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Tops To Wear With Leggings This Spring and Summer

Tops To Wear With Leggings This Spring and Summer

Happy Tuesday ladies. Women seem to have a love/hate relationship with leggings. They either love them or detest them but the truth is, more and more of us are reaching for leggings these days because they’re perfect for wearing at home and super comfortable.

There’s a flattering way to wear leggings and a not so flattering way. I shared my best tips for how to wear leggings here. Today I’m rounding up some fun long tops to wear with them that’ll work for spring and into summer.

Style Tips On How To Wear Leggings

  1. Make sure the fabric is totally opaque, these are not tights
  2. Be sure your top is long enough to cover your crotch and backside
  3. Buy leggings with a high spandex count so they don’t bag out at the knees and seat
  4. High-rise leggings with a wide no-roll waistband prevent them from rolling down when you sit
  5. Choose full-length rather than cropped leggings for the most elegant look
  6. Solid colors tend to look less like exercise wear

Best Tops To Wear With Leggings

Leggings always look best with long tunic tops because no matter the shape you’re in, they look tacky as streetwear with short tops. Side slits help elongate the look of your legs while maintaining your modesty:). If you are petite, try tops from the missy section which will give you some extra length. Tops from the tall section will also give some extra length so don’t limit yourself to one department.

Short or Long DressLEGGINGS COLLAGE WITH DRESS


Leggings look great under short tunic dresses or even longer ones with side slits. Many of these are sheer which keeps the whole look lighter. If your legs aren’t your best feature, yet you love to wear dresses, a lightweight legging could be a great solution for you.

Pullover Tunics

These are super easy to wear but are often on the full side so beware that they don’t swamp you. Large over lean is a great look but try to avoid ones that look like tents. This tunic has a drawstring waist that helps slim it down. Think about adding a belt to fuller tunics to give some semblance of shape.

Button-Up Shirts

Basically, any button-up shirt that’s long enough to cover your backside works over a pair of leggings. Straight, shirttail or asymmetrical hemlines are all flattering with leggings.

 

Plus Size Tunics

I love this tunic and would wear it in a heartbeat.

Curvy ladies look wonderful in plus size leggings and there’s no shortage of cute tops to wear with them. Just be sure they’re long enough to cover your derriere and not too full. You’re aiming for tops that float and skim over your torso that are not overly voluminous.

Quality leggings look great on plus-sized ladies in shapes that flow but don’t overwhelm. Fit and flare tunics are a great option for all women to give a semblance of shaping without clinging. These are hands down my very favorite leggings of all time. They’re a very slim pant that’s uber comfy and travels like a dream.

Are you reaching for leggings more often these days?

If you liked this post, I’d love you to pin it to your Pinterest board. Did you know that pinning an image from a blogger’s website can be one of the best ways to support their business?

Thanks for reading ladies and remember to wear what makes you feel confident.

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33 Comments

  1. Pamela Amendola
    April 16, 2020 / 7:16 pm

    Hi Jennifer
    I look forward to reading your blog everyday. This one was particularly helpful. I’ve been uncomfortable wearing leggings until I found Hue brand. They are a nice weight and stay up without rolling. I m never sure what type of footwear to wear. Perhaps you could do a piece on what type of footwear to wear with leggings.

  2. Janet D.
    April 14, 2020 / 7:52 pm

    How gorgeous are those Eileen Fisher leggings in that copper colour?? In an effort to get myself out of blue jeans & into something a little more dressy, last year I bought 2 pairs of leggings/ jeggings/slim pants — I don’t know what to call them, but do like them & wear them a lot & am now actively looking to buy another couple of pairs. My only requirement is that they’re a heavy enough fabric to be pants & not tights, that they fit slim but not skin-tight & that they’re high enough in the waist to not slip/roll down when I sit. In truth I have more trouble finding the right tops than I do the pants — which makes this post so timely. I find myself leaning toward gauzy, embroidered Indian cottons & the kind of tunics I wore back in my hippie days (that Floral Crush tunic from Soft Surroundings is ME!), although 2 of my favorite looks are simple long shirts, one black, the other white, sleeves rolled up, worn with sandals & plenty of jewelry. I’m a scant 5’4″ so trying to get the proportions just right can be tricky but when I do, it works a charm. I still love my jeans, but leggings have become a big part of my life.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 15, 2020 / 10:08 am

      I’m with you about my preferred type of leggings. Skinny stretch pants are more to my liking. I’m 5’4” too:)

  3. Kay
    April 14, 2020 / 5:43 pm

    You can put me in the anti-legging camp. I don’t like them on me, and there are few women who look good in them at all, IMO.

