Image courtesy H&M
It might be what's inside that counts but it's also what's underneath. You've witnessed it firsthand I'm sure - that girl at the wedding trying so desperately to look ladylike as she wrestles her strapless bra back into place; that lady in line at Starbucks whose granny panties are losing an epic battle with her bum. Oh, and the unassuming woman in the demure plain white tee (Um, excuse me but I can see your Hot Pink Bra!) Sure, we talk about clothes, clothes, clothes here in The CLOSET, because, let's face it, clothes are exciting and fun and pretty. But here's the thing about clothes - they can look pretty tragic if you're not armed with the proper tools. (read: unless you're 14 or happen to be blessed with a La Senza model body, most of us need a little help to keep things tucked in and held in place as we move about our day.) These underwear essentials will help you feel positively uplifted so you can rock that new spring wardrobe you've been waiting to bust out (pun totally intended).
1. THE SEAMLESS THONG
Awkward as it may appear, there's no better way to avoid panty lines than the thong. To avoid scratches, chafing and otherwise-super-uncomfortable 'situations', look for these three S's: soft, stretchy, seamless. Most important of all - you should really not feel a thing.
Try: Aerie Seamless Thong (available in 11 different colours), $10.60
2. THE T-SHIRT BRA
First things first - go and get a proper bra fitting. Most women are wearing the wrong size bra resulting in cups that spill over, straps that dig in and bras that don't support the cause. Once you get the right size (and the right bra) your clothes will instantly look better and you'll immediately look thinner. True story. Though we all love pretty bras, every woman should own a great microfibre t-shirt bra that will disappear under your sweaters, blouses and tees. If you're wearing white or anything sheer, always (always!) opt for a nude bra rather than white.
Try: H&M T-Shirt Bra, $17.95
3. CUTE, COMFY, HIPSTERS
If your underwear drawer is filled with stretched out, worn-in granny panties, it's time for an update (even if you are a grandma) Look for seamless options (again to avoid panty-lines) in fun colours and prints to add some excitement to your everyday. I love the seamless hipsters from Garage, La Senza and Aerie.
Try: Garage Seamless Polka Dot Hipster, 4 for $20
4. A NON-SCRATCHY LACE BRA
Lace is beautiful to look at, but cheap lace can feel like someone is applying sandpaper to your boobs - not a good feeling. This bra looks AND feels great, so you can feel just as sexy as you look. Plus, its full coverage style and no-slip straps perform just as well under clothes as out of them.
Try: Aerie Sofie Lightly Lined Bra, $25
5. BODY SHAPERS
There's nothing worse than feeling paunchy, or not feeling paunchy and then looking at pics later and wondering why nobody told you that your tummy was hanging out. Whether it's post-babydom, an indulgent weekend or just good ol' genetics, a little tummy can wreak havoc on your look. Consider these shaping briefs the corset of the 2010's. If you're looking for a full-body slimming effect under a dress (without the tell-tale muffin-top effect you get with some bodyshapers) nothing beats the high waisted shapers from SPANX. Two words: Life. Saver.
Try: H&M Shaping Briefs, $14.95
Try: SPANX Slimplicity High-Waisted Shaper, $90, The Bay
6. STRAP HAPPIES
Dresses and tanks come in all forms but sometimes, our bras just aren't quite as flexible. These strap converters allow you to clip your straps in place to help your bra go totally incognito.
Try: Aerie Strap Converter (in black, nude and clear), $11.60
7. VA VA VOOM VOOM
If you consider yourself lacking in certain, um, departments, this bra is an absolute miracle-worker. Wear it anytime you want to achieve enviable cleavage for date night, or just because you can. And the cake meets icing bonus - this bra is actually super comfy, too, since the underwires are padded. Heaven! If you're looking to give your other bras some added oomph, silicone inserts are a great way to look instantly well-endowed. Now va, va, voom voom, you!
Try: Calvin Klein Push Positive Bras, $49, The Bay (select colours on sale for $17.63)
Try: H&M Cleavage Enhancers, $14.95
8. A SLIP-PROOF STRAPLESS
Most strapless bras are fighting a losing battle with gravity, which makes strapless dresses a dance floor nightmare. This rave-reviewed bra lifts you up and actually stays put, making it totally worth the splurge.
Wacoal Strapless Full Figure Red Carpet Bra, $75, The Bay
9. SWEET DREAMS
We've all heard that you shouldn't sleep with underwires yet we also know the importance of being supported while we sleep to avoid the dreaded droop that happens over time. These 2 options (1 in sporty cotton, the other in sexy lace) are light, airy and breathable so you can rest easy.
Try: Aerie Fit Racerback Bra, $21
Try: Wacoal Lace Kiss Bralette, $23, The Bay
10. A LITTLE SOMETHING, SOMETHING
If you spend most nights in flannel jammies or shorts and a tee, we get it. I mean, unless you're in the honeyoon phase of your marriage, or in the throes of a bad (good) romance, comfort usually wins out over come-hither. Still, every woman should own something fun, just in case (wink, wink, nudge, nudge). (PS - La Senza has loads of options (had a hard time getting pics) but visit the store and you'll see them in all their frilly glory).
Try: H&M Nightslip, $29.95
P.S.- if for no reason other than the fact that it's David Beckham running around in his underwear, check out this hilarious new ad for H&M, directed by Guy Ritchie. And if you haven't already, be sure to check out the David Beckham bodywear line in the men's section at H&M for your favourite boy. Really, truly, awesome underwear for men)