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Charnos Ultimate Shaper Tights

Charnos Ultimate Shaper Tights are a great all around product!

Charnos make these tights in Italy and make four sizes from Small to Extra Large. Our sample pair came in size small for ladies up to 5’4” tall and 38” hips. The sizing is such that Large is the tallest ladies and X-Large for those most full in the hips.

Flattens the tummy and lifts your bum while smoothing hips and slimming thighs.

In the Small size, they look quite bizarre as the large control panty is almost as long as the light sheer legs. The legs are made straight with a sandal toe and have a matt finish. The panty is designed like a pair of cycling shorts, long in the body and extending part way down the legs.

Closer inspection of the panty reveals that is made of some bands and zones, apparently intended to lift and shape rather than just squeeze. The flat seams and cotton gusset give an impression of quality, one that is slightly let down by the fact that on our test pair the controlling bands did not line up either side of the central seam possibly not enough to give you a lopsided silhouette, but disappointing.

We don’t have a tester who fits into the small sizing specified, so we tried someone larger, and we got a surprise. We can only assume that our test pair were wrongly packaged as they stretched comfortably to fit someone taller than the top end of the Large size.

The legs have a beautiful cosmetic powder finish and the brief smoothes and shapes without constricting. The transition from control top to a sheer leg is cleverly engineered to avoid bumps and bulges.

Sizing concerns aside these are effective and comfortable tights at a sensible price.

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Charnos Two Tone Cube Tights

Charnos Two Tone Cube Tights fall flat.

Overlooking the open packet, aka cardboard hanger, that these tights arrive in/on first impressions are pretty good. There is an impression of quality and a textured feel not unlike a soft fishnet. Stretch the material over your hand, and the original square geometric pattern is revealed, of which later.

As for construction, these are tights of great contrast, the legs are unshaped, but they are well made and made without a reinforced toe which makes them far more versatile when it comes to choice of footwear. The pattern stops just south of the gusset, and the fact that there is a gusset is the only positive thing we can say about the panty.  The plain panty is just rather cheap and dull; styled as it is anyone wearing these tights with very short shorts or a very short skirt is going to commit the fashion faux pas of having the panty section showing.

Another grumble about the packet. The size chart details four sizes, Small, Medium, Large and X-Large, our test pair of tights are size M/L…which is what size exactly? A case of a standard packet to which stickers are added without any check as to whether the information on it is relevant. Come on Charnos you can do so much better!

Our test reveals that the M/L will stretch to cover the size range defined for “Large” in fact we found that a maximum height of 6’0” (183cm) together with a maximum hip size of 42” (107cm) could be accommodated simultaneously. Yes, the fit is snug at this maximum stretch, but that is no bad thing.

The most upsetting thing about these tights is that the legs look exquisite, smart, classy, stylish, slimming…even a little expensive. Taking the pattern to the waistband and adding flat seams would have added to the cost, but also put them into our must-have category.

If you keep the tops of your thighs covered this style would indeed be a good choice for the colder months of the year. An amazing design let down by inadequate attention to detail.

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Charnos Simply Bare Tights

Charnos Simply Bare Tights are an instant classic!

Fist impressions of these tights are a little confusing, looking as they do like a pair of cheap tights with a heavy and not in the least bit summery boxer style brief and unshaped legs.

It is only on closer inspection that you can see that the brief is a very open knit, clearly designed to give good ventilation. The seams, in the brief, are very nicely made, but not flat. The small gusset is cotton lined.

The legs are very light and stretchy and finished with a sandal toe.

Our test pair in “tan” looked very dark, almost chocolate until they were on, then the sheer leg almost disappeared, so you see just a slight sheen and a hint of colour rather than tights.  The feel as good as they look, particularly when you cross and uncross your legs; something you may find yourself regularly doing just to remind yourself you are wearing pantyhose.

Incredibly light – incredibly strong. The first pair of tights that lets your legs breathe. Perfect skin tones for sensational “summer legs” all year round and ideal for warmer weather. Also, enhance your natural skin tones.

