Best Nike Leggings Reviewed & Rated for Quality
Ah, fall has finally arrived. The first sound of rain against our rooftops. The crunch of autumn leaves below our boots. The smell of pumpkin spice lattes. We can finally put away our airy summer attire, our mosquito repellant, and thin blankets. Gone are high electric bills, perpetual sweat, and sandals. Time to open the back part of our closet and bring out our scarves, sweaters, and you know what else? LEGGINGS. I am a huge sucker for leggings, especially leggings as pants. I wear them to sleep, to work out, to attend events- who knew they could be so versatile?
This is the best product on our list that is currently in stock:
Flattering curve-hugging design
Top 10 Picks
1. Legend 2.0
Made from polyester
Matte material, not “shiny”
Don’t let the “tight” description fool you. These are one of the most comfortable leggings I have ever worn- I may be biased because I’ve had the same pair for over 6 years with no signs of wear and tear. They’re the holy grail of leggings because they are form-fitting, high-waisted, and totally breathable.
You know this has to be an important aspect when buying leggings. The purpose of leggings, in my eyes, is to provide a sense of relief from constricting jeans and other attire. If you’re going to be wearing something form-fitting, it must provide comfort.
This is a dry fit, made from polyester so it allows for air to seep through. You’re not left with embarrassing sweat stains after a workout or feeling tight and sticky.
Cost and Value
As stated before, you don’t want to spend $5 every other week on a new pair of leggings. You want to invest in a quality pair that will last, and with this affordable price point, you may want to buy a few in additional colors.
If your body temperature runs hot, you may be averse to long leggings. Capris might be more for you. These capri leggings stop at the calve, allowing some breathability for your ankles and lower half of your legs. Maybe you like to show a bit of color and personality during your athletic endeavors. These pants come in a wide array of colors and styles.
These leggings come with a stylish waist band with “Nike” displayed in attractive letters. They also come in several different neon colors with different styles.
This is made from a mesh-polyester-spandex mix so not only is it sweat resistant, but it is also made to stretch and move with all your movements.
Cost and Value
The cost can vary depending on the style and color you choose to get. The neon colors with flashy styles tend to run a little higher, but because these are capri-style, they run a low lower than most full length leggings. This is worth it because this type of legging can be worn year round.
3. Power Essential Crop
Sweat Wicking Power Fabric
Has back pockets with zippers
¾ quarter length
Wide elastic waistband
One of the most annoying aspects of running is having to deal with drooping leggings that ruin your running flow. This can also lead to chafing and other uncomfortable aspects of running. This Dri-Fit Running Crop is not only hemmed in length for ultimate movement, but it fits snug so you never have to readjust.
¾ Length Coverage
Nike says it best, this amount of coverage gives you a “tight, locked in feel.” This is important when moving around a lot to ensure clothing doesn’t stray away.
Nike Power Fabric
Coined “Sweat-Wicking Power Fabric,” this material is meant to move smoothly against the skin and prevent chafing, while you continue at your comfortable pace.
Cost and Value
Anything with pockets is worth the money to me. This comes with back pockets so you don’t need to spend extra money on an arm band. This is also cheaper than the longer-legged leggings so you know it’s worth it.
4. Power Essential
Size might not be available
Just like some boots are made for walking, these leggings are made for running. Like our number 1 item in this list, these are made from dri-fit material that fit snug and conform to your body. The flat in-seams move smoothly against your skin, so you won’t feel when you’re running.
There are subtle reflective details throughout these leggings that help you stand out. As a runner, this is important especially if you are running during the evening.
The material will help keep you dry and comfortable- you can wear this in the heat or the cold. It’s thick enough to keep you warm but the material makes it breathable enough to wear in the heat.
Cost and Value
These run about the same as the other items on this list- meaning they are totally affordable without breaking the bank. You also have a few color options to choose from so you might want to grab a few!
Variety of Styles
May be slightly see through
If you’re the type to like to show off the brand you’re wearing, this one might be for you. With Nike’s slogan “Just Do It” running stylishly down one leg, it’s clear as day who you’re wearing. This also comes in a few variations and styles so you can take your pick.
Variety of Styles
There are about 14 different variations of this style, and in our opinion, they’re all so stylish! You can choose from black to red to green, with different variations of the slogan.
I personally like full-length leggings for fuller coverage. Not only does this provide warmth, but it makes one look leaner and taller.
