You will be hard pressed to find any woman in 2021 who does not have at least one pair of yoga pants in their wardrobe. They are a staple that can be worn on almost any occasion, and are not just reserved for yoga or working out. As so many are rushing to the shops to buy yoga pants, brands have upped their game, meaning you can easily find high quality great yoga pants virtually anywhere.
Despite the fact that most yoga pants that you can find will be high quality, not all yoga pants are made equally, meaning it can be overwhelming knowing what pair is going to be best for you and your needs. In order to help you know what yoga pants are likely going to best suit your needs, we have created this guide on all things yoga pants, from fabric, to waistband, colour to brand, we have everything you need to know.
Is there a difference between yoga pants and leggings?
One of the main questions that continuously pops up regarding yoga pants is what exactly is the difference between yoga pants and leggings. Since they both look pretty similar in regards to their looks, it can be difficult to see how exactly they are different, however there are some key nuances between the two which dictate performance and wearability.
As you could probably guess, yoga pants are specifically designed for athletic purposes, whereas leggings are more regularly bought for fashion purposes and do not perform great in athletic situations. Whilst you can get workout leggings, these would generally also come under the umbrella term of yoga pants, but they straddle the yoga/ legging venn diagram due to the fact that they are skin tight.
Although you can get specific yoga leggings, the more mainstream design of leggings are different in a variety of ways. First and foremost, the material and fabric used in leggings is different. Most leggings are made from a cotton fabric, meaning they are not particularly useful for when individuals are sweating during exercise. However, there are polyester leggings which are more suited to exercise and are what workout leggings will usually be made from as they have sweat wicking abilities.
Yoga pants on the other hand need to be thicker and have particular properties that allow you to perform your best during yoga practice. In order to achieve this higher quality of workout pants, you will usually find that women’s yoga pants are generally made of a polyester blend which usually includes spandex or lycra in order to give it the extra stretch that is needed for exercise.
It is therefore evident that yoga pants and leggings are slightly different, and although you can get more specific yoga or workout leggings, if you want your pants to allow you to freely and comfortably partake in exercise, yoga leggings are the way to go.
What are the most popular yoga pants in 2021?
As there are so many brands and variations of yoga pants, it can be difficult to know which are the best yoga pants to buy. In order to help you have your decision, we have curated this list of the best and most popular yoga pants in 2021 to help make it easier to choose.
Colorfulkoala 25″ Brushed Leggings w/ Pockets – Black
First comes our favourite all round pair of yoga pants, Colorfulkoala’s 25” brushed leggings with pockets. Coming in at only $24.99, you are getting a high quality product for the price. These pants provide wearers with a soft feel, with their 75% polyester to 25% spandex fabric blend, making them extremely comfortable to wear.
In addition to the perfect fabric blend, these pants also have a seamless waistband and flat lock seams along the length of the pants, giving them an almost naked sensation, which is perfect for the comfort that you need for yoga. Overall, these are a great choice for anyone who is looking for high performance yoga pants at a reasonable price point.
Lululemon Invigorate High Rise Tight 25”
On the complete opposite end of the price spectrum from our first pair of yoga pants is Lululemon’s invigorate high- rise tight 25”. At $128 these pants are realistically outside of a lot of people’s budget, but they make the list nevertheless as they are an extremely high performing pair of yoga pants, making them a fan favourite.
The fabric used in these pants are superior due to the fact that they are a blend of nylon and lycra, which affords them the same elasticity, but with the added benefits of breathability and with the inclusion of two types of moisture wicking fabrics, they are almost completely sweat resistant.
Additional features such as a high waistband, increased support and more than one pocket included in the pants secure them a spot on the list.
Baleaf’s Laureate 28″ Thermal Pocketed Leggings
Thermal leggings are something that many people do not consider, however if you live in a particularly cold area of the world or you have winter travel plans, thermal leggings are going to have to be a must for your suitcase or wardrobe, and these have everything you want in a pair of thermal yoga pants.
Made from a blend of 87% polyesters and 13% spandex, with a micro grid fleece lining, they provide you with all the comfort and benefits of normal yoga pants whilst also affording you the integral warmth that are needed for those cold winter days at home or whilst you travel to those colder corners of the globe. This brand is also inclusive as they offer leggings in sizes XS to 3XL, which is a key advantage to this brand.
