Ballet Tights And Dance Tights
Quality dance tights are an absolute essential for dancers of all ages and abilities. It’s always a good idea to have a couple of pairs in your bag ready for your dance classes and rehearsals. You’ll also want a fresh new pair of tights ready for performances, competitions or dance exams.
Here at PDE Dance Supplies, you’ll find a great range of styles from stirrup and footless dance tights to footed tights and more. If you're looking for compression dance tights, we stock Support+ Convertible ballet tights, designed to make dancers legs feel less tired after long periods of dancing.
Shop for top brands including Silky Dance, Tendu and more in adult's and children's sizes with a wide range of colours available.
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Ballet Tights And Dance Tights Buying Guide
It’s important to choose dance tights that will be comfortable, well fitted and suited to your dance style. Our ballet tights and dance tights buying guide will help you find your perfect tights, from fresh new ballet tights for an upcoming performance to footless dance tights for your contemporary dance classes, convertible ballet tights for your pointe work lessons and more…
Why Do Ballet Dancers Wear Tights?
For performances on stage, a choreographer will often want a uniform look to the costumes, particularly costumes worn by the corps de ballet in the large group dance scenes. This can be achieved by the dancers all wearing ballet tights in a similar shade or colour - for example pale tights for the white swans in Swan Lake.
Away from the stage, you will often see ballet dancers wearing tights for their ballet classes and rehearsals. This has much to do with comfort and injury prevention - wearing tights helps to keep the muscles in your legs warm and as such helps to prevent injuries caused by cold muscles.
Are Dance Tights Different To Regular Tights?
Yes, dance tights are different to regular tights. When it comes to comparing dance tights vs regular tights, the main difference is the thickness. Whilst normal tights can be quite thin (15 denier for example) dance tights tend to be much thicker (typically around 60 to 70 denier).
Dance tights also come in a variety of foot types such as footed, footless or convertible. In recent years, a number of manufacturers have also developed compression dance tights, designed to enhance blood circulation to the muscles in the legs.
What Are Ballet Tights?
Like most dance tights, ballet tights are thicker than normal, every day tights. This makes them more durable, which is important as they need to withstand the rigours of many hours of ballet classes, rehearsals and performances. The increased thickness of ballet tights also makes them less likely to ladder. Due to their increased thickness, ballet tights are also more opaque which gives a more uniform colour to the dancers’ legs when performing as a corps de ballet.
How Do You Clean Ballet Tights?
Ideally, ballet tights or dance leggings should be hand washed in cool water using only a mild detergent. This will help to prolong the life of the tights and avoid shrinking them. If you must machine wash ballet tights, it’s recommended that you use a gentle washing machine cycle on low temperature and a mild washing detergent. You should also wash your tights with similar coloured garments and try not to wash them alongside clothes with zips that could snag on the tights and cause them to ladder. Avoid tumble drying your ballet tights, instead hang them out to air dry, away from any sources of direct heat. This will help to maintain their shape and elasticity.
What Do Ballet Dancers Wear Under Their Tights?
Female ballet dancers normally don’t wear any underwear under their ballet tights. This is to avoid the look of a ‘vpl’ (visible pant line) in class or on stage. Due to the extreme range of the movements often performed by dancers, if underwear was worn it could ride up and become uncomfortable.
The tights in effect are the underwear, with the ballet leotard worn over the top of the tights. If dancers do prefer to wear dance underwear, body stockings are available which are designed to be worn under the leotard or tights.
Body stockings for dancers tend to have a high cut leg line to ensure that they can't be seen under your leotard or tights. Body stockings are also available with both nude and clear straps making them very versatile and useful to wear underneath a range of leotards and costumes. At PDE Dance Supplies, we stock body stockings by Silky Dance. These are made from ultra soft material and are seamless too, making them very comfortable to wear in the dance studio or on stage.
What Do Male Ballet Dancers Wear Under Their Tights?
Male dancers normally wear a dance belt (also known as a jock-strap) under their ballet tights, designed to increase support and comfort. A dance belt is similar to ‘thong’ style underwear, but with a thicker elasticated waist band to ensure a more comfortable fit. The front support pouch is normally triangular in shape and simply constructed with of a couple of layers of stretchy fabric and a thin layer of padding material to create a smooth, discreet look to the dance tights. A male dance belt is normally a similar colour to the dancer’s skin tone to make it less noticeable when worn under male dance tights.
Different Types Of Ballet Tights
Convertible Ballet Tights
What Are Convertible Ballet Tights?
Convertible ballet tights are ballet tights with openings under the feet. They are one of the most popular choices for ballet dancers.
These tights feature a hole under the sole of the foot so they can be ‘converted’ quickly between footed tights and footless tights. This is particularly useful when you need to be able to roll your tights up to switch between dancing bare foot or dancing in your ballet shoes.
