Turns out Kate Middleton was right all along; it is time for nude pantyhose to make a comeback.

A year ago, if you told me I would be writing this post, I would have called you a liar. I hated nude pantyhose. I thought they looked fussy and contrived and overwrought. They weren’t “effortless.” They weren’t “cool.” But now I have changed my mind. Pantyhose are wonderful, and they deserve a comeback.

First, a definition: “Nude” pantyhose are any hose that are approximately the color of your naked legs, whatever that color may be. By “nude,” I do not necessarily mean “beige,” though that might be the shade that works for you.

OK, now that that is out of the way, let’s talk about why nude hose needs to make a comeback.

1. They make your legs look nice

Most of us do not have legs that are smooth and perfect. Pantyhose make it look like we do.

2. You might be able to avoid shaving

Thanks to the smoothing, perfecting effects of nylon tubes of fabric over your legs, you can probably get away without shaving your legs, even for a formal event. Not that you have to shave your legs if you don’t want to. But if you don’t want to bother shaving your legs but still want the look of hairless legs, pantyhose will be there for you.

3. “Effortless” is a lie

You know all those cool, leggy style bloggers running around in short shorts and flirty summer mini dresses with their legs looking shimmery and perfect? A lot of them are wearing leg makeup. They are literally smearing foundation over their legs to make their legs as smooth and pretty as their faces. That is pretty cool and all, but I do not have time for that. (Also, the one time I tried body makeup, it started raining, and then I walked into a room full of dancers in pristine white kimonos. I spent the next hour shouting, “Stay away from me!” Lest I ruin someone else’s outfit.) Pantyhose are like makeup for your legs, but they won’t rub off, and at the end of the day, you can just peel them away.

4. The preppy look is in

Everyone seems to want to look a bit like a fancy middle-aged lady this summer, and fancy ladies always look polished, and pantyhose look “polished” in that “I work at a conservative office” kind of way.

5. You probably aren’t powerful enough for the “bare legs” power play

When everyone in New York was up to their eyebrows in snow and below-Arctic temperatures, powerful fashion people and celebrities were ostentatiously running around in mini skirts with bare legs. It was declared the ultimate power play because to dress like that one had to know that one would never have to be outdoors. One would always have a car waiting, and doors would always be opened for one. That’s all well and good, but if you are a person who hails cabs or takes the subway, that power play will just lead to regret and sadness.

6. Besides, fashion power plays are tacky

If you have to be that overt about being powerful, it’s a bit sad, no?

7. They are retro and a bit throw-backy

Dita Von Teese wears hose. So did your grandmother. Pantyhose aren’t out of style; they’re just retro. Pick up a pair of stockings or a pair with seams along the back if you want all the above benefits but still want to feel like you’re interested and sexually adventurous.

8. They prevent blisters

Dressy shoes are so much more comfortable when worn with pantyhose than when worn with bare feet. Sorry to get all practical on you at the last minute. I probably should have ended at point #7 and the phrase “sexually adventurous.”


1 Comment

  1. Iskra, I came across this article by accident as I looking to order new pantyhose from one of my usual sites. I found that you made excellent points about why pantyhose should make a come back. This made me think of a recent conversation I had with one of my friends who is a trial lawyer. While have drinks, she and I got on the topic of personal choice and professional appearance. She, of course, had just come from court and looked like a polished professional, to include nude pantyhose that I thought matched her skin tone perfectly. During our conversation she mentioned that she wears pantyhose often because she feels confident knowing she looks put together and that Carrie’s over into how she carries herself. For the sake of brevity I will not recount the entire conversation but in the end we both felt that in the end our choice to wear pantyhose in a heavy bare leg climate was a result of how we viewed ourselves and that was more important than being a slave to a trend that often made us feel self conscious.

    I think one of the biggest problems is that American pantyhose have often limited themselves to one or two shades that don’t seem to match any skin type. My secret has been that I always buy European brands. It’s not as expensive as you would think but the quality, feel, comfort, and color options are by far superior than what exist in the corner drugstore. Kate Middleton, like many women in the UK and Europe have the option of many brands that meet their personal preferences. I believe that women who chose to give pantyhose another shot should consider looking at the options for hosiery outside the US.

    In the end I have always been an advocate of personal style and comfort. I feel confident that with the pantyhose I wear, I have been able to achieve both those goals.

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