Best Compression Pants

Compression gear is terrific for athletes, gym rats or anyone that is recovering from a serious injury. Of course, they are also nice for people who simply want an amazing base layer for working out. But, compression gear, and for this purpose pants, do so much more than that. Depending on the specific pair of compression pants, they can also be extremely comfortable against your skin and a solution to clammy legs. Most will feature proper ventilation and moisture-wicking technology, which you will find to appreciate very quickly. However, there can only be a select few that garner the label of “the best”.

Saxx Underwear
  • Saxx Underwear
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Comfortable
  • Designed for marathon
  • Price: See Here
CW-X Stabilyx
  • CW-X Stabilyx
  • 4.9 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Reinforced waistband
  • Fast recovery
  • Price: See Here
Nike Hyperwarm
  • Nike Hyperwarm
  • 4.8 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Reduce irritation
  • Thermal mesh
  • Price: See Here

10 Best Compression Pants

 

 

Saxx Kinetic

It just does not get much better than this. The Saxx Kinetic Compression Pants are certainly the pinnacle of the technology and its incredible comfort, moisture-wicking performance and fit justify that easily.
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Performance
Saxx uses nine panels of fabric to create the foundation of their compression pants. The result is support for your hamstrings, quads, thighs and glutes.

Breathability
Two key design features are present to increase the breathability as much as possible. The first are mesh panels that will deliver ventilation to your legs. Second is the moisture-wicking technology that will prevent perspiration from building up.

Comfortability
Comfort is clearly of the essence here and it is obvious once you analyze the design. First off, Saxx only uses Flat Out Seams for their compression pants and this results in smoother contact against your skin. Also, the softer side of the seam is placed inward for further comfort.

Fabrics Utilized
There is a unique blend of fabrics in these tights and it includes polyester, Modal, nylon, merino wool and viscose.

Sizing and Fitting
All size options from small to XX-large are available to select from. However, a few consumers have noted that they ran small on them; you may want to go a size up.

Overall
Granted you get the right size for you, again, you may want to consider sizing up, these are the best compression pants out there. Past the performance, the amazing combination of comfort and breathability is unparalleled.
Pros
  • Designed for marathon training sessions and extremely hot days
  • Overall, very comfortable against your skin
  • The pants do not ride up and stay in place very well
Cons
  • Some reviewers have noted that they do run a little small

CW-X Stabilyx

Despite the fact that several users have claimed the Stabilyx Tights can be a hassle to get on and off and that they tend to run small, their performance advantages and comfortability more than makeup for those few blimps.
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Performance
These tights harness the midsection, band together the muscles and ligaments to stabilize the knee, support your lower abdominals, and provide targeted support for both your knees and your cores.

Breathability
The material blend is ideal for breathability as it manages to wick away moisture from your body. In the end, you are left feeling cooler and drier throughout the day.

Comfortability
Thanks to the flat seam construction, the bulkiness of the seams is kept to a minimum. In turn, this increases the comfort as your legs will not feel the seams as much.

Fabrics Utilized
CW-X utilizes a blend of 80 percent CoolMax with 20 percent Lycra, and because it is also a four-way stretch fabric, this gives you the properties of flexibility and breathability.

Sizing and Fitting
These tights are designed to better fit women but various users have claimed that they fit tighter than the size indicates. Also, several report it is difficult to take them on and off due to the tightness.

Overall
When it comes to pure performance and compression, for women, it is hard to argue with the results. Add to this excellent comfortability due to the flat seam construction and a material that will wick away moisture, and you get a winner.
Pros
  • The waistband is double reinforced
  • Minimizes lactic acid build-up to allow you to recover faster from injuries
  • Utterly excellent when it comes to performance
Cons
  • Can be a hassle to get on and off
  • Tend to run tight and small

Nike Hyperwarm

Nike has always been one of the top brands in the world for athletes, period. While they have another pair of compression pants that make their way onto this list, their Hyperwarm Training Tights are the best the juggernaut has to offer.
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Performance
During your average workout, you will really notice the difference that these tights make for you. Overall, they are what you would expect from a pair of high-quality compression pants.