The panty section does its job well, but you would not choose to show it off. Take care of just how short you go with your skirts when wearing these tights.

Ideal for summer but perfectly suited to giving your legs that freshly tanned look at any time of the year.

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Charnos Sheer Lustre Tights

Charnos Sheer Lustre Tights are the softest tights around!

There was a time, many years ago, when there was no such thing as a website where you could read about tights to find out what they were like. The only way for a gentleman to buy tights for his lady was for him to pluck up his courage and go into a department store and ask.

Why are we telling you this here? Well, all those years ago when our webmaster wanted to buy tights for his wife at Christmas these were the tights that were recommended. Those few notes jotted down at the time, and reproduced at the bottom of this page, are the first seeds of this site.

The tights have undergone a few changes over the years going from a boxer style brief to a lacy brief and then to sheer to waist construction in this latest (2008) version. The range of available colours has changed too over the years, and in the newest version, the denier increases from 10 to 15.

In all respects other than the brief detail this new design appears to be an evolution of Charnos Elegance Tights. No bad thing, when we last looked at those, we suggested they could replace Falke Seidenglatt as our favourite tights.

First impressions are that the new design is less glossy than the original, no bad thing as they were perhaps a little too much.

The feel in hand is very smooth and soft. The shaped legs look very classy, and quality is evident from the sheer sandal toes to the finger band that provides a durable transition between the sheer to waist construction of the legs and brief. The finger band runs into a narrow band of reinforcement that runs either side of the flat seams in the panty and around the cotton lined brief.

It was hard to decide which of the lovely colours to try first, in the end needing a pair of tights to go with a grey outfit we opted to try the silver-grey first. This colour more than most shows off the shine and lustre even before you put them on, the appearance is almost metallic.

Very little of the lustre is lost as you stretch these tights up your legs, and pull them you will have to, they are not overly long. But these are durable and stretchy tights, smooth them carefully up to your legs and you are rewarded with a fit like a coat of paint.

The feel is as smooth and glossy as the look suggests. They feel soft from the inside too!

Not quite so glossy and lustrous on the leg as the original sheer lustre tights, but much chicer and refined. All we need to do now is to find outfits to show off the other colours.

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Charnos Sheer Bow Tights

Charnos Sheer Bow Tights is super affordable and cool!

When we came to review these tights, we had a feeling of déjà vu, and when we checked, we had seen a style of the same name from another manufacturer, although we have not reviewed it. Now we won’t say who we think copied whom but this style is nearing the end of its time in the Charnos range and the other maker does have form!

So what makes a design worth copying? Or is it merely a case of what makes the design so good that two people think fit at the same time?

Indeed, this style is sensibly priced in the current market where fashion styles have suddenly started to sell for prices well more than £20. Charnos have found a few economies to hit this price point, most notably the sizing or rather the sizes available. Although the size chart details size Small, Medium, Large and X-Large our test pair came in small/medium and the other size available is Medium/Large.

Detailing is probably not in the £20 class but the straight legs are finished with a sandal toe detail, and the seams in the boxer brief may not be flat but they are well finished, and there is a cotton lined gusset. So everything we could expect for the price.

Sizing is accurate, and the 9% Lycra helps to give a perfect fit as well as helping to span two sizes in one garment. Fully stretched the bow details do look a little like slightly deformed butterflies up close but the overall effect from a few paces away is quite attractive.

The bow design will not be to everyone’s taste, but it has been well executed. Charnos unashamedly target the more “every day” end of the market and judged against this ambition we would have to say these tights are a success.

Fun, funky tights that look good without costing a fortune.

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Charnos Run Resist Sheer Tights

Charnos Run Resist Sheer Tights are truly heavenly!

Sheer tights that won’t run or ladder are the “Holy Grail” of pantyhose, and about as likely to ever be found as the cup from the last supper too, but that does not stop hosiery makers at least trying to limit the damage caused by broken threads.

