Be warned, the statement following this sentence will either make you cringe or put a smile on your face: Bold and bright red tights are taking over every corner of the high fashion world right now with no signs of slowing down. Miu Miu, for one, sent a model down its Fall/Winter 2023 catwalk in a sheer hosiery in a brick tone, worn with a rich magenta cardigan and coordinating underwear (Miuccia Prada really knows her way around an unexpected color combo). That same season, over at Gucci, the vibrant piece was layered underneath a low-slung see-through skirt. Saks Potts also got in on the fun at its show last January, opting for cherry-colored fishnets paired with a brown croc-effect coat and slouchy boots in the same neutral shade.
Celebrities have hopped aboard the red tights train as well. Hollywood darling Elle Fanning was an early adopter of the style, having posted a head-to-toe fire-engine red outfit on the ‘gram back in April. And more recently, for a Bustle photoshoot, Gwyneth Paltrow dove head first into the trend with a full fiery outfit, complete with coordinating sheer hosiery.
While red tights may feel like a shock to some, the style actually has a longstanding place in pop culture history. Back in the ‘80s and ‘90s, eternal muse Princess Diana often attended royal affairs (like a visit to Cirencester, pictured below) and off-duty outings (think a Paul McCartney performance) wearing the bold accent. And in the late-’00s, Gossip Girl enthusiasts will recall fashion lover Blair Waldorf was no stranger to the style. To be specific, Upper East Side’s preppy high schooler wore red tights in Season 1, episode 10, along with her other signature pieces, like a fitted pinstriped blazer, a collared blouse, and ballet flats. According to a Blair Waldorf outfits fan page, her hosiery from the scene came from American Apparel, a go-to spot for tights in all colors during the early aughts.
Now it’s time for you to put your own stamp on the look. Scroll ahead to gather outfit inspiration from six influencers.
With A LBD
Wearing a mini dress without tights in the winter is never a very fun experience. That said, if you’re bored with your go-to black style, slip into a colorful pair. A deep maroon piece is a great alternative for those hesitant to sport full-on crimson. Round out the flirty combination with a sleek black heel (perhaps Alexander McQueen’s new Armadillo sandals?) and silver jewelry.
With A Coordinating Dress
When in doubt, a matching moment will never let you down. So, consider teaming your tights with a flowy dress in the same look-at-me shade. From there, ground the duo with black accents, like a sleek leather bag and platform shoes. You’ll want to keep this formula on standby for your next night out.
With A Denim Miniskirt
A denim miniskirt is always a good idea. But a denim miniskirt teamed with red tights? Now that’s a fantastic one. Give the combo some edge by working in a sporty black and white bomber and cutout knit top into the look.
With Standout Separates
The mash-up above will certainly speak to those who like to have fun getting dressed. Rather than simple basics, style your hosiery with standout pieces, such as a distressed leather jacket and pleated miniskirt. Finishing off with pumps in the same hue will earn you extra style points.
With Understated Outerwear
Though it may sound counterintuitive, you can tone down your red stockings outfit. How, you ask? Pair the piece with a polished cream coat and luxe black bag. Bright heels in the same crimson shade aren’t required, but encouraged — we’ll leave that up to you.