Getty Images

Ask Amy: How Do I Extend the Life of My Tights?

How should I wash and dry my tights? Any tips for making them last longer? —Cheyenne


Treating your tights with a little TLC when you clean them can help extend their life. The safest method is to handwash them in the sink with cold water and a gentle detergent. But you can also wash tights in the washing machine on the delicate cycle in cold water. Launder them in a mesh, zippered hosiery bag to prevent tangling and snagging, and avoid washing them with dark colors, which can stain your tights. Whatever you do, avoid throwing them in the dryer—heat will warp the elastic waistband, create pilling and break down your tights' elasticity. Lay flat or hang dry for best results.

Getty Images

Another tip: Make sure your tights are long enough so that they don't rip as you put them on or dance. If you see a snag or run, apply clear nail polish around it (and let it dry completely) to prevent it from spreading. (Hair spray also helps, in a pinch.) Depending on how sturdy your tights are, you may be able to fix small holes with a needle and thread.

Have a question? Send it to Pointe editor in chief and former dancer Amy Brandt at askamy@dancemedia.com.

Latest Posts


Skjalg Bøhmer Vold, Courtesy Merritt Moore

How Quantum Physicist Ballerina Merritt Moore Learned to Dance With a Robot (Plus, Her Newest Film)

When the world went into lockdown last March, most dancers despaired. But not Merritt Moore. The Los Angeles native, who lives in London and has danced with Norwegian National Ballet, English National Ballet and Boston Ballet, holds a PhD in atomic and laser physics from the University of Oxford. A few weeks into the coronavirus pandemic, she came up with a solution for having to train and work alone: robots.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Lauren Anderson's Tips for Relevé Développé Écarté Devant

Développé écarté relevé "is in every class, every ballet," says Lauren Anderson, former principal dancer and current program manager of education and community engagement at Houston Ballet. Below, she gives you the keys to success for this "light and lovely" repertoire staple.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Andrey Chuntomov, Courtesy Arabesque-2020

Inside Arabesque-2020, One of Russia’s Top Ballet Competitions

Much like everything else this year, the XVI Russian Open Ballet Competition Arabesque-2020 was unlike any in its three-decade history. Rescheduled and shortened because of the coronavirus pandemic—and on the brink of cancellation until the very last moment—the competition nevertheless took place October 24 to November 2 at the historic Perm Opera and Ballet Theatre.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks