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  • Writer's pictureCompression Athlete

The Best Compression Tights to Wear Under Shorts 2024

Tights that fit and feel great under athletic shorts.

Athlete wearing compression tights under shorts during workout.

While you likely first saw them being worn by professional athletes, nowadays, you’re just as likely to see your average gym-goer rocking a pair of compression tights.

It’s no surprise that the popularity and use of compression tights continues to grow across the world of sports, as their benefits are immediately noticeable.

So, while some outside observers tried to write compression tights off as a mere fashion trend, the reality is that more and more athletes of every stripe are starting to utilize tights for both performance and recovery purposes.

Gearing up in a pair of compression tights is a great idea before any workout or physical activity, as the compressive pressure applied to your muscles helps you warm up faster, improve overall endurance, and recover at a quicker rate.

When it comes to wearing compression tights, whether full-length tights or ¾ length tights, many men opt for a pair of athletic shorts over the top.

And it’s worth noting that certain compression tight styles work better than others when worn under shorts as a baselayer.

Here, we’ve compiled a list of the best compression tights to wear under shorts for 2024.

What Type of Compression Tights Work Best Under Shorts?

If you’re looking for a pair of compression tights that will fit great under athletic shorts, there are a few key characteristics that you’ll want those tights to have.

It may be helpful to think about how basketball players utilize compression tights under their uniforms.

Their compression tights have a smooth fit that lie nicely under their uniform shorts, which is key if you want to avoid any bunching or tangling with the top layer athletic shorts.

Basketball players wearing compression tights under uniform shorts.

Additionally, the tights stay put without any need for adjustment. They have a snug fit but do not limit the athlete’s mobility in any way.

Finally, the compression tights utilize a performance fabric and design that boosts comfort, support, and endurance.

If you’re having trouble determining whether a certain pair of compression tights would fit well under shorts, a good rule of thumb is to look at its product page.

Are there images of the tights being worn under shorts?

If yes, then this style of wear (tights under shorts) is likely suitable to the product’s design.

If no, then you may want to look a bit further. It’s possible that the tights are better suited as an outerwear option (without shorts on top).

Criteria for Our Top Compression Tights Under Shorts Picks

Provides Mobility: Most important is finding compression tights that won’t restrict your movement in any way. You need tights that support and boost your movement, rather than constrict it.

Secure Fit: Compression tights serve as your base layer, so you need tights that will stay in place without causing any irritation or distraction. A secure fit keeps you focused on the task at hand.

Optimized Design: We’re looking for leading activewear brands with the best fabric, design, and technology specifically aimed at increasing performance and endurance.

Note: Featured products are independently selected and reviewed by Compression Athlete. If you purchase through our links, we may earn commission.

1. Under Armour RUSH SmartForm 2.0 Leggings

The Under Armour RUSH SmartForm 2.0 Leggings feature a patented infrared technology that reflects your body’s energy to increase muscle endurance. These leggings utilize SmartForm pattern technology that forms to your shape for a custom fit.

Athlete wearing Under Armour RUSH SmartForm 2.0 Leggings.

Shop at Under Armour: UA RUSH SmartForm 2.0 Leggings

Under Armour’s RUSH SmartForm 2.0 Leggings have strategic mesh panels for increased breathability that’s great for wearing under shorts. These leggings wick sweat, dry very quickly, and have a drop-in strength pocket on the right thigh for storage.

2. Under Armour HeatGear Leggings

The Under Armour HeatGear Leggings are the latest version of their original performance baselayer and are constructed with an ergonomic design for extra comfort, durability, and superior coverage.

Athlete wearing Under Armour HeatGear Leggings.

Shop at Under Armour: Under Armour HeatGear Leggings

Under Armour’s HeatGear fabric is lightweight and features mesh paneling for extra ventilation. These leggings have a wider waistband for added support, a drop-in pocket for storage, and are a UA best seller.

