The time for tights is upon us

Last updated 15:43 08/06/2012

So this week's posts are very much in a wintry theme. It's hard not to be thinking wintry thoughts when everything has such a "north of the wall"* look about it.

Naturally it is a time of gloves and earmuffs, of thick socks and gumboots and, for some of us, tights.

Me, I like a bit of nice, thick, tight action. Usually in company with a pair of "don't even think about messing with me, fool" boots, perhaps these ones. But finding a good, reliable pair of tights is like the search for the hopefully-not-holey grail. When it comes to buying tights, you pays your money (and you can easily pay $20 a pair)...you takes your chances.

The potential pitfalls are many. Sizes vary greatly. Even though the packets come with a size guide these cannot always be trusted. And I have been sucked in by the "one size fits all" description more than once. Clearly I am not in the tights "mainstream". And then there's what happens when you accidentally buy the tummy-sucking-in kind.

My friend Josie is of the opinion that opaque tights are manufactured to less robust standards than they used to be as part of a conspiracy to get us to buy more pairs. Who knows, maybe she's right? She wouldn't be the first woman to rip a pair of supposedly thick hose on the first wear, would she?

And then there's the ones that are substantial enough not to tear immediately but, like me with a hangover, swiftly lose their desire to be up. I have a pair of bright blue tights that are great in every other respect except that they start the day with their waistband just under my boobs but by early afternoon this has migrated to somewhere between my belly-button and disaster. This is in fact a literal pitfall of the winter season since these tights regularly fall from somewhere near my pits.

So, I'm really keen for any tips on which brands of tights are the best. I think part of the difficulty in hunting out a good pair of tights comes from that fact that they all look so similar in a drawer. They very rarely have an identifying label or tag so you find yourself picking up a pair and thinking "are these the good ones or the 'getting them on is an epic struggle' pair?" Also when you do find a pair that perform well and want to buy more from the same brand, you find you can't because there's nothing on them to tell you who made them.

Am I really going to have to create a complicated matrix chart and sew different-coloured buttons on to all my pairs so that I can be scientific about this? Because, honestly, I am far too lazy for that. I'd much rather crowd-source this bugger.

So ladies (or chaps if you have experience in this area) do you have a brand or line of tights that you swear by? Do you suffer similar tight-related humiliations? Is there an actual conspiracy afoot or is it only an al-leg-ed conspiracy**?

*Game of Thrones reference. Apologies to those of you without SoHo channel or large broadband allowances.

**Boom! Double leg/foot pun in one sentence. I'm pretending to be proud of this fact rather than ashamed.

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65 comments
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jen   #1   03:52 pm Jun 08 2012

Bought a great pair of tights after the recent cold snap - just your ordinary bog-standard denier tights, from PNS, prepared to put them on... 1 minute later, success had not snagged on fingernails or anything. Sat down after rearranging other clothing items, only to have them sabotaged by an on-lap leap by madam many-claws.... bugger.

Lesley   #2   03:55 pm Jun 08 2012

Ambra all the way!!They are good quality, hard wearing (I am yet to put a hole in any of mine after muliple wears/washes), they have a nice velvety matte finish, come in multiple options for colours, thicknesses and lengths. But - best of all, they have a wee pink label in the back at the waistband to tell you what sort they are!! (ie footless, dernier etc). Available at Farmers.Too good!!

Laura MW   #3   03:56 pm Jun 08 2012

I love tights! If you can find the 200 denier ones by (I think) Razzmatazz, they are amazing! You know that feeling you get when you put on a hoody for the first time and the inside is so fleecy and snuggly.... it's that feeling in tights! Plus they are really warm and have lasted me ages, to finish on a more pragmatic, non-snuggly note.

Lucy   #4   03:57 pm Jun 08 2012

I am BIG on tights. I think the ones from Glassons are the best. Why? They are cheap ($9.99), thick and don't rip (mine have only worn out by getting that old tight look). The only issue I have with them is sometimes I notice they have a slight sort of sheen about them and I prefer a plain matte black tight.

Taylor   #5   03:59 pm Jun 08 2012

The plain black ones from Glassons are pretty fantastic. I'm on my 2nd winter with a few pairs of these and no holes to be seen!

noodle   #6   03:59 pm Jun 08 2012

I go through about 5 pairs a fortnight. The cheaper brands don't have a proper re-enforced toe area so if I'm wearing anything but fluffy slippers the motion of my feet will push my toes through and spell enormous holes. Or when you do buy the expensive ones the waist is not sturdy enough so you have to wear your Bridget Jones knickers over the top to keep the crotch from hitting your knees by the time you've reached the train station.

Plus size stockings are a load of tosh too. I used to swear by the Pams ones from Paknsave/New World etc but I don't know if they've revised the amount of nylon or what but they do not cover anything let alone these sturdy kauri trunks I call thighs.

Huh who knew I had so many feelings about stockings.

AJ   #7   04:00 pm Jun 08 2012

Voodoo's 120 denier available at Farmers for about $20! A bit pricey but they are amazing - thick,and warm. And I'm a tall girl (6ft) and the XT actually fit without becoming thin at the top.

They also seem indestuctible - I will never need to carry clear nail polish in my handbag again.

Niri Tacen   #8   04:01 pm Jun 08 2012

Your Friday essay is late again, Tamaira. Hold out your hand. Palm down, girl. Slap it with your other hand. Consider yourself punished.

Also, all this talk about tights reminds me of this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pc1am3KyYgA

Niri's tip of the week: don't search for "Men in tights" in google. Search for "men in tights mel brookes movie". Otherwise you'll wind up in the weird part of the interwebs again. This is not good when your boss happens to walk behind your desk at that moment...

I have the same problem with tights. Some stay where they're put. Others constantly threaten to become a tight ball in the toe of my show. Others actually try and climb up me. I don't know how, or why, but I suspect aliens.

angelsmum   #9   04:14 pm Jun 08 2012

My current faves are a pair of Ambra 70denier tights I got from Farmers ages ago, they have yet to develop a hole AND they have a tag in the back so I can identify them in the drawer. Also helps getting them on the same way everytime...you know how the underside of the feet sometimes gets little pulls and stuff and if you put them on the other way the next time it looks manky?

Anna   #10   04:18 pm Jun 08 2012

Bugger tights!! I wear leggings - they stay were they are put and depending on the thickness they are warmer than tights and last for ages! I will only wear tights if I need any other colour but black!! which is very rarely. lol @Niri's tip of the week!! too funny!


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