Trends: Royalty Kate Middleton Singlehandedly Brings Back Sheer Pantyhose

With more benefits than just being a fashion accessory; Pantyhose can positively
affect your health in a number of ways

Kate Middleton has been quite the media sensation lately due to her well publicized marriage to the royal price. But something else of Kate's was aglow, too - her legs. The Duchess seems to have embraced the sheen of sheer pantyhose, a throwback to the 1980s that went the way of the mullet. Until now, it appears.

The more Kate pairs the shiny hose with her various outfits for official engagements, the more they're flying off the shelves in her native United Kingdom. Whether it's a calculated fashion choice or, more likely, a royal requirement, it looks like they are here to stay. Maybe.

But there are more benefits to pantyhose than just fashion; in fact, they can affect your health in a number of ways. I asked Board Certified Vein Specialist, Dr. Z. Catherine Navarro (, to share some of the health benefits of the supportive legwear. 

Support hose provide comfort to aching, tired legs and apply gentle pressure to soothe and massage the legs, improving circulation and reducing leg discomfort. Support stockings are ideal for athletes and health care workers, clerks and airline pilots and others who regularly travel by airplane, train, car or bus for long distances.

Wearing support stockings can help prevent poor circulation in the legs and swelling of the feet, ankles or legs. They can also help prevent varicose veins and spider veins--small, round spots with tiny red veins spiraling outward.

Support stockings may be used for medical conditions such as slowing the development of varicose veins or chronic venous insufficiency--when the leg veins cannot adequately pump blood back to the heart. Support stockings may also be used to help prevent deep vein thrombosis, the formation of a blood clot in a vein. According to the Mayo Clinic, support hose reduce the risk of a clot breaking off and causing a pulmonary embolism--blockage of an artery to the lung.  
It's worth noting, though, that other royals, including Queen Elizabeth and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, also sport tights for official engagements.