Insomniac Sale Picks: Warm and Durable Tights

*In this late-night feature – which will run Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday of each week – I’ll gather up three fun items that are currently on sale online and share them with you! I would LOVE suggestions: Stylish wide-width pumps? Classic v-necked sweaters? Chandelier earrings? Petite dress slacks? What would you like to see featured?*

Krysta requested a few picks for warm and durable tights, so here we go:

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Hue Brushed Tights – was $20, now $15

I don’t have gobs of Hue tights in my own collection now, but the pairs I have are both warm and durable. They can get a little pinchy if you end up with a style or size that doesn’t work, but they are definitely thick without being bulky and hold up well to washing and wearing. This style is described as “heavyweight sweater tights boasting a warm brushed lining” and comes in black and brown. (The Nordstrom house brand has plus sized tights in similar colors, and Sock Dreams has plus size sweater tights.)

express opaque tights

Express Opaque Full Tights – was $14.90, now buy one get one 50% off

Not on sale in the usual sense, but I’m sneaking them in because I feel like Express tights are the best-kept secret in the biz. I will admit that I haven’t bought any this year, but that’s because the pairs I have from two years ago are STILL going strong. Soft, warm, stretchy, and durable. The style you want is Opaque Full. Available in red, cobalt, wine, and olive as well as black, brown, and gray. (We Love Colors has the best selection of colorful plus-sized tights around, though I haven’t found them to be super warm.)

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Spanx Lace Bouquet – was $42, now $25.20

So here’s the thing about Spanx hosiery: It is REALLY good. If it came in non-compression options, it would still be really good. The fibers used in the legs are amazingly strong, most styles are quite warm, and they don’t roll down. This style was one of the few I could find on sale and I have some patterned pairs that are decently warm, but the full-priced versions – here for $28 and here in high waist for $38 – are even better bets. Size G fits up to 325 pounds and 6 feet tall.

Other not-currently-on-sale resources for warm and durable tights:

  1. Express – Again, my top pick for warm and affordable tights. The opaques are much warmer than the sheer patterns, of course.
  2. Smartwool – Although I don’t own any myself, these get high marks from reviewers and from Already Pretty readers.
  3. Spanx – Compression properties aside, these tights are super durable and quite warm. Especially the reversible pairs.
  4. Falke – For the splurge, these are utterly amazing. Soft, warm, beautifully made.

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12 Responses to “Insomniac Sale Picks: Warm and Durable Tights”

  1. Robin

    They’re not on sale per se, but Nordstrom Rack carries a line of thick, fleece-lined tights and footless “leggings” that are super comfortable–even in the waist–and always something like $6.97. The black and gray ones (they also come in navy and dark brown) are a layering staple for me.

  2. Aya in Couturgatory

    Hm, never bought compression things before, but those Spanx tights are gorgeous! I will try them and see if my muscles get pushed around to different places.

    Good to know about Express, too. I love their camisoles- I have half a dozen of them and I haven’t found any others that can match their thickness, sturdiness, and fit.

  3. K

    I haven’t tried some of these brands and am also shopping for warm winter tights, so thanks!

    How do the Express & Falke brand tights fit on you/ your clients length/height-wise? I often find that most tights, even when sized up, are too short/ not stretchy enough length wise to comfortably pull up on my long legs (32″ to ankle/ 34″ inseam) and this is especially noticeable in opaque tights that then become sheer in most spots.

    I know that Hue and Smartwool brand tights are too short for me, but Commandos work well but aren’t warm, and I’m wondering if you know how Express opaque tights and/or Falke compare to the above brands? Or, do you or other readers have recommendations for warm tall size/long legs tights brands? Thanks!

    • Susan

      I’m quite short (5 even) but I feel like the We Love Colors tights come up really high, too high for me, but maybe just right for you.

      I would avoid the Uniqlo tights. Even I have trouble pulling them up high enough.

  4. Madge

    Marks & Spencer is a UK retailer, and they have the best tights! I have a couple pairs I got in 2010 that I’ve worn a lot that still look great. So last month when I saw they were shipping to the US for free, I bought 2 pairs of wool ones last for $30 total!

    For reference I’m about a size 18-20 and 5’10” and their XL size fits me great.

  5. marsha calhoun

    I am learning to love tights, so I thank you for all this research and for the examples you offer. I would like to inquire about a random but intrusive phenomenon I experience. I find that irregularly patterned ones such as the lace bouquet evoke in me a visceral negative (actually a revulsion, but I was reluctant to use the word). I don’t know why – I suspect that they remind me of disease or something. I was just wondering if anyone else ever has this experience – I kind of hope not, because it’s clear that many people find such patterns beautiful, as I would if I saw them anywhere else.

  6. Krysta

    Thank you, Sally! “Too many tights” is an improbable condition for me! (As in, as soon as I say that, I realize that I have no clean tights for the next day and don’t have enough time to wash/dry them!)

    And it’s funny. A couple days after I sent that e-mail, I walked into one of the Savers* around here and right by the entrance was a cold weather display. Had a bunch of new sweater and fleece-lined tights in four or five different colors each, as well as scarves, hats, gloves, etc. I picked up a couple pairs of fleece-lined tights (first I’d found locally that go up to my weight!) and a printed silk scarf that was too pretty to pass up, even for someone that rarely wears scarves.

    *That’s the name Value Village goes by around here. I think there’s a third name they go by elsewhere, too.

  7. Jasmine

    Target’s $5 tights used to be pretty warm, durable and amazing – but then they changed suppliers or something and now they’re standard sheer uncomfortable tights. 🙁 It’s really sad, too, because the few pairs I have from 4 years ago are still going, whereas ones bought after that have long since been finished.

  8. Nebraskim

    I have tights I love from Shopko (sort of a cheapo retailer common in the midwest). They are comparable to the tights Target USED to carry.

    Marsha C., I’m not repulsed by patterned tights but I can see how the red on red could look like a bad rash. I saw a young woman wearing sheer red tights recently, and they looked like a really bad sunburn. Cute in theory, bad in practice I think. She also had extremely heavy legs and the skirt was pretty short, so it could have been they were just stretched a little bit too sheer.

  9. Sarah P.

    I bought a pair of Smartwool tights on ebay last winter, but the legs were way too short. The crotch only came to my mid-thigh, and I’m 5’6″. Did I get a missized pair, or is this normal for Smartwool tights? I don’t want to take the risk again with a larger size unless I know they are going to fit.

  10. Tracy

    I live in Colorado and I have discovered some inexpensive fleece tights at Walgreens and Bed Bath and Beyond that are warm, opaque and sturdy. They are pretty boring though, so sometimes I wear patterned but not so opaque tights over a pair of simple opaque black tights from Target. This allows me to stay warm on the walk to the light rail and add interest to my winter wardrobe.