I’m a health editor – these are my 12 go-to high waisted gym leggings

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  • That won’t roll down, sag, or cut you in half.

    So, you’re after a pair of high waisted gym leggings but don’t want to spend money on a pair that’ll roll down mid-workout, exposing your midriff.

    No one likes workout kit that doesn’t deliver what it promises, and the core tenant of a good pair of high waisted workout leggings is that they’re just that: high waisted and don’t roll down at any given opportunity (or burpee).

    A bit like my edit of the best gym leggings, I’ve tried and tested all of the leggings in this roundup. I’m a marathon runner and strength train regularly, too, so have trialled the below over short runs, long runs, speed sessions, and gym sessions for you.

    Don’t miss our guides to the best running shorts for women, oversized gym t shirts, and the best sports bras, while you’re here – and keep scrolling for your ultimate guide to the best high waisted workout leggings on the market.

    Testing process

    So, what do I look for in a good pair of high waisted workout leggings? Support, compression, and sweat-wicking comfort that lasts the test of time, too. I’ll never include a pair of leggings that aren’t squat-proof, leaves you with crotch sweat patches, or falls down mid-squat.

    Keen to know how team MC test all of the products we include? All of the below products have been personally tested by me and are leggings that I’d buy myself. There are no products included that I haven’t tried personally.

    The leggings below were tested over a minimum of one three-mile run and one gym session, but most of them were worn for at least four to five workouts before the reviews were written.

    What did I look for when deciding the best high waisted gym leggings?

    Aka, what’s the success criteria? Good question.

    • First and foremostly: are the leggings actually high waisted and does the band stay put, supporting you through your session?
    • Are the leggings well-fitting (no crinkly knees or baggy bums), and do they run true to size?
    • Are they sweat-wicking?
    • Are they non-see-through?
    • Do they offer compression?
    • Was the material prone to bobbling or piling?
    • How well did the leggings retain their structure over time, and did they wash well?
    • Is the product a reasonable price? (We know times are tough right now – don’t miss by guides to free home workouts and how to exercise for free. The below get my seal of approval as fit kit that actually lasts the long run.)

    Health Editor Ally Head trying some of the high waisted gym leggings featured in this article

    I’m a health editor: these are my 12 go-to pairs of high waisted workout leggings

    1. Cheap high waisted workout leggings

    CRZ YOGA Women’s Naked Feeling Workout Leggings – £23 | Amazon
    I was pleasantly surprised with these Amazon dupes – sure, they won’t last as long as the higher price point designs, but for £23, I found them to be both supportive and flattering.
    On the high waisted front – the design felt similar to more high-end alternatives, hugging my mid-section in a soft yet supportive way. They didn’t roll down through either sweat session I try them in and I liked that the leggings move with your body but don’t end up around your lower tummy as a result.
    If you’re a sweaty person like me, do note that you’ll likely get sweat patches in the lighter colours.

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    2. Gymshark high waisted leggings

    Flex High Waisted Leggings – now £36, was £45 | Gymshark
    A mid-price point option, I liked these leggings from Gymshark and found the high waisted design to be both sculpting and supportive – it didn’t roll down but did nip me in at the waist more than other pairs I tried.
    I found them to be a good workout companion and flattering, too, but do note that they’re a lot thicker than other options, so not ideal for summer sweat sessions. They are great for cold winter workouts, though (or wearing around the house as energy bills continue to rise). Short girls, do note: they run slightly long, and are extra high rise on the stomach, too.

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    4. High waisted workout leggings with tummy control

    Claude Pocket Legging Ultraviolet – £55 | Pocket Sport
    I’ve been a fan of Pocket Sport since I tried their workout shorts in this colourway and didn’t get a crotch sweat patch – which, if you workout regularly, you’ll understand is quite rare. They’re a really great high waisted option as they hit that sweet spot of being comfortable but actually staying up, thanks to the non-stick grip that lines the waistband.
    The quality is outstanding and I’ve never been disappointed by a product of theirs. Buy for a mid-range option that feels more expensive, will last for ages (I’ve had mine for 3+ years now and they still feel new), and sweat-wick seamlessly, too.

