How to Layer Pantyhose

Layer a couple of pairs of pantyhose in the same color to get an opaque look like Olivia Wilde's.

Photo: Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

If you think pantyhose are just for grandmas, reconsider. While traditional, nude hose can look a little dated depending on how you wear them, you can make any color and texture of pantyhose work if you just do a little creative layering. Wearing two or more pairs of hose over one another can instantly change their look and a turn a pair of tacky pantyhose into a sexy fashion statement.

Warm Up

Chances are good that when you’re wearing pantyhose, the weather’s a bit chilly. Layering two or three pairs is a great way to turn thin, sheer hose into a toasty covering for your legs when you’re wearing a skirt or dress. Don’t layer nude-toned hose, though -- the layered hose will appear darker on your legs, so you will look like you OD'ed on self tanner. Instead, layer black, navy or other dark-colored pantyhose that match your outfit. You can even mimic the look of opaque leggings by layering several pairs of inexpensive hose on top of one another.

Slim Down

If you’ve got a little extra bulge at the stomach or hips that you want to hide, control-top pantyhose can be your best friend. Sadly, you usually have limited color and style options, so you wind up wearing frumpy-looking nude pantyhose if you want to shave a few pounds off your figure when you’re rocking your favorite pencil skirt or little black dress. But you can get around the problem by simply layering another pair of hose over your functional-control tops. Try a funky color or a cool pattern to add a little va-va-voom to your look, and no one will know that you’re getting a little help in the battle of the bulge.

Play with Color

If you like mixing it up with color, layering your pantyhose allows you to create unique color combinations. In the spring, you can wear a pair of sheer white hose over purple to create a softer lavender shade. In the winter, wear your favorite sheer red pantyhose over navy to get an eggplant color for your legs. Colorful layering usually works best if you layer the sheer color over the more opaque hose.

Add Texture

When you really want to turn heads, layer your pantyhose to add texture and dimension to your outfit. What could be sexier than wearing a pair of black fishnet stockings over plain pantyhose in a bold color like red, blue or hot pink? You can also try a tone-on-tone look by pairing textured and plain in hose in the same color -- it’s a good idea if your textured pantyhose feature an open weave because the added layer beneath won’t change the color but can still provide added warmth to make you more comfortable on a chilly day. You can also wear a different color beneath your open-weave hose, though, so that you see the other shade peeking out through the textured areas.

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