Cost and Value
These range in price depending on the color and style you’re choosing to get. Colored leggings tend to be lower than the black matte ones, and that in my eyes is called winning!
6. Club Logo 2
Variety of color
Slightly see through
These leggings embody everything listed above- Dri-fit? Check. Stretchy fabric? Check. Logo design? Check? The logo design on these are a little more subdued than the leggings listed above, but with the unmistakable check mark on the bottom, you know you’re wearing Nike.
The Nike logo displayed near the ankle is a cute way of incorporating some style into your athleisure.
Not only is this dri-fit, it is also stretchy so it allows for plenty of movement. These can be worn as yoga leggings or even cross-fit.
Cost and Value
These are the most inexpensive pair of Nike leggings on this list! Opt for a brighter color to save even more.
7. Power Poly
Flattering curve-hugging design
Like the leggings listed at #5, these leggings also have the infamous “Just Do It” displayed on the side of the leg. These come in an outlined font so it’s not as bold, but still gives the message that you’re ready to take action.
Having clothing material made out of mesh is important for cooling- nobody wants clothes to stick to their body after a workout.
The lines and seams on this legging are very flattering and outline a woman’s silhouette. It hugs to your figure and compliments your curves.
Cost and Value
These run a little pricier than the ones on this list. Given that they incorporate quality mesh fabric, a flattering design, and striking patterns, it’s worth the splurge.
8. Power Training
Striking is the word that comes to mind when I look at these pair of leggings. Coming in a two tone, split mesh pattern, this is a definitely cutting-edge style. Not only are they fashionable, the panels are mesh so it provides breathability.
You can bet you will stand out wearing these leggings. The design is not only aesthetically pleasing to the eye, it’s also functional.
There are mesh sections throughout the leg area which can provide extra relief and comfort when your body temperature rises.
Cost and Value
Given the unique design of these leggings, they run higher than most. You may want to save this for a splurge, or when you want to add a bit of flair to a growing legging collection.
9. Men's Pro
Variety of Styles
Not long legged
Who says only women get to wear leggings? Men can share the love too. Meant for training purposes, these leggings provide the best compression to train in comfort.
These leggings provide a compression fit that isn’t too tight. This will allow for maximum movement and comfort during training.
Inner Leg Mesh Gussets
Fear not, men. There are inner leg meshes that allow for proper ventilation, especially in the high-heat zones.
Cost and Value
These come in a wide array of colors ranging from black to neon, and the price will vary depending on the style you get. Still, these are very affordable and compare to most of the leggings on this list.
10. Pro Cool
May show sweat for gray
To end our list, a classic. With a Nike engraved waist-band, small logo on the thigh, and mesh panels, this is a staple to your legging collection. This is not only functional but body-skimming, so it makes for the ideal base layer for the colder seasons.
Body Skimming Fit
As the colder season approaches us, we want to LAYER. You don’t want to look bulked up, so a thin base layer is the way to go.
These are made from the same Dri-Fit material that most Nike leggings are made from, so you know they will provide comfort as soon as you put them on.
Cost and Value
These come in three styles- black, patterned blue, and dark grey. While the patterned blue tends to be higher because of the design, these are a staple to any closet and will last for years.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
You may have noticed that most, if not all, the leggings on this list have Dri-Fit Technology. This is extremely important when purchasing a pair of leggings. If you’re not wearing leggings to work, or to lounge around the house, then you’re most likely using them for sports or active wear. When we are active, we most likely sweat. And when we sweat, there may be stains. There’s nothing more embarrassing than having a sweat stain in weird crevices of our legs, so it’s important to look for quality material that is sweat resistant.
Nike’s Dri-Fit technology is an innovative technology that is made from a unique polyester fabric that allows for breathability and is designed to keep you dry. This gets rid of annoyances like making sure you’re aired out and have time to dry. This gathers your sweat and makes sure it’s evenly spread throughout the top layer of your garment so that the sweat evaporates quickly.
You want to look for these types of materials when purchasing leggings: polyester, nylon, or spandex with some type of moisture management. This ensures that sweat is not trapped, but able to disperse off your body quickly. Also, this type of material is made for movement, so you will never feel constrained during your workout.
Remember that quality materials tend to cost more. However, it is important to invest in a few staple pieces that you know will last throughout the years. I used to buy leggings that were made from cheap material simply because they were inexpensive. However, I would have to replace those leggings every month because the seams would rip after a few washes, or the material would thin out and become sheer. Replacing my leggings every month actually ends up costing more than if I would have invested in a pair of quality leggings right away. Like I said before, my first pair of Nike leggings have lasted me for over six years with no signs of distress. When you think about clothing that you’ll be wearing regularly, like leggings, you want to make sure that you’re investing for the future. This also saves you time because you’re not constantly going back to replace your torn leggings. Time is money!
