In a sea of retro trends making a comeback, most of us are have given our closets a retro makeover. We've got our Princess Di bike shorts, our oversized sweatshirts, our classic tie dye sets. All that's missing? A flouncy, sporty tennis skirt, of course.
Now that the world is slowly but surely starting to open up again, it's an ideal time to explore equally comfortable outfits that are just a little bit more elevated with some feminine flair, which all of the best tennis skirts we've found lately have to spare. Sure, they may have once served (pardon the pun) prep school, by way of Newport, energy. But now, they are a perfect piece to dress up or down since they're sporty, cute, versatile, and playful—a well-rounded do-all piece no wardrobe should go without.
Acing your tennis skirt
Although tennis skirts have entered the mainstream, make no mistake, they still need to be functional. You don't have to play tennis to wear one, but if you are, it needs to be the right one. Just ask Maya Jacobs, a marketing program specialist who recently graduated from Rutgers University where she played Division 1 women's tennis throughout her collegiate career. Jacobs has worn her fair share of tennis skirts, on and off the court.
"Arguably they're the most fashionable uniform. But if there aren't shorts underneath, they're not worth your time," Jacobs explains. "The shorts make all the difference. They're what allows you to run around the court while holding your phone and extra balls."
Jacobs isn't too picky about brands, although she spent most of her time in Adidas since the team was sponsored by them. But she is definitely picky about the fit, specifically these three main components:
- Length: "The most flattering skirts are medium length—the longer the ones look a little weird and don't allow you to move around as much," she says. Your skirt should hit around the upper thigh, giving you unrestricted movement to run, dive, and jump. "And tuck in your shirt," says Jacobs.
- Compression: As Jacobs mentions, your tennis skirt should actually be a skort lined with shorts. These shorts should be compressive enough to add support and protection while serving as extra storage for objects like balls and phones (bonus if they pockets.) But the skirt itself shouldn't be too tight, otherwise you won't be able to move. Jacobs likes the flouncy feeling of the pleated skirts, but if you do go for the slimmer A-line style, just make sure you have enough room to move around.
- Size: Your comfort level should be a grand slam at all times."If it's too big you're going to spend the whole time [playing] stopping to pull it up," Jacobs says. "And if it's too small you won't able to move." Play around with sizing and pay attention to waistbands that are compressive and sit at the waist without rolling up or sliding around.
The 12 best tennis skirts to add to your warm-weather wardrobe ASAP
Originally $55, now $42
Nike is one of Jacobs’ go-to brands for its quality and fit. If you’re looking for a skirt to wear on and off the court, the Victory is a solid bet. The thicker, mid-rise waistband is there for a secure fit, while the subtle pleating is timeless and swishes just right. Best part is, it’s made with at least 75 percent recycled fibers, making it a grand slam for your wardrobe and the planet.
As mentioned, Jacobs spent much of her collegiate career wearing Adidas tennis skirts, so you know they’re up to snuff. Goldilocks reviewers tout this skirt for being not too long, not too short, not too loose, and not too tight. In other words, it fits just right. The fabric is soft, stretchy, and sweat-wicking, so it’ll keep you dry and odor-free on and off of the courts.
This skort is timeless, functional, and it’s—oh yeah—designed by an actual tennis pro! If you’re serious about the sport, this piece is way worth the investment. That’s thanks to the little details in the design, like the internal ball pockets on each side and the ribbed, stretchy fabric that wicks sweat in minutes. Even if your game isn’t as good as Venus Williams’, you’ll sure feel like it is.
You know Alo for its celebrity-approved yoga pants, and this flouncy skirt is just as good. Its simple, A-line silhouette is the perfect option to dress up with a longer top or sweater for a summery picnic or outdoor dining moment or to wear with a sporty crop or sports bra on the courts. The length is flirty and flattering, and the comfy inner short even has a pocket to keep all of you essentials handy.
You’re bound to be best dressed at your next match in this pleated Wilson skirt. For starters, it’s adorable—that vintage stripe?! We’re in love. But the no-brainer comes from its anti-odor technology which physically stops stink from growing on your skirt, and in turn, stops you from stinking, too. That means you can wear it game after game and it’ll still smell like it did on laundry day.
Want a color besides black or blue? Free People has a rainbow of actives skorts to choose from, all that feature a high-rise waist band and fun, tonal seam detailing for a unique take on the classic tennis skirt. Great for lounging, moving (and grooving), or a relaxed day at home—it’s a perfect versatile option.
You’re going to “love” this medium-coverage skort, pun very intended. It’s made in a lightweight, quick-drying, recycled polyester fabric for comfort that is also kind to the planet. It also features an easy to pull on, comfortable, knit waistband, and a built-in short liner (a must) for extra security.
A Spanx skort?! Yes, please. In addition to its signature booty-boosting fabric, this Spanx skort has just about everything: pockets for your keys, phone, and other essentials, sweat-wicking fabric, and a mid-thigh short liner. Tag on the chafe-free fabric and you’ll never feel any of that, ahem, summertime uncomfiness again.
Lululemon knows activewear. The Pace Rival skirt is designed for tennis, but made to tackle whatever your day has in store thanks to its is mid-rise, lightweight design that’s supremely breathable and stretchy. It swaps the classic pleats for a stacked seams making it a little more fitted than other styles, but it’s just as friendly when mobility comes into play.
Warning: If you slip this skirt on, you might not ever take it off. It’s that comfortable and versatile, making it a go-to outfit for almost y any occasion. It’s probably the most sustainable option on this list (it’s made from 23 recycled plastic water bottles) and its sprawling size availability makes it one of the most inclusive, too. Trust us—you’ll want one in every color available.
Want a quality skirt on a budget? Add this one from Halara to your cart. It’s stylish and super functional, crafted with everything you want out of a practical tennis skirt, including those built-in shorts and side pockets. Bonus: that crossover waistband that gives you added support whether you’re diving for balls or diving to the couch.
Athleta sells a wide variety of athleisure skirts, but if you’re looking for one for the courts, the Ace Tennis Skort is, well, an ace. Its 15.5-inch inseam make it an ideal length for exercise and sports, while its fun, airy silhouette make it a fashionable enough for everyday wear. And the prints?! Choose from black camo or two, colorful geometric patterns to spice things up.
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