Here’s a little styling secret: What you wear under your clothes can make or break your entire outfit — and I’m talking about more than just hiding your VPLs (visible panty lines).
You may have a love-or-hate relationship with shapewear (we all know that pulling on a pair of Spanx can be a tricky affair!) but you’ll see an immediate difference when it’s layered under your outfit, especially anything form-fitting. Most women turn to shapewear to shrink their bodies, but it’s not about constricting or shrinking your figure. The right underpinnings have the power to enhance your natural curves and help your clothes fit even better — and if you choose the right pieces, they can even be comfortable and supportive!
That’s right, if you literally can’t breathe in them, they’re probably not the right size.
Consider this your comprehensive guide to your new and improved underpinnings drawer.
Start with Great Underwear
Before you shimmy into those skinny jeans, take a look at your underwear collection. Every piece in there should fit three criteria: It should make you feel confident about your body when you put it on, fit properly, and offer solid support.
You need 3 underwear styles in your intimates drawer:
A high-waist full brief for days you want extra smoothing but don’t want to wear shapewear (lots of great options below and here)
A wide side thong for no pantylines – the wide style is great for helping smooth hips and tummy vs a g-string that’s literally exactly what it sounds like: string (my fave style below and more options here)
Lastly, a boyshort or girl boxer for sleep, and under skirts and dresses (my fave style is below and more options here)
Enhance with Shapewear
Do you wear a lot of cinched waistlines? Do you want to boost your backside in pants? Or look smoother in your shirts? (Or all of the above?!)
Here are 5 must-haves for your shapewear drawer:
While it isn’t traditional shapewear, a camisole works underneath every top, especially sheer fabrics! I wear this one under everything to smooth things out a bit and ensure my bra isn’t showing, no matter what type of fabric my top it.
Shaping Shorts are great for under skirts and dresses. They help with chafing and smooth things out a bit without being ultra restricting.
A Bodysuit Shaper smoothes everything out and works well under skirts, dresses and jumpsuits. (I personally love a bodysuit under a form-fitting dress).
A Legging Shaper is perfect under denim or jumpsuits when you want to look extra smooth, or dresses during fall/winter.
Shaping Tights go under skirts and dresses in fall/winter.
Build a Basic Bra Collection
A bra is the most important undergarment a girl could have, and it can truly make or break an outfit. Wearing the wrong size bra is more common than you think, but once you find the right size, it can change your entire silhouette. Before you choose an undergarment on how it looks, it’s important to consider the most important qualities you should look for in a bra: fit, support and comfort.
Here are the 3 bras every girl should have in her arsenal:
I think we all cringe when we hear the words “strapless bra,” but there are great one’s out there that do provide the 3 most important qualities outlined above! This one is my favorite and it’s great for tops or dresses where you can’t just pull your regular bra straps down and fake a strapless.
A T-shirt Bra is the perfect everyday bra that goes underneath any top or blouse. This is my all-time favorite and I have it in three colors because it’s that amazing. (I highly recommend taking the fit quiz to determine your size, the results might surprise you! My results recommended I go down a band size, up a cup size and wow, what a difference!)
The Balconette Bra is sexy and cute, but also provides great support and just enough coverage. (My favorite style is below and there are more here)