One thing you definitely do not want to do is buy a pair of leggings that are see-through. You don’t want your underwear to peek through when you’re doing a squat at the gym. A lot of leggings made from thin material are sheer, and while this might be okay for layering under clothes, it is definitely not good for working out.
What you want to look for is the material it’s made of. Thicker fabrics tend to be less see-through, but this isn’t always the case. Depending on the body type, these fabrics may be stretched out more causing transparency. What you want to do is try on the leggings at the store and do the “bend over” test. Try squatting, bending over, engage in some fitting room acrobatics, and see if you can see your undies or skin peeking through. If so, you know that these are not opaque, and may cause some embarrassment in the future. Investing in the right pair of opaque leggings made out of quality material will ensure that the fabric does not wear out over future washes and stay intact.
This is probably the most important one for me. Leggings are naturally supposed to be form-fitting. Imagine wearing a pair of jeans or trousers that are skin tight, and trying to sit, run, or walk in them! Horrid. Comfort may vary based on the individual, so you may want to try on your pair of leggings before you purchase them. What may be comfortable for some may be uncomfortable for others. Some might like a more snug fit while others prefer a looser fit.
The type of fabric you choose for your leggings may provide greater comfort than others. I like a softer fabric and find certain leggings made from spandex to stick to my skin. However, there are people who prefer a more elastic feel that can provide coolness during hot temperature. Certain fabrics feel itchier on different skin types and may need more
There are a variety of leggings that can provide the maximum comfort. You definitely want to choose from the material listed above, but there are also different types of cuts that you may prefer. There are skin-tight, body-hugging leggings that are meant to be worn as a base or for yoga. There are high-waisted leggings that provide a flattering silhouette and slims down the gut area. There are ¾ length leggings that can provide more breathability for the lower part of the body. Some say these types of leggings make them more “aerodynamic” during their workouts.
Leggings don’t just have to be black (although one should definitely have a pair of quality black leggings for layering). There are so many different styles out there that can show off your personal style, so you’re not just limited to the same old boring athleisure.
There’s a saying that goes “If you dress good, you feel good,” or “dress for success,” and I am a firm believer in this. Sometimes just putting on a nice outfit can change your mindset for the entire day. It can make you more confident and attractive, which seeps into other areas of your life, like when you’re interacting with someone or you’re crushing it at work. The same idea goes for the right pair of workout gear. It can completely change your mindset during your workout and motivate you to workout harder and put in that extra effort.
Colorful, printed, patterned leggings are the new norm at the gym and there’s a reason why. Clothes can influence our behavior and can subconsciously change the way we act. If you’re dreading heading over to the gym while wearing frayed shorts and your old college t-shirt, try changing it up a bit and invest in a workout outfit, including a pair of fun leggings, that amp up your energy. There will be a direct shift in your mentality, and you’ll not only want to be more active, but you’ll feel confident in doing so. Some experts may call this “enclothed cognition”- the outward shift that happens that reflects your attire. Sometimes putting on a brighter color with fun graphics can cause a direct personality change, causing a more outgoing, cheerful you. There is a reason why wedding dresses are traditionally white to invoke feelings of purity, and black is the color to wear at funerals to reflect a more somber, serious setting. Brands use color theory depending on the type of business they are and carry symbolic meaning. To tie it back, the color you wear may affect the way you act. If you’re investing in a pair of attractive, fun, colorful leggings, you’re investing in your future mental shift.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
With Nike, you can expect quality and style. But when it comes to your activewear, especially leggings, comfort is key! Whether you are running, jumping, climbing or lounging, don't sacrifice comfort for the look.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: What kind of leggings should I buy?
This depends on what you’re purchasing leggings for. If you’re looking to buy leggings for the gym or for athletic wear, you definitely want to look for leggings that are sweat resistant and comfortable. If you’re looking to buy leggings for layering or for style, you want to look for ones that are thin enough to add as a base layer.
q: What kind of leggings flatter my body?
