12 Ultra-Warm Leggings That Are Perfect For Cold Weather Hikes

When the cold weather hits, it's pretty difficult to get me out the door. It's not that I don't love the winter — because I do. I just love it from one side of the window, and that's the side with my bed and laptop. The best warm leggings for hiking (and if you're me, everything else) can help you to feel cozy and comfortable despite the temperature.

If you're wondering what to wear for hiking in cold weather, an insulating base layer is the best place to start. The greatest thing about winter leggings is that they trap the heat in without the added bulk. The top pairs are lined with fleece, velvet, or some other kind of insulating material, but they're still relatively thin. That means you can wear them on their own or layer them up without feeling like the abominable snowman.

Warm-weather leggings (especially the athletic kind) also tend to use knits and fabrics that wick away sweat and allow moisture to escape — so you stay dry as well as warm. Whether you're planning a winter hiking trip or you just like to stay cozy on your way to yoga, these extra-warm leggings might just be the best investment you make this year.


The Best Overall Warm Leggings For Hiking

Minus33 Merino Wool Leggings, $66, Amazon

Made from 100-percent wool, these Minus33 leggings are amazingly warm and thick. That said, thanks to the interlock-knit construction, they're also flexible and effective when it comes to wicking away moisture. The flatlock seams won't chafe, and they're specifically designed to hold up in the washer and dryer. This pair comes in multiple colors and is also suitable for fishing, camping, hiking, or snowsports.

  • Available sizes: XS — 3XL


The Warmest Budget-Friendly Pair

Paradox Merino Blend Base Layer, $13, Amazon

The vast majority of wool leggings are pretty expensive — but these Paradox base layer bottoms start at just $10 and cap out at $25. That's because they're made from a cozy blend that utilizes wool for its warmth and moisture-wicking properties, but adds in polyester and spandex to create an affordable pair of leggings. It's even infused with FreshGuard, which prevents unwanted odors. You can get this pair in black or gray.

  • Available sizes: S — XL


The Best Weatherproof Leggings

32 Degrees Weatherproof Thermal Leggings, $16, Amazon

If you're planning on braving the elements, 32 Degrees weatherproof leggings are specifically designed to resist odors, static, and moisture, but they're thin enough for wear underneath waterproof paints. "Great product," says one reviewer. "Perfect for layering without bulk and provides warmth and comfort."

  • Available sizes: S — XL


The Best Double-Layer Leggings

Duofold Heavy-Weight Double-Layer Thermal Leggings, $30, Amazon

Because they're made from double-layer, heavyweight thermal fabric, these Duofold leggings are great for hiking, running, or cycling in extreme weather. While they're thin enough to layer, you probably won't even have to. They also offer optimal comfort thanks to their extremely stretchy fabric, moisture-wicking capabilities, and tagless, flatseam design to prevent chafing. "Wore them today in 40 degree weather and I was totally comfortable," says one reviewer.

  • Available sizes: S — XL


The Warmest Plus-Size Cotton Leggings

Zerdocean Plus Size Thermal Leggings, $20, Amazon

These Zerdocean plus-size leggings are super comfy and easy to care for. They're made from thick cotton and lined with a soft fleece, so they both wick moisture and keep you warm. Since they're anti-pill and non-transparent, reviewers are thrilled. "I've been wearing them for two weeks, and no pilling has occurred, even after three washes." You can get them in three colors: black, light gray, and dark gray.

  • Available sizes: XL — 4XL


Fleece-Lined Yoga Pants For Ease Of Movement

Baleaf Fleece Lined Leggings Yoga Pants, $25, Amazon

If ease of movement is your primary concern, these yoga pants from Baleaf fit the bill. The soft-brushed fabric, moisture-wicking capabilities, gusseted seams, and extreme stretch grant you full range of motion — but the interior is lined with a soft fleece for extra warmth and comfort. There's even a hidden pocket in the waistband where you can keep your phone, key, or ID.

  • Available sizes: S — XXL


The Best Fashionable Cold-Weather Leggings

Weigou Velvet-Lined Leggings, $16, Amazon

Just because you're hiking doesn't mean you're necessarily less concerned with fashion. These Weigou leggings are shiny and sleek on the outside, so they almost have the appearance of leather pants — but they also feature a layer of velvet on the inside. People love them because they're comfortable, warm, thick, and have a bit of a sheen to them.

  • Available sizes: S — XL


Plus-Size Leggings That Keep You Feeling Fresh

ColdPruf Platinum Plus Size Leggings, $26, Amazon

These ColdPruf plus-size leggings are made for the roughest of expeditions because they're created with ColdPruf fabric and SILVADUR technology. In other words, the base layer creates optimal insulation using real merino wool while the infused silver helps to tackle bacteria and unwanted odors. This pair also features a non-itch waistband and tagless design to prevent chafing as well as several gussets for added range of movement.

  • Available sizes: XL — 3XL


The Best Warm Leggings For Petite Sizes

Conceited Fleece Lined Leggings, $10, Amazon

Due to the shorter-than-usual inseam, reviewers say that these colorful fleece-lined leggings hit just above the foot if you're short. This is especially great for petite people who would rather not have to stuff excess fabric into their hiking boots. They also provide comfort and warmth with their double layer fleece fabric, high waistband, flat seams, and durable but flexible stitching. Last but not least, they're available in countless colors.

  • Available sizes: S — XL


The Best Extra-Thin Leggings For Layering

Heat Holders Leggings, $12, Amazon

Even though they're almost thin enough to see through, these Heat Holders feature advanced insulating yarn that maximizes the amount of warm air held against your skin. For that reason, they're great for layering or wearing under dresses and sweaters. Reviewers say they're warm, cozy, comfortable, and actually stay up without constant adjustment. You can get them in four colors: black, brown, purple, and navy.

  • Available sizes: S — XL


The Most Low-Hassle Thermal Pants

Hanes X-Temp Thermal Pant, $12-$20, Amazon

For those whose biggest concern is maintenance, Hanes X-Temp thermal pants are as low-hassle as they come. First, the cotton/polyester blend is made with no-rub flat seams and tapered legs that won't ride up when layered underneath other clothes. Second, the material is already pre-shrunk to ensure that they're the same size after washing. Last, you can get them in a wide range of colors, sizes, and patterns, and reviewers say they're "not extremely thick, but they have kept [them] warm" regardless.

  • Available sizes: S — 3XL

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This post was originally published on 9/20/2017. It was updated on 6/14/2019.