incredible hassle, but once you’ve found the perfect pair, you’ll look and feel amazing, and they might even improve your performance. 

So, let’s see what approach you should take to pick the perfect pair of running tights that check all the boxes and make your favorite hobby that much more enjoyable. 

Why Running Tights Matter? 

Most people who have just taken up running pay little to no attention to the clothes they’re wearing while running. “Ah, as long as there are no rips or stains, these leggings will be perfect for my morning jog.” Not quite. 

Wearing low-quality running tights made of inadequate materials can seriously affect your running performance. They can restrict your movement, keep all your sweat locked in so that you develop rashes and skin irritation, and they can slow you down. 

Poor choice of running tights can even make your chafing worse, preventing you from performing the simplest daily tasks. 

So, choosing the right pair of running tights is exceptionally important. The best running tights for women will not distract you from your run; they’ll keep any excess moisture away from your body, they’ll provide comfort and support, minimize drag, and keep you safe. 

Take Your Time to Find the Right Fit 

The first, most important feature you’ll need to consider when looking for a new pair of running tights is the fit. Too tight, and they’ll cause severe discomfort that can quickly turn into actual, almost debilitating pain. Too loose, and they can increase your drag, distract you with their sliding, and increase chafing. 

So, how should running tights fit? Essentially, you’re looking for tights that fit snuggly but don’t cut off your circulation. The best ones will be just a bit more difficult to put on, but once they’re on, you’ll feel like you’re wearing absolutely nothing at all. They’ll be elastic and allow you to move freely in any which way. 

Make sure to pay very close attention to the seams. If you can feel them while trying the tights on in the changing room, you can bet you’ll feel them much more intensely after a few minutes of running. 

You should look for flatlock seams on tights that can barely be detected when you’re wearing them. The flatlock seam feels comfortable on your skin and moves with your muscles, ensuring that there are no distractions whatsoever when you’re running.

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The Best Running Tights for Women: Get Good Compression

Compression running tights are the best choice for your daily run. They have excellent elasticity but still provide firm support. They squeeze your muscles in all the right places, reducing vibration and preventing unnecessary strain. 

Compression tights should fit very snuggly against your legs and feel almost like a second skin. 

There are several different pressure levels with these running tights. Those with low-pressure levels will make you feel like you’re wearing nothing but your birthday suit, while those with high-pressure levels will leave little wiggle room, keeping your muscles firmly in place even when doing high-impact activities.  

Regardless of the compression intensity, they should be exceptionally elastic and allow you to move freely without any constraints. 

When trying them on, make sure that there are no pressure spots that dig into your skin and cause discomfort. 

Is the Length Right? 

When choosing your new running tights, their length is generally a matter of personal preference. Still, it’s something you’ll need to pay attention to ensure the utmost comfort. 

Most commonly, running tights will go down to your ankles, keeping your legs completely covered. The only thing you’ll need to keep in mind when buying these tights is whether they go over your ankles or not. If they go over your ankles, you could feel some discomfort if your shoes keep pushing the tights up as you’re running. So, when getting full-length running tights, it’s best to go for those that stop just at the ankle. 

3/4 tights and biker shorts are the most common during the warmer months. They’re generally very comfortable, and you only need to make sure that the seams are not too tight and cause indentations. If you’ve ever had sock marks, you know that it’s not usually a big deal while you’re wearing them, but it’s surprisingly painful once you take them off. It’s the same with these types of tights, so check the seams to prevent future trouble. 

Waistband Matters 

The waistband might just be the most important feature of running tights. Those thin elastic bands that dig into your stomach are a huge no-no! They can cause serious, persisting pain and discomfort, bloating, and can even disrupt your menstrual cycle if you continue wearing them despite your body telling you to stop. 

So, avoid such waistbands at all costs! 

Ideally, you should go for high-waisted tights with a wide waistband that spreads pressure evenly across your abdomen, not squeezing any single point in particular. 

Alternatively, you could get yourself a pair of tights with a scrunchy waistband that sits a bit more loosely on your stomach while fitting snuggly around your legs and buttocks. 

These two types of running tights will remain comfortable even if you spend the whole day in them. They won’t leave those nasty indentation marks and won’t irritate the skin around your waistline. 

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People Need to See You (Reflective Paneling) 

While we consider running to be an excellent sport for those who enjoy some alone time with their thoughts, it’s still essential to keep other people in mind when going for your daily run, namely car drivers and bikers. 

If you frequently go for a run in low light conditions, you need to stay safe by wearing reflective clothing that remains visible and helps you avoid any potential accidents. 

Reflective paneling on your jacket, running tights, and shoes can quite literally save your life. Drivers and bikers will be able to see you whether it’s daytime or nighttime, foggy, or rainy. 

So, don’t neglect the importance of reflective features on your running tights. They’re practical and can be pretty stylish as well, so it’s a win-win either way. 

Fabric Types to Consider 

One of the biggest mistakes that many new runners make when choosing their running tights is going for all-natural, cotton materials. Sure, cotton can feel pleasant on your skin; it’s breathable, soft, it simply feels nice. On the other hand, it absorbs moisture so well that you’ll start feeling chilly as soon as you start sweating, even in 100℉ weather. Not to mention that you’ll have to buy a new pair of cotton tights sooner than you’d like to believe. 

Instead, it’s in your best interest to go for technical fabrics such as high-quality nylon or polyester. These materials are much more durable and offer excellent features. 

The best running tights for women made of technical fabrics will wick away excess moisture, keeping you dry and comfortable for the duration of your run regardless of how much you sweat. Many will have both stylish and practical “vents” to improve breathability and keep the air circulating in the right spots. They’ll keep you warm in winter and cool in summer. They could even protect you against sun damage and keep your skin healthy. 

Are They Keeping You Warm? 

The best running tights for women should allow for seamless thermoregulation during exercise, and they should keep you warm even when running during the coldest months. 

If you have harsh winters in your area, look for running thighs with excellent insulation on the inner side. These will help warm you up quickly and make running more comfortable. Make sure that they don’t lock in moisture as you sweat since it’ll be impossible to warm up if you feel wet. 

If you have scorching summers, you need lightweight running tights that allow your skin to breathe and that wick away sweat and moisture. 

Women’s Running Tights: Comfort Is Important 

Above all else, look for running tights that feel comfortable. Whether we’re talking about insulating tights for winter or biker shorts for summer, comfort is of the utmost importance. 

You should feel no particular pressure points and no noticeable seams. Running tights should never cut off your circulation or give you abdominal pain due to their thin waistbands. 

You should always try running tights on before you buy them or always check the reviews before you order online. Avoid tights that have uncomfortable seams and zippers, or that simply sit awkwardly on your skin. 

Skin Protection 

Finally, it’s essential that the best running tights for women provide excellent skin protection. That means that they prevent chafing and irritations, allow your skin to breathe and that they don’t leave unpleasant indentation marks. 

The best of the best will even have a high UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) rating – a clothing equivalent for SPF rating. They’ll protect your skin from the harmful effects of the sun, and keep you healthy and happy. 

Choosing the right running tights for women can be a hassle, but it’s essential to find a pair that fits you well and has all the necessary features to improve your running experience. 

Don’t settle for subpar tights that’ll only prove to be annoying at best. Get high-quality running tights and enjoy all the benefits that they bring. 

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