No Leaks Here: The 9 Best Period-Proof Workout Leggings

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The year is 2021, and we expect big things from the feminine hygiene products industry. Many of us have already made the switch to period panties, and now we have our sights set on leak-proof apparel, particularly in the fitness department. Say hello to period-proof workout leggings: all-star athletic pants you can rock with peace of mind, no matter the time of the month.

Period-proof workout leggings are similar to period underwear in that they have built-in liners that soak up blood. But with leggings, the idea is that you can go underwear-free with a tampon or menstrual cup and not worry about it leaking through. "There are many so styles that you can find one that's comfortable and best suited for your activity," says board-certified OB/GYN Dr. Carolyn Moyers. Additionally, according to Dr. Sherry Ross, an OB/GYN and women's health expert based in Santa Monica, some pairs can be worn without a tampon or cup, while others are designed to hold a pad securely in place.

Scroll down for the best period-proof workout leggings currently on the market.

Our Top Picks
Stretchy, comfy, and great for workouts of all kinds, these absorbent leggings can hold as much as three tampons-worth of blood.
Equipped with a dual-layer leak-proof liner, this wallet-friendly pair is stretchy and breathable.
With four-way stretch and a reinforced waistband, this pair will stay put during your flow while you're on your flow.
These high-rise leggings come equipped with a built-in pad with three layers of blood-absorbing, moisture-wicking protection.
A great choice for runners, these mildly compressive leggings hold up to two tampons-worth of blood sans bulkiness.
Best for Cycling:
Thinx Cycle Shorts at Amazon
These compressive shorts prevent leaks, wick moisture, and keep odors at bay—a great option for cycling of all kinds.
Great for workouts of all kinds, these shorts are highly absorbent to prevent leaks—even on your heaviest days.
Best Workout Underwear:
Knix Leakproof High Rise Thong at Knix
Ideal for light days, this fitness-ready thong holds up to a teaspoon of blood or sweat while the anti-odor gusset keeps you fresh.

Best Overall: Thinx Period Active Leggings

What We Like
  • Soft, stretchy material

  • Asborbs

  • Inclusive size range

What We Don't Like
  • Relatively pricey

From the brand that started it all, Thinx makes the best workout pants for menstruation. Period Active Leggings are great for jogging, hiking, taking a barre class, practicing yoga, or sweating up a storm during a HIIT (high-intensity interval training) routine.

Featuring a built-in liner that can absorb as much as three tampons-worth of blood, they're suitable for vigorous workouts or all-day athleisure wear on moderate-flow days. The soft, stretchy material and high waistband keep you comfy while preventing leaks. They also pass the squat test with flying colors and offer plenty of breathability where you need it most.

Material: Polyester, elastane, cotton, breathable PUL | Size Range: XS–4XL | Absorbency: Moderate | Colors: Black, olive

Best Budget: Ruby Love Period Leggings

Ruby Love Period Leggings
What We Like
  • Reasonably priced

  • Breathable

  • Leak-proof liner

What We Don't Like
  • Only one color available

  • Low-rise design

"Cotton leggings may be best for overall comfort," says Dr. Sherry. That's why we're loving this budget-friendly pair from Ruby Love, which is made of 90 percent cotton and 10 percent spandex for a perfectly breathable, stretchy fit. Designed to work just like the brand's period underwear, the Period Legging features a dual-layer leak-proof liner made of absorbent cotton and dri-tech mesh.

If you like high-waisted compression to combat bloat, these pants might not be ideal, as they sit just below the waist. However, they offer a comfy, leak-free fit for running, strength training, yoga, pilates, and nearly any other activity.

Material: Cotton, spandex | Size Range: XS–3XL | Absorbency: Moderate | Colors: Black

Best for Yoga: Dear Kate Go Commando Yoga Pants

Dear Kate Yoga Pants
What We Like
  • Four-way stretch

  • Can be worn without underwear

  • Moisture-wicking

What We Don't Like
  • Not ideal for heavy flows

Calling all yogis! With Dear Kate's Go Commando Pants, your flow won't interfere with your, well, flow. Woven from a blend of nylon and elastane, they offer incredibly comfy four-way stretch, and the reinforced waistband stays put as you bend, reach, and stretch through every pose.