We don’t try to damage a pair of tights, but of course, with this pair, we do need to see just how durable they are and what happens if a thread should fail. There are four sizes of Small to Extra Large, Extra Large being designed more for width than height. The test these tights we gave a pair of Medium to someone much bigger than the suggested size with rough skin on their feet and sharp toe and fingernails and told them to do their worst.

The tights are made with sheer legs and a more massive boxer style brief. The legs are shaped at the heel and finished with reinforced toe detail with a good quality seam. The panty has well-finished seams and a cotton lined gusset.

You can feel the strength and the grip of the knit and the Lycra as you start to put these tights on, they feel way stronger than regular ten denier tights. They do have the look and feel of 10 deniers on the leg though, smooth with perfect even colour and a way of catching the light that only sheer hosiery can manage.

We are not sure if it because Charnos made our test pair in China, but the sizing seemed very much on the small side. The knit restricts the amount of stretch to some degree. When buying these tights go up one size if you are in any doubt at all about sizing.

The run resistance does work if a thread goes you just get a small hole and then a short darker line either side, which we suppose is the two broken ends running back a little into the knit. This positively prevents one snag entirely ruining your tights, but once you have one or two small holes, the look is degraded to the degree that you would not want them on display.

Well worth considering if you are prone to damaging your tights, just watch the sizing.

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Charnos Multi Diamond Tights

Charnos Multi Diamond Tights need to up their game.

Somewhat mixed first impressions with the simple boxer style brief and raised seams, but at least there is a gusset to help with fit.

The legs are straight and finished with a plain toe detail.

More positive is the softness of the material and the design. The design is a variation on a trellis pattern on a sheer background.

Just two sizes but this are not that limiting as there is lots of stretch such that the M/L size will fit an athletic 34″ leg…Long in any sizing scheme. Charnos suggest a height range of 5’10” to 6’0” if your hips are 34”-38”, 5’5” to 5’9” id your his are 34”-42”, we would suggest that you could get away with maximum height and hip size together.

The fit is skin tight hip to toe.

The pattern is well defined and visually compelling, although to our eye the “closed” intersections (see above) look odd compared with the “open” intersections, why not just stick to one?

Although quite sheer these are warm tights ideal for the colder months of the year. Celebrated in early Autumn with a short skirt, as good in winter with a more extended dress and boots.

Regarding pure quality, we have seen better fashion tights, the legs are great, but that boxer style brief is pretty appalling, the only saving grace is that the gusset makes for a comfortable fit. Wear these tights with shorts or a short skirt and the tops of the legs will show and your style credentials will be destroyed.

An excellent design concept ruined by cut-price detailing and manufacturing. Given that many young women buy tights to go with shorts or indeed very short skirts there is just no excuse for using a plain boxer style brief on any tights, notably patterned fashion tights at £8.00 a pair.

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Charnos Light Support Tights

Charnos Light Support Tights are perfect everyday tights!

These are very light tights; there is no clue that they support tights when you take them from the packet. Very many tights of two halves the straight legs are bright and sheer and finished with reinforced toes. The boxer style brief is heavier and more built for function. The seams in the brief and around the cotton lined gusset are not flat, but they are well finished.

The first clue that you get that these are tights for support is when you stretch them to put your first foot in, and then you only feel it at the very last part of the leg. Once on your legs, you can barely feel the compression at the ankle, and although the compression is only light, you can feel it decrease up your leg.

There is neither control nor compression in brief, and sizing is accurate with enough stretch to go a little over the sizes on the size chart.

The look on the leg is good, but even though only ten denier there is no way anyone will think you have bare legs. No attempt has been made to give them a unique glossy or powder finish, but they do have a beautiful sheen in the right light.

The fit is excellent, and the colour is perfectly even. They do make your legs feel much lighter and fresher. Maybe not tights for that big date, but just the thing if you are standing or sat at a desk all day for work. Nobody will ever guess that you are wearing support hosiery either. Highly recommended for discrete support of tired legs.

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Charnos Killer Figure Cincher Tights

Charnos Killer Figure Cincher Tights are an absolute killer pair of tights!

