Searching for the best athletic pants for women? I crowdsourced the KERF audience to find out their favorites! This post includes affiliate links.
10 Best Athletic Pants For Women
I’ve been living in leggings for the past two years thanks to the pandemic and WFH life. Leggings are a staple of my “mom uniform.” I also aim to be active daily, so athletic pants are just practical for my lifestyle.
I know how that perfect pair of athletic pants can make you feel confident and comfortable throughout your workout. You know what I’m talking about… the pair you want to reach for even when they’re in the dirty clothes hamper.
Throughout the years I’ve tried too many different types of leggings to count, from twenty dollar Target leggings to the cream of the crop. Spoiler alert: my favorite leggings ever are under $30!
If you’re anything like me, and athleisure wear rules your closet, then you probably know that each pair of athletic pants serves a purpose: some are best for the bike, some are made to be worn on the yoga mat, and then there are those that you lounge in/live in/travel in/chase kids in. My go-tos must have a high waist, pockets, and medium compression, but I love loose joggers and high compression tights for other activities as well!
I crowdsourced the KERF audience to find out their favorite athletic pants for women. With a variety of budgets and activities in mind to inspire your workout wardrobe, here are your favorites (including my must-haves).
10 Best Athletic Pants For Women
In no particular order, here are the leggings and athletic pants y’all think are the best of the best.
Lululemon Align II 25″
These are the uber popular high waisted, super buttery soft leggings that Lululemon is known for. They don’t have much compression and feel like you’re wearing nothing at all! The waist won’t dig in at all. They’re best for under tunics and dresses and lounging around; additionally, they are a favorite for yogis. I have a pair and think they are very comfortable, but they are personally not my top pick since I gravitate towards more compression. The Align leggings come in many colors that are always changing and a few different lengths as well – including shorts and joggers – with the 25″ being a cult favorite.
Lululemon Wunder Under 25″
These have quite a bit more compression, compared to the Align style, and are super smooth. The Luxtreme material is great for high impact workouts. I love these for plyometric classes at the gym. Another similar moisture-wicking style that is very popular is the Wunder Train Tight – these feel cool and sleek on the inside, soft and brushed on the outside, and are great for training, as their name implies.
These are similar to the Align leggings, at a sliver of the cost! They are very similar in fabric and fit, and great if you’re taller since these are longer or “full length” with a 28″ inseam. Priced at $22.99 – unbeatable! With almost 40,000 ratings on Amazon, it’s clear these are versatile and comfortable.
Colorfulkoala 7/8 Length Leggings with Pockets (Kath’s favorite!)
And these, my friends, are my favorite leggings that I wear every single week. I do everything in them from riding the Peloton to folding laundry to wearing them around town. The side pockets are perfect to hold your phone on the go, and they have the comfort of yoga pants while having decent compression for everyday wear and workouts. The price can’t be beat either.
Athleta Salutation Leggings
You all are my people because I love Athleta as much as y’all do! These high rise leggings were recommended several times for good reason. Designed for yoga practice, they give support that feels like a gentle hug. These also have pockets to fit your essentials and come in fun colors and prints. Plus, Athleta offers their styles in tall and petite sizes, making it easy to find the perfect fit.
Zella Live In High Waist Leggings
Moderately priced at just $59, these Nordstrom leggings are flattering and best of all can be worn both at the gym or as a casual outfit for running errands, school pick-up, and more. The brushed, sweat-wicking fabric dries quickly to keep you cool and comfortable. While I know a bunch of people love and recommend these, I have to say they are not my favorite. I bought them and returned them a few years ago.
Vuori Performance Jogger
This a pair I haven’t tried myself, but Vuori is a brand that is growing in popularity fast. Not only have I received personal recommendations for their Performance Joggers, but you all seem to like them, too. The Performance Joggers have a slim, but relaxed fit with a slightly cropped leg (they come in a long version, too), side pockets and a drawstring. The fabric is dreamy soft. My VA, Hillary, says she doesn’t take her off! Style with a cute tank and denim jacket for casual weekend wear, or wear with a cozy sweatshirt for a movie marathon. They’ll be your new go-to.
Athleta Salutation Jogger
Salutation, for the win again. These joggers are uber comfortable and are usually part of my weekend uniform. The ultra thick waistband is amazing, and they are the best for lounging. For a more sporty jogger, the Venice Joggers are my go-to for running errands. Both are loose-fitting and have pockets. I don’t wear these styles often as workouts pants, but they are certainly made with an active lifestyle in mind.
Girlfriend Collective Compressive High-Rise Legging
This workout clothes brand is new to me, but many of you gave it two thumbs up. These workout pants have an extra high-rise with four-way stretch and compressive fabric made from recycled water bottles — basically everything you need to get through your favorite high-impact activities, like running, yoga, and binge watching The Bachelor.
Bonus: Each pair of Compressive Leggings diverts 25 bottles from landfills. Plus, they have a variety of sports bras to match and make your outfit complete!
Old Navy High-Waisted 7/8-Length Side-Pocket Leggings
With budget in mind, these Old Navy leggings got a lot of recognition from all of you. The breathable, lightweight yet compressive fabric provides the ultimate stretch for all types of movement, and the elastic waistband stays put no matter how you’re moving. Quick dry fabric is a must for taking these leggings from workout to WFH life.