Breathability
In areas where you need it the most (such as the lower back leg), thermal mesh has been integrated. In addition to this, the Dri-FIT fabric will pull moisture away from your body and the material itself.

Comfortability
Due to the flatlock seams that knit the fabric together, which reduces the overall amount of chafing that you will experience, you are left with a feel that hugs your skin without irritating it.

Fabrics Utilized
The main body of the Hyperwarm Tights is made from a blend of polyester (88 percent) and spandex. Meanwhile, the mesh insets are also made of polyester and spandex, with a little more polyester (92 percent).

Sizing and Fitting
While some users have claimed the fit can be narrow, the waist does provide you with a wide stretch for a streamlined fit. For size options, select from small to XX-large.

Overall
The blend of polyester and spandex creates the foundation for the Hyperwarm Tights, and it does an admirable job doing so. This produces next-level comfort and overall, one of the best products out there.
Pros
  • Due to the wide stretch waist, it is a streamlined fit
  • Features thermal mesh on the lower back to enhance ventilation
  • To reduce the overall irritation, flatlock seams are used
Cons
  • Various users report that the fit can be narrow

Skins A400

Skins A400
An interesting, and potentially embarrassing, issue persists with the A400 Compression Pants. With that said, it is certainly not enough to prevent these pants from being the highest recommendation.
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Performance
From the calf all the way to the upper thigh muscles, there is compression. What this means for you is a more efficient workout and when it concludes, a faster recovery time for your legs.

Breathability
Skins integrates Adaptive HEIQ Technology into their compression pants and it allows them to properly regulate your body temperature. When you begin to overheat, they will cool you down and vice versa.

Comfortability
All the major seams consist of A-Seams. Besides being very durable, this also makes the tights incredibly comfortable against your skin. In addition, the ankle cuffs feature bonded seams for additional comfort.

Fabrics Utilized
The main portion of the A400 Compression Pants is made from a blend of nylon and spandex, with the majority being nylon (76 percent).

Sizing and Fitting
To optimize the sizing as much as possible, Skins uses all measurements of the body (chest, limbs, weight and height). As far as selections go, you can choose from small to extra-large.

Overall
So, what exactly is that “embarrassing” issue? Various reviewers claim that the crotch area creates what is known as “camel toe”. In public, it may be necessary to wear something underneath to prevent this. But, it does not affect the performance in any way.
Pros
  • They fit extremely comfortable on your hips
  • There is a pocket in the back of the waistband for storage
  • At night, the embedded design glows
Cons
  • Users have taken issue with the crotch area, in general

2XU Tights

2XU Tights
In terms of performance, the 2XU Compression Tights offer so much compression support benefits for you while you exercise that it is almost hard to fathom. However, a base layer underneath (at least underwear) may be necessary as users have noted the crotch area can be uncomfortable.
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Performance
Indeed, the benefits here are nearly endless and enough to keep you coming back for more. This includes support for your quads, hamstrings, abductors, IT band, and glutes, muscle containment which results in reduced vibrations and minimized fatigue, and increased circulation for an improvement in recovery time.

Breathability
Overall, the material is very lightweight and breathable. Furthermore, it is also antibacterial. As such, the build-up of potentially harmful bacteria to create potent odors will be thwarted.

Comfortability
In terms of freedom of movement, these pants are not restrictive and allow for motion. However, some buyers have taken issue with the groin area; stating that it is the least comfortable area of the tights.

Fabrics Utilized
These are crafted from 100 percent Lycra spandex. Thus, providing you with all the great benefits of spandex with the most obvious being its stretchy appeal.

Sizing and Fitting
A wide range of sizes are available for you including everything from extra-small to XX-large. Again, sizing can slightly vary, leading to some users recommending a size up.

