What’s the deal with a stockings fetish?

The used panty marketplace

Long legs, short legs, bony ankles and soft ones. From dimply thighs to slender toes, legs and feet have long captured the hearts (and libidos) of people from all walks of life. 

If there was ever an ode to the beauty of all kinds of legs, stockings are it. Although they were initially men’s wear for more practical riding, Queen Elizabeth I reportedly found silk stockings so dang sumptuous that she wore them every day for the rest of her life.

As the years went on, gender roles and stockings flipped. For most of the twentieth century, stockings were a simple of sexuality and status for women. Thankfully, it seems as if our culture is starting to remember that stockings are for everyone.

With such a rich history, it’s no surprise that a stockings fetish is so common. People love tights of all stripes (including striped ones). Their shine, sleekness,sensation, and smell drive folks wild – even when you get them at the grocery store.

What does a stockings fetish look like?

As far as fetishes and kinks go, this one is pretty common. Stockings (and lingerie in general) are one of the most popular ways to add some fire to the bedroom. Because it’s so common, there are many different ways people choose to honor this kink.

Fetishes are deliciously diverse. The more you read about them, the more you realize that no two people’s desires are ever identical. A love for stockings looks a little different depending on who you’re asking about it. For most people though, a stockings fetish comes up in one of three ways:

  • Watching, touching, and worshipping someone else in stockings
  • Wearing a pair of stockings themselves
  • Smelling other people’s well-used stockings

People who love seeing their partners in stockings are in luck, because this pleasure is easy to indulge both in public and behind closed doors. It’s easy to wear their stockings out on the town and feel the tension build at a restaurant, dancing, or even at work. 

For some people, stockings are only appealing in specific scenarios, like a dom/sub dynamic, but for many people, just seeing their partner in them is enough. Often, the sight of their lover’s legs wrapped so tightly in stockings makes stocking fans want to wait on them hand in foot – sometimes literally. 

Folks with stocking fetishes are polite, attentive, and lavish attention on their partner. Sometimes, that becomes straight up worship. Stocking lovers will kiss, massage, smell, and otherwise devote themselves to their partner’s stockings and legs on hands and knees.

Stockings are more than just sexy to look at

A stockings fetish would be dead on arrival if there wasn’t another side of this silky coin: the people who get a thrill from wearing those nylons in the first place.

For some people, their love of stockings is straightforward. They’re turned on by the smooth fabric gliding over their calves and thighs, by how ensconced they are in the fabric stretching over their bodies, by the way every curve is brought into focus. Just wearing these stockings home alone, with nobody to bear witness, is enough to drive them wild.

Even if the appeal isn’t so directly sexual to other people, wearing stockings can make them feel more powerful, more present in their bodies. The way the look is so divine, that tights put a frisky pep in their step. That power and presence makes stocking fetishists a welcome addition in some folks lives, because when you feel like you’re fine as hell, then you are fine as hell. I for one know that my day is a little better when I step out in garters and thigh highs. The combo makes me feel, capable, like I could stomp a city. It goes almost without saying that for some, such a boss attitude translates well in the sack.

But power trips aside, some folks love to wear tights solely because of the response a pair of fishnets awakens in their lover. If your partner finds you irresistible when wearing stockings, you’ll feel like a bona fide pleasure god every time you slip those babies on. This confidence boost ripples out from the first kiss you and your partner share that night all the way to the final position that slakes both of your thirsts.

The diversity of this kink for both the wearers and the viewers is what makes it so fun. But whether people get off on watching others wear them or love to slip a pair on around the house, there’s one thing about tights everyone seems to agree on: the tantalizing smoothness of a leg in pantyhose is enough to tip you into oblivion.

Sometimes, the appeal comes from everything under the tights

While the tights themselves can be more than enough to make some folks salivate, often that’s not the only reason people love a good pair of stockings. Another reason they’re so popular? Everything going on under the nylons.

As a culture, we love butts, thighs, calves, and feet. In the stockings fetish world, it’s pretty standard to worship stockinged feet. If you’re one of the many folks embarrassed by their love for foot worship, rest easy. It’s actually a very typical kink – and is often a huge part of the appeal of stockings. Foot fetishists get a rush from either having their feet attended to or lavishing attention on other people’s feet. 

While people have long wondered what exactly makes our tootsies so sexy to play with, a neuroscientist named Vilayanar Ramachandran recently came forward with a theory. For some of us, he says, what essentially happens is that the wires for our genitals and toes get crossed, since those two spots are so close in the brain. This strange little mix up in our bodies means some of us are lucky, and getting our toes sucked can be nearly orgasmic. The feeling is so common that these days, even celebrities are down to talk about their love for foot play.

