The 12 warmest leggings for winter - we've found the comfiest, cosiest styles

The warmest leggings are not only a joy to wear in the winter (thank you elasticated waistband and stretchy fabric), but our fashion experts' picks look good, too.

composite of models wearing three of the warmest leggings from Seasalt, Acai, Poetry
(Image credit: Seasalt, Acai, Poetry)

The warmest leggings will keep you looking chic in plummeting temperatures. Comfy and cosy, adding warm leggings to your wardrobe will be a game-changer for tricky weather days when you want to be extra comfortable and prepared for the season. 

There are plenty of chilly months ahead, so there's no better time to begin planning your seasonal legging outfits. Although winter throws up countless joyous elements - think roast dinners, log fires, and cosy nights in - it can also make getting dressed a bit of a mission. Comfort is a major factor when putting together our wardrobe for chilly days, so a pair of reliable and stylish leggings is a non-negotiable in any winter capsule wardrobe.

If you're still struggling to curate your best leggings collection for cold weather, you should be looking for thermal fabrics, luxe fabrications such as cashmere, and fleece linings, as these will ensure you're getting a pair of the warmest leggings on the market. These easy-wear basics can help to underpin your wardrobe for the coming months and can easily be styled with everything from the best hoodies to knee-high boots for comfy, classic style. We've rounded up some of our favourite warm leggings to get you started.

The warmest leggings to shop now, chosen by our fashion experts

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How to style the warmest leggings

Not sure what to wear with leggings? Need some legging outfit inspiration? Leggings are one of the most versatile pieces you can add to your wardrobe this season. Acting somewhere between tights and trousers - depending on how you wear them and their thickness, a pair of leggings can be both stylish and practical. 

For wearing under trousers, opt for a fine knitted pair, as these won't add bulk and you can still squeeze into your best straight-legged jeans. For wearing under skirts or dresses you can afford to go for a slightly weightier pair, or opt for a cashmere pair of leggings for a really soft and warm finish. If your skirt is midi length, add a pair of knee-high boots to your look and no one will ever know that you have a pair of loungewear style leggings underneath. 

If you want to show off your leggings (and let's face it, if you've invested in some high-quality ones, why not?) team with oversized jumpers and a leather jacket or one of your best winter coats for a laid back outfit.

What is warmer, tights or leggings?

Leggings and tights both offer added warmth in winter, but they serve slightly different purposes. Leggings are typically thicker and often come with fleece or thermal linings that will keep you extra cosy. Although you can get fleece-lined tights, these are less common and can also be pretty bulky. Standard tights won't keep you as warm as leggings due to the thinner fabric, so if it's warmth you're looking for above all else, leggings are the best way to go.

Do leggings keep you warmer than jeans?

"In short, yes," says our fashion editor Rivkie Baum. "Because jeans are made of cotton, despite their weight they are pretty breathable and the wider weave allows cool air to travel through the fabric more easily. Leggings have a much tighter construction (even those made of cotton) and so are naturally warmer. Leggings also can be crafted from a host of different fabrics including wool, cashmere, spandex and those with thermal properties which trap heat well."

Our experts:

Rivkie Baum
Rivkie Baum

With over fifteen years' experience, Rivkie is an accomplished fashion editor, writer and stylist. Covering international fashion weeks, and styling photoshoots all over the world, Rivkie loves translating the trends in an accessible way to make fashion available for all budgets. 

Hannah Hughes
Hannah Hughes

Hannah Hughes is Group Fashion Editor at Future Publishing. Her work appears in woman&home, Woman, Woman's Own, and Woman's Weekly magazines. She is a fashion creative with over fifteen years of solid experience in editorial, commercial, and celebrity styling. She has an in-depth knowledge of the luxury, mid and high-street fashion sectors, which she developed over a decade spent as Fashion Director at some of the UK's most widely read women's magazines, including You Magazine and Look Magazine.

Amelia Yeomans
Senior writer

Amelia joined woman&home in 2022 after graduating with an MA in Magazine Journalism from City University and she is now a senior fashion and beauty writer. She began building her career as a lifestyle journalist after completing a fashion journalism course at the Condé Nast College of Fashion & Design in 2019, writing for a variety of titles including OK!, New!, and Notion on topics such as sustainable fashion and entertainment.

With contributions from