Leggings are the hero item to rely on this autumn, and beyond

With working from home and at-home workouts becoming the norm, leggings have secured a special place in our wardrobes for the foreseeable. And the best leggings (opens in new tab)are the pairs you reach for time and time again. 

A capsule wardrobe is something that most people rely on without even realising. Usually, this would consist of the basics that make up your everyday core outfits. We’re talking the blazer you can put your trust in to make any look appear smarter with minimal effort. The white T-shirt you’ll pair with a slip skirt in summer and your trusty jeans come winter (two other items included in the capsule). Then there’s the midi dress you can wear as your work look and also as your go-to wedding guest ensemble. Apparently we only really wear 20% of our wardrobes, and this seems even more realistic this summer. We’ve focused more on comfort. How to dress while working from home, attending a socially distanced picnic or a long walk through newly discovered territory. It appears the humble legging we once saved only for yoga or the gym has become the holy grail when it comes to the new capsule wardrobe. Although, a lot of people are still shopping them for sport with Pinterest reporting the highest search ever recorded for mental health activities including yoga which is up by 80%.

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Easily transitioned, the stretchy legging has become the base to most great lockdown outfits. Whether teamed with a loose-fit T-shirt, worn with a racer vest top or layered with a crisp white shirt - we’ve worn them on repeat. So much so, it’s hard to think of a wardrobe without them post lockdown.

Some of the most stylish women on Instagram have been opting for chic leggings. @venswifestyle shows the key is to balance out the tighter bottom half with a longer top half when out and about to keep them looking classy. A sleek front split which also shows off a killer pair of shoes.

SHOP NOW: Split hem leggings, £19.99, Mango (opens in new tab)

Mango have a very similar style for under £20. Try them out with a blazer and heels for a dressy evening ensemble.

We’re embracing the legging in all its comfortable glory and giving them the seal of approval for many outfits to come. Lyst has reported that there has been a 17% rise in search week-on-week for leggings since April, with Lululemon (one of Meghan Markle’s favourite activewear brands) being one of the most searched brands. The Canandian brand even made it on the Financial Times’ list of the top 100 companies prospering in the pandemic due to increased sales.

SHOP NOW: Align pant 28”, £88, Lululemon (opens in new tab)

The bestselling style from Lululemon just happens to be the Duchess’ favourite. Get them in a khaki shade and team with a white shirt and tan sandals for an effortless day look.

But long gone are the days' leggings are just reserved for sporting activities, credit where credit is due, these simple, stretchy items have secured a forever place in our capsule wardrobe. Leggings are now totally acceptable as part of an everyday outfit – when you get the right pair that isn’t transparent – and they’re ideal to wear for different occasions.

SHOP NOW: Cotton-blend leggings, £9.99, H&M+ (opens in new tab)

This particular style from the H&M+ section is available in sizes L-3XL and they also come in classic black. They’ll look effortless with a white T-shirt and fresh trainers for a weekend stroll.

What we’re saying is leggings aren’t going anywhere. They’ve made a reappearance decade after decade since the eighties and according to the Woman & Home fashion team, they’re a staple to stick by this summer, and beyond.

Go forth and wear your leggings with pride, you’ll be the smug one not having to rely on restricting jeans.

Harriet Davey is a freelance fashion editor, writing and styling for titles including Vogue, Stylist, Grazia, Who What Wear, and woman&home. With over 10 years of experience in the industry, Harriet has a love for shopping but also a newfound interest in trying to be more sustainable. With a love for Scandi brands and an eye for key designer pieces to mix in with high street hero buys, Harriet specialises in shopping stories and buying guides that’ll make you feel excited about updating your wardrobe.