But the pleasure doesn’t end with wearing stockings so that others will worship your feet. Some people derive deep pleasure from doing the foot worshipping themselves. It turns them on to suck on toes, as well as kiss, lick, and massage the foot. Often, people who love feet are intoxicated by their smell, too – a perfect complement to stockings. 

The eroticism of scent is so strong, that lovers may lust after a pair used tights slipped off after a long work day, or even go so far as to have their partners tape a stinky shoe to their face for an extended period of time.

This love for feet, from smell to touch, is probably why foot jobs are such a popular search result on porn sites. And as with any sexual desire, the kink doesn’t stop with the basics. Niche foot lovers even rally around the kink of clipping other people's toenails. Hey, if I can get a free pedicure while making someone’s day, why not?

Although feet are the most popular body part we fetishize with stockings, that may not even be the thing about them that makes someone tick. After all, a good pair of tights glides over smooth calves, powerful thighs, and round booties, too. Someone who loves stockings may just lose it at the sight of long legs under that shiny fabric.

When it comes to thigh highs with garters, the appeal is often in the booty that perches just above the tights. The shape of a garter belt showcases the booty and everything else you’ve got going on down south, which is enough to make even the most vanilla folks sigh in pleasure.

Different kinds of stockings

From our booties to our tippy toes, tights area amazing because they flaunt the beauty of our bodies. No matter your curves or angles, tights are flattering – and I’m not talking about that control-top nonsense. If you have a belly, a good pair of tights hugs it perfectly and shows it off to your lovers. If you’re muscular, tights find that line in your calves, leaving little to your voyeurs’ imaginations. Whatever kinds of curves you’ve got and whatever you’re packing down south, tights in the right company can help you feel your absolute sexiest.

It helps that there are so many deliciously different kinds of stockings out there – and it makes sense that stocking lovers are connoisseurs of their kink. While most people love all stockings, they also have certain ones that do the trick more than others. 

Thigh highs

Even people who might not consider themselves a stockings fetishist find a nice pair of thigh highs on their honey a hard sight to resist. If you’ve ever seen a single sex scene in a movie or a 1940s period piece featuring a hot lead, you’ve seen the way that thigh highs can ignite people’s imaginations. Maybe it’s that they end at the thighs and leave everything northward free and uninhibited, but the joy wearers and viewers get from thigh highs is spread across our media. 

These treasures are as varied as can be, from smooth silky ones to fishnets to wooly winter pieces. Some need to be secured with garters, while others (also known as hold-ups) let you go garterless thanks to strong elastic that helps them stay in place throughout the day. 

Want to really feel yourself as you go through a humdrum day? Slip a garter and thigh highs on under your skirt, and enjoy your secret all day long.

Body stockings

While not quite a pair of stockings as we’d normally think of them, a body stocking deserves its own place on this list nonetheless. These sexy numbers stretch their way up the entire body, lending every inch to those delectable textures of nylon. 

Lacy numbers let lovers catch glimpses of what’s underneath, while the textures that stocking lovers cherish curl their way up along every curve of the body. Just like with thigh highs, body stockings come in different patterns and textures like intricate lace, fishnet, and smooth nylon. Some body stockings are even made especially for fetishists, like this whole-body nylon stocking that even covers the hands. No matter how deep the stocking fantasy goes, a body stocking makes it possible.

Traditional nylons

Maybe it stems from all of us seeing businesswomen in the 1990s coming into their power in the workforce, but a pair of nylons is arguably the most classic form this fetish and kink takes. For some folks, the raw, real-life appeal of a pair you can buy at the grocery store takes the cake. 

There’s something about the sleekness of a pair of plain black nylons that can make stocking lovers moan more than the most intricate designs. It could be because these are the most breakable and prone to runs. That smooth, tender fragility of these tights has persisted in many stocking lovers’ minds as the sexiest kind of stocking out there.

As a bonus for people who love them, these stockings also happen to be the most cost effective, so everyone wins.


Can anything really compare to the backseam of a good pair of stockings? The long line running up the back of a pair of hose is a classic staple for folks with stocking fetishes everywhere. 

During World War II, there was a massive stockings shortage. The seam was such a powerful part of completing their outfits that people would paint seams onto the backs of their legs to give the illusion of stockings.

Nowadays, stockings with seams are easy to come by, and wearing them feels powerful, like a timeless statement. For the viewer, there’s something about that thin line up the back that sets the imagination off.

Smelly socks

Socks loaded with smells are some people’s bread and butter – so much so, that the sale of dirty socks is a bustling side business. Partners can dive into the scent of their lovers’ socks and feet after a long day, or buy a stranger’s socks to enhance their solo play.

Not just a treat to look at

Sometimes, the stocking fetish isn’t just about appreciating how smooth they are, wearing them, or smelling them. Humans love to touch the wall with the sign that says “wet paint.” We can’t resist the opportunity to push something to its limit – and fragile nylons are no different.

