Leggings: 3 Fresh Outfit Ideas For 2023

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Leggings have an unfair bad reputation, in my opinion. 

We’re often left feeling like we’re supposed to reach for something other than leggings if we want to seem “put-together,” but why are we trying to find an alternative if this option is stretchy and comfortable, AND we like how they look on us, you know?!

Leggings Have A Bad Rep: Let’s Style Them In 3 Fresh Ways

So, I’ve been thinking, maybe we don’t need to feel bad for reaching for our favorite pairs of black leggings as often as we do. Perhaps we just need some fresh inspiration in how to style them.

When I’m looking for a quick, easy outfit, leggings are an obvious choice.

top | leggings | shoes | socks | similar bag

When I’m looking for a quick, easy outfit, leggings are an obvious choice. They’re the perfect companion to a busy mom life. And in case you’re curious…these Lululemon leggings are definitely a favorite of mine (this second-skin legging from Athleta and this ultra soft legging from Vuori are also top faves).

But instead of throwing on my regular ol’ tees that I love so dearly, I’ve been reaching for a few other outfit combos to help make my looks feel more intentional.

These three outfits have been perfect for the mild winter climate of where I live in California, but they’ll be an amazing option as we roll into spring too. 

Outfit Idea #1: Pair Your Leggings With A Slouchy Cardigan

A slouchy cashmere cardigan paired with leggings is shockingly versatile, simply because it’s easy to class the look up w/ flats & jewelry.

sweater | tank | leggings | similar boots | similar bag

A slouchy cashmere cardigan paired with leggings is shockingly versatile, simply because it’s easy to class the look up with flats and jewelry, or keep it casual with sneakers and your hair in a bun. Either way, you feel put-together in that comfy, cute sweater.

Boots are a fun and easy way to add personality to a leggings outfit. While ankle booties were a popular match to leggings in past years, now it’s time to reach for something a little taller.

I love the idea of rocking this leggings-&-a-sweater outfit combo w/ tall wide-calf boots.

sweater | tank | leggings | similar boots | similar bag

I personally love the idea of rocking this leggings-and-a-sweater outfit combo with tall wide-calf boots, and while these aren’t technically rain boots on my feet, the look would be stellar — and practical — for spring with a pair of your go-to rubber boots.

When I'm wearing a shorter sweater w/ leggings, I love reaching for sneakers to elongate my legs in the outfit as much as possible.

sweater | tank | leggings | similar boots | similar bag

Don’t feel like you’re restricted to a long cardigan if that’s not your preference. A cropped sweater that sits just at or above the bum is another great option (yes, leggings are in fact pants).

When I’m wearing a shorter sweater with leggings, I love reaching for sneakers to elongate my legs in the outfit as much as possible.

Fit Notes: This cashmere cardigan from Jenni Kayne is easily a top worn piece in my closet – I’m wearing a large! Not looking for such a big investment? This cardigan is identical and incredible (I own multiple colors, also in size large).


Outfit Idea #2: Replace Your Oversized Tee With A Button-Down

When I want my leggings outfit to feel intentional but still have the same comfy, throw-&-go appeal, I swap my tees w/ an oversized button-down.

top | leggings | shoes | socks | similar bag

Don’t get me wrong, I still think of an oversized tee with leggings as a must-have outfit. It’s now a classic, if you will. But I don’t always feel very chic in this combo.

When I want to feel like I put together an outfit on purpose but still have the same comfortable, easy, throw-and-go appeal, I simply swap my tees with an oversized button-down.

top | leggings | shoes | socks | similar bag

Since leggings are tight and fitted, and I prefer my button-downs to be loose and flowy, I love wearing the tops unbuttoned so as to still give me a bit of shape and dimension.

This outfit idea works great in all climates too. Reach for a lightweight linen top as the temperatures rise, or layer it up with a stretchy long-sleeve underneath if needing extra warmth. 

This Free People button-down shirt runs really big: I'm wearing a medium, & it fits loose & quite long.

top | leggings | shoes | socks | similar bag

My go-to? Cotton gauze — it’s the best.

Fit Notes: This Free People button-top shirt is my favorite purely for how soft it is. The top does run really big: I’m wearing a medium, and it fits loose and quite long. If you’re shorter than me, or looking for something a bit more minimal when it comes to the length, try this button-top: you still get the same flowy coverage but with a little less material.


Outfit Idea #3: Throw On A Statement Coat

Grabbing a statement coat is a great way to keep your leggings on, but still feel put-together when you’re leaving the house.

coat | leggings | tee | shoes | similar bag

It goes without saying that this outfit idea is for those of us on the go.

Grabbing a statement coat (instead of a sweatshirt or worn-in fleece) is a great way to keep your leggings on, but still feel put-together when you’re leaving the house for school drop-off, errands or whatever the day requires. 

I get most excited for linen clothing when we’re nearing the end of winter. It’s a material that just feels like summer.

I get most excited for linen when we’re nearing the end of winter. It’s a material that just feels like summer.

Free People’s Charlie trench coat is part linen — and the long overcoat of my dreams (that attached hood, are you kidding me?!).

I’ve also used this same “leggings with a statement coat” concept with an oversized biker jacket and a heavier dress coat. The outfit is always slightly unexpected and yet intentional, which makes it 10/10 in my book.

I’ve also used this same “leggings w/ a statement coat” concept with an oversized biker jacket & a heavier dress coat.

coat | leggings | tee | shoes | similar bag

Fit Notes: The trench coat runs slightly big. I’m wearing a medium (usually prefer a large in coats), and I love how it fits.


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Xx,
Amy

Let’s be friends on Instagram! Sharing life from a California beach town, daily style & beauty faves, never-ending Gilmore Girl binge-athons — all with a good dose of adorable toddler content too.

Hey, Pinners…

Black leggings *are* pants — we just need some fresh inspo. Here are 3 comfy, fresh outfits to wear into spring (think: w/ a trench coat, cardigan & more).

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