So as you might have figured out by now, I really don't like spending my money on expensive things. Unfortunately, all equestrian things are expensive and I use my things on a regular basis and so they get worn down. I rotate through about 5 pairs of riding breeches and when they get little holes in them I usually just sew them up. I try to wear them until they literally fall apart. And they are now falling apart. So I had to look for new riding breeches. I ended up getting riding tights instead of riding breeches because a) I've never tried riding tights before and b) it is so hot here that wearing riding breeches is a miserable experience. I got the TuffRider Ventilated Schooling Tights.
|TuffRider Ventilated Schooling Tights|
The price for these is about as low as you can get for a pair of riding tights. I paid $36 per pair. They range from $36-47 on Amazon. If anyone else knows of cheap riding tights or breeches that actually last please let me know, because I would prefer to pay even less than $36 but just can't seem to find it anywhere.
|Navy pair in action|
I ordered the colors navy/navy and black/charcoal because they seemed neutral enough and also some reviewers on Amazon said that the lighter colors are see-through so I avoided those (although I don't know if they are actually see-through). There are 7 total colors on Amazon. The first color listed is the main color and the second color listed is the color of the side panels (the ventilated areas).
The two pairs that I got have a different design (I don't know why this is, perhaps they are different models?). The navy pair has a traditional knee patch that is a suede-like material, but the black pair has the UltraGripp knee patches. Because I ordered both pairs from the same Amazon listing, if you really are attached to one style over the other you should probably order these elsewhere.
|Navy in action|
The UltraGripp knee patches really are just little pieces of grippy stuff that are attached to the tights. Because of this, there is not an additional padding in the knee. For the first five minutes of riding in these tights, it felt really uncomfortable to not have an added layer of protection between me and the saddle, but after those five minutes I got used to it and it didn't bother me anymore. I don't know if I had any additional grip in the saddle so I wouldn't expect magical things from the grippy knees, but they are definitely a cool and unique feature of these tights.
|Ultra-Grip knee patches|
I ordered the size X-Small after a lot of internal debate. I figured that they would be really stretchy (since they are 92% Polyester and 8% Spandex) and saggy, loose tights just fall off. The X-Small fit really well, they are not at all tight on me and they don't fall down my butt, so mission accomplished! I feel really weird telling the internet about my height and weight, but it is actually helpful to me when others do this for clothing reviews, so I am 5'4" and I weigh about 105-110 lbs.
I think that these riding tights are very aesthetically pleasing. The ventilated strips on the side make the tights look streamlined and they have a slimming effect on my leg. The waistband falls about two inches below my bellybutton so I'd say that they are probably medium-rise. The material is a bit shiny (you can see that in the photos) so they look really similar to stretchy leggings.
Since these are riding tights and not riding breeches, they are meant to be thinner and thus fit tighter. After years of wearing riding breeches, I don't actually mind the tightness (it's something I've just had to get over), but they are indeed thin and tight (so if that scares you then go with riding breeches instead). Since the material is so thin they are really easy to fit into boots and half chaps. I am slightly concerned about the thinness of the material because I have no idea how long it will last. After a full day of working at the barn, the tights did get dusty but they had no snags or tears in the material which does bode well but I have no idea about the durability of the material in the long run. I am hoping that they last for a while, so fingers crossed!
|Durable enough for jumping|
I primarily got riding tights instead of riding breeches to try to beat the heat and I have to say that they were a lot cooler than my riding breeches are. So they do fulfill that standard. I don't know if I will be able to wear them in the fall or winter yet, but I would guess that these work pretty much only for summer riding (although I'm still going to try to get away with wearing these when the weather cools down).
I really like these riding tights. I need to see how they hold up to know if I would buy them again, but based on appearance and comfort I think these are great. If you are a person who likes lounging around in leggings, then these are a natural progression for you!