Which are the best women’s gym leggings? We’ve tested over a hundred pairs over the years, from the good to the bad and the alarmingly see-through. (We’ve also tested the best running shoes, the best exercise bikes and the best sports bras.)
You may have noticed that people generally talk about good gym leggings in terms of what they don’t do – ie, fall down or bunch around your ankles – rather than what they do. The best pairs operate like a second skin, keeping you warm (but not too warm) if you’re training outside and cool if you’re in the gym, dry and comfortable. They offer a zero-distractions fit that allows you to focus on the exercise at hand.
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What to look for when buying gym leggings
Look for versatility, sweat-wicking fabric and comfort, says Alex Boardman, physiotherapist for Aston Villa FC and county tennis player. Investing in a good pair which will do you for the gym, running, and various sports is worth its weight in gold. It’s also worth checking how ethically a pair of leggings were made. For example, Sweaty Betty and Tala are well known for using sustainable fabrics. An ethical brand minimises water use in production, packaging, empowers workers, ensures workers are paid living wage and does not use or test on animals.
, a personal trainer who specialises in menopause and mid-life fitness, says: “I have a vast range of leggings but I really love . The reason they’ve nailed it is they have pockets, which feel solid when you run in them, and they last and wash well.”
How we tested the best gym leggings
Over the course of three years, the Telegraph Recommended team (Abigail and Rebecca) have tested countless pairs of gym leggings from every leading brand whilst running, cycling and strength training.
1. Lululemon Wunder Train leggings
Best overall, 10/10
We like: the quality of the fabric means they stay good as new for a long time
We don’t like: the price tag