Heated studio classes, be they hot power yoga (my exercise of choice) or something similar, are unique when it comes to the needed uniform. I’m constantly seeking out leggings that have a rise just high enough to stay up, but just low enough to allow for optimal movement; styles that are as tight as a second skin, yet feel supportive at the same time.
The prime requirement, though? Sweat-wicking power. Even when I think that I’ve found the next best thing, all too often I take them into a hot class and am disappointed by the way they handle the sweat that’s inevitably released from pores I didn’t even know existed. So, I put the newest crop of performance leggings through a personal sweat test. Below you’ll find seven pairs of hot yoga pants that were able to take the heat.
These leggings have accumulated more than 5,000 reviews on Amazon.com and still managed to remain at a solid 4.5 stars, so I had to try them out. Let me tell you, they are sleek, moisture-wicking, and perfect for the sweatiest of workouts. Honestly, the price point ($25!) might have been the initial draw for many, but it’s simply an added bonus—they work just as well as performance tights I’ve paid much more for.
While I personally gravitate toward bottoms of the longer variety (i.e. ankle-length leggings), I respect the fact that, before entering a heated studio class, many among me would rather wear as little as possible. Allow me to introduce you to the only bottoms I’ve ever found that I can actually wear while working out and not feel as though they’re either cutting off the circulation in my thighs to loose enough to feel as though everyone in the room can see up my shorts. Splits59 might have just made me a shorts covert.
I loved how high-waisted these were without digging in at the top. They were lightweight and moisture-wicking as promised, without feeling too thin. The only note that might put a few other styles above this one is that they’re super slippery so, while it might help you get into that split you’ve been working on, it’s definitely going to take a ton more work to hold your tree pose.
4. Outdoor Voices 7/8 Flex Leggings, $75
These are my babies, to be sure. What I love about them is that they’re a little softer than the brand’s other offerings and really work some magic when it comes to keeping me dry in the hottest of hot yoga classes. What’s more, they still boast the same bright colors and color-block patterns of the rest of the brand’s selection, which is what first drew me to Outdoor Voices years ago.
Teachers, friends, Instagram ‘it’ girls: everyone has been talking about the joys of this brand for years. And I’m not quite sure why it took me so long to listen. The beauty of these sweat-wicking leggings is in the waistband. The perfect rise allows them to suck you in and keep you comfy without rolling over, slipping down, or generally feeling like it moves at all.
This particular Spiritual Gangster style seems to run on the half-size-small size. But, as it turns out, there are reasons behind this: a stay-in-place-like-glue waistband. And, when it comes to a sweaty studio class, it’s kind of a non-negotiable in my opinion. These passed the test and then some.
I was initially drawn to this style because they’re graphic without “screaming” color and print. That said, as it turns out, they’re also incredible at the sweat-wicking situation. They’re actually a little warmer than other leggings, which I didn’t much mind as they loosened up my muscles more easily but, despite how much I sweat in them, they never fail to fully dry in less than three minutes—no joke.
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