Available in ¾ Length: Under Armour HeatGear ¾ Leggings

3. Nike Pro Dri-FIT Fitness Tights

The Nike Pro Dri-FIT Fitness Tights feature a comfortable stretchy knit fabric with a snug body-hugging feel that moves naturally with your body. These tights utilize sweat-wicking Dri-FIT technology to keep you dry and focused.

Athlete wearing Nike Pro Dri-FIT Fitness Tights.


Nike’s Pro Dri-FIT Fitness Tights sport a soft and stretchy waistband that stays put through all activity, side pockets for secure small item storage, and are available in several color options.


Available in ¾ Length: Nike Pro Dri-FIT Fitness ¾ Tights

4. Nike Pro Dri-FIT Tights

The Nike Pro Dri-FIT Tights utilize supportive and lightweight fabric in a stretchy design that offers a full range of motion. The Nike Dri-FIT technology moves sweat away from your body to keep you cool, dry, and comfortable.

Athlete wearing Nike Pro Dri-FIT Tights.

The Nike Pro Dri-FIT Tights have a snug elastic waistband and flat seams throughout for a smooth feel on your skin. These tights also feature mesh fabric in the front pouch and upper back for improved airflow.

Available in ¾ Length: Nike Pro Dri-FIT ¾ Tights

5. Nike Dri-FIT ADV A.P.S. Recovery Training Tights

The Nike Dri-FIT ADV A.P.S. Recovery Training Tights features a signature Axis Performance System layering design for a smooth and secure fit that’s extra stretchy and made to move.

Athlete wearing Nike Dri-FIT ADV A.P.S. Recovery Training Tights.

Nike’s Dri-FIT ADV A.P.S. Recovery Training Tights are lightweight and breathable with mesh in the front and upper back for extra breathability. These compression tights have sweat-wicking Dri-FIT ADV technology, 4-way stretch, and a comfortable elastic waistband.

6. Lululemon License to Train Tights

The Lululemon License to Train Tights feature a locked-in and distraction-free fit with slick low-friction support. These tights are breathable, sweat-wicking, and feel cool to the touch.

Athlete wearing Lululemon License to Train Tights.

Lululemon’s License to Train Tights utilize 4-way stretch and a bonded construction for flat and smooth seams. These tights keep in place with silicone grippers on the inner waistband and have an interior pocket.

Available in ¾ Length: Lululemon License to Train ¾ Tights

7. Lululemon Vital Drive Train Tights

The Lululemon Vital Drive Train Tights are designed to promote joint and muscle support as you train. These tights have 4-way stretch and interior gripping to stabilize major muscle groups

Athlete wearing Lululemon Vital Drive Train Tights.

Lululemon’s Vital Drive Train Tights utilize abrasion-resistant fabric that wicks sweat and is quick-drying. These tights have drop-in pockets, a hidden phone sleeve, and reflective details.

8. Adidas TechFit AEROREADY Training Tights

The Adidas TechFit AEROREADY Training Tights feature Techfit technology for a sleek and compressive feel that supports and focuses your muscle energy. These tights feature mesh details and sweat-wicking AEROREADY to keep you cool, dry, and comfortable.

Athlete wearing Adidas TechFit AEROREADY Training Tights.


Adidas’ TechFit AEROREADY Training Tights consistently receive high marks for comfort thanks to their fit and fabric, which is soft, lightweight, and breathable. These tights also sport a 3D sculpted mesh-lined pouch that’s designed to handle motion.


9. WOLACO Fulton Compression Tights

The WOLACO Fulton Compression Tights feature a versatile performance design in a comfortable moderate compression fit. These tights have two sweat-proof compression pockets with breathable mesh backing and a secure elastic security band.

Athlete wearing WOLACO Fulton Compression Tights under athletic shorts.

WOLACO’s Fulton Compression Tights sport a stay-put ergonomic fit with premium moisture-wicking, anti-pilling fabric. These tights have a comfortable elastic waistband, layer great under shorts, and are also available in a ¾ length.