  4. Susan B
    April 14, 2020 / 4:44 pm

    I love the look of that long blue and white sheer tunic! I’ve had a hard time wearing leggings. Even with a long tunic, I feel very exposed and they are usually not warm enough, especially around the house. That being said, I’ve had great success with slim leg pants from JJill and Lands’ End. They give pretty much the same look when worn with tunics and long cardigans and they’re warmer. It’s taken me awhile, but I’ve also gotten comfortable with wearing capri leggings under short dresses in the summer. I never wore short dresses before!
    I look forward to your blog everyday. You’re my favorite! 🥰

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 15, 2020 / 10:06 am

      I’ve just ordered a mid length caftan to wear leggings under looking forward to styling it.

  5. Mary
    April 14, 2020 / 4:29 pm

    I’m still stumped here. The leggings you have pictured look like skinny pants to me. (Eileen Fisher) I have tried wearing leggings but they fit me like, as you’ve said, sausage casings. I think because I don’t have big hips so I can’t wear the bigger sizes that would fit my legs best. And then the really long tops look frumpy with pants legs that are looser than they should be. I’m about to get rid of all tunics because they just don’t work with anything I have.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 15, 2020 / 10:05 am

      My EF skinny pants fit like a legging with a slightly wider leg. They’re very close to the body but not sausage casings. I size down on them so they’re snug on my legs.

  6. Nancy Walden
    April 14, 2020 / 11:02 am

    I recently bought two pairs (black and blue ) of denim cropped leggings. They’re by Hue and since Sam’s Club carries them they’re very affordable. The label calls them capris but they’re actually ankle-length. When I bought a white pair last year, they called the style 7/8. This year they have a slit which I really like. I need some new tunics to wear with them so I appreciate today’s topic! The long blue/white tunic reminded me that I have a similar style in a deep red, navy and white print that I’ve always worn with long navy leggings. It’s sheer so I wear a navy tank under it but I’ll have to try a white tank and the white leggings. I can also go more casual by wearing it with blue denim leggings. Thanks for making me rethink something that is already in my closet!

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 14, 2020 / 2:20 pm

      My pleasure! Those sound like great combos.

      • Lil
        April 23, 2020 / 12:16 pm

        I just found some Hue leggings online at Kohl’s! My 50th is in the Fall, but this past year my petite body rounded-out after knee surgery so I’m not sure if this new little belly is a meno-pudge or a Pandemic pudge, ha! Anyway, at this time, leggings are fitting me and feeling the best and are the most forgiving of my newfound apple shape.

        I’ve had success with leggings from Athleta but now I am looking for more of that hybrid cut you were talking about, Jennifer – not quite as tight. I tried Spanx leggings last year when I first gained weight but they kept rolling down my tummy – highly disconcerting:( I’m hoping the affordable Hue will work for me!

  7. Peggy
    April 14, 2020 / 10:38 am

    I ordered a terrific pair of adaptive wear legging/slim pants from Fusci. If anyone uses a wheelchair these leggings have a High back to solve the problem of pants sliding down.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 14, 2020 / 2:16 pm

      Thanks for the tip Peggy

  8. April
    April 14, 2020 / 10:25 am

    Jennifer, I love leggings but I’m only 4’11, so tunics generally are too overpowering. What would you recommend for someone my size? Maybe a regular sized long top?

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 14, 2020 / 2:16 pm

      That could work. A regular sized button up would likely be the right length on you. Match your top color to your leggings for the longest look and make sure it’s not too full.

