Running Tights

As we publish posts with reviews of various running gear, we will compile those reviews on this page!  Here’s what we’ve looked at so far:

Visible? Toasty? TTS? Pockets? Comfy? Unstinkable? Overall
Athleta Reflective Relay (2014) Pretty Well! (The regular relay just has the “flicker” effect) Good, unless it’s in the 20s Yes (MB, Sandy size S) One rear Yep! No Great Choice!  This lower waisted tight works really well for Deborah because they come in petites, which fit her legs as well as fit her not ride up too high on her waist.
Athleta Be Free (2014) So, so – the “flicker” effect Good, unless it’s in the 20s Yes (MB, Sandy size S) Heck yes! FOUR of them Darn near perfect No Best overall, did we mention pockets?!
Athleta Stride (2014) Best in class A bit less warm than the Relay and Be Free Compression fabric, you may want to size up One rear Compressive. Very sleek, tight fabric Yes Uncomfortable. Too much like control top panty hose
Athleta Homestretch (2014) So, so – the “flicker” effect at ankle Will work for chilly weather, not sub zero This one falls a bit, consider a petite or sizing down (Deborah tried the M) One rear, small Super soft fabric, very flattering color scheme, zippers did not irritate skin No See Deborah’s review here.  Still evaluating, the size we tried did not stay up
Athleta Power Lift (2014) So, so – the “flicker” effect (there is a reflective version) Comfy into the teens! Compression fabric, you may want to size up One rear, smaller than others Compressive side leg and tummy panel that really pull you in No Looks smart, but the others are more comfy
Athleta Ski Line (2014) Nope So snuggly! Comfy into the teens Yes (MB, Sandy size S) One rear, smaller than others Not your Mom’s sweatpants! No Well worth one pair for super cold days, either this or the power lift version
Athleta Embodiment (2014) Nope This is meant as an underlayer with other items, ski pants, etc., so it adds warmth Yes (MB size S) None, not meant to have any Next to skin fit is remarkably comfortable, the waist is great, no muffin top, will fit seamlessly under any number of things Yes! See our post on these! They are not meant to be worn on their own and there may be some “see through” issues if you intend to use them for gym classes, but as a warming underlayer, especially with a CYA-type skirt, these are fantastic! MB loves to wear hers all winter and things they are a great investment.
Lululemon Speed Tight II *Full-On Luxtreme (Brushed) (2014) Flicker effect when the pant cuffs are turned up Thick fabric should be pretty warm No (MB thinks they run small, she’s normally a size 4, sized up to a 6) Heck yes!  As good as the Be Free!  Rear, two side, and special waist gel pockets This is a really compressive, scuba-like fabric, similar to the Athlete Stride.  However, not wearable because the fabric was so tight behind the knees, you can’t bend them.  Very uncomfortable. No Due to the comfort issues, these did not work for us.  Lulu should really add a mesh panel behind the knees on pants made from this type of fabric, and then they would be great.  The patterns and colors are delish.
Lululemon Speed Tight II *Full-On Luxtreme (2014) Flicker effect when the pant cuffs are turned up Thinner fabric than the brushed, good for most cold days No (MB thinks they run small, she’s normally a size 4, sized up to a 6) Heck yes!  As good as the Be Free!  Rear, two side, and special waist gel pockets This fabric is thinner than the brushed version and far more flexible and more comfortable. The wide waistband is great, and while the fabric still bunches a little behind the knees, these are really nice. No Similar to the brushed, Lulu could improve these pants by adding a mesh panel behind the knees on pants.  But otherwise, they are sleek and flattering, and the patterns and colors are very cool. More colors please!