Men’s compression tights, or compression pants, have long been a bit of a taboo subject. For a long time, the average gym-goer has likely steered clear of compression tights because they’re worried they’ll reveal (or in some cases, not reveal) their package.
Moreover, many men may feel wearing compression tights in the gym isn’t necessary, and they’re only useful for those who run and sprint outside.
But compression tights and compression gear actually has multiple uses, and you may find it could make all the difference between you reaching and smashing your personal bests.
Benefits Of Compression Pants
Compression pants are invaluable for men who are prone to chafing because they can effectively wick away moisture and stop skin abrasions in their tracks.
However, the greatest benefit, and the reason you should buy compression tights in the first place, is that they are designed to stimulate blood flow, ensuring that strained muscles receive enough oxygen during periods of elevated activity.
Men’s compression tights prevent fluid accumulation in muscle tissue, which is a boon considering how muscle fibres tend to swell and expand under pressure. The restrictive nature of the pants also serves as a valuable recovery tool. The additional pressure provided can reduce swelling – provided you continue to wear them after you’ve hung up the dumbbells, and taken your fifth and final selfie for the workout.
This round-up concerns only compression tights and compression pants. You can also find compression shorts, which are likely to be a more popular category for men because they can be well hidden underneath regular workout shorts. Compression tights extend all the way down to your ankle, which can help to recruit and engage muscle in your entire leg.
We’ve rounded up the very best brands producing compression tights for men right now. They will likely use various materials and fabrics, which have specific uses, so be sure you understand which pair or pairs will be best suited for you.
Price: From $90
Sizes: S- XXL
Origin: Randolph, New Jersey
Yep, if you hadn’t already heard of the term before, meggings are a thing (leggings for men) and Matador was the first to truly introduce the concept. But, don’t just think of these as your basic leggings designed for men. What Matador Meggings has created is a truly versatile pair of compression pants that not only offer all the benefit of compression wear, but something so comfortable and designed with the male anatomy in mind, that you can wear them anywhere you want.
While you can opt for standard black, Matador Meggings are best enjoyed in one of the more visually loud prints, which not only make you feel good (loud prints exude confidence, which can in turn put you in a better mood) but makes them perfect for wearing to festivals, too.
Not only can Matador Meggings be used for workouts, thanks to a lightweight performance fabric with 4-way stretch, odour-resistant and sweat-wicking properties, but they can be worn anywhere you want. A specially-designed crotch area helps to hide your goods, so you can forget about wearing shorts over the top. Better still, you even get a small pocket for your phone and a loop on the back to hold a towel.
Price: From $65
Sizes: S – 3XL
Origin: Baltimore, Maryland
US sportswear brand Under Armour was one of the very first companies to introduce compression tights and compression wear to the market, meaning they really are an expert in the field.
Under Armour has a range of men’s compression tights that can be worn on their own or as a baselayer, although the specific pair you choose will influence this decision.
The company’s range makes use of various technologies, such as UA RUSH which helps to return energy to your body, and UA HeatGear which makes the compression tights incredibly light so you feel like you’re wearing nothing at all. Compression tights are available in full-length or 3/4-length styles and all are made to last you a lifetime.
Price: From $45
Sizes: S – XXL
Origin: Beaverton, Oregon
Unsurprisingly, Nike is in on the compression tight action too. The company’s Dri-FIT technology turns the idea of chafing into a distant memory, allowing athletes to keep sprinting, lifting, and posing for gym selfies pain and rash-free.
For muscular recovery, their ‘Hypercompression’ tights include silicone panels at key locations where injury likes to make an appearance. These give your thighs and calves plenty of backup and support for cooling down and post-flogging recuperation. If the prospect of a busted hamstring keeps you up at night, Nike compression pants are your bridge over troubled workouts.
Price: From $70
Sizes: XXS – 3XL
Origin: Melbourne, Australia
Australian/New Zealand sportswear brand 2XU is perhaps the best compression wear brand out there and is the category it invests the majority of its research and development.
Trusted by professional athletes the world over, 2XU compression tights feature technologies such as Muscle Containment Stamping, which helps to reduce muscle movement in key areas to help minimise injury and strain.
2XU is one company where you need to look at each pair of compression tights individually, as they each have different intended uses. This could be helping you perform at your best during a workout or training session, or aiding and boosting recovery once you’re finished.
Whichever you choose, you can be sure of some of the best compression tights around.
Price: From $32
Sizes: XS – 3XL
Origin: Solihull, England
British sportswear brand Gymshark is for those who want quality clothing without breaking the bank and is a brand that has leveraged social media incredibly well to gain a cult following.