Overall
Word of advice, if you are going to invest in these (which is not a bad decision on your part), you may want to wear underwear underneath of them. Despite the small problem in the groin area, these truly are a fantastic investment.
Pros
  • Are very beneficial when recovering from an injury
  • Includes a drawstring closure for a custom fit
  • Provide ample support when working out
Cons
  • When it comes to fitting in the groin area, these can be unsettling

Zensah Hight-Waisted

Zensah Hight-Waisted
Among the impressive features of these pants from Zensah, the breathability may stand above the rest of the pack. Not only are there mesh panels designed on the side for ventilation, the material blend wicks away moisture to prevent it from building-up during intense exercises.
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Performance
Overall, these are designed like compression pants should be with support for your muscles to minimize the risk of injury during exercise regimens. But, if already injured or suffering from muscle fatigue, these also improve your recovery.

Breathability
These pants were designed and crafted in Italy and using moisture-wicking technology, they are able to prevent moisture from building up. For even further breathability, there are mesh panels designed on the side.

Comfortability
Overbearing seams can be one of the main reasons a piece of clothing is uncomfortable. Zensah eliminates the possibility of this arising as their compression tights have been designed with seamless technology.

Fabrics Utilized
A majority of these pants are designed with polyamide (75 percent) but there is also a hint of spandex (13 percent) and polypropylene (12 percent).

Sizing and Fitting
You can either choose small, medium or large when it comes to sizes. However, most reviewers claim that the pants fit true to their size with only a few exceptions.

Overall
These almost seem like a perfect pair of compression pants. Well, while they last, they just may be. However, some users have reported that durability can be an issue and that the fabric is easily torn. Still, if you properly care for them, they are truly phenomenal.
Pros
  • There is a hidden back pocket for storage
  • It is designed with moisture-wicking technology
  • Strong visual appeal with a few different color options
Cons
  • Users have questioned the durability and claimed the fabric tears too easily

DRSkin Pants

DRSkin Pants
Many users will agree, due to the immense popularity of these, that DRSKIN did a superb job of designing their compression pants. While a similar problem insists to that of the 2XU Compression Pants, the performance advantages and high-breathability surely make up for it.
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Performance
These tights, as the name implies, are indeed tight fitting and this improves the blood circulation and will improve your recovery time when dealing with an injury. Plus, it will increase the efficiency of your workout and provide strong medical effects as a result.

Breathability
In the winter, this will feature heat retention and in the summer, will prevent your legs from overheating. It accomplishes this because of its two-way air circulation and moisture-sensing technologies.

Comfortability
The fabric blend is smooth and soft against your skin and because of the materials, does not restrict your motion. However, due to the seam that runs straight down the front, it may be wise to wear underwear underneath to prevent chafing near the groin area.

Fabrics Utilized
92 percent of these pants are made from polyester and the other 8 percent belongs to spandex.

Sizing and Fitting
Even though it may seem minor, the amount of size options provided is incredible and will adapt to several people. Everything from XXXX-small to XXXXX-large is available.

Overall
Despite a few design flaws that are present, it is difficult to argue with the goods that are delivered here. As a huge bonus for those of you who struggle to find your size, there are also an unfathomable amount of options.
Pros
  • To keep you cooler and drier, these wick away moisture from your body
  • The utilized material is highly-resistant to abrasions
  • Can select between a wide range of color options
Cons
  • If you need to use the restroom, you will need to pull the pants down completely
  • A seam is present straight down the front and could lead to chafing in the groin area

Recofit

Recofit
Everything you love in a pair of compressions pants, or tights, is present with RecoFit’s version. This includes carbon fabric that disperses heat and moisture, excellent comfortability, and an aid in your athletic performance and injury recovery.
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Performance
All the benefits of compression, including special emphasis on your glutes, lower back, and calf muscles, are provided for you. For athletics and injury recovery, these are perfect.

Breathability
Due to the Resistex carbon fabric that is utilized in these pants, they manage to disperse the moisture and heat that resonates from your body. All in all, they breathe well.

Comfortability
The carbon fabric not only aids in breathability but due to the technically advanced patterns of the fabric, it also excels in comfort for long uses.

