Photo by Christof Stache, AP

I thought Michelle Obama made one giant leap for womankind when she ragged on pantyhose on "The View" last year -- "[They're] inconvenient!" she said -- but this spring, others would beg to disagree.

At, one female columnist makes the valid point that while going bare-legged may be liberating, the preparation it can entail -- waxing, exfoliating, cellulite-busting and self-tanning -- is hardly a free-wheeling alternative.

I'm not so sure. You can stretch out any beautifying routine to Kimora Lee-esque proportions, or you can do a rush job. I suggest aiming for somewhere in the middle, like taking a few careful minutes to apply these incredible leg enhancing products.

Rio Blush City Gel Firming Leg Gel. A makeup artist for "Sex and the City: The Movie," Kyra Panchenko spent 45 minutes every day whipping up a crazy concoction of bronzer, cellulite cream and lotion to apply to Kim Cattrall's immaculate bod. Lucky for us, the formula now comes in a tube. Stay tuned for the colorless (yet still glow-y) version. (A personal request by Panchenko's client, Uma Thurman.) $48

Per-fékt Body Perfection Gel. Think of this gel as a tinted moisturizer for your body. It smooths the skin with shea butter, ceramides and hyaluronic filling spheres, while imparting a hint of shimmery color that instantly evens out skin tone. $48

Photo courtesy of ModelCo

DiorSkin Forever Extreme Wear Flawless Makeup SPF 25. Put makeup on your legs? Don't knock it 'til you try it. To make veins less noticeable, my colleague mixes moisturizer with this long-wearing foundation (in a shade two shades darker than what she wears on her face). "It stays put!" she says. $44

MAC Face and Body Foundation. During Fashion Week, makeup artists live on this stuff. Probably because it's water-resistant, so it can survive the sweaty backstage atmosphere, which is hotter and stickier than any summer I've lived through. $32

ModelCo Bronze Airbrush Sun. If the suspense of waiting for your questionably-applied self-tanner to develop is too much to bear (p.s., I totally relate), then use this sheer bronzing mist. You'll even out your skin tone and look a little leaner, too -- if you're into that sort of thing. $32
If you're lucky enough to have both time and cash to spare, you might want to try out Smooth Shapes, the hot new anti-cellulite treatment that promises smoother, firmer-looking legs. A series of eight treatments is recommended, but some women have felt more body confident after just one. Celebs are all over it, of course.