Are Spin Bikes or Stair Climbers the Better Gym Machine for Strong, Sculpted Legs? Here’s What Experts Have To Say

It all depends on your goals.

There’s nothing more confidence-boosting than an article of clothing that elicits raving compliments every time you wear it. For some, it’s a pair of perfectly painted-on jeans a la The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, or an LBD you can dress up or down depending on your mood. But for me, it’s my Halara High-Waisted Crossover Flare Yoga Leggings ($30).

I travel a few times a month for work and always pull these out of my closet for flights—not only because they’re an ego boost while I’m walking (waltzing) through the airport but also because they’re one of the most comfortable pairs of travel “pants” I own. I haven’t gone on a trip without them since I got them, but I also wear them lounging around the house and for long days on my laptop (like right now) because they’re soft and cozy enough that you forget you’re wearing them.

Halara High Waisted Crossover Flare Yoga Leggings — $30.00

Available sizes: XS-4XL in regular, petite, and tall inseams

Colors: 14


  • Crossover waistband that eliminates that dreaded pressure on your stomach
  • Trendy silhouette 
  • Comfy, even after long days of travel
  • Wide range of sizes, inseams, and colors
  • Affordable


  • The Tall inseam is slightly too short for a 32-inch-inseam
  • Material pills slightly at the seams from wear-and-tear (can be prevented if hung dry)

First impressions

Like with any buzzy IG brand, I was a bit hesitant to try Halara because I was unsure about the quality. I’ve seen dozens of ads for the brand on social media for the last couple of years, but Halara reached a new level of popularity when Taylor Swift was caught wearing the brand’s Breezeful skort at Coachella. (I also have and love this skirt, although the leg strap is now folding awkwardly because the material is thin.)

I originally received these leggings in March, and when I opened the package, I was immediately surprised and impressed by the quality. When I tried them on, I was even more pleased to find that everything fit me well, no returns necessary.

Quality and feel

These leggings are made of a relatively thick material—a polyester and elastane blend—that is breathable, doesn’t ride up, and feels protective but not compressive. (If you’ve ever worn ultrathin leggings that make you feel like you’re naked, you’ll know what I mean.) The flared design, which is actually more subtle than it sounds, makes me feel more on-trend than when I wear a standard pair of leggings, but it’s also super practical, allowing me to walk without stepping all over the extra fabric. Since March, I’ve probably worn these almost 50 times. After countless runs through my machine washer and dryer, the material is starting to show ever-so-slight pilling, especially along the seams, but only if I squint. I probably would’ve prevented this wear by skipping the dry cycle and hanging them instead.

While I mostly wear them for travel and events, I’ve worn them for one workout—a strength training session—but Halara specifies that they’re also suitable for low-impact activities like yoga and pilates. However, I can’t picture doing a downward-facing dog in a flare leg that would bunch up around my calves (ick), but that might be the millennial in me.

Comfort and fit

While their comfort is why I reach for them again and again, they actually look so good on me. When I wear them where they sit naturally, the “V” shape—where the two layers of fabric cross—rests just under my belly button, and the top of the waistband hits directly on my hip bones. The crossover waist design not only adds a fun visual flair, but it minimizes pressure on the stomach, too.

Photo: Author

A bit about sizing: I’m 5’5” and 150 pounds with long legs compared to my short torso, and thick hips and thighs. I ordered these in a medium tall. When I wear them with chunky sneakers, these leggings are just a tad shorter than I would prefer, but I like a nearly-grazing-the-ground long (which is why I ordered tall in the first place.) It’s not enough to deter me; I just wish they came in a longer version, and those who are taller might have some issues with the length.

Final thoughts

I test a lot of products, especially active and leisure wear, and it’s rare to find a piece of clothing I reach for again and again (and again) that’s less than $50. I won’t be letting go of these anytime soon, I can tell you that, and with such an affordable price tag, you should snag a pair for yourself. You deserve it.

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