Fabrics Utilized
It is not too hard to figure out that the main fabric used in these compressions pants is a Resistex carbon-based fabric. Besides all the benefits of comfortability and breathability, it is also a very flattering material.

Sizing and Fitting
While RecoFit claims that the sizes are typical and true, some users have reported otherwise. In fact, one claimed they were too tight and another not tight enough. No matter, you can select from extra-small to large.

Overall
Despite the sizing issues that seem to be present, these are a fantastic pair of compressions pants that every woman would be enthralled to own. At their core, they are comfortable, manage moisture efficiently, and provide all the performance benefits of compression.
Pros
  • The waistband can be worn three different ways
  • Behind the knees are flexible, breathable mesh
  • Designed with Resistex carbon-based fabric
Cons
  • Some users have reported they are not true-to-size
  • Fabric does seem a bit fragile

Nike Hypercool

Nike Hypercool
If not for various claims of questionable durability and fabric integrity, the Hypercool Training Tights could quite possibly be among the elite of compression pants. While not quite there, there is still enough quality present to warrant interest.
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Performance
No matter the training or exercise regimen that you are partaking in, the compression fit of these tights will provide freedom of movement and long-lasting support for the muscles you need.

Breathability
Nike implements advanced cooling technology into their Hypercool Tights that makes them more breathable than their predecessors. What significantly aids in this is the mesh that is designed throughout the back and sides of the pants.

Comfortability
Because Nike went with flat seams, there is virtually no skin irritation associated with the Hypercool Compression Pants.

Fabrics Utilized
As opposed to some of the others, the polyester and spandex blend features a touch more spandex (14 percent). As for the mesh panels, it is nearly identical (88 percent polyester and 12 percent spandex).

Sizing and Fitting
These are not full-length tights. Instead, they are only ¾-length and this can add a bit of versatility to your workout. Furthermore, you can select from small to XX-large, in terms of sizes.

Overall
Again, the durability and integrity of the fabric do come into question here from various users. As such, take extreme caution when handling and using these pants and if you do, you will notice the benefits right away.
Pros
  • Integrates mesh throughout the back to keep you cool
  • The waistband is both snug and smooth against your skin
  • Features flat seams for enhanced comfort
Cons
  • A number of users have stated the fabric tears too easily

Under Armour Pants

Under Armour Pants
When it comes to base layers, compression, or any other piece of apparel that fits “close to your skin”, Under Armour’s name always seems to get brought up. This is no coincidence as they have a pretty good indication of what their users crave and the design of their compression pants is no different.
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Performance
All the benefits of compression gear are present here and the locked-in feel provided only enhances it.

Breathability
To prevent moisture from building up over time and causing your body to overheat, these pants do feature moisture-wicking technology. Plus, as odor can be an issue, also integrated is anti-odor technology to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.

Comfortability
For all-day workouts and adventures, these will stay comfortable for the extent of it. This is thanks to the ultralight feel, in conjunction with the second-skin fit that is delivered.

Fabrics Utilized
The blend of fabrics here is polyester and elastane (which is another word for spandex) with a majority of it being polyester (84 percent). The knitting is also done in such a way that allows for four-way stretch fabrication.

Sizing and Fitting
The choice is yours and you have the options from small to XXXX-large.

Overall
When you are contemplating investing in a piece of apparel made from Under Armour, it is never a bad thing. They consistently produce high-quality gear and while their compression pants may have some concerns about longevity, they show why the manufacturer is so well-known in the world today.
Pros
  • The four-way stretch fabric allows for freedom of motion
  • Implements anti-odor technology
  • Comes in various sizes from small all the way to XXXX-large
Cons
  • Some users have taken issue with the durability

Criteria Used For The Evaluation

The Performance Benefits They Provide

So, what is the crave with compression pants or gear in general? For those who really do not understand what pants with compression are, they are more than just a legging to keep your legs warm in the winter or cool in the summer. Instead, they offer nearly endless benefits when you are exercising. This can include reduced muscle fatigue, a lower risk of muscle soreness during a workout, improved recovery when you are dealing with an injury, and an overall easier time of recovering immediately after a workout regimen.

