Everyone has that one friend who likes to wear skirts despite subzero temperatures. And before you judge, I should admit I'm definitely that friend. When it comes to clothing, I prefer dresses to pants, which is why I'm constantly searching for the warmest tights for women.
A least half of my closet consists of dresses and skirts, and when winter comes, I like to transition my wardrobe while staying cozy by layering up, big time. Thermal tights, fleece tights, and more serve as an ideal layering piece that keeps legs warm under skirts and dresses — and even jeans or other pants — without adding too much extra bulk. So even if skirts aren't your thing, tights will still come in handy in the colder months.
When it's time to choose a pair (or a few pairs), you'll be pleasantly surprised by the wide range of thermal technology you can find in tights these days — and often at a price that's less than $20 a pair.
Best yet, there're plenty of varieties to match both your personal style and the degree of warmth you need. From pairs that use high-performance insulation to non-itch wool tights to classic but cozy cable-knit options, these will bundle you up in comfy warmth. For the sartorially adventurous, many of these cool-weather tights come in a range of colors beyond classic black, too. Pick your favorite and layer at will.
1. The Overall Best Warm Tights
Heat Holders's thick thermal tights use high performance insulation to protect against the cold while staying thin enough so that they work with almost any outfit. As one reviewer put it simply: "These tights fit great. They are warm but they are not too thick." The thermal fabric is made from a combination of polyester and elastane for a tight yet breathable fit that moves with you. Each pair has a soft brushed inner that traps warm air close to the skin. Machine washable and of a thick, opaque 140 denier, you can choose between black, navy, or purple for these fan-favorite tights with a 4.4-star rating — and they cost less than $15 a pair!
- Available in sizes S to XL
2. The Best Fleece-Lined Tights
For extra-cold days Vero Monte's fleece-lined tights are made from 90 percent fleece to capture warmth and trap it in. The 10 percent spandex helps keep the shape and material comfortable. Designed with an elastic waistband, these footed tights feature a stretch fit that won't sag during wear. The tight's smooth finish also prevents them from clinging to clothes or piling over time. With a 4.5-star overall rating after more than 400 reviews, they're a favorite for being thin enough to wear under pants and warm enough to wear under dresses.
"I cycle to work every day, in a climate that includes lots of ice and snow in the winter, and I wear dresses and tights every day. These are thick and warm; I was cycling in temperatures in the 20s (Fahrenheit) and was comfortable (well, that's untrue - my fingers were COLD, but we can't blame that on the tights)," raved one shopper.
- Available in two sizes for 5'3'' to 5'10''
3. The Best Itch-Free Wool Tights
The wool tights of old could be itchy, loose their shape, and generally uncomfortable. But these Janus wool tights are made from a high-quality Merino wool blended with polyamide so the fabric that's soft to the touch while the 2 percent elastane helps it stay put. The wool's absorbent quality keeps you warm but not sweaty throughout the day. Made of Okeo-Tex certified material, it's also proven free from potentially harmful chemicals. Machine washable, one reviewer raved, "These are the best. The real wool kept me warm while traveling internationally, but they are still breathable so I didn't get hot."
- Available in sizes XS to XL
4. A Fleece-Lined Pair Of Tights Available In Sizes Up To 4X
Available in black, gray, brown, and navy, fans love these versatile fleece-lined tights for being cozy and comfortable. "I'm required to wear tights for work, and during the winter, we're allowed to wear opaque tights. I've been searching for a good pair that will last AND keep me warm.... and these are definitely it!" one customer says. Made of a nylon-spandex blend, they hold their shape well and the extra-stretchy waistband provides comfort. With a 70 denier thickness, they cover well but are still thin enough to wear under pants. "So warm! Wore them traveling through Europe in the winter (think 0 degrees), and they were warm alone and under pants," another customer raves. The only drawback might be that it's recommend you hand wash these.
- Available in sizes petite, medium, tall, 1X-2X, and 3X-4X
5. The Best Ribbed Tights For Warmth
These tights from Vero Monte are made with a blend of wool, acrylic, polyester, and spandex, which makes them stretchy and breathable all while keeping you incredibly warm. They also feature a ribbed pattern to add some texture to your outfit, plus a stretchy waistband and reinforced toe. Pick between four colors black, light gray, coffee, and wine red. "If you're looking for a cozy sweater-ish feel, warm, quality textured tights to wear in cold winters... look no further," raves one review. Unfortunately, while the stretchiness of the fabric gives it some range, it's only available in one size.
- Available in one size for 5'1" to 5'6"
6. The Best Patterned Tights For Warmth
"I love these! They keep me warm and they are so well made and fit well. They actually have a back and a front and the foot is defined. Just a great stocking. They have a soft sweater look," writes one happy customer about these warm patterned tights. Other customers found these tights made with a blend of modal, cotton, polyester, and spandex to be comfortable, stretchy, and cozy. "They're actually the warmest tights I currently own," one shopper says. With their subtle pattern woven in, it's a great way to add a little texture to your look. They come in three colors: black, navy, and wine.
- Available in two sizes for 5'3'' to 5'11''
7. The Warm Tights With The Most Colors To Choose From
Hue's super opaque tights are made from a 90 denier knit for opaque coverage. Warm enough to wear in chilly temperatures, but light enough not to suffocate legs, these tights come in more than five different colors from subtle black and Espresso to vibrant Chili and Ocean Blue. Hue also offers an impressive range of sizes the company says can fit those from 4'11" to 6'0". Unfortunately, it's recommended that you hand wash these to preserve its shape. With more than 600 five-star reviews on Amazon, it's no wonder customers are saying things like: "I can wear them all day and they don't sag at all. They're thick and warm, and aren't uncomfortable underneath pants."
- Available in five sizes for 4'11" to 6'0"
8. Silky Tights That Will Keep You Warm At A Great Price
L'eggs extra soft silky tights are an affordable yet durable wardrobe staple. Best described as opaque with a slight peek of skin, these tights are primarily made out of nylon to keep legs warm year-round. One reviewer raved about the bargain writing, "They fit well, maintained their shape, kept me warm during a very cold winter, and will still be wearable next winter, even though I wore and washed each pair over 30 times."
Also Great: These Cult-Favorite Fleece-Lined Leggings Are An Amazing Deal
This pack of six fleece-lined leggings are a great deal for a high-quality product. "I'm back from my trip to Iceland. It was about 30 degrees F a few times and they kept me warm throughout the trip. I didn't even have to wear them under my pants!! They were perfect and I couldn't believe the price for these," one customer raves. Made of 90 percent nylon and 10 percent spandex, these offer plenty of stretch to fit many different bodies while the fleece lining is cozy and comfortable. With more than 2,300 five-star reviews, they're a best-selling Amazon cult-favorite.
- Available in one size that fits up to an XL
This post was originally published on November 2, 2017. It was updated on June 21, 2019. Additional reporting by Jen Fiegel.
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