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Whether trying out an athleisure look or getting all glammed up for date night, plus size leggings outfits can make any body shape look fabulous! Even better is how versatile they are – from different fits to super-soft fabrics – plus-size leggings offer many options when styling them. Read on for twelve impressive ideas on the best leggings outfits that will bring out your best self this season!
In this post, we’ll explore my favorite outfit ideas featuring statement pieces combined with timeless staples that will help curvy women like you create updated looks that show off your beautiful shape while feeling great at the same time. So get ready and discover how plus-size leggings can help boost your style and confidence!
Wearing a leggings outfit might seem like a no-brainer to some, but to others, they can never find the right look that makes them feel confident and comfortable. Today I’m going to walk you through everything I consider when creating a leggings outfit for myself as a size 20 woman that’s 5’10”.
In this post, I’ll break down the following:
As I stated above, I’m a size 20, and I’m pretty tall at 5’10”. But even if you’re a size 16 or 26, 4’11’ or 6’2”, I think this formula will work for all plus size women, especially after you’ve done the legwork on finding the perfect leggings for your shape.
When I put together an outfit, I consider my silhouette and how to balance my proportions. Since leggings are tights, I typically like to go loose on top. (Though I break my own rules from time to time:) Adding a jacket or boot is a good choice because it ties the whole look together, and for me, it makes it feel less like the athleisure trend.
There are many different ways to wear leggings, so use this as a jumping-off point for inspiration, not a rule book! Cute outfits are in the eye of the beholder, and no curvy gal should feel like she’s being held back.
Finding the right legging to fit your body can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be! The key is figuring out two things: what size you are and what legging style is most flattering for your figure.
Start by taking measurements of your waist and hips, then compare that with the sizing chart on clothing websites. That will help you determine the size that will best fit you, especially since all clothing brands have their own size charts. With your actual measurements in hand, you can make a more accurate purchase.
From there, try different waistband styles. Most of what’s on the market are high waist leggings, but the waistband will affect the fit. My favorite leggings are the Athleta Elation Tights, and they have a very wide band, which I love. You can see them pictured below.
Others, like the Hue leggings pictured below, have a more narrow waistband. That might be the type that’s most flattering and comfortable for you. You have to try different kinds and see what looks and feels best.
The next thing to consider is the fabric choice. The Athleta Elation tights are compression leggings made of nylon and elastane. This means they give me a smooth silhouette, but they’re not so constricting that they’re uncomfortable.
However, the Torrid Comfort Waist leggings shown below are made from cotton and spandex, providing little to no shaping effects. But some might consider their look and feel of them to be preferable. Again, you need to try both options and see what you like best.
Finally, consider what length looks best on you. Most commonly, the 7/8 length that hits right above your ankle bone is considered to be the most flattering. Other lengths to consider are full length, which covers your ankle and goes down to your foot, and Capri leggings, which usually hit mid-calf.
Depending on your height, you might have to hem your favorite leggings to achieve that length. This is my favorite length. In certain brands, their full-length leggings look 7/8 length because of my height. But on someone 5’2”, they’d probably have to hem them.
Plus-size is often viewed as this one-size fits all silhouette when it comes to anyone over a size 16. However, it’s really not. Within plus size clothing, the same as with straight-size clothing, you have to consider a person’s height, body type, and if certain body parts are an outlier in proportions (such as someone having a bubble butt or small chest while also being plus size).
That said, it depends on those factors regarding what’s most flattering. As I said, I’m a plus-size, tall, hour-glass shaped woman. So I like to accentuate my natural waist and emphasize my chest and butt while not adding too much height to my look. (Though you could have the exact proportions and not feel the same way!)
This brings us back to the theme of this post; you have to try things on and see what you think looks best. Again, my fool-proof formula, as mentioned above, will work for everyone. But playing around with specific pieces of clothing is the only thing you can do to find out for sure.
The one that makes you feel best! Sure, I could say black is the old-time “flattering color” standby. And yes, I do love my black leggings. However, I wear colored leggings too. It comes down to what colors look best on your natural coloring. I did a color consult with Lindsey at Created Colorful to find mine.
