Stockings or tights? What’s the difference and which ones are best for you? These are questions we get asked a lot here at Luxury-Legs, so we’re here to help. The stockings vs tights dilemma has been going on for decades, so we’ll weigh up the pros and cons of each style to help you decide which is right for you.
Stockings vs Tights: What’s the Difference?
Stockings and tights appear very similar, at least on the surface, but most of us know they differ in several important ways. Both are commonly crafted from nylon and are designed to be perfectly form-fitting, but this is generally where the similarity ends.
Stockings: These traditionally cover the leg from the foot up to just above the knee or up to the mid-thigh. The stockings are then historically worn with suspender belts and suspenders to keep them from falling down, though the invention of hold-ups has provided an alternative to this. Stockings are also traditionally sheer, though you can find opaque stockings in most modern collections these days.
Tights: Unlike stockings, tights cover the legs from the toes all the way up to the waist with no interruptions. Traditionally thicker than stockings, tights are now available in a huge variety of deniers and opacities, with some styles even designed to mimic the aesthetic of stockings. Unlike stockings, tights are also available in footless varieties, and many are available without visible seams and gussets for a seamless, uninterrupted leg look.
Stockings vs Tights: Which Should I Choose?
Now we’re clear on the key differences, it’s time to look at which style of hosiery might be best suited to you. To do this, we’ve listed out the pros and cons for each style to help you make the decision.
Stockings: The Pros and Cons
Although some may think that stockings are outdated, they are in fact making a strong comeback. Now representing a golden era of beautiful, elegant and sophisticated vintage fashion, stockings are back in our lives with multiple uses, whether for everyday wear, for Date Night outfits or simply as a hidden confidence-booster. Although stockings are mostly hidden from sight, there are several reasons why millions of women tend to choose them over tights.
Let’s see some of the benefits to wearing stockings:
- Wearing stockings in a crowd of people and being the only one who knows about them has an empowering feeling to it (seriously, just try it and see!)
- They’re flattering to all body shapes, providing a great confidence boost
- They are considered more breathable than tights due to the lack of a gusset
- Stockings are adaptable to all occasions
- They make you feel sexy and feminine
- They are widely considered to be more comfortable to wear than tights, due to the fact they are less restrictive and cooler to wear in hot weather or at the office.
With all these fabulous benefits it’s easy to see how stockings often emerge as the victor in the stockings vs tights dilemma. But what about the downsides?
The disadvantages of stockings:
Though there are few (let’s face it, stockings are fabulous), there are several small elements that some people consider as downsides to stockings:
- Stockings are a little more fiddly to put on, considering the need for clipping them to suspenders and suspender belts
- Stockings with suspenders also making going to the loo a little more time-consuming, as you need to unclip each time you go
- Stockings can’t be worn with shorts, unlike tights, and so are slightly more restrictive in the scope of outfit options
If none of the above cause you any concern, then stockings might just win the stockings vs tights dilemma for you. Let’s take a quick look at tights before you decide, though.
Tights: The Pros and Cons
Tights hold a great advantage with their versatility. A thick opaque for the winter months keep the cold out, whereas a sheer pair in the summer is a great way to finish any outfit. A control top pair of tights is definitely a girl’s best friend, as the spandex in them flattens and smoothes the stomach and bottom, while patterned tights add a whole new dimension to all kinds of outfits. Let’s take a closer look at the pros and cons of wearing tights:
The Benefits of Tights:
- Tights are quicker and easier to put on that stockings as there is no need for suspenders
- Tights traditionally carry a wider variety of styles, deniers and designs than stockings
- Shapewear tights are a less restricting alternative to traditional shapewear
- Will see you through all 12 months of the year
- Tights disguise the legs, hiding cellulite, moles, bumps, pimples, varicose veins, calluses and unshaven legs
- Smooths the figure to hide any bulges for an extra confidence boost
- Give a professional look, well-dressed, sophisticated and elegant
- Can be worn under shorts as well as dresses and skirts, making them a little more versatile than stockings
That’s a long list of incredible benefits, right? Their versatility and convenience are the key reasons why tights do often win out in the stockings vs tights dilemma, but there are one or two disadvantages of tights, too. Let’s take a quick look:
The Disadvantages of Tights:
Just like with stockings, the list of disadvantages is decidedly smaller than the advantages. But here are a few minor elements to consider when making your choice:
- Some consider tights to be too warm and too restricting due to the fact that cover the body from the toes to the waist
- Tights are sometimes considered to be less ‘sexy’ than stockings, though seamed tights and fishnet tights could always give stockings a run for their money
And that’s it. Now you’ve seen the pros and cons of each style, you’re now ready to tackle your stockings vs tights dilemma. Although, who says you have to choose? Some occasions call for stockings, while a simple pair of tights might be the perfect option for others. Both are equally relevant in modern lifestyles, inviting you to build up your own collection of each style so you’re ready for absolutely anything.