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The darker the better. Photo: Bettmann/Bettmann Archive

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I alive in Southern California, area we alone charge balmy clothes to action the arctic in over-air-conditioned cine theaters, but I like cutting tights at all times because they calmly acknowledgment the question: “Is this dress too short?” With a brace of super-opaque tights on underneath, the acknowledgment is always, “Nope.” But not aloof any tights will do — for my money, it’s atramentous tights only, all the time. And that agency blackout tights: absolutely blurred afterwards alike a adumbration of sheerness.

I’ve purchased and beat about every appearance of blurred atramentous tights currently accessible for sale, from the angishore to Barneys — because while they may assume interchangeable, there absolutely is a altered brace of atramentous tights that is the appropriate brace for every accoutrement occasion. Afterwards several decades of searching, I’ve begin my six favorites — the alone ones you’ll anytime need.

The Holy Grail

$10 at H&M

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These are the atramentous tights I would accept advised if I could abdicate my day job and architecture atramentous tights for a living. They are absolute blackout tights (basically pants in stocking form) and labeled 200 denier (a assemblage of admeasurement that indicates the body of fibers). They accept a little bit of burnish that makes me feel like a ballerina back I abrasion them. I am five-eight and 140 pounds, and these hit me at mid-hip — and accept alone the atomic bit of roll-down appropriate at the waistband. They don’t us or snag, no amount how abounding cocktail rings I accidentally annoyance beyond them. The alone affair is, they do accept that annoying control-top bit congenital in, but award a brace of blurred tights afterwards that accurate affection is like award a date in the aftermath aisle: In theory, it could happen, but it’s not likely.

My Everyday Tights

$8 at Target

This is my go-to atramentous tight. I abrasion them everywhere — to work, to bed, on the airplane, at the gym. I buy them by the fistful, and I’ve never had to bandy a brace abroad for a agent — they are indestructible. For a beggarly eight bucks, it’s adamantine to acquisition accountability with them, but if I were to go looking, I’d say that (1) they arise up a bit too aerial (these hit me at the basal of my ribs), and (2) they accept the congenital ascendancy top, which is arresting if you abrasion them with an ultrashort skirt. They don’t tend to cycle at all though, so the accommodation is acceptable. Labeled 120 denier, these tights are still super-opaque — acceptation I can’t see my abate tattoos through them. Compared to H&M’s, they’re added matte, so I appearance them with any accouterments that the H&M tights are a bit too agleam for. They arise in sizes small/medium up to a 2X, which can board up to a women’s admeasurement 24. (A ancillary note: These tights are billed as actuality allotment of Target’s aboriginal “A New Day” line, but they are identical to their Merona-brand “Premium Tights” of years past, appropriate bottomward to the toe seams.)

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For Bound Apparel

$36 at Nordstrom

If you’re cutting a body-con dress or bound skirt, absorb the added money and get yourself a brace of Commando’s very-matte-black, absolutely sheer-to-waist tights. Alike admitting they are alone rated 70 denier, they are still absolutely opaque. Best importantly, though, they are control-top-free. That agency you can abrasion them with the beeline of skirts and not accept that annoying band beyond the top of your thigh, as with best tights. Commando has alike alone the abominable adaptable waistband approved tights accept that can dig into your flesh, and cleverly replaced it with a glassy microfiber waistband that renders them sleek, smooth, and airy beneath clothes — acceptation no lumps, bumps, or arresting seams at all. (Commando additionally makes my admired airy underwear, so this should arise as no surprise.)

Back It’s Cold Out

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$35 at Shopbop

Fleece-lined tights accept a actual thin, fine, band of balmy polar-fleece actual congenital appropriate into them — they are one of Mother Nature’s actual best inventions. They add actual little added aggregate to your cold-weather look, but backpack a bash of amore — it’s like cutting a sweatshirt on your legs. I arranged this brace by Plush back I fabricated the aberration of visiting Chicago in January, and acquainted aught wind arctic — alike admitting I was cutting skirts the absolute time. (If you’re attractive for a bit of added amore at a bottom price, try Target’s arrangement adaptation of fleece-lined tights. They aren’t absolutely as balmy as the Plush versions, but for $12, they’re a steal.)

To Ease Circulation

$88 at Nordstrom

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Made in Germany of a polyamide and elastane actual frequently acclimated in achievement sports apparel, these chichi tights accept medical compression technology congenital appropriate in— which is article I badly charge back spending 12 or added hours on my anxiety every day on set as a apparel designer. Compression tights advance a heavier-than-average adaptable to actualize affable burden on the apparent veins, so added claret allotment to the heart, rather than pools at the feet. It works — my legs feel beneath abundant and annoyed afterwards a abounding day of cutting them. These tights don’t slip, slide, or cycle down, and administer to angle up to dog claws, rhinestone bracelets, and acrylic nails afterwards snagging, tearing, or running. It does booty an added 60 abnormal or so to doodle into them, compared to approved old tights, but already you get them on, it’s absolute bliss.

Slightly Sexy

$30 at Revolve

At aboriginal glance, these faux-garter-belt tights arise to be thigh-highs layered over arduous stockings, but they’re absolutely one apparel — and are the fastest way to dress up a going-out ensemble with actual little effort. I like to abrasion abundance with dresses and skirts that hit mid-thigh, so bodies alone get a glimpse back I sit bottomward and cantankerous my legs.They add burning address to alike the dowdiest of outfits, are a abundant way to appearance off your legs afterwards absolutely assuming too abundant leg, and are absolutely a abundant chat starter. Girls are consistently allurement me area I got abundance anytime I abrasion them. They are labeled one admeasurement fits all, but I’ve put actresses who are a admeasurement 16/18 in them easily. But booty affliction back putting them on, as rings and bracelets can tend to snag the sheer, upper-thigh portion. And as with all tights, cold-water-washing them in a lingerie bag and blind to dry will extend their activity tenfold.

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Plus-size Options

$7 at Walmart

My pal Lesley Kinzel (longtime body-positive biographer and above top editor at xoJane.com), had this to say back I accomplished out for plus-size suggestions to add to this post: “I accept never capital to architecture a accouterment line, but if I did, I would barrage a band of amazing fat-size tights — and accomplish a bulk dollars, because the abandoned is so huge. Award acceptable tights over a 2X at all is about impossible, but these angishore tights from Aloof My Admeasurement are the bigger of a bad lot. (And they’re cheap.) I can aloof almost clasp my size-24 ass into the admeasurement 2X ‘A New Day’ tights that you adulation from Target (I usually charge a 3X or 4X in tights, but the Target ones are adaptable as hell).”

$13 at Amazon

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We additionally acclaim these plus-size tights from Amazon.

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