But beyond that, I wear colors that fit my personal style and tend to change them seasonally. You can see below I’m in burgundy leggings during the fall, and I love that look. The one leggings look I don’t find particularly flattering are the patterned ones. They don’t do it for me; I definitely prefer solids.
The number one question I get about leggings and being plus size is, “What tops do you wear to cover your butt?” And I get it; a lot of women, plus and straight-sized, don’t want to show their butt in a pair of pants that shows off so much of their figure, so they look for a long shirt or tunic tops to pair with them.
However, I don’t ever want any of my plus-size friends to think they can’t rock crop tops or a graphic tee and denim jacket with leggings because of the section they shop in. Or that they can only wear dark colors. If you like those looks, as I do, wear them! There are no rules regarding “What size do I have to be to wear this trend?”
But if you feel most comfortable and confident wearing leggings with flowy tops or a long sweater, that’s your look! Run with it. Sporty looks, casual looks, or fancy looks, make sure they feel like YOU!
If you try a bunch of different leggings and end up liking the ones that clock in at around $100, don’t despair! My favorite leggings are pricey too, but I’ve learned to take good care of them, so they last. My current Athleta Elation Tights (are you tired of me mentioning these yet?) are over three years old and look just as great as the day I got them.
This is due to two factors; the fabric choice and how I care for them. The Elation leggings are compression, meaning they’re made from nylon and elastane, two fabrics that don’t fade. Since they don’t fade, they keep their rich black color their whole life making them look brand new. However, I also take really could care of them. Below you’ll see my washing routine.
My Leggings Wash Routine
It also helps to have a few pairs to cycle through so you’re not constantly wearing the same pair and washing them all the time. Depending on what you do during the day and how long you wear them, you can get a couple of wears out of them before washing, which also helps their longevity.
I’ve included below a variety of plus size leggings outfits I’ve worn over the years. Some are a casual look for everyday wear, while others are a more sophisticated look that would be great for a date night.
Typically, the 7/8 length that hits right above the ankle bone is the most flattering on most women. They elongate your legs and give a clean silhouette. But everybody has their own preference for length, so I recommend trying different ones and seeing which you think looks best.
If they all seem too long, fold them to the 7/8 length and see how it looks. Suppose you find your dream leggings that don’t come in your dream length, get them hemmed. Most dry cleaners can do it, and it’s typically less than $15.
Is it a cop-out if I say neither? Okay, so obviously, leggings are a tighter-fitting clothing item, but I get what you’re asking. If you try the 2x and they’re too tight, but the 3x feels too loose, which should you choose? I’d prefer the 3x and have them looser because too-tight clothing is always unflattering.
Ultimately though, you’d find leggings that fit just right. By trying several different brands and styles, you’ll be able to find a pair and size that fit you perfectly.
If they roll down, they’re too small. Don’t be tempted to squeeze into those too-tight leggings – you’ll cause your skin to contort in a struggle for freedom, pushing the fabric down until it can escape its confinement. This causes them to roll down as you wear them throughout the day.
They’re too big if they are falling down without the waistband rolling. Either you bought them in a size too large, or they may have stretched out over time. That devil of a dryer can break down the elastic and cause them to stretch out super fast.
Size up. Typically there’s not that big of a difference from one size to the next; another reason to not get hung up on the number they put on a tag, so sizing up will fit better and probably not look baggy.
Wearing plus size leggings outfits does not have to be daunting. With some creativity and the right pieces of clothing, you can create a variety of flattering outfits that showcase your figure in the best light. When it comes to feeling confident and fashionable, plus size leggings can do no wrong!
Plus size leggings are perfect for days when you want to be comfy but still look stylish. My lookbook was just a glimpse of how bold and eye-catching wearing plus-size leggings can be. I hope this article inspires all my fellow curvy ladies out there to try out statement looks of their own with plus size leggings as the foundation.
Now, let’s hear it – what are your favorite plus size leggings brands?