10. LSKD Perform Tights

The LSKD Perform Tights feature signature Advantage technical fabric that’s built to perform with a sleek, stretchy, and durable fabric blend. These compression tights sport dual side phone pockets that provide bounce-free storage.

Athlete wearing LSKD Perform Tights under athletic shorts.

Shop at LSKD: LSKD Perform Tights

LSKD’s Perform Tights utilize a low-cut elastic waistband with an internal drawcord for a secure fit, a comfortable front pouch, and work great both on their own or paired with shorts.

11. Alo Yoga Warrior Compression Tights

The Alo Yoga Warrior Compression Tights feature a performance high-stretch nylon jersey fabric with moisture-wicking and odor-resistant technology. These tights have 4-way stretch for superior mobility and comfort.

Athlete wearing Alo Yoga Warrior Compression Tights.

Alo Yoga’s Warrior Compression Tights have a full gusset and double inseam panel making them great both on their own or layered under shorts. These tights feature a drawcord elastic waistband for a perfect fit.

12. Reebok Workout Ready Compression Tights

The Reebok Workout Ready Compression Tights feature a performance compression fit with sweat-wicking Speedwick fabric to keep you cool and dry and mesh panels at the back knee for added ventilation.

Athlete wearing Reebok Workout Ready Compression Tights.

Reebok’s Workout Ready Compression Tights are specifically designed to handle high-intensity training sessions with an inner leg gusset and angled side seams to promote easy lateral movements.

13. Baleaf Flyleaf Quick-Dry ¾ Compression Tights

The Baleaf Flyleaf Quick-Dry ¾ Compression Tights feature a slight compression fit with a signature Diamond Crotch design for increased mobility. These tights are breathable, quick-drying, and moisture-wicking.

Athlete wearing Baleaf Flyleaf Quick-Dry ¾ Compression Tights.

10% Off Coupon Code: CompressionAthlete

Baleaf’s Flyleaf Quick-Dry ¾ Compression Tights feature a high-rise design, drop-in pockets on the thighs for convenient storage, and an inner drawstring for a smooth and adjustable fit.

14. Sleefs Compression Tights

The Sleefs Compression Tights feature a comfortable and durable performance fabric with non-woven stretch fabrication for advanced movement.

Athlete wearing Sleefs Compression Tights.

Shop at Sleefs: Sleefs Compression Tights

Sleefs’ Compression Tights have a smooth and sleek fit that layers well under shorts and can also be worn on their own. These compression tights utilize a stay-put elastic waistband and are available in many color options.

Available in ¾ Length: Sleefs ¾ Compression Tights

Why Do Men Wear Shorts Over Their Compression Tights?

You’ve no doubt seen the shorts over compression tights style by now.

But if you’ve never worn the style yourself, you may wonder what purpose the shorts serve and if they add any additional benefit to what the compression tights already provide.

The simple answer is that there aren’t any athletic benefits to wearing shorts over compression tights.

While adding a pair of shorts on top of your tights can offer a little extra warmth during cooler months, that’s about as far as the benefits extend.

Athlete working out with compression tights worn under shorts.

So, if there aren’t really any benefits offered by wearing shorts over compression tights when working out, why add the extra layer?

In general, the choice to wear shorts over tights has to do with modesty. Due to the skin-tight nature of the compression tights, some men prefer the extra layer of fabric to serve as a sort of buffer.

In other words, they just feel more comfortable adding the shorts than to wear the compression tights on their own.

That being said, certain compression tight designs are specifically geared toward being worn as outerwear, i.e. without the layer of shorts on top.

These styles tend to use a thicker, high-grade fabric that does a good job of concealing and compressing.

But if you prefer wearing shorts over your compression tights and feel more comfortable doing so, then rock those shorts over your tights.

Even though wearing shorts over your compression tights won’t add anything to your workout, they won’t take anything away either.

Remember, comfort is always an important factor in performing your best, whether in competition or just training on your own.

Another great option to keep you supported while active is compression boxer briefs. Check out our top picks here.


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