Balmain Makes It Okay — Nay, Chic — To Wear Leggings This Spring

Our favorite Fashion Week trends are the ones that validate what we already knew. Socks with sandals shouldn't be considered a faux pas. (Same goes for dresses over pants.) You can DIY virtually anything. And leggings, the non gratae of the fashion world, can certainly have a respectable place in our wardrobe when done right. Phillip Lim first confirmed this long-held belief with varying levels of styling at his spring '16 show in New York. Then, Balmain validated our feelings with its own high-fashion take on these contentious non-pants.

Five of the looks Olivier Rousteing sent down the runway feature figure-hugging bottoms too tight to be considered trousers. Of course, this isn't the stretchy-yoga-pant fare we tend to grab for lounging on weekends (or quite frankly, for doing anything but exercise): Balmain's take on leggings boast high waistlines framed at the top by wide, hardware-heavy belts and down below by strappy, Kardashian-esque sandals. They exude the sex appeal that permeates every Balmain collection, thanks to the formfitting silhouettes and fabrics that leave little to the imagination. There are no tunics or long tops to cover up the crotch area. Instead, the message is clear: Leggings don't have to pass for pants — you can wear 'em in their own right.

Our will-they-won't-they relationship with leggings has been going on for too long. Ahead, we outline the five steps to wearing your leggings with pride, as seen on the Balmain runway.

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