The romantic, dreamy world of ballet has influenced pop culture — hello, fellow Center Stage fans — and fashion for years, and it’s making a comeback. As ‘90s nostalgia and Y2K culture roll back on the scene, the rise of ballet-inspired dressing comes as no surprise (think Sex and the City and Carrie Bradshaw’s iconic tutu). Cue balletcore, an aesthetic inspired by the styles and silhouettes of ballerinas. We might not all be as athletic and graceful as a prima ballerina, but we can take a few style cues from her when it comes to getting dressed.


The balletcore aesthetic stems from styles worn by ballerinas in both the rehearsal studio and on stage. Ballerinas have always been the subject of cultural examination — Degas’ impressionist paintings from the 1800s along with the 2010 film Black Swan, for example — so it’s natural that the ethereal, dreamlike silhouettes play heavy influence on today’s trends.

With over 708 million views on TikTok, #balletcore is really having a moment. Yet unlike other flash-in-the-pan viral fashion trends, balletcore has remained, well, on pointe for quite some time. “The influence of ballet on fashion—specifically practice clothing such as leotards and tights—dates back to the rise of balletomania during the 1930s and 1940s,” Patricia Mears, a curator at the Museum of FIT who led the “Ballerina: Fashion’s Modern Muse” exhibit, told Vogue in 2022. “It was strongly revived during the disco era of the 1970s, long before the term athleisure entered our vocabulary.” 

Athleisure may be a modern style staple, but post pandemic, the ready-to-wear industry has focused on elevating it, and in doing so, cementing balletcore as a key trend again.

Model wearing the white twist front tank and shorts from Le Ore styled with a black bra underneath and legwarmers


Unsurprisingly, balletcore is derived from the art form itself. “Dance, movement and ballet in particular is such a huge part of self expression,” Luna Montana, a ballerina, told CNN Underscored “It’s using your body to tell a story. In many ways people use fashion to portray the same things so it’s natural that the two things would collide to create a trend such as balletcore.”

When thinking of ballerina outfitting, traditional apparel comes to mind, like leotards, tights, ballet flats, and leg-warmers. Figuring out how to wear the balletcore trend starts with knowing the essential pieces and elements to nail the aesthetic. Some trending staples include:

  • Leotards and bodysuits
  • Leg warmers
  • Tulle skirts
  • Corset tops
  • Wrap sweaters
  • Cardigans
  • Cut-out details
  • Romantic accents
  • Muted pastels and black, brown, and white colorways
  • Smooth, shiny fabrics
Two models standing by a ballet barre wearing baggy cargo pants and layered tank tops and ballet shoes.

Shop the Trend


For a pared down, elegant approach to the ballet vibe, reach for new Le Ore pieces. Inspired by the sensual romance of dance, the newest collection truly delivers effortless elegance. The twist-detail pieces offer a buttery soft, move-with-you smooth fabric, with ballet-inspired silhouettes and athletic performance attributes. 

Layering is also key — the warm-up and practice outfits of dancers and that off-duty style is on every moodboard this season. Think slouchy cargos over slinky bodysuits, leg warmers over leggings, and wrap-tie cardigans over strappy bras. Seamlessly layering pieces atop one another offers a “dancer off duty” vibe without feeling like you’re about to take center stage for The Nutcracker.

Model stretching while wearing a tan twist front tank and shorts from Le Ore with legwarmers and ballet shoes.


History dictated it, and fashion has future-proofed it: Balletcore is here to stay. By embracing the line between cozy athleisure and graceful styling, the appeal is undeniable. Channel your own prima ballerina with a few new pieces and what you already own. Because you know you’ve got something in your closet that hits the prima ballerina note. What girl doesn’t?

Close up of a model wearing pastel pieces layered from the new Le Ore collection