Buying perfect lingerie
Backless, strapless, halter neck, uplift, cleavage enhancing, gel-filled, thongs, shorties, G-strings, tangas, high legs - phew! Buying underwear was a lot simpler when your gran was a girl.
Whether it's to complete a special outfit, enhance a naughty night in, or just because you can't find any shoes you like, the key to the perfect lingerie purchase is making sure it fits. The knack with knickers is buying the right size for you. It's no good buying a size eight because in your dreams you have a supermodel's behind: you'll only end up with an extra bum cheek where the stressed elastic's cutting into your wobbly bits. Be honest, and generous, when buying your panties.
According to underwear guru Anne Musk from figleaves.com, women can be just as ill-advised when they deal with their chests. "It's believed that over 70 per cent of woman wear the wrong size bra," she says. "It is very important to wear the size that fits you correctly rather than wearing the size you want to be." And it can be more serious that a nasty red elastic mark, according to Anne, "A badly fitting bra can cause bulges because the breast is not supported, and bad posture which will increase sagging of the breast."
How do you get a great fit? You'll need two measurements: the bra back size - measure directly under your bust for the number 32, 34, 36 etc; and the cup size - measure the fullest part of your bust for the letter A, B, C, D, DD etc Use a chart such as this as a guide, or get the po-faced woman in the department store to measure you, but you'll need to test out your bra yourself.
Anne says, "Often traditional bra measuring doesn't work well as we are all so different. Try the bra on and spend a few minutes assessing the fit." Some of the problems you might encounter are:
- You're bulging out the top or sides. If your curves are a bit lumpy under your lycra, the cup size is probably too small.
- If you're experiencing wrinkles where they shouldn't be i.e. the bra cup is creasing, it's too big. The bra should fit smoothly over your boobs.
- If it rides up your back it's too big around your body, go down a bra back size. The strap should fit snugly around your rib cage.
Lingerie: What's hot?
It used to be considered a hideous crime, allowing your knickers to make an appearance over the top of your jeans. How things have changed. Now it's not just Superman and drunken girls in hipsters who give you an eyeful of their undies, according to Anne from Figleaves, the latest styles for bottoms are definitely 'thongs to be seen'. "Jennifer Lopez, Britney and Jordan have all been spotted recently with hipster jeans and the back of their thongs showing. Since the launch of the Gossard G-strings many brands are offering thongs with ornate embroideries and diamante details." The reason for this crime of fashion? "The Gossard thongs with a Diamante T at the back are £15 each and I think for many people if you pay £15 for a thong you want to show it off!"
If you're going to show your undies, do it deliberately. Remember it's not always sexy to hint at what's underneath your clothes: lacy patterns when seen through silk or other smooth materials can give a mottled buttock/breast effect. As Sandra, a student, 21, comments, "Bras that look fantastic when you're in your undies make you look like you're smuggling bags of spuds as soon as you put a top on."
Variety is the spice
Girls, everyone's idea of 'sexy' is different, so go for something flattering that you're comfortable with. You look most sexy if you feel good. There's nothing worse than pouting seductively whilst constantly trying to free a skinny bit of lace from between your bum cheeks.
You'll need to kit yourself out with a range of colours and styles for different occasions. Your undie drawer needs to be as varied as the wardrobe of clothes to go on top of it. And please don't be disheartened if the lingerie Jennifer Lopez tucks those peachy buttocks into doesn't come in your size.
Read the comment policy
Use our free question and answer service and speak to an expert!