While leggings are comfortable, they may not be flattering to every type of body. It’s important to shop for your body type so that you feel your best. For those who are on the more petite side and fall under 5’4”, you may want to consider a slim fit crop, or leggings that hit just above the ankle to give the legs a longer look, and also to ensure that you are not bombarded with fabric. For those 5’4” with curves, a sculpting crop legging will provide support around the waist without feeling suffocated.
For those on the taller side, a long mid-rise will showcase your long legs, but stop mid-hip for maximum comfort. Compression leggings are amazing for fuller figures, because they add support and sculpt in all the right places and provide a toned, lifted effect.
Some leggings have what you call a “control top” option, which covers the midsection and allows for a smooth silhouette. High-waisted leggings (my favorite) draws in around your waist, providing not only comfort but a toned appearance for your hips and butt.
A wide waistband sits below your belly button without jabbing into your sides. You want to look for wide waistbands with high elasticity, because it may be uncomfortable if they are too tight.
Seamless leggings soften a more muscular build, because the lack of structure and lines. These are good for layering under thick layers of clothing, or wearing as pants under a chunky long sweater. On the other hand, paneled or tiled leggings can provide shape to a thin, boxy build. These can provide the illusion of shape or curves- you want to look for panels running vertically through the legs.
q: What brand is the best?
This also depends on what you’re using the leggings for. For athletic wear and training purposes, you want to go for brands that specialize in sporting wear. Nike, Adidas, Gymshark, and UnderArmour offer leggings made from a top-grade material that are made to be sweat-resistant and offer the right type of compression. Lululemon, Fabletics, and Beyond Yoga offer specific types of leggings that are made for maximum flexibility during yoga, and offer a wide array of colors and styles.
q: Where can I purchase leggings?
You can visit your local mall to see if they have brand leggings in their department stores. It’s best to try the leggings on first to see if they fit well, are comfortable, and are opaque. If the prices of brand name leggings are a bit higher than you’d like at the department store, you may want to visit online stores like Amazon or eBay to see if they carry the style you want, at a discounted price.
q: Can I wear leggings as pants?
This is up for debate. While I am inclined to say yes, there are fashion police of the world who would fully say no. If you are wearing leggings as pants, there are a few key things you have to remember. Make sure they are not see-through. If they are see-through, they are basically tights and not leggings, and definitely cannot be worn as pants. If they are opaque, make sure you are wearing the appropriate underwear that won’t show any “panty lines” and show creases. This is why some may be so averse to seeing others wearing leggings as pants, so you want to be mindful, especially in the environment you’re in. A more corporate work environment may not allow for leggings to be worn in the workplace, while a more casual atmosphere will allow for them.
q: What kind of shoes do I wear with leggings?
This also depends on the environment that you’re wearing your leggings in. Of course, when you’re wearing leggings to the gym, you want to pair these with a pair of comfortable training or running shoes. If you’re wearing leggings as part of your everyday or night-time attire, make sure that you’re wearing the appropriate footwear. High-heels or stilettos are best suited for attire that isn’t as form-fitting as leggings- opt for some mules with a pointy heel instead. Sandals provide a more casual, put-together look to leggings than flip flops in the summer or warm weather. Boots-combat, ankle, thigh-high- are great ways to layer your leggings during the fall weather. Loafers and flats are a trendy, stylish way to elevate your leggings look, and are versatile enough to be appropriate for most environments. If you’re in a more wet climate that tends be prone to heavy rainfalls, leggings are a great way to layer under thick layers of clothing and pair with some rainboots. The thin fabric ensures that you can comfortably walk around without having fabric bunch up around your ankles.
q: What else can I wear with leggings?
You can find many fashion blogs that give you easy tips and styling tricks that make leggings appropriate to incorporate with all the pieces of your wardrobe. In most of these fashion websites and blogging tips, there are a few common themes. First, you want to make sure that the top you’re wearing is long enough to cover your back and front side. This provides a flattering silhouette, as well as an aversion to embarrassing lines peeking through. You can also add long cardigans, sweaters, and jackets to frame your physique. Pairing leggings with sneakers and a graphic tee when you’re out doing your errands provide an air of chic style, as opposed to sweatpants. Pair under miniskirts during cold weather to incorporate your summer pieces, as well as get more warmth than your regular pair of stockings or tights. If you’re wearing patterned or colorful leggings, you want to pair them with a simple black or white top to provide a sense of balance to your look, but still be bright and fun. You can even dress leggings up for a night out or at the workplace with a bold statement necklace and a striking blazer. Leggings serve as a versatile base for many types of looks, and it may be fun to experiment with different colors or patterns.