When buying leggins you have a choice, either buy good ones first time or waste money buying low cost leggings that wear out and don’t last.
As a Pilates instructor I’ve tried a wide range of leggins, it’s worth spending a little more for a high quality product. My recommendation is the Contur Smooth Move leggins (click to visit the store). These leggins are environmentally friendly, squat proof, and are the most comfotable leggins I’ve ever worn.
These aren’t the lowest cost, however the high quality and environmental benefits give you peace of mind you won’t need to replace them in 6 months with a low cost, envronmentally damaging, pair.
What to Look for in Leggings
If you’re going to a class you’ll want a set of leggings that look great, but what other factors should you look for?
- Snug fit – With the range of movements required for Pilates it’s important to have well fitted leggings that aren’t going to get in the way of your movements and that when you move don’t keep sliding down requiring you to constantly pull them up.
- Squat proof – Do you feel comfortable performing squats? Do they have the right amount of give to ensure they don’t split? Working out at home on zoom is one thing but when we can join each other in the studio for Pilates class you’ll want to make sure you can squat without your panty line or underwear being visible.
- Price – Cheaper leggings often seem to hold their shape for less time leading to bulging material at the knees or lose material around your glutes after you’ve performed a few squats or sat in them for any length of time.
Top Leggings to Consider
- Contur Smooth Move – Contur (link to website) are my choice for leggings, not only do they look and feel fantastic, they’re also produced in a socially and environmentally responsible way. The vibrant range of colours are a winner, the material supports and holds you in, in all the right places and allows you to move freely and, most importantly, with confidence. I like the high waist band and absolutely love the feel of the material on my skin. They are ultra flattering and I receive compliments every time I wear them, what’s not to love?
- Sweaty Betty – Until I tried Contur leggings Sweaty Betty were my brand of choice, a great selection of good-looking clothing. Their Power leggings were always my go-to leggings of choice and I do love the pockets on the leg. They have a great range of colours but not every colour or pattern has proven to be squat proof and that’s a real issue for me when it comes to feeling confident. They are expensive, so I generally buy them when they are in the sale and can’t always get my size.
- Under Armour – A very established brand, while they do have some interesting designs I’ve always found them to be a little bland as I like having a rainbow of colours to choose from to suit my mood. On the plus side they have a range of lengths: cropped, 7/8th or Full.
- Nike – Another established brand (one with a chequered history with environment and social responsibility) they have good sales and you can often find 20% discount codes.
Why I Chose the Contur Smooth Move Leggings
As a Pilates instructor I need good quality leggings that last. Most people will pop leggings on for a Pilates session, maybe an hour a day, maybe just once a week. As an instructor I wear them all day, every day. What I love about the Contur leggings is how comfortable they are, I haven’t felt the need to remove them, they’re like a second skin!
Contur have the tag line “You’ve got it, we flaunt it” and they certainly live up to this! I’ve had so many wonderful comments about my outfits since switching.
I don’t just do Pilates, I also enjoy outdoor boot camp training and have been wearing these outdoors, even in winter when it’s far too cold for most sane people to leave the house to do star jumps in a snow covered field!
Considering the high quality and environmental credentials I thought they may be very expensive, I was surprised to find this luxury brand retails for less than I expected, they’re on par with most branded leggings and are actually lower cost than my previous favourite, Sweaty Betty.
Environmentally & Socially Friendly
I’m very conscious of fast fashion trend, of buying something low cost that doesn’t last very long and gets thrown away. This isn’t environmentally sustainable and one of the key elements I love about the Contur range is it has been created from the start to have sustainability at the heart of every product.
These leggins are made from a selection of high end recycled fabrics made of ECONYL yarn. Never heard of it? I hadn’t either! It’s a special yarn, a 100% regenerated NYLON yarn made from industrial wast such as fishing nets. Instead of this material being dumped into landfill they’re regenerated for use in clothing.
The company have also chosen to manufacture all items via a UK social enterprise aimed at minimising fabric waste, paying a fair wage and upskilling employees.
These factors set this company apart from other brands, they’ve chosen to create products from scratch with an environmentally and socially responsible approach, whereas other brands are only now starting to move in this direction thanks to external pressure.
For me, investing in these leggings wasn’t just an investment in a great product for myself, it was also an investment in the future, the future of the environment and a future for those making these brilliant garments.