5 Best Running Tights in 2021: For Cold Winter Trail Runs

Trail runners and ultrarunners are pretty well-known for being tough people when it comes to all-season running in challenging mountain environments and weather conditions. With that said, it makes sense that we need running gear to help us tackle adverse conditions, and then be able to recover quickly after these intense workouts.

Wearing compression running tights can really help improve recovery times, protect you from the elements, and even help prevent picking up hitchhikers like ticks should you ever find yourself running in areas with long grasses where ticks are known to be active. Below is a list of reasons why you should consider buying yourself a pair of running tights for winter or cold weather running.

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All running tights on this ‘Best Running Tights Buyer’s Guide‘ have been ranked based on the effectiveness of the features below:

  • Compression running tights can actively improve running performance (in both power and speed) – especially important for trail and ultrarunners who like to add elevation and distance into their run training.
  • Compression running tights can reduce the risk of injury through reduced muscle oscillation.
  • Compression tights for running can increase the speed of recovery by way of increased blood lactate removal and reduced swelling.
  • Running tights help prevent you picking up potentially harmful ticks when running amongst long grasses.
  • Running tights can protect from the sun’s harmful rays, with SPF protection, and keep you warm on cold and/or wet and windy days.

This ‘Best Compression Running Tights’ buyer’s guide is regularly updated so be sure to bookmark it in preparation for when you’re ready to make a purchase. Congratulations to all brands who made it on to this buyer’s guide, you have designed truly great running tights.


1. 2XU MCS Run Compression Tights (EDITOR’S CHOICE)

2XU MCS Compression tights best running tights trail and kale 2
2XU MCS Run Tights – compression tights for trail running

The 2XU MCS Run Compression tights have earned the top spot in this list, as the best running tights with compression. The MCS Run tight is an excellent product that really does perform as stated by 2XU – I know this because I’ve tested them on many a long and challenging trail run.

The MCS Run noticeably reduced fatigue during long runs and this is due mostly to the muscle mapped compression which has been designed to reduce muscle oscillation in areas where you need it most.

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Because the compression has been mapped to zones, they are very comfortable to wear for long periods of time, and at no point do I ever feel like the compression is restricting me in any areas including my waist or legs.

Speaking of the waist area, theres a draw string to adjust tightness, and a comfortable waistband, so that you’re not just relying on super-tight compression to keep them on, which would not be as comfortable.

The 2XU (pronounced “two-times-you”) MCS Run tights (now called ‘Light speed’) are made from a sweat wicking and quick-drying fabric which also help regulate body temperature by drawing moisture away from your skin. It also has UPF50+ sun protection and antibacterial anti-odor technology to keep you smelling fresher for longer.

This fabric also offers great flexibility and range of motion while you’re running and there are 3 well planned-out waist pockets which store essentials including energy gels, phone, and keys. I like that the MCS Run (now called ‘Light speed’) also have plenty of reflective logos to ensure you’re seen while running in the dark during the winter months.

The 2XU MCS Run tights are available in men’s and women’s – to learn more use the links below:

FULL REVIEW: 2XU MCS Run Compression Tights Review

The 2XU MCS Run Compression Tights are also available at the stores below – use our links for the best price:


2. On Running Tights Long

On Running tights best running tights trail and kale 2
On Running Tights Long winter running tights

The On Running Tights Long is an excellent choice of winter running tights for those running in cold weather conditions, where insulation is potentially more important than compression. They keep your legs warm but also offer breathability due to the soft, and sweat-wicking polyester with elastane material being used.

FULL REVIEW: On Running Tights Long Review

The Tights Long stretch nicely for excellent freedom of movement while running. I really like that these tights offer extra insulation in areas that need the most protection from the cold. For example, there’s an embossed insulating panel above the knee that provides sensitive tendons with extra warmth in cold conditions.

The On Tights Long have an attractive minimalist design but that’s not to say they lack features because they definitely don’t. There are ankle zippers and an adjustable waistband to make putting them on and taking them off nice and easy.

The On Running Tight Long also have plenty of hidden pocket storage for your essentials too. And finally, there are reflective details to help keep you visible when running at night. For all these reasons, we have awarded the On Tights Long as the second best running tights for runners.

The On Running Tights Long are available in men’s and women’s – to learn more use the links below:


3. Salomon Agile Long Tight

Salomon has long been in the game of designing running tights for trail running, so they know all too well our list of requirements for a good pair of running tights. The Salomon Agile Long tights have an adjustable waistband which makes them easy to put on and take off but also give them the ability to be micro-adjusted to your waist size, rather than relying on compression to keep them on.

Salomon uses their Advanced Skin Active Dry fabric with 4-way stretch flexibility which efficiently moves moisture away from your skin to keep you dry during intense running efforts. You may be familiar with this fabric as it’s used in much of Salomon’s other clothing and running hydration packs too.

There’s a centered zippered back pocket which lets you carry essentials securely and also some reflective detailing in strategic places to keep you safe while running in the dark.

Some will also be pleased that the Agile Long running tights will stay opaque when stretched, which means no visible pant-line if you choose to wear underwear underneath the running tights. The Salomon Agile Long Tights are available in men’s and women’s – to learn more use the links below:

The Salomon Agile Long Tights are also available at the stores below – use our links for the best price:


4. Janji Groundwork Flyby Tight

Janji Groundwork Flyby Tight best running tights trail and kale
Janji Groundwork Flyby Tight winter running tights

We are big fans of Janji here at Trail & Kale, not just because the apparel they produce is really unique in style and technical in design & materials, but because we also love what the brand itself stands for. Janji donates a portion of their sale proceeds towards funding clean water projects in countries around the World.

The Janji Groundwork Flyby Tight is made with a durable stretch nylon, and has an insulating double-lined front panel which also provides extra protection and modesty.

There are 4 sizable pockets to the rear and also the sides which is very useful for those long runs when you may want to take energy gels, and other essentials along with you.

Like all of the tights on this list the Groundwork Flyby tights have hi-vis reflective details, but with these they’re in the taping along the side seams.

Groundwork Knit, the material used in these tights, is made using a premium grade nylon that has a significantly tighter woven filament than standard synthetics. Tighter filaments mean less microfiber shedding in the wash-cycle, plus greater durability of the garment. This fabric is also bluesign® certified meaning it is free from harmful chemicals and is fabricated in a way that meets a high environmental standard.

JANJI REVIEWS: Janji Men’s Running Apparel Review / Janji Women’s Running Apparel Review

The Janji Groundwork Flyby Tights are available in men’s and women’s – to learn more use the links below:


5. Nike Power Running Tight

The Nike Power Tights are made with a supportive stretch fabric that is designed to help you move more freely through your stride. The center back pocket features a side zipper for easy access and security and theres even an internal vapor barrier which helps protect your phone from sweat when running hard.

Nike uses its famous and effective Dri-FIT technology in these tights which will help you stay dry from sweat, and keep your temperature well regulated.

There is a silicone print at the upper thighs which adds support and keeps the tights locked in place and there’s also a 2-way drawcord on an elastic waistband which can be worn on the inside or out.

The Nike Power Running Tights also feature reflective detailing down the sides and on the swoosh logo.

The Nike Power Running Tights are also available at the stores below – use our links for the best price:


I Hope you enjoyed reading this best running tights buyer’s guide, if you have a question for me please leave it in the comments down below.

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All opinions are our own and never influenced by brands. We may earn money if you buy from a link.

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5 Best Running Tights in 2021: For Cold Winter Trail Runs 1 - Trail and Kale | Trail Running & Adventure

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