As the name suggests, you can either go commando in these leggings with a tampon or menstrual cup or wear them with underwear during your period. Thanks to three layers of breathable lining, they're designed to resist leaks and stains while wicking away moisture.

Material: Nylon, elastane | Size Range: XS–XXL | Absorbency: Light | Colors: Black, multi

Best for HIIT: Adidas Techfit Period-Proof 7/8 Tights

Adidas Techfit Period-Proof 7/8 Tights
What We Like
  • Made from recycled materials

  • Three layers of protection

  • Squat-proof

What We Don't Like
  • Only one color available

Adidas' take on period-proof workout leggings are these high-waisted beauties. Featuring the brand's exclusive Flow Shield, they have a built-in pad with three layers of blood-absorbing, moisture-wicking protection. In other words, you can get moving with peace of mind knowing you won't leak through the material.

The Techfit Tights have a 7/8 cut, meaning they're about 88 percent as long as full-length pants. With a high-rise waistband, they offer a secure, held-in feel when you're bloated—and you can bet they pass the squat test.

Material: Recycled polyester, elastane | Size Range: XS–XXL | Absorbency: Moderate to heavy | Colors: Black

Best for Running: Flow2Freedom Exhale Pant

Flow2Freedom Exhale Pant
What We Like
  • Made from recycled materials

  • Absorbs more than two tampons-worth of blood

  • Key/card pocket

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Only one color available

If running is your workout of choice, we think you'll love the Exhale Pant from Flow2Freedom. Featuring the brand's proprietary Kwantum Technology, the built-in lining holds upwards of two tampons-worth of blood without any bulky panty lines.

The full-length cut is great for year-round jogging, and the high-rise waistband offers mild compression and a slimming effect while you log miles. What's more, there's a hidden pocket in the back for your keys, ID, or credit card, plus a large side pocket for your phone.

Material: Recycled polyester, spandex | Size Range: XS-XL | Absorbency: Moderate | Colors: Black

Best for Cycling: Thinx Cycle Shorts

What We Like
  • Inclusive size range

  • Front pocket for heating pad

  • Moisture-wicking

What We Don't Like
  • Not ideal for heavy flows

Whether you're a frequent spin class attendee, like to stream your rides at home, or prefer biking in the great outdoors, you'll stay dry and protected in a pair of Thinx Cycle Shorts—cycle, get it? Like the brand's widely celebrated period underwear and workout leggings, they have an ultra-absorbent, leak-resistant lining.

Not only do these shorts prevent unexpected leaks, but they also wick away moisture and keep odors at bay when you sweat. The high-rise design and compression fit put gentle pressure on your abdomen during your crampiest days while encouraging circulation to your thighs. Oh, and did we mention there's a front pocket for a mini heating pad?

Material: Polyester, elastane, cotton, breathable PUL | Size Range: XS–4XL | Absorbency: Light | Colors: Black, gray

Best Shorts: Thinx Period Active Training Shorts

Thinx Period Active Training Shorts
What We Like
  • Inclusive size range

  • Absorbs five tampons worth of blood

  • Back zipper pocket

What We Don't Like
  • Waistband prone to rolling

Thinx also makes excellent period-proof active shorts, which you can wear for strength training, running, hiking, HIIT—you name it. The brand's Training Shorts have a highly absorbent liner that holds up to five regular tampons worth of blood, so you can rest assured you won't leak on even your heaviest days.

Aside from working out, you can rock them while running errands, sightseeing, padding around at home, or just hanging out. Another thing we love about Thinx is that the brand's products come in an impressive eight sizes.