For your muscles, these can be lifesavers. Typically, when you complete your exercising for the day, your muscles will be unbelievably sore and this type of pants will significantly aid in reducing this soreness. Also, they will allow your muscles to breathe better by improving the oxygenation of the muscle tissue. But, these type of pants or tights can be essential for people recovering from a serious injury. Due to the nature and design of them, they boost your muscle strength and hence, the recovery.

So, in turn, when buying a pair of pants, ensure that they actually provide these benefits for you.

The Breathability

Anyone who has spent extensive time researching this type of gear should know a thing or two about breathability. However, for specific apparel that is designed to be used when you are active, it is borderline mandatory. No matter who you are, when you begin to work out you will eventually perspire. If your apparel is not breathable, you will begin to feel clammy and for lack of better words, gross. There are two key factors that contribute to how breathable these pants are. The first is moisture-wicking.

You do not need Da Vinci’s code to crack this one as moisture-wicking does exactly what you would think it would, pull the excess moisture away from your body. With this technology, your skin will be drier and the clamminess feeling will never be prevalent. Secondly is the ventilation which is garnered by mesh. With this integrated, airflow will be allowed to come in through the mesh paneling.

Also, another side feature that is nice is when they are antibacterial. In this instance, they will prevent the build-up of bacteria that will cause potent odors.

How Comfortable They Are

It does not take a rocket scientist to figure this one out as this is a no-brainer. At the end of the day, you can throw all the benefits of any type of clothing aside. If it is not comfortable to wear, then why would you want to wear it? Stupidly simple question, right? But, comfort truly is everything and if you are going to wear something for an extended period of time, it need not provide discomfort.

Thankfully, manufacturers around the world are not clueless about this fact and do everything in their power to develop comfortable clothes. Besides the fabrics being utilized, which can make a big difference, many designers will implement Flat Out Seams in their pants. Oftentimes, the reason why clothing is so uncomfortable is that of the bulky seams that are present. With this specific type of seam design, this will never be an issue and as a result, it tends to feel smooth and soft against your skin. Of course, comfortability can also be a preference and if you have a specific preference of one seam design over another, prioritize it. As long as you are content with it, that is all that matters.

The Fabrics Utilized

When it comes down to it, there are typically two main fabrics that you will see in this type of pants (or gear in general). The main portion will either be, most of the time, polyester or nylon. At this point, if you have been paying attention to the fabrics of the listed pants, you are probably scratching your head as nylon did not appear too much on this list. Yeah, that is not a coincidence as polyester is simply a superior fiber when it comes to compression. Why, so, though?

Basically, it aids in all the aforementioned vital design factors. Indeed, polyester is a highly breathable material that has a natural tendency to wick away moisture, is able to regulate the moisture to prevent overheating, and is an overall comfortable fabric. But, this type of pants is also oftentimes made with a small blend of spandex. Because of its nature, this is what creates the stretchiness and flexibility of the pants. Keep in mind, when you are looking through various pants, spandex, Lycra, and elastane are all the same synthetic fiber.

The Sizing and Fitting

When it comes to compression pants, the fit you are looking for is going to be different than any other piece of clothing you shop for. Oftentimes, when an article of clothing is too tight, you believe this is an issue and want something looser. However, do not fall into this trap as they are designed to be tight. This is what provides the benefits of compression and if you aim for a looser feel, you are undermining the point of the technology.

But, it is still not a bad idea to advise by prior user’s experiences. If the majority of people claim that they are too tight and you should go up one size, do so. Another important note, when selecting your size, you should do so according to your height and weight. If ever unsure, always reference the sizing charts provided for you by the manufacturer.

FAQs

Q:   How to Care for Compression Pants?

