Can You Wear Leggings On The Beach?

While packing for my beach holiday this summer, I realized I didn’t own many beach outfits or bikinis. Staring at my suitcase full of jeans, hoodies, and tights, I wondered whether it was acceptable to wear leggings on the beach?

While you can wear leggings on the beach, your comfort level will depend on what kind of beach it is, what activities you plan to do, and the materials from which the leggings are made. The rise in popularity of ‘swimming leggings’ means that tights are becoming a more common beach outfit.

While leggings are not the first thing that may pop into someone’s mind when the word ‘beach’ is mentioned, there are many reasons why someone would want to wear leggings to the beach. Leggings are also a popular choice for a beach outfit for certain aqua sports such as surfing.

Is It A Good Idea To Wear Leggings To The Beach?

When most people picture beaches, we think of white sand, the burning sun, blue surf with people in shorts and bikinis working on their new tan. However, in certain places, this is not the case. Whether or not it is a good idea to wear leggings to the beach depends on various factors, including what type of beach it is.

Sandy Beaches And Leggings

Sandy beaches are generally the first kind of beach that pops into anyone’s mind when the subject of a ‘beach day’ is brought up. Typically, we think of white or yellow sand, the warm sun, and a majestic blue sea to swim in.

Wearing leggings to a sandy beach might not be the best idea, depending on what you plan to do at the beach and what type of material the leggings are made from. Regular cotton leggings will be highly uncomfortable, as they can feel tight, sticky, and get full of sand.

If you plan on swimming, there is also a high possibility that you will experience chaffing after the leggings have gotten wet with saltwater and filled with sand. Some kinds of ‘activewear’ leggings are made from materials designed for swimming, much like swimming costumes and bikinis, so these would be your best option.

Black leggings should be avoided as they absorb the sun’s heat and may make your day a little uncomfortable. There is constantly the risk that you might overheat and dehydrate when you spend too long in the sun.

Suppose it is not your plan to swim in the sea, catch a tan or spend too long on the beach. In that case, standard cotton or polyester leggings are a perfect option if you just want to check out the waves or go for a short sunset walk.

Rocky Beaches And Leggings

Rocky beaches are created as a result of coastal cliffs eroding. The different rocks and stones on the beach prevent any sand sediments from forming, essentially creating a unique beach type of mainly pebbles and stones.

This type of beach is perfect for wearing leggings, as there will be no small sandy sediments to stick to your clothes. A perfect example of this kind of beach is Ruby Beach in Washington state. The weather may also play an essential factor. If it is rainy, cloudy, or cold and you simply want to walk on the beach for a bit, leggings are an excellent option to keep you warm.

Many people enjoy the unique scenery that rocky beaches provide, so it is not uncommon for many exercise or yoga groups to head down to the beaches in their activewear. Bikinis are less common on rocky beaches than on sandy beaches, so you won’t stand out if you wear leggings to a rocky beach as you would on a sandy beach.

Reasons Why People Wear Leggings To The Beach

While it may seem uncommon to see someone wearing leggings on the beach – there are many perfectly valid and reasonable explanations for why someone may want to wear leggings on their beach day.

Wearing Leggings To Avoid Sunburn

We have all been there before; no matter how often you reapplied that oily SPF-50 cream to your skin, you still end up with a nasty sunburn at the end of the day.

The sun is not a force to be reckoned with. While some people can stay out all day and turn a gorgeous brown, others go straight from pale to red and experience uncomfortable pain and peeling skin.

For many people who have sensitive skin and want to avoid any damage, wearing leggings on a day out in the sun is the perfect option to enjoy the beach and avoid getting sunburnt on their legs.

Wearing Leggings To Protect Tattoos

Whether your tattoo is relatively new or a couple years old, we all know that extended sun exposure is no good for your tattoo. People with leg tattoos may want to protect their ink from the harsh sun rays by covering up instead of spending the whole beach day in the shade or reapplying massive amounts of sun cream over their leg tattoo.

Wearing Leggings To Protect Scarred Skin

Sun exposure is terrible for newly scarred skin. Whether someone was in an accident or just had surgery, their doctor may recommend covering the scarred skin for 6-12 months while it heals. Leggings are a perfect option for someone with a new scar on their legs that they have to protect.

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Best Type Of Leggings For Beaches

With technology and clothing materials constantly evolving and improving, it was no surprise when I discovered a fantastic brand of leggings that are perfect for beaches – swim leggings! Also known as swim tights, this fantastic pair of pants is every woman’s dream.

These leggings are designed to be used during aquatic exercise. If you went to the beach for a sunset walk and decided you wanted to have some fun in the waves, your clothing will no longer be a problem.

The material also offers exceptional protection from the sun’s rays. The best part is they look exactly like everyday leggings, so feel free to add them into any outfit, on any occasion – whether it is water-based or not! You can browse different types of these amazing leggings here.


While it is not common to see someone wearing leggings on a sandy beach, it is generally a more accepted beach outfit for rocky shores. There are many different reasons people want to wear a pair of leggings to the beach, such as to avoid sunburn. With an increase in the popularity of swimming leggings, it may become a more popular outfit choice for beach days.