For years, women have shunned pantyhose in favour of bare legs, and nude hose was considered frumpy and old-fashioned. However, the “Kate Middleton Effect” has brought hosiery back into the limelight. Hosiery has been flying off the shelves in Europe and Japan, and now, even in North America, and I am personally cheering on this trend.
As a stylist, in my opinion, hosiery is always required in 3 instances:
- Formal skirt suit – If you are on stage, making an important presentation, or you work in a conservative professional office, nude hose is required with a skirt suit or a pencil skirt.
- Formal cocktail dress – I attended a formal Christmas party last year and saw a number of women with “screaming white” bare legs worn with their fancy “LBD’s” (Little Black Dress). It looked awful! Sheer black hose looks great with an LBD or a bold colour such as red. Otherwise, nude hose is your best choice.
- Cold weather – As a stylist, I personally only recommend a bare leg in the summer — never winter! No matter what you think of nude stockings, bare legs look out of place once it gets cold outside. If nude stockings aren’t your thing, then go with the opaque tight.
- Pasty white legs are not attractive! If your legs aren’t long, tanned and toned, then the nude hose will make your legs look better.
- Hosiery smoothes out uneven skintone.
- Hosiery smooths dimpling under white or cream pants.
- Hosiery creates a sleeker line under knitwear.
- Hosiery reduces rubbing in shoes.
- Nude hose is meant to be NUDE. It must match your skin colour or you will look dated. Suntan stockings on someone with fair skin should be outlawed.
- Don’t wear with open-toed sandals or shoes! There are now toeless options out there.
- Thigh-High’s – These are very comfortable and if you get a run, you can discard one instead of the entire pair.
- Subtle Patterns – Dotted hosiery makes more of a style statement, but for the office, avoid heavy patterns and sexy options such as seamed or a fishnet.
- Sheer Anklets – An edgy new look is a sheer anklet with a sandal. Not for everyone, but kind of fun.
- Opague Hose – The black tight has been back in favour for quite a while for our cold, winter months, and flattering on everyone. Colour is fun, but black is always a classic.
HOW TO BUY HOSE
- Department stores carry the best selection. Avoid the discount brands at stores like Walmart. With hose, you get what you pay for! I love the HUE brand from the Bay. Nordstrom’s carries another quality brand from DKNY.
- Denier is the key. The higher the number, the more opaque it is. If you want very sheer, go for a very low number. More coverage, go for a higher number.
I sincerely hope that pantyhose makes a major comeback. I believe, sadly, that some women have stopped wearing skirts because they are not happy with their bare-legged look. Nude hose makes your legs look great and besides, most men think hosiery is sexy! Ladies, I challenge you … go buy a pair of nude hose that match your skintone and wear them with Princess Kate pride. Let’s reclaim our femininity and wear those skirts again! Or be even braver, buy a seamed pair, and watch your man drool!