Don't Tell Me I Can't Wear Leggings

Aemilia Madden

I was sitting at the airport this weekend (wearing leggings and sneakers), biding my time on my phone when I came across an article titled "Why Yoga Pants Are Bad for Women." As someone who puts on a pair of leggings probably every day (and, fittingly, has written about it), I of course had to click. Will they give me a blood clot? Cut years off my life? Inhibit my workout?

Nope, I realized as I began to scan my way down the page. There was no science to back up those words—just an opinion. "We may be able to conquer the world wearing spandex," it read. "But wouldn't it be easier to do so in pants that don't threaten to show every dimple and roll in every woman over 30?"

In a world where women's reproductive rights are at risk, when our sisters and friends are saying #MeToo, when workers across industries are having to shout #TimesUp, should the battle we choose to fight really be against what we put on our bodies? Frankly, I don't think it matters why any woman decides to wear leggings. If that's what makes someone feel comfortable (or sexy, sure), there's no reason to critique that choice.

Personally—and just practically—speaking, I find that yoga pants allow me to run with ease, to lie in bed "dressed" but comfortable, and to head to the grocery store and the gym all in one go. Other women may prefer sweats, jeans, or tailored pants, and hey, that's okay too.

Needless to say, I got to the end of the article feeling bewildered. Looking down at the yoga pants on my own legs afterward, I remember thinking, Flying a red-eye is awful, and if a pair of body-hugging pants makes it even a little bit better, there's no question that I'm wearing them.

As it turns out, when I broached the topic with my co-workers, they too had a lot of feelings about yoga pants and their choice to wear them. So, I decided to let the Who What Wear team speak for themselves.

Explore: News, Fashion, Leggings

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