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    5. High waisted workout leggings with pockets

    Wunder Train High Rise Tight – £88 | lululemon
    As well as being the perfect mid-torso amount of high waisted, the lululemon Wunder Train leggings have not one, not two, but three pockets – one on your lower back and one on either thigh.
    Plus, this particular design has a drawcord around the waist which means ou can make sure you’ve got the perfect fit.
    When testing, I loved how they hugged my waist and really didn’t move during any workout. Plus, they stayed cool no matter how sweaty I got (and trust me, some sessions were sweaty).

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    6. Super high waisted workout leggings

    Exhilarating Leggings – £107 | P.E. Nation
    After a pair of workout leggings that aren’t just high waisted but, well, basically touch your boobs? Enter stage right, the P.E. Nation designs, which promise not only to support you around the waist but sit even higher than usual, too.
    They’re a higher price point option, for sure, but the leggings are really high quality and sculpting, too. When testing these, I particularly liked how at ease I felt in them knowing they were 100% squat-proof (trust me, I tested them extensively).

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    7. High waisted gym leggings sale

    Techfit 3 Stripes Long Gym Leggings – now £22.80, was £38 | adidas
    While most adidas leggings are great, what they certainly aren’t is high waisted – that is, apart from the Techfit range, most of which are a comfortable high waisted design great for both working out in and wearing for brunch.
    When I tried, the support band around the wasit dug in a little but wasn’t noticeable after a while. They’re currently on sale –  go, go, go.

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    8. Best black high waisted gym leggings 

    All Day High-Waisted Gym Leggings – £70 | Sweaty Betty
    Sweaty Betty know how to design high waisted, supportive leggings.  Carving the perfect mid-point between soft and sculpting, these All Day leggings really live up to the hype.
    I loved that they supported me through everything from Pilates to long distance runs to strength training, but are also quality enough material to wear to the office with an oversized jumper and boots, too. I’d size down for the most supportive fit as SB do come up a little large.

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    9. High waisted compression workout leggings

    Form Hi-Rise Compression Tights – £70 | 2XU
    Another great high waisted option, 2XU are known for their compression tights. Not sure what that means? Well, making sure your tights have adequate compression (that quite literally translates to pressure, FYI) has been found to boost recovery and reduce your risk of injury, too.
    When I tried, the leggings stayed up and sweat-wicked well – IMO a great high waisted option for runners.

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    10. Seamless high waisted workout leggings

    Ultimate Leggings in Dark Olive – £39.99 | Adanola
    Forever the go-to of the more fashion-forward gym goer, I was sceptical that Adanola leggings wouldn’t genuinely perform well – all too often, kit that looks this good doesn’t sweat wick or support. But I was wrong – I’ve worked out in my Ultimate Leggings at least 20 times now and they’ve never rolled down, crinkled round the tummy or waist, or left me feeling unsupported.
    They’re great, and an affordable price point, too.

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    11. High waisted gym leggings Nike

    Dri-FIT One – £39.95 | Nike
    These leggings call themselves a “second skin” – which, when I try, I agree isn’t far off. They’re great, rivalling the higher-end versions in their high waisted-ness, but also their comfort, support and sculpting abilities, too.
    They’re spectacularly lightweight and soft, making them really easy to wear. Plus, they won’t break the bank.

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    12. High waisted gym leggings 3/4 length

    The Limitless 6/8 Legging – £88 | LNDR
    You may not have heard of LNDR, but you won’t forget their leggings once you’ve tried them.
    Cleverly, they offer hidden technology at the front of the waistband which makes you feel extra supported, and gives you a streamlined silhouette. They have three length options – full length (8/8), ankle length (7/8), and calf length (6/8). Worth the price tag.

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    Happy shopping – and sweating.

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