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Tan Tights, Fashion Secrets of the Famous

Updated on September 25, 2010
Carla Bruni shows how it's done.
Carla Bruni shows how it's done.

Tan tights are coming back in with the rushing of the cooler autumn air (fall winds, if you happen to be in America,) and the American tan tight, or skin tone tight is in, in with a vengeance. Why? Because tan tights are in essence a second skin, providing a little bit of extra warmth and comfort from the cool air as Winter begins stalking towards us all with claws outstretched.

I've often mused on the wondrous ability of a thin barrier of nylon to create a warm zone around the legs akin to being snuggled by a litter of small furry puppies, and the tan tight takes full advantage of this special power to extend the summer season by weeks at a time.

But what about the color? Is tan not a plain and boring option? As anyone who has been reading me obsessively for the past three years know, I have quite a love / hate affair with the color beige, or 'tan' as it is being called in this instance. However this is one case where I will not say a negative word about the color at all. Tan tights represent beige at its finest - beige as it was meant to be worn, which is as unobtrusively as possible to the point where you could pretty much deny its existence.

You see, tan tights are meant to be worn and not seen. They are a means of extending a summer wardrobe into Autumn, and perhaps for the brave, even into winter. They are brave garments, taking the brunt of the elements whilst you skip and prance about the place and people ask you why you aren't cold. They're a secret weapon every woman should have in her wardrobe.

The secret to picking tan tights is to ensure that you have adequate opacity, yet not too much of a matte finish. The idea really is to mimic real skin as much as possible without it making you look and feel as if you're wandering around in a skin suit. Tan tights invariably come in a range of shades and tones, so pick a tone that suits you. If you're naturally pale and tights start tipping over the color barrier from beige to brown, you've gone too far. If, on the other hand you are blessed with a little more color to your skin, then choosing a pale tone won't work - even if that's what's being advertised as 'tan'.

Perfect for wearing with knee length dresses and skirts, tan tights are the saviors of summer fashion. Invest in a few pairs and stave off the coming of long pants, long skirts and the misery of overcoats.


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