  9. Kathleen OBrien
    April 14, 2020 / 10:02 am

    Well done – I do like leggings – but like you only with long tops (tunics) or a dress. I did get the one from Lane Bryant – my story on that was I ordered my regular size and ended up having to send it back and get the next size up as it seems a little stiff – sizing up made it perfect. And the white is crisp like a white shirt should be but with edgy look that I love!

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 14, 2020 / 2:14 pm

      I just love the shaping on that shirt. Thanks for sharing the sizing info.

  10. Funinteriors1
    April 14, 2020 / 8:59 am

    Jennifer, this is my first response to your blog.
    First let me say I love it and you. Your warmth
    and goodness radiates.
    I am 78. A former model years ago; a recently
    retired Interior Designer so I am all about
    fashion. I have also done some styling over
    the years, mainly for my ID clients. Because
    our body types are so different ( I am 5’10” and
    very long legged and not curvey😢-sort of
    straight) I didn’t know if I could relate. But your
    post today about leggings was
    excellent. You have really upped the ante and
    try to address all body shapes etc. Plus I just
    really like you and your humility and kindness.
    Keep it up.
    I just looked in the mirror after being quarantined for about 3 weeks with no hair
    coloring/ cut and I don’t look like my mother – I
    look like my grandmother. Yikes!

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 14, 2020 / 2:13 pm

      Welcome Carol! There’s a lot of those mirror surprises going around;) You’ve had some very cool careers. Stay safe and cut yourself some slack. We are all in the same boat.

  11. Joanna
    April 14, 2020 / 8:28 am

    Well done, Jennifer! I hate seeing women wearing leggings like they are pants. A long top is mandatory when wearing them, unless you are working out. I occasionally wear them in winter with a long sweater or tunic top, paired with tall boots or booties.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 14, 2020 / 2:09 pm

      I love mine with boots and a long sweater too. It’s cozy and easy.

  12. MollIe M.
    April 14, 2020 / 8:13 am

    Leggings are the only pants I wear. I love them. The make is HUE. They always fit just right and you don’t keep pulling the up. Tights fit differently and I do not wear them as they are tight to the leg.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 14, 2020 / 2:08 pm

      Hue is a great brand. They make so many nice options

  13. Carolyn
    April 14, 2020 / 7:02 am

    Good morning!
    Thank you for putting so much time and effort into giving us this great post on leggings and the tops to wear. Now if everyone could just read this.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 14, 2020 / 2:07 pm

      Good morning Caroline!

  14. Eve
    April 14, 2020 / 7:00 am

    I like the idea of a longer lightweight dress over leggings. I won’t go the really sheer route but I can see an eyelet or Lacey dress as a possibility. Even a mesh maybe. Thanks for the idea Jennifer.

  15. Linda
    April 14, 2020 / 6:56 am

    You have convinced me to get some leggings and tunics for this summer. I will be looking to find a couple of pairs!

    I hope everything is going well there!

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 14, 2020 / 2:06 pm

      We are hanging in there. Stay well Linda

  16. Olwyn
    April 14, 2020 / 6:42 am

    Love tights and reach for them over pants or jeans. It is the comfort factor and they hide my varicose veins. Finding tunic tops that are long enough to provide the modesty I want, is my biggest issue. And I want any top to skim and have some fluidity to it – nothing that clings.
    I find it a graceful, flattering look when well done. But there are guidelines and thank you for posting them. I am 79 and seek ease and comfort first.

  17. Bea
    April 14, 2020 / 6:00 am

    I love the comfort of leggings, but would never wear them out in public. Since I have a big bust and am only 5’1″, leggings seem to make me look heavier on top, out of proportion, off balance, and shorter than I am. Leggings are perfect for wear at home, though!

  18. MP
    April 14, 2020 / 5:37 am

    Outfits shown here are cute – on someone else! I hate tights! I bought a nice black pair with seaming details. Every time I put them on, I took them right off. I did not want to be seen in public in those — even with a long top. I eventually gave them to my 20-something niece. She rocks those tights.

    • Jennifer
      Author
      April 14, 2020 / 2:05 pm

      There’s are big difference between leggings and tights:)

      • MP
        April 16, 2020 / 6:22 am

        I meant leggings! Tights are definitely NOT pants but leggings are sort of pants for other people. 🙂

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