You may think only under-caffeinated moms and workout enthusiasts wear leggings as pants. But, in reality, most of the fashion a-listers love and wear leggings too. And they wear them in a unique way that takes them from “have you even showered today?’ to outfit perfection.
So how do you wear leggings and look fashionable?
Well, check out this post for the basics of wearing leggings: The Ultimate Guide To wearing leggings and looking stylish.
Key things to remember when styling leggings as pants
1. Pull one item from a more formal category to pair with your leggings. Now, when I say formal I am not suggesting that you wear a ballgown with your leggings. In fact, I’m using the term formal in relation to leggings. Look for a more structured piece, like a blazer, coat, or shirt, and try to stay away from too many “relaxed” pieces.
2. Pay attention to your hemlines. Where does your shirt or jacket fall on your body? Ideally, for these looks, you’ll want the shirt or jacket to fall closer to the bottom of your butt. This allows the leggings to act more like “pants” and takes the focus away from the leggings. If your shirt is shorter than your hips or you are wearing a cropped top, just add another layer that can compensate.
3. Don’t be afraid to “finish the outfit”. Details like hair, makeup, and accessories can really pull an outfit out of the depths of “I just didn’t try today”. So be sparing, but also don’t forget to add a bit of jewelry, a trendy bag, or a statement shoe to make your outfit feel more intentional.
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Unique Legging Outfit Idea 1
what you need: high waist black leggings, turtleneck, oversized crew neck sweatshirt, bucket hat, gold necklaces to layer, trendy bag, chunky boots, and contrasting socks.
This look is a bit 90s, it’s easy and casual and plays on popular trends. Start with high waist black leggings. Add a turtleneck (bonus points if it’s printed), and a crew neck oversized sweatshirt. Add a bucket hat for a fun 90’s vibe. You need chunky boots with socks peeking out and a trendy bag.
Bucket hats are a big trend this season, as are 90s vibes. The fact you are combining two popular trends in this one unique legging outfit makes its really stand out and levels it up. With so many other points of interest, the leggings become just a casual backdrop for the other articles to shine, and that is a great way to wear “leggings as pants”.
Unique Legging Outfit Idea 2
what you need: high-waist black leggings, white shirt, tweed jacket (channel vibes), scrunchie, loafers, lace socks, microbag
This look is a bit more formal but with a trendy twist. Start with a white shirt ( mine is a Large from the boy’s department). Add a tweed jacket (major Chanel vibes). Pull your hair back in a low bun with a velvet scrunchie to keep the look sleek and effortless. And for a fun twist add lace socks, loafers, and a micro bag.
I love this outfit because it’s like some modern amalgamation of the Easter Sunday MIL look. But super cool. It has the perfect balance of cool-girl AND sophisticated elegance. How do you achieve this balance? The quirky details are key. The micro-bag trend adds a more surreal element to your otherwise classic ensemble and the lace socks provide a break from the serious. Details like this can make your outfit, don’t forget about them!
Unique Legging Outfit Idea 3
what you need: high-waist black leggings, cropped fitted tee, oversized blazer, hair bow, heeled mules
This look is one of my favorite legging outfits. It’s on-trend, so chic, and has great masculine/feminine balance to it. Start with a cropped, fitted tee. Add an oversized men’s blazer to the look. Put your hair in a low half ponytail and add a hair bow accessory. Add heeled mules to finish the look off. You can even match your bow with your shoes for a fun pop of color.
Sometimes simplicity wins, and this outfit is the epitome of that, with a few feminine details. The pop of color is a great way to add more interest to an otherwise neutral ensemble, and the hair bow and mules also give a feminine edge to the look
Unique Legging Outfit Idea 4
what you need: high-waist black leggings, padded shoulder tank/tee, pearl belt, pointy lace-up boots, and a simple clutch
This look is perfect for a night out, it’s sexy yet elegant. Start with a padded shoulder tank, and try to keep this look monochrome for the most sophisticated outfit. Add a pearl belt for interest. And pointy black lace-up boots. Keep your hair simple with a center part. Grab a simple black clutch and you’re ready to go.
Who knew you could wear leggings as pants and actually go out? Oh ya, fashion people. This outfit plays on the popular trend of padded shoulders. And the monochrome aspect to this outfit keeps it ultra-chic and streamlined.
Unique Legging Outfit Idea 5
what you need: high-waist black leggings, oversized (men’s) shirt, knee-high boots, medium hoops, classic (smaller) handbag
This look is casual yet put-together. I like to call it classic with a trendy twist. Pull your hair back in an easy ponytail and pull out a few front strands. Add a men’s denim shirt or flannel. Add knee-high black boots (mine have a slight western feel to them). Next, add a small handbag and medium gold hoops to finish the look off.
Oversized pieces are one of those French-style secrets we tend to overlook. Now, I’m not saying this look exudes french style because it really doesn’t. But, if you hate all these outfits and you’re still reading this post you can come out on top regardless because oversized pieces are the key to effortless chic. Especially when paired with leggings they really add a nice balance to the ensemble.
For more oversized style ideas, check out these posts:
Unique Legging Outfit Idea 6
what you need: high-waist black leggings, striped mock turtleneck, statement shoes, classic trench, scrunchie (optional)
This look has classic elements with fashion-forward details. Add a striped fitted mock turtleneck. Pair this look with statement shoes, like these knot front mules. Add a classic trench to your look. Optional: Put your hair in a low side ponytail with a scrunchie to make this outfit a bit more trendy.
This outfit is kind of a shot in the dark. It works in certain settings as a quirky take on classic elements. Don’t take your outfits too seriously and you’ll begin to find how fun fashion can be.
If you love leggings and want to make them even more fashionable, check out this post on the latest legging trend to hit the fashion scene.
Be sure to check out this video if you’re struggling on how to put these outfits together, that visual will be the missing piece to your puzzle.
And pin any of these looks for reference to help get the word out that you can in-fact wear leggings as pants with these unique outfit ideas! And follow me on Instagram for daily style inspiration.