I used to live with some friends in an old Queenslander house and there was no full-length mirror. One day I was getting dressed for work (law firm) and I wore a black wrap dress, fishnet stockings and ankle boots. I got in the office before most people arrived and was buried in work. Mid-morning I took a toilet break and as I was walking back to my office, one of the secretaries stopped me and said:
“Emma, do you realise your dress is totally see-through at the back?”
To my horror, you could see the entire outline of my white butt and black G-string clearly through the thin crepe fabric. There was a mad dash to buy a slip and a fair bit of embarrassment but I learned a hard lesson that day: Always check your reflection from the back to make sure our outfit is finished off well.
How about you? Ever had a realisation that your otherwise fab outfit was let down by your rear? Have you ever felt insecure because of underwear issues? Ever noticed unsightly lumps, bumps or bulges? Then this one is for you! I am going to give you some simple fixes on how to get rid of these kinds of problems, which really comes down to choosing the right underwear for the job.
What I am sharing with you is based on actual bodies and with the knowledge of how different styles, fabrics, cuts and finishes affect the female form. You may not know this, but before I had my own Image Consultancy, I actually worked as a lingerie stylist for 2 years and during that time, I saw hundreds of semi-naked women and I credit this as being research that has helped me style everyday women so intuitively. I spent a lot of time asking questions, listening and observing the common problems women faced with their un-Victoria-Secret-model-ish-but-still-beautifully-feminine-bods.
Most women have flesh. They have fat. They have curves. Whether size 6 or size 26, women have indentations because we naturally have a higher body fat than men, which is necessary for health, menstruation and reproduction. Sure, some women have an ectomorph body composition (very low body fat and quite skeletal) and others still work incredibly hard at the gym and they control their diet in order to drastically reduce their body fat (*I would also question the sustainability and effect on self-image but that’s for another post.) but these are the exception and not the norm.
When you add clothing to the flesh, it needs to grip to stay up. Pants and skirts need to dig in to stay put. Bras and knickers need to hold firm to defy gravity!
I searched far and wide to find examples (that hadn’t been photoshopped) of what happens when you put a tight horizontal seam across a soft part of your flesh. You guessed it, it digs in, creating unflattering lines and bulges. You can see that there are all sorts of body sizes and shapes, the common problem is that the elastic in the briefs are too tight and in the wrong position. Let’s stop blaming our bodies and instead, find the right style of underwear to flatter them!
HOW TO FIX?
- GO UP A SIZE- Most women try and buy the same size underwear as their clothing size but in most cases, I would recommend going up at least 1 size to get a no-dig look. Personally, I wear a 9 or 10 in jeans but always go for either a size 12 or 12/14 underwear. I learned this after fitting matching sets of lingerie to clients- even if you are balanced top to bottom, still go up a size in your briefs.
- TRY A DIFFERENT LINE- Look for a style that sits at the narrowest part of your torso, whether that be high, mid or lower on the hips. Whilst usually this is higher, as a guide: If you have a defined waist, you will always feel better when your underwear sits high on the waist; Women with curved tummies will probably find the mid-rise best, and women who have very narrow hips may find lower hipster styles are better.
- GO WIDE- Look for styles with a nice wide band over the hips, like the Brazilian style. With stretch fabrics like lace or microfibre, they will sit on the hip better and create less dig in.
- SEAMLESS- When you examine the edges of your briefs, be aware of strong elastic or reinforced seams. Whilst these are designed to grip and stay, they also have the downside of creating visible lines. I prefer seamless styles or I have even been known to take to underwear with a pair of scissors and make my own line!
- SHAPE IT- If you are wearing something super clingy, consider a lightweight shaping brief that smooths from waist to thigh (or lower if necessary).
- LACY LEGS- If you find that your knickers especially dig in around the legs or hips, I would recommend a lace leg for a softer line.
- SKIRT OR PANTS- Be aware that there are different underwear suited to either pants or skirts because the pull of the fabric is different. Pants move upward, skirts and dresses pull downwards. I learnt this the hard way: Brazilian style underwear is PAINFUL under jeans and pants because they ride up! They are designed to be worn under dresses for gorgeous round lines over the buttocks. For jeans or pants, I would recommend G-strings or seamless briefs.
- STAYING IN? Remember that what you wear underneath your clothes is really different than what you wear when you’re not wearing any clothes if you get my drift! If you are looking for a sexy little set to wear in the boudoir, don’t rely on them to keep you looking fine whilst you’re out on the town. It’s a totally different job description!
Looking for some recommendations on essential briefs for your top drawer? Here are my top 4 investments to save your ass!
- Lacey G-strings- essential for under jeans, pants or leggings. They give a great line and make your butt look perkier so get them in all 3 colours!
- Microfibre no lines- These feather-light skin coloured boring but essential briefs are great for smoothing coverage when you are wearing light coloured or lightweight fabric and want to avoid the slight show of lace.
- The full lace Brazilian brief. These will not only make you feel like a sexy mamacita, but they also look amazing under skirts and dresses, accentuating the curve of your rear in a flattering way.
- Sexy shapewear. Is there such a thing? Who knows, but we could all do with a bit of extra smoothing when it comes to tight dresses and this high waisted style with the lacy legs has you covered. Literally.
So, now you have the lowdown on how to choose the right briefs for your body, remember that foundations are worth investing in! Don’t be afraid to spend a decent amount of cash on a few varieties in both skin & black colours to make sure you are always dressing your best.