Part of the kink for some folks lies in the act of ripping these bad boys. Tears and runs send a shiver through their bodies, and creating a hole in a fresh pair of tights may get their nerves on end like nothing else.

Sometimes, the end goal isn’t to rip the nylons, but to get them dirtied or wet. However that comes about depends on the viewer and the wearer, but let your imagination fill in the gaps however you please. Everything from playing in the mud to water sports can help folks make their filthy stockings fantasies a reality.

One of many undergarment fetishes

Stockings fetishes are common and understandably sexy, but they’re not the only garments that cause a stir in the bedroom. They’re just one stone on a string of gems to enjoy wearing. Underwear fetishes are a very popular twist on getting off. Whether it’s socks, tights, panties, binders, or elaborate lingerie, there’s something about what’s happening under the clothes that is irresistible.

Lingerie for days

When falling into the sexy world of silk, satin, and lace, wearing and appreciating lingerie is a common ground many of us share across diverse sexualities. It’s natural to relish feeling in control of our sex lives. It’s one of the strongest ways to honor ourselves, and a simple way to do that is to appreciate erotic sensations like silk on bare skin.

For the viewer, lace performs a magic trick full of intricate designs. The small holes help the wearer feel nude while clothed. The implication of what’s just out of sight is a thrill for the wearer and viewer alike.

Best of all, good lingerie comes in a wealth of fabrics that are soft and glide over the skin so deliciously that they’re sure to raise goosebumps if you put them on (and take them off) just right.

If all of this sounds amazing, go ahead and try it. Lingerie shouldn’t be gender specific. We all deserve silky goodness along our backs and under our touch. And if you haven’t enjoyed that feeling yet, you aren't quite living.


Talking about the eroticism of lingerie wouldn’t be complete without a wink and a nod to used panties. This particular fetish is adjacent to stockings, because so much of the appeal is the musk from well-worn panties. Wouldn’t a natural combination be enjoying someone’s used panties and stockings in one fell swoop?

Okay, but is it a kink or a fetish?

I’ll come clean here: this headline is a touch sensationalized for the majority. Most people think “kink” and “fetish” are interchangable, but that’s not the case. Often, people who are titillated by a pair of stockings actually have a kink, not a fetish.

The work “kink” includes a host of things, from anal play to impact play to lingerie. When it’s a kink, these things enhance a person’s sexual experience, but aren’t necessary in order to reach peak satisfaction.

A fetish is different. Whatever the fetish is, it is entirely essential to their pleasure, and generally to their ability to orgasm. If you have a fetish, it may be hard or impossible to get off in any other way. 

When talking about fetishes and kinks, most people actually have a stockings kink, not fetish. It adds to their sexual pleasure without being mandatory – kind of like an extra sprinkle of salt to finish a meal off.

For some people, a fetish is a non-issue. Maybe their primary partner shares the fetish, and both people are wholly satiated by the exchange. However, many folks feel frustrated when they learn that their kink has become a make-or-break for all sex. If that’s the case, sex-positive, and kink-aware therapists can help folks find their joy and get it on again with and without the kink.

How do I tell my partner about my love for stockings?

If all this stockings talk has you worried about how to broach the subject with your partner, don’t worry. Talking about kinks is a healthy part of any good relationship.

To an extent, even casual flings deserve an open policy on communicating kinks, so you can both grow as lovers. Start by having an open dialogue. Ask them what kinds of kinks or turn-ons they have, or lead in by saying you have a kink you’d like to share. 

Although you may be thinking about that kink in the heat of the moment, the best time to bring your fantasies up is generally not when you’re having sex or making out on the bed. If your partner rejects the kink, it can feel awkward and embarrassing for you both. Instead, bring it up when you’re having dinner or during a quiet moment reading together on the couch. By giving your partner space to digest it, you’re opening yourself up for the potential to receive that “yes.” Any partner who’s got a good attitude for experimentation will be happy to hear you out about this kink.

But remember: any conversation you have about kinks, you always have to be willing to accept your partner’s “no.” You never know what someone’s boundaries are, and if they’re firmly against wearing stockings for your pleasure, then you need to find those kicks elsewhere, or ask yourself if it’s a kink you can live without. You can also have a good conversation with them to explore why it’s a no, and see if there’s a space where you can both have your cake and eat it too.

Kink, fetish, proclivity…

Call it what you will, the love for stockings has been around for as long as stockings have, and it’s not going anywhere. There’s no wrong way to be a stockings kinkster, so dive in and find your thrills.Maybe it’s a pair of fishnets, some thigh highs with garters, or even regular old nylons from the grocery store. Whichever texture or style you choose, let yourself fall in love with the beauty of each curve highlighted and defined under a smooth pair of tights. Who knows? You may even love to wear them yourself.