Gymshark’s leggings won’t offer as much in the way of true compression compared to the more expensive brands on this list, but as a supportive baselayer, they’re more than capable.
Carefully designed to sculpt themselves to your body shape and muscles, Gymshark compression pants offer support and sweat-wicking properties to help kick your workouts up a notch.
Price: From $98
Sizes: XS – XXL
Origin: Vancouver, Canada
Lululemon is arguably one of the best and most fashionable activewear brands on the market. Originally designed for yoga, the brand has expanded to create premium activewear for all types of exercise. Committed to designing innovative technical athletic gear, Lululemon’s compression tights are no exception.
Lululemon offers compression tights that all serve a different purpose. Their Vital Drive Training tight, for example, is specifically designed for strength and weight training, as it is made with abrasion-resistant fabric, whereas the Surge tight is specifically designed for running with its lightweight fabric for a full range of movement.
All of Lululemon’s compression bottoms have four-way stretch, sweat-wicking abilities, and added support, but make sure you purchase the right tights specifically designed for your preferred way of exercising for optimal performance.
Price: From $34
Sizes: XS – XXL
Origin: Manchester, United Kingdom
For affordable compression pants, look no further than Boohoo Man. Offering a simple range of compression tights, if you’re itching to try compression wear without forking out huge amounts of money, Boohoo Man’s range is excellently priced but still good quality.
Granted, the compression qualities won’t compare to more expensive competitors, but, similar to Gymshark, as supportive baselayers, BooHoo Man’s range is perfect.
All garments are made with stretchy fabric for flexibility and feature sweat-wicking technologies. Perfect for all forms of exercise!
Price: From $105
Sizes: S- XXL
Origin: Los Angeles, California
It may have yoga in its brand name, and that is certainly the discipline best suited to the clothing on offer, but Alo Yoga’s collections, especially their compression range, are excellent for all forms of exercise.
While Alo Yoga’s collection of compression tights is limited to just two pairs at the time of publishing, they are designed to be comfortable and allow for a full range of movement. With odour-resistant and moisture-wicking fabric, Alo Yoga compression tights will keep you supported throughout your workout, even if that workout is just a walk to your local coffee shop.
Price: From $79
Sizes: XS – XXL
Origin: Huntington Beach, California
American sportswear label Leorêver positions itself at the more premium end of activewear. All pieces are designed and made at the company’s showroom in Huntington Beach, California, and all are designed to be used not only for exercising but for travel, business meetings, and running errands.
Leorêver’s small but incredibly impressive range of compression tights for men is one that you really should be checking out. Despite being a premium activewear brand, the company’s compression tights are rather affordable.
Designed to provide comfort and support to your hips and lower body, the tights feature a double-layered front crotch panel, a UV cut finish, and are made with an extremely breathable fabric. These compression tights have even been sported by professional football, basketball, and hockey athletes, so you know they’re good.
Available in 11 stylish colours, Leorêver’s compression tights will improve your performance, no matter your exercise of choice.
Price: From $40
Sizes: XS – XXL
Origin: El Segundo, California
Fabletics was founded on the notion that you couldn’t buy high-quality activewear without spending a fortune. And, with none other than Kate Hudson on the list of co-founders, you can bet your bottom dollar the US sportswear brand is dedicated to providing the best possible clothing for the lowest possible price.
Fabletics’ Baseline Tight offers just that, an exceptional fit thanks to 4-way stretch fabric, and with anti-chafe, anti-stink properties and breathable properties, you can be sure of a comfortable and effective workout.
Perhaps best of all, Fabletics offers a 90-Day perfect fit guarantee, so if you’re not entirely satisfied, you can return it for a full refund.
Price: From $89
Sizes: XS – XL
Origin: Encinitas, California
Inspired by the active lifestyle of Coastal Californians, Vuori is dedicated to producing premium “performance apparel”, integrating fitness, surfing, sport and art into their stylish but casual activewear ranges.
Vuori only has one pair of compression tights on its book, but surely it’s better to dedicate your craft to one ultimate pair than several mediocre pairs, right?
Vuori’s compression tights are made from a proprietary performance stretch knit fabric, combined with flatlock seams to help prevent chafing. As you’d expect, they’re sweat-wicking and quick-drying and, in our opinion, they look incredible.
Price: From $54
Sizes: XS – XXL
Origin: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Brooks Running is all about, just that, running. The company is known for their incredible range of running shoes, so it only stands to reason that they have some of the best running gear too, which includes compression tights.
The Momentum Thermal Tight, for example, is a heavyweight design intended for runs in colder weather. The stretch fabric contours perfectly to your body to give you support in all the right places, while a conveniently placed pocket will store your phone.