You probably already came to this realization but you will need to wash your pants regularly. Now, the manner in which you should wash them all depends on the specific pants. One method may not be applicable to each set of pants and as such, always reference the care label and manufacturer’s recommendations for their pants. However, here is an example and what 2XU recommends for their garment. They insist that if you machine wash them, do so in cold water and to never use bleach or fabric softeners (simply using your standard laundry detergent should suffice just fine).

Also, they suggest that you should not tumble dry it or iron it; simply hang it up to dry them. Finally, they recommend storing the pants in a protective bag away from direct sunlight.

Q:   Do Compression Pants Make you a Better Runner?

This is an age-old question that every runner seems to want to know. Thankfully, Ajit Chaudhari and his team of colleagues aimed to answer the question of if compression pants indeed make you a superior runner. Their results may disappoint you, though. In conjunction with Nike, Chaudhari (a physical therapist at the Ohio State University) and his team tested two separate compression tights provided by the manufacturer.

To quote Chaudhari (paraphrasing a bit), their team concluded that the tights had no real effect on the runner’s height or strength when running. “When we tested them after a 30-minute high-intensity run, we did not see any real effects of the tights”, he claimed. It did not matter which tights the runners wore (between high compression tights, low compression tights or general running shorts), it made no difference at all. You may believe that you are an improved runner, but that is probably a false assumption.

Q:   What is the Best Way to Put on Compression Pants?

For any other garment, this question would probably be disregarded as completely foolish and painfully obvious. But, you need to remember what the designed purpose of this type of pants is; to be as tight as physically possible to deliver all the benefits that compression provide. However, on the other hand, this can make them a major hassle to get on and off. They will not fit or go on like a normal pair of pants or tights, that is for sure. As such, here are a few pointers that you can abide by that will hopefully ease the hassle of the process.

First off, if you are struggling, take them off and begin to pull them up past the midway point of each of your legs. From there, bring up each pant leg individually and hold the waistband while you do it. You may have to wiggle them around and such, but this should help. As a side note, if they are still uncomfortable try taking them off and putting them on again (they tend to fit better the second time).

Q:   Will Compression Pants Make You More Tired?

This could be a reason why one would not want to wear this type of pants. They may feel that the workout will be too intense and that they could not take it. As Physiclo points out, a manufacturer of such pants, these types of pants or tights are going to work out your body harder and as such, you may feel more tired as a result. But, there really is no harm in this as the only factor you may need to adjust is the timeframe of your workout regimen. However, also remember that with this type of pants, the recovery time is greatly enhanced and your body may feel ready to go quicker than you think.

Q:   Can Compression Pants Cause Damage?

This guide has been praising compression pants left and right, and rightfully so. Yet, there is always a flipside to everything and there is some caution that must be taken when wearing this type of pants. In particular, when you wear them too long. Many doctors warn that this can cause issues with your body including Orly Avitzur, who is a medical advisor to Consumer Reports. There is a specific type of nerve pain that can be caused by wearing tight clothing for extended periods of time and Avitzur notes how she sees it with patients.

The condition, which is not important to you, is known as meralgia paresthetica. What happens when you have this ailment is you will notice painful burning and tingling in your thighs. It persists when there is too much pressure on the nerves that run through your groin. While it is more common for other reasons, Avitzur states that she sees it because of shapewear around once a month.

Q:   Would Not Working Out Longer Have the Same Effect?

This is a very intriguing question and while this time we are not pointing to scientific evidence to back it up, if you think about it logically you will know the effect will not be the same. A perfect example is to assess the difference between lifting 10 pounds 10 times or 20 pounds 5 times. It all comes down to anaerobic exercise vs aerobic exercise. Let’s say you go on a long-distance run and then a short sprint. In one instance, you are improving your body’s use of oxygen and in the other, you are increasing the strength of your muscles.

While it works, in theory, when you look at it mathematically. If you look at it scientifically, it does not work out quite the same.

Final Thoughts

Compression pants are so significant for athletes and anyone who is physically active as they provide you with so many performance enhancements. Always remember, they are designed to be very tight to your body so do not fall into the trap of believing you need a looser fit. Granted, these are not for everyone but you will never know unless you try.