Today, I want you to think about 'What Lies Beneath?' -I'm talking underwear! As a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant, clients come to me for help finding their personal Signature Style and building a new wardrobe. Many don't even consider that I will be just as interested in what they wear under their clothes.
One of the first questions I ask is "When were you last measured for a bra?" The response varies between - "Never" - yes really, to "Last week" - to which my heart sinks when I can tell that they have been measured wrong.
What would your answer be? Remember, it is important that you get remeasured every 6 months, or after any weight loss or gain.
I hope you find the advice below useful, and it inspires you to go and get re-measured, properly!
So why does your underwear matter? It matters because the right lingerie next to your skin can make you feel better-than-great, confident and put together. Some have said “No one sees my underwear so why bother buying anything special?” or “Lingerie is for young people with perfect bodies and that’s not me.” Many women have the opinion of lingerie is that it’s ill fitting, scratchy, uncomfortable, and only meant to stay on the body for five minutes before it comes off. Sure, that type of lingerie exists, but there’s so much more out there. Modern technology has totally redefined the possibilities for comfort. Now you can wear lingerie that not only looks great but also feels great next to the skin.
Here's my advice for working on your underwear wardrobe:
When you have great fitting undergarments, you make your best impression.
Realise that fit may vary as you get older. Changing your bra style may be the update you need. Going up a cup size in underwear may be the key to the smooth lines that make you look thinner and more fit. A balcony bra creates a different shape to a push up. The correct fitting underwear can knock lbs off you, and completely change your shape. If the bust line is too low, you lose your waist and look short bodied. Smooth pants, either seamless shorts or a thong, and Spanx (left) if you need a little more support, help create smooth lines
Its ALL about the fit
With bras, the first thing to pay attention to is fit. It is SO important! I cannot stress this enough. Most women know that statistic that 80% of women are wearing the wrong bra size, and yet they all must think that they are among the 20% who have it right! In my experience - and of course there are always exceptions - M&S don't get it right and La Senza have no idea, even though they use the statistic as a quote in their marketing. Most high street stores where you are served by a young girl with a tape measure will not get it right. Many of the big department stores have great bra fitters, usually the best will be the older lady with the grey hair an a bun. Look into exploring small lingerie boutiques. These smaller shops tend to have high quality and unique pieces. Just be wary of anyone with a tape measure who tells you your size and leaves you to it. You need a fitting, one on one help for the duration of your time in the store so you understand how the bra should look and feel - and even how you should put it on properly!
Rigby & Peller In my opinion the best place to head is Rigby & Peller, and if you can't get to London and you have a any bust, then try Bravissimo. Both stores do not use tape measures but look at your boobs to assess your size, and then fit you with a bra that is right for your personal shape. If Rigby & Peller are a bit out of your price range - though I would encourage you to invest in at least one bra from them, once you have this information you can then take yourself off to the high street and fit yourself.
Buy skin coloured and seam free lingerie.
Once you have that, you can build up your lingerie wardrobe with more interesting colours and textures. Once you know your correct size, and how it should fit, you can explore the highstreet stores for different bras. Try M&S, La Senza and Gap Body, for great seam-free bras in a variety of patterns and colours. If your favourite colour is teal, find a matching bra and pants set in that colour and you’ll love wearing it. If you want something sensual, find a fabric that feels luxurious against your skin. If you want your undergarments to be simple and practical, find them in a soft satin texture in a hue that you love. If you prefer something sexier, find a luxurious lace or a flirty ruffle set but keep these to a minimum as they are impractical and show as lumps and bumps.
Dressing in great underwear is first and foremost something you do for yourself! Whether or not anyone else gets to benefit from seeing you in it is secondary. With so many beautiful colours and fabrics to choose from, this is a safe place for you to express your creativity and sensuality.
This article is from my February newsletter. If you enjoyed reading it, and would like to have regular advice and tips, sign up for it on the Babet Style Consultancy website.
As a fully trained and experienced personal stylist, I can help you find your own personal Signature Style and I can advise you on a lingerie wardrobe that flatters your body and fits in with your wardrobe. I can take llbs off you, help you begin to build a wearable, practical and comfortable wardrobe that is also flattering, modern and stylish. If you need help, I am only a phone call away 020 7193 8956.