Material: Polyester, elastane, cotton, breathable PUL | Size Range: XS–4XL | Absorbency: Heavy | Colors: Black, olive

Best Workout Underwear: Knix Leakproof High Rise Thong

Knix Leakproof High Rise Thong
What We Like
  • Inclusive size range

  • Seamless cut

  • Machine-washable

What We Don't Like
  • Not ideal for heavier flows

"On light days, period underwear can be used alone," says Dr. Moyers. With that said, your best bet for working out is the Leakproof High Rise Thong from Knix. Thanks to an ultra-absorbent liner with the brand's Fresh Fix Technology, the waterproof design absorbs blood and prevents leaks.

This fitness-ready thong can hold up to a teaspoon of blood or sweat, and the anti-odor gusset will keep you fresh while you move. What's more, the seamless cut is virtually invisible underneath the workout leggings of your choice.

Material:  Nylon, lycra, cotton, spandex, polyester | Size Range: XS–4XL | Absorbency: Light | Colors: Black, pink, beige

Final Verdict

The best period-proof workout leggings overall are Thinx Period Active Leggings on account of the soft, stretchy design and built-in liner that can hold up to three tampons worth of blood—extra points for the inclusive size range. Having said that, if you want something with a little more absorbency or prefer a 7/8 cut, you can't go wrong with Adidas Techfit Period-Proof 7/8 Tights, which offer three layers of Flow Shield protection.

Meet the Expert

  • Dr. Carolyn Moyers, DO, FACOG, is a board-certified OB/GYN physician. Her practice, Sky Women's Health, is based in Fort Worth, Texas.
  • Sherry A. Ross, MD, is an OB/GYN based in Santa Monica, California, a women's health expert, and the co-founder of URJA Intimates. She is also the author of She-Ology: The Definitive Guide to Women's Intimate Health. Period. and She-Ology the She-Quel.

What to Look For in Period-Proof Workout Leggings

Liner

The most critical feature of period-proof workout leggings is the built-in liner. Like period underwear, the absorbent layers soak up blood and wick away moisture for leak-resistant protection while you move.

You'll find options with double- or triple-layer linings that can hold anywhere from one to five tampons-worth of blood. Absorbency is crucial, but breathability is also important, as you want something that'll keep you dry and odor-free.

Material

According to Dr. Sherry, cotton will provide the most comfort, as the material is naturally breathable and moisture-wicking. But as mentioned above, breathability matters most in the liner.

For the rest of the pants, you'll want the fabric to be stretchy, soft, and supportive enough to pass the squat test. Look for styles made from synthetic materials like nylon, lycra, spandex, elastane, and polyester.

Color

Dr. Sherry suggests getting period leggings in a dark hue, as it will conceal not only potential leaks but also sweat when you're working out. Most styles come in black, though you'll find other deep colors, like olive green, charcoal, and navy, as well as some printed designs.

FAQ
  • How do period-proof workout leggings work?

    Period-proof workout leggings feature absorbent liners to offer leak protection while you move your body. The multi-layer material absorbs liquid, including blood, sweat, and other moisture, to keep you dry during exercise. Most are designed to be worn without undergarments to supplement a tampon or menstrual cup, though you can always wear underwear if that's what you prefer.

Why Trust Byrdie

Theresa Holland is a freelance commerce writer specializing in fitness, wellness, and women's health. She is a big proponent of period-proof apparel, including underwear and workout attire, and has personally tried styles from Thinx, Ruby Love, and Modibodi. For this story, she spoke to multiple OB/GYNS, reviewed designs from a wide range of brands, combed through user reviews, and carefully considered key specs like absorbency, fit, size range, and material before making her selections. Theresa has been contributing to Byrdie since 2020, where she covers cosmetics and exercise essentials.

According to our Diversity Pledge, 15% of products in our newly-published market roundups will feature Black-owned and/or Black-founded brands. At the time of publishing, we were not able to find enough period-proof workout leggings from Black-owned and/or Black-founded businesses to meet this percentage. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at contact@byrdie.com and we will evaluate the product ASAP.

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