The hole under the sole of the foot is stretchy enough to make it easy to pull your foot through, yet tight enough to fit snugly around your foot. The hole in convertible tights is also reinforced to help prevent the tights from laddering.
Ballet dancers who are dancing on pointe will often choose convertible ballet tights as they can be rolled up easily to apply plasters or toe spacers when putting pointe shoes on.
At PDE Dance Supplies, we stock 2 brands of high quality convertible tights from UK dance tights manufacturers. You can choose from Silky Dance tights, or the more premium convertible ballet tights by Tendu, both of which are available in adults and children's sizes. We hold plenty of stock should you wish to order bulk dance tights ready for the term or year ahead, alternatively tights can be ordered individually too.
Footed Ballet Tights
What Are Footed Ballet Tights?
Footed ballet tights cover the whole of your foot. They are a popular choice for kids dance tights or baby ballet tights. More senior students and adult ballet dancers who are not dancing on pointe often like to wear footed tights. This is a practical choice as you don’t need to roll your tights up to switch between dancing in flat ballet shoes and dancing in pointe shoes. Footed tights are commonly worn for character dancing too.
Compression Dance Tights
What Are Compression Dance Tights?
Compression dance tights (or compression ballet tights) are designed to make dancers legs feel less tired after long periods of dancing. At PDE Dance Supplies, we stock Support + Convertible tights by Silky dance. The graduated support technology used in these silky dance tights has been medically proven to enhance blood circulation to the legs and muscles.
This aids faster recovery and alleviates DOMS (Delayed onset muscle soreness). The benefits of Silky Dance Support+ Convertible tights can help dancers of all levels and abilities.
Compression dance tights have been growing in popularity amongst professional ballet dancers and students in recent years. They are an excellent choice for the serious ballet dancer or for ballet teachers who spend long hours in the dance studio.
Other Types Of Dance Tights
Footless Dance Tights
Footless dance tights stop at the ankle, leaving the dancer’s feet exposed. These are a popular choice for modern or contemporary dance where the dancer may wish to dance bare foot or in socks.
Some dancers prefer to have bare feet inside their ballet shoes to help them feel more of a connection to the floor through the soles of their feet and so like to wear footless dance tights for ballet class. Tan footless dance tights are often worn for modern or lyrical dances and black footless dance tights are also a popular choice.
Stirrup Dance Tights
Stirrup dance tights cover the whole leg and feature a ‘stirrup’ that passes over the arch of the dancer’s foot, wrapping around under the sole. This style of tights are popular for a number of dance styles, particularly jazz, tap and modern. The stirrup design makes these tights very versatile as they can be worn over or under your dance shoes. Some dancers like to wear stirrup dance tights with foot thongs. This can make it easier to perform pirouettes and other turns as the underside of the foot thongs is designed to slide more easily on the floor than the skin on the balls of the feet would.
What Colour Dance Tights Will I Need?
Pink Ballet Tights
Pink ballet tights are essential for children's ballet classes and a popular choice for adult ballet too. Ballet tights tend to come in a uniform shade of pink, commonly known as ‘theatrical pink’ although some brands may use different terminology to describe the same colour.
Black Dance Tights
As the saying goes ‘black goes with everything’… and black dance tights are no exception! Black dance tights are super versatile, making them a popular choice for dancers of all ages and abilities. Black is a popular choice for adult ballet dancers who often have no set uniform requirements when attending open ballet classes.
Tan Dance Tights
Tan Dance Tights (also known as Shimmer Dance Tights) look fantastic under bright lights. This makes Tan & Shimmer dance tights a perfect choice for a number of dance styles, particularly when performing on stage in dance shows, competitions and festivals. Tan dance tights are often required uniform for modern dance classes.
Dance Tights Brands
When it comes to dance tights, there are a number of brands to choose from including Capezio tights, Bloch tights, Wear Moi, Tendu and Silky Dance tights and many more.
At PDE Dance Supplies we are proud to stock a range of tights from leading British brands Silky Dance and Tendu as well as tights from Capezio, Wear Moi and Roch Valley.
Silky Dance Tights
Silky was established in 1997. Silky dance tights offer an extensive range of women’s and girls dancing tights from beautifully shimmery tan tights through to convertible ballet tights and the new Support + Convertible compression dance tights. The Silky brand is known for its wide range of tights and their aim is to offer quality women's hosiery at affordable prices.
About Tendu Tights:
Tendu always strive for the best quality at a realistic price. Their passion is helping dancers achieve their goals, by bringing great quality, functional products to enhance comfort and strength. Tendu go to great lengths to manufacture and source products that will be useful. They focus on the quality of the products, rather than the packaging, keeping prices realistic.
Alongside their range of premium convertible ballet tights and other dancewear, Tendu also produce a fantastic range of dance exercise equipment from foot rollers for dancers to dance exercise bands, wobble boards and more including the Tendu stretch band.
