Authored by B. Miller and can also be found here: http://is.gd/SyC8mL
Tights and leggings are two very similar types of clothing. Both are very tight, form-fitting pants, often worn under another piece of clothing such as a dress, skirt, or even jeans. There are some differences between tights and leggings that may make them more suited for one style over another.
The first difference between tights and leggings is the material used to make them. As a general rule, tights are slightly thinner than leggings, and are not intended to be worn alone. Leggings are made of thicker material, and though it is not often recommended in fashion, they may be worn alone and are often used for working out. Tights may also be made of thicker material, however, and once worn with a dress and boots, can be impossible to tell apart from leggings.
The next difference in tights and leggings is length. Tights generally stretch over the feet and all the way up to the waist, entirely covering the legs. Leggings usually end at the ankles, and do not normally cover the feet. Leggings may come in varying lengths, from knee-length or capri-length leggings all the way up to pant-length leggings. For this reason, tights are often worn in the winter for warmth, whereas leggings may be worn during virtually any season, even with open-toed shoes.
Shorter leggings may be referred to as cropped leggings. These work well for working out, and are also very popular to be worn under dresses. Though black is a common color, both tights and leggings may be available in many different colors and patterns for different outfits.
Leggings may be made out of materials such as wool, nylon, silk, or cotton, typically with a stretchy material such as lycra to give them their distinctive look. In general, tights tend to be made out of a more transparent material than leggings. Previously, some leggings were made with stirrups that went over the bottom of the feet to prevent the leggings from riding up. These are no longer commonly worn.
Tights may be worn with shoes that cover the whole foot, such as boots or ballet flats. Leggings tend to be more versatile and can be worn with sneakers, open-toed shoes, or sandals, as well as boots and flats. There are some jeans that are now designed to look like leggings, because they are so tight and form-fitting. These are sometimes referred to as "jeggings" in a combination of the two words.
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