What Color Of Hosiery To Wear


“What color of hose should I wear?” is one of the most frequently asked questions I get from my TG clients, second only to “What color should my hair be?” 

Hosiery is the finishing touch, not the focal point. A lot of women get this wrong by wearing hose that are either too dark or too light for the rest of their ensemble. Of course, if your CD and do not shave your legs, perhaps a darker shade is your option. For others, herewith some basic 101 rules to help you. 

Here are some guidelines: 

1. Hosiery needs to be in the same color base as your garment. Don’t mix warm hosiery colors with cool garment colors. 

2. To instantly look taller and trimmer, go monochromatic by matching the color tone of your hosiery to your shoe and your hem. 

3. With neutral colored skirt or pants, match all three color elements. Example: black skirt, off-black hose, black shoes. 

4. Colored hosiery for dressy or business situations needs to be very sheer. Charcoal gray or off-black is more subtle than a solid black. 

5. Colored hosiery may either match the garment or the accessory/accent color.
If the hose match the color of the dress or skirt, they add the illusion of height and slimness. This concept works especially well with neutrals like navy, gray, brown, beige, taupe, and even burgundy and rust, but NOT with red. 

If the hosiery color matches the accessory/accent color, it should not outshine the garment color. 

6. With a brightly colored garment, choose neutral shoes and match hose to shoes. Example: red dress, taupe hose, and taupe shoes. 

7. Two-color spectator pumps look best with hose matched to the lighter color, NOT the darker one. 

8. Very dark, light or bright hosiery colors and patterns or textures draw attention to your legs. 

9. Off-white or light beige can be worn with black during the summer season. 

10. Keep leg coverings in the same mood and weight as your shoes. Chunky, casual shoes work with heavier, textured hose or socks. 

11. Control top hose are more durable than regular hose, and Lycra extends the resiliency of both. 

12. Avoid emergencies by purchasing hose in quantity and keeping a spare pair in your desk drawer and glove compartment. 

So what’s one of the biggest bugaboos I see? Wearing dark hose to hide spider veins. Unless your ensemble is dark, you’re calling attention TO your legs, not AWAY from them. Dress in darker colors to match the hose, or wear a longer skirt to cover what you want to hide. 

Wearing hosiery gives you a refined, polished look that can’t be beat, so do incorporate it in your wardrobe.  With a few guidelines and a nice hosiery wardrobe, you can look great no matter what occasion comes your way. 

I hope this helps give you a guideline when purchasing and when coordinating. 

Denae Doyle 


4 thoughts on “What Color Of Hosiery To Wear

  1. Pingback: Summer Hoisery ~ What Lighter Spring/Summer Colors Do I Put With My Lighter Clothing? « Femininity Coaching From Denae

    • Great question…what color of hosiery do you wear. It is best, to pull the “sample” stocking in the store– over your hand and match to your arm shade. It is best, to get as close to your natural skin shade as possible. Now, for light skin…wear a BUFF or NATURAL. If you tan, then select a shade with yellow or gold. If your dark skin, try the light gray, light charcoal, and my favorite Expresso in Light Sheer. The general rule is to go light in the summer and darker in the winter months. Also, to wear light black, after 5:00 and for evening. Now, with the new opague, design hoseiry, wear them in the winter with great boots–but keep the design to one color. To be safe, Buff in the summer, and Expresso in the Winter!
      I hope this answers your question!

  2. Thanks for so much great help. I have a Florida wedding to attend in Florida in July. I have a basic three quarter sleeve, scoop neck dress which looks a little wintery. I’m 5’6″ size l2. Do you have any suggestions to maybe wear a colored shoe, and which hose, or do I still stick to monochromatic with off black hose and black shoes. Thanks

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