About Capezio Tights:
Capezio was established in 1887 by Salvatore Capezio, who was born in 1871 in Muro, Lucano Italy. After training as a cobbler in Italy, Salvatore Capezio emmigrated to the United States and at the young age of 17 he opened a small shoe repair shop near New York’s old Metropolitan Opera House.
He soon became appointed as the official shoemaker for the Met. During her first tour of the United States, Anna Pavlova purchased Capezio shoes for her entire company. To thank her, Capezio famously created a pointe shoe named 'The Pavlova'. Capezio continues to be a popular dance brand all around the world and we are delighted to stock Capezio tights at PDE Dance Supplies.
Dance Tights Size Charts
Dance tights and ballet tights are available in a wide range of sizes from child size tights for 3 to 5 year olds all the way up to plus size dance tights for adults. Each manufacturer may set their dance tight sizes slightly differently, which can make it confusing when shopping for ballet tights. Read on below for our dance tights size charts...
Silky Dance Tights Size Guide
Silky Dance Tights Children's Size Guide
|Silky Dance Child's Dance Tights Size:||Approximate Height (cm)||Approximate Height (feet and inches)|
|Child age 3-5||104 cm||3'4"|
|Child age 5-7||116 cm||3'8"|
|Child age 7-9||128 cm||4'2"|
|Child age 9-11||140 cm||4'7"|
|Child age 11-13||152 cm||5'0"|
Silky Dance children's dance tights are available from kids size age 3-5 (suitable for children approximately 104cm or 3'4" in height) up to kids size age 11-13 (suitable for children approximately 152 cm or 5'0" in height).
Silky Dance Tights Adult's Size Guide
|Silky Dance Adult Dance Tights Size:||Approximate Height (cm or feet and inches)||Approximate Hip measurement (cm or inches)|
|Adult Small||150-162 cm
|Adult Medium||152-172 cm
|Adult Large||162-178 cm
|Adult Extra Large||168-179 cm
Silky Dance adult's dance tights are available from adult size small (suitable for adults approximately 150-162 cm or 4'11"- 5'4" in height with hip measurement between 82-92cm or 32"-36") up to adult size extra large (suitable for adults approximately 168-179 cm or 5'6"- 5'10" in height with hip measurement between 124-140cm or 48"-54").
Tendu Ballet Tights Size Guide
Tendu Ballet Tights Children's Size Guide
|Tendu Child's Ballet Tights Size:||Approximate Height (cm)||Approximate Height (feet and inches)|
|Child age 8-12||152 cm||5'0"|
Tendu ballet tights for children are available in kids size age 8-12 (suitable for children approximately 152cm or 5'0" in height).
Tendu Ballet Tights For Adults Size Guide
|Tendu Adult's Ballet Tights Size:||Approximate Height (cm)||Approximate Height (feet and inches)|
|Adult small / medium||152 cm - 172 cm||5'0" - 5'8"|
|Adult medium / large||157 cm - 182 cm||5'2" - 6'0"|
Tendu ballet tights for adults are available in adults size small / medium (suitable for adults approximately 152cm - 172cm or 5'0" - 5'8" in height) or adults size medium / large (suitable for adults approximately 157cm - 182cm or 5'2" - 6'0" in height)
Mens Ballet Tights Size Guides
Capezio Tights Size Guide
|Capezio Mens Tights Size (Capezio MT11) :||Approximate Height (cm or feet and inches)||Approximate Inseam measurement (cm or inches)|
|Adult Small||145-155 cm
|Adult Medium||157-165 cm
|Adult Large||168-175 cm
|Adult Extra Large||178-183 cm
Capezio MT11 men's ballet tights are available from adult size small (suitable for adults approximately 145-155 cm or 4'9"- 5'1" in height with inseam measurement between 68-73cm or 27"-29") up to adult size extra large (suitable for adults approximately 178-183 cm or 5'10"- 6'0" in height with inseam measurement between 83-88cm or 33"-35").
Wear Moi Tights Size Guide
|Wear Moi Mens Tights Size (Wear Moi Solo) :||Approximate Height (cm or feet and inches)|
|Adult Small||161-175 cm
|Adult Medium||168-182 cm
|Adult Large||175-189 cm
Wear Moi men's tights are available from adult size small (suitable for adults approximately 161-175 cm or 5'3"- 5'9" in height up to adult size large (suitable for adults approximately 175-189 cm or 5'9"- 6'3" in height.
This Ballet Tights And Dance Tights Buying Guide was written by PDE Dance Supplies co-founder, Michael Berkin. Michael is an ex professional ballet dancer who trained at The Royal Ballet School and performed with a number of international ballet companies including Birmingham Royal Ballet, Royal New Zealand Ballet, Ballet Ireland and Northern Ballet. You can learn more about Michael Berkin here.