Zella Barely Flare Live in High Waisted Pants
As yoga pants have also been used as somewhat of a fashion statement in recent years in addition to being utilised for exercise purposes, it means that they have also taken on new forms and styles, most notably of which is the bootcut pant, which is what Nordstrom’s Zella brand are offering here.
As these are not form fitting pants, they provide an elongating look to them, which is favoured by many. However, they also possess many of the same benefits that the traditional form fitting yoga pants offer, such as sweat wicking material and optimal stretch.
JoyLab High- Rise Seamless ⅞ Leggings
When it comes to the rise of yoga pants or leggings, you largely have two options, high waisted yoga pants or mid rise yoga pants. We would argue that high waisted yoga pants are the superior option for a multitude of reasons.
Firstly, high waisted yoga pants or workout leggings are more multi-functional. Since high waisted pants are generally considered more in style in the everyday world of fashion, it means that you can also wear your yoga pants outside of the workout/ exercise environment. Moreover, high waisted yoga pants are generally more comfortable as they provide the support that is needed during yoga or workouts.
These joylab leggings as sold at target are budget friendly and provide the perfect high waisted look and the comfort that you are inevitably seeking.
Nike Yoga Dri- FIT
Although this list has been largely devoted to exploring the best yoga pants for women, women are not the only ones who go to yoga classes, so what is available on the market for men? When it comes to yoga practice, men usually wear shorts to their workout classes, and we think the Nike Yoga Dri- FIT are one of the best pairs available.
One of the best things about these shorts is that Nike caters to the wide variety of body types held by men, meaning they hold all possible sizes, from a Small to 4XL, and even including an entire tall range within their sizing. Moreover, these shorts come in a variety of colours, so that men can express themselves when they go to yoga practice.
These shorts also offer the usual benefits that you would expect of a good yoga pants, as they are breathable, comfortable and have the required stretch factor needed for yoga and workouts. The only downside to these shorts is that they are fairly expensive, but that is to be expected with a brand like Nike.
If loose fitting shorts are not your thing, Nike also offers a tight version of these shorts, that specifically cater to the needs and specificities of men and the male body.
What to look for when buying yoga pants?
Although above we have listed some of the best individual brands and pairs of pants, all of which are amazing yoga pants, that are on the market at the moment, they are not always available to everyone to buy at any one point in time. It therefore always helps to know the specific things that you should be looking for when you go out to the shops to buy your newest pair of yoga pants.
- Sweat wicking fabric is arguably the most important factor that you should look for when buying yoga pants, especially if you intend to use them for exercise purposes. The sweat wicking abilities of a yoga pant lies in the fabric that is used, so if the pants are predominantly poliester, you can largely guarantee that they will provide you with the sweat wicking properties you desire. This is so important as it saves you the embarrassment of those pesky sweat stains that are unavoidable during virtually any type of physical activity.
- Elasticity in your pants is another key feature that is integral to yoga pants, as it will ensure the comfort of the pair of pants that you choose. Again, the effectiveness of this feature lies in fabric that is used. If there is at least a certain percentage of latex or spandex included in the creation of the pants, they will have that perfect elasticity that you should be looking for when you go to buy a pair of yoga pants or leggings.
- If it is comfort that you want, seamless pants are the way to go. By removing all kinds of seams in the making process, you get that naked, second skin feeling that is imperative for a comfortable pair of yoga pants.
- As pockets are almost non- existent in womens clothing, if you can find a pair of yoga pants with multiple pockets, you have hit the jackpot. Usually, when it comes to skin tight leggings, you will find a small pocket somewhere in the elastic waistband, which is usually just the perfect size for your phone, and realistically, this is all you need. Nevertheless, many brands cut corners and do not provide customers with a pocket in their pants, so if you find a pair with a pocket, or even better, two pockets, buy them there and then.
- Avoid over the top yoga pants. Just as there are a whole range of things that you should be looking for when it comes to yoga pants, there are also things that you should try to avoid. As style has come into the conversation surrounding yoga pants, more and more brands have been adding redundant features to yoga pants, such as zippers and bows. You should try and avoid pants with these additional features as they will ultimately get in the way of the exercise you are wishing to do.