It was the arrival if these tights, so apparently the successor to the Charnos support panty tights that are our first recollection of tights from around 1970 that prompted us to take a look at the whole shaping & sculpting tights market.

The thing has come on a lot since 1970, first, of course, is the addition of Lycra. There is no shaping of the legs, but they are beautifully sheer and finished with a sandal toe so suitable to wear any time of the year and with any shoe. The Lycra makes for a superb fit on the leg and contributes to the slightly lovely sheen. As sheer tights, these are winners, regardless of their shaping intentions. They do incidentally look sheerer than 15 denier.

The shaping panty is finished with flat seams and a cotton gusset for optimum fit and comfort, and this works with one proviso. As part of the waist-cinching smooth silhouette concept there is no actual waistband; if you have a well-defined waist, this is not a problem the panty sits nicely where you put it, high or low. If on the other hand, you have a waist that needs help then the top of the tights can tend to roll over. Paired with a pair of high waisted pants worn over the top of the tights the Cincher worked, but with a risk of VPL.

Sizing is on the generous side of accurate with plenty of stretch for those with longer legs. We could even say very generous as Charnos suggest 6’0 and 139lb or 5’9 and 163lb as maximum combinations for the large size. Aside from the fact that anyone of 6’0 and only 139lb probably needs a good meal more than waist cinching, we found 6’4 and 220lb could be accommodated.

Charnos may not have entirely delivered a tights alternative to real shapewear, but at £6.00 they have produced a perfect pair of sheer tights that look and feel great.

We tried our test pair on a model almost precisely matching 5’9” and 163lb, she found the tights were too big, and if pulled up high enough to cinch the waist then the waistband rolled over.

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Charnos Killer Figure Hourglass Control Tights

Charnos Killer Figure Hourglass Control Tights are not the best fit…

There was a time back in the dim and distant past when underwear for an adequately dressed lady consisted of “foundation wear” and hosiery. Back in the 1950s that would have been a girdle with suspender straps and stockings, from the 1960s, it may well have been a Playtex girdle with those new-fangled tights/pantyhose.

Wherever the issues around health and comfort the fact was this shapewear greatly enhanced an alluring ladies curves without the need for too much diet and exercise (perhaps as well as the gym as we know it had not been invented).

You can still buy real shapewear of course, and we have reviewed some great examples of ‘Shocking fashion’, but it is far from everyday wear.

What Charnos are trying to do with their Killer Figure range is build the shaping into the top of tights; The ultimate control top pantyhose.

This style is intended to do most of the job if the longline girdle, shaping hips, thigh tops, bottom, tummy and waist.

First impressions are excellent; these are first rate sheer tights with a sandal toe and lightly shaped heel. There is a good choice of sizes and enough stretch for us to say the sizing is on the generous side of accurate. The panty has flat seams and a lined gusset.

Easy to put on the panty smooths and shapes without being overly tight and restrictive, our tester noticed the bottom lift more than anything.

The hourglass design is intended to be worn with the waistband as far up your body as possible, just under your breasts would probably be ideal. Pull them right up, and you can feel them hug you and shape you. But, and it is a big but, should you bend over or move in the wrong way the stretch at the top of these tights will try to release itself by rolling down towards your waist, the smooth silhouette is then ruined.

Ironically the makers of real shapewear, including ironically Charnos Lingerie the one time sister of Charnos hosiery, could have told us this would happen. Actual shapewear is far stiffer and often includes stiffeners. Historically bone or metal stiffeners were used, now more likely to be plastic. The boning was there not control the body but to control the elastic controlling the body.

If you need/want clothing to shape your figure into an hourglass shape you need to buy proper shapewear, it will cost a lot more money initially but long term it has better value as it will work, and it will last years. The concept behind these tights is flawed, firstly they don’t work, and secondly, a ladder in the leg means the hourglass shapewear attached ends up in the bin.

So a fail from Charnos? Well, unfortunately, yes, these are good sheer tights with even colour and a beautiful finish, but the shaping only works if you have good posture and stay standing up.

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