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We wear them for various activities, making leggings and yoga pants versatile. But many of us aren't aware of the differences between them. However, it's essential to know when to wear each type. So we'll clear this up for you by discussing what's the difference between yoga pants and leggings.

Yoga Pants vs. Leggings

Yoga pants and leggings, often used interchangeably, actually have notable differences. They not only vary in appearance but also in the way they feel and fit. Each serves its intended purpose. While leggings have gained broader social acceptance as everyday pants, they still don't quite match the versatility of yoga pants.

When deciding between investing in high-quality yoga pants or opting for more affordable leggings, yoga pants are the superior choice for both your comfort and your yoga practice.

However, the line blurs when determining whether you can substitute yoga pants for leggings, particularly in the realm of the athleisure trend.

Let's get to the lowdown of their distinct differences.


The key difference between yoga pants and leggings is their intended use as activewear or everyday pants with various patterns and cuts. However, the athleisure trend has made yoga pants increasingly stylish for regular wear.


The main difference between yoga pants and leggings is their performance, with leggings potentially causing slipping waistbands and reduced flexibility.

In contrast, yoga pants offer four-way stretch, moisture-wicking properties, durability, and a gusseted crotch for ease of movement.

Fabric and Seams

Traditionally, leggings were designed to be thin and non-stretchy, ideal for layering under dresses or long shirts for added warmth. Today's leggings offer versatility with various fabric options.

Yoga pants are designed for medium to high-impact workouts, featuring thicker high-performance materials and reinforced flat-fell seams.

Leggings often have concealed overlocked seams, with some activewear leggings effectively utilizing this type of stitching.


Leggings are snug and extend to the ankles, often resembling yoga pants. Yoga pants, once loose and flared, now come in various styles as "yoga leggings" with diverse lengths and shapes, often featuring a thicker, higher waistband to prevent it from going down.

Types of Yoga Pants

What’s the Difference Between Yoga Pants and Leggings?

Women's yoga pants have come a long way since its inception. Nowadays, we have a myriad of styles, fabrics, and cuts to choose from.

So when you're ready to hit the mat and arrive at an "ohm" or do a high-intensity workout at the gym, the question that arises is how to choose the best yoga clothing for your practice.

Choose yoga pants based on your activity, routine, and, most importantly, comfort. And with that, let's do a deep dive into the different kinds. There's a pair of yoga pants for every body, including expecting moms!


Expecting moms are thankful for the comfort that maternity yoga pants bring when no other pair of pants could fit as their bellies grow. They also do well for low-impact maternity exercises.


Apart from giving an instant tummy tuck, high-waisted yoga pants add the flexibility you need to do various yoga positions or exercises, like Pilates. With their solid waistbands, they give the extra protection and comfort you need.


When the weather's a scorcher, capris, made from stretchable fabrics, provide comfort and make an ideal summer outdoor yoga bottom because of the cropped length.

Wide Waistband

Yoga pants designed for plus-sized women often feature wide waistbands, typically using spandex and polyester to ensure a comfortable and supportive fit around the hips and rear.


The return of stretchy bell bottoms make them ideal for a relaxed fall dressing, suitable for lounging or low-key workouts, featuring a fitted leg that flares out from mid-calf to the ankle.

The best flared pants for your body type and personality help you get to know your body type to find out which cut and style of flared leggings best suit you.

RELATED: 8 Baleaf's Yoga Outfit to Make Workout Look Good

Types of Leggings

What’s the Difference Between Yoga Pants and Leggings?

Women's leggings were initially designed for added warmth and as a base layer. They usually come in materials, like Lycra, polyester, cotton with spandex, and nylon. They're a must-have in any closet because of their function and versatility. They can be easily dressed up or dressed down.

Our five awesome leggings to obsess with give you a rundown of the various kinds of leggings that best suit each body and a style guide to help you stay fab!

Let's check out some of the common fabrics used in making these cozy wonders.


These are readily available at most clothing shops, typically crafted from a blend of cotton and spandex to provide affordability and various style choices, although they tend to be thinner and may lose their shape with time.

Faux Leather

Resembling leather pants with additional stretch and breathability, they are a valuable investment for a stylish, comfortable night out, although at a higher cost than standard leggings.


Polyester leggings offer stretch, water resistance, and sweat-wicking properties, making them suitable for running, but they may develop odors, so consider a blended material as an option. Plus, their slightly pricier than other materials commonly used for leggings.


Wool leggings do well in very cold climates because they offer warmth, comfort, and style but are usually pricier than cotton leggings.


Nylon is a popular material for leggings because it combines stretchiness, durability, and wrinkle resistance. However, it requires a bit more T-L-C as it can shrink when washed. Fabric softeners can harm the nylon fibers.


Thermal leggings, with a fleece-lined thermal insulation layer, ensure warmth in cold temperatures and defy the misconception that thermal gear can't be stylish, as our range combines both form and function.

Our best thermal leggings for outdoor workouts in winter serve as great base layers for your main bottom wear. They help you stay warm even at extremely cold temperatures while letting moisture out.

So Which Would You Wear: Yoga Pants or Leggings?

If you're seeking activewear, opt for yoga pants for exercise. But if you're simply in search of comfortable leggings, you have a multitude of options.

Baleaf gives you a wide array of choices of women's leggings and women's yoga wear for every activity you have because #wemovetogether with you.

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