Bedroom Insider

A blog about relationships, intimacy and sex toys.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Lingerie Buying Basics

Woman in garter belt lingerie drinking wine
Lingerie can be your secret sexual weapon, but if you're not sure how to wear it or even shop for it, lingerie can be quite intimidating.

The perfect piece of lingerie for you will fit your body and, perhaps more importantly, be comfortable. After all, confidence is the sexiest thing you can wear, and it's nearly impossible to be confident when you're not comfortable.

Read on to learn more about lingerie styles and fit.

Types of Lingerie

There are a number of types of lingerie to consider when you're purchasing.

  • Bustier: This piece of lingerie is like a light corset. It's not designed to pull anything in, but it has the same general shape that will emphasize an hourglass figure but may highlight your tummy if it's a problem area.
  • Corset: A corset helps to pull in your hips and waist thanks to the ribbons or strings. It also boosts your cleavage. A corset with boning will be more effective, and premium corsets will have multiple metal bones to provide structure. However, they come at a much higher price. 
  • Camisole: Often worn with panties or something else on the bottom, a camisole is a sexy top often made from satin or silk and trimmed in lace. Camisoles are sometimes worn under day clothing.
  • Chemise: A form-fitting nightgown that covers your upper body but stops around your hips or butt.
  • Babydoll: Has an empire waist right below your breast. It's looser below the waist, which is great for hiding tummies. Some babydolls utilize a flyaway style, showing a hint of your belly or back (if the pieces separate in back).
  • Garter belts: Garter belts or skirts are worn at the hip or waist, typically over your panties. They connect to stockings to keep them up. This piece really pulls together your outfit. Garter belts aren't necessary when your other pieces of lingerie have garters.
  • Teddies: The classic teddy is like a sexy bathing suit or leotard. It covers your upper body and includes a panty portion. It's especially stunning on svelte bodies.
  • Bodystocking: A single-piece type of hosiery that covers your entire body in lace, mesh or similar material. Tall or shorter women may have trouble finding one that fits well.
  • Robe: A robe can be worn over any of the other lingerie on this list or by itself. Robes are loose and fit a variety of bodies.

Panty Styles

Of course, sexy panties are often counted as lingerie, especially when you wear them with a camisole or bustier. You can choose from a variety of styles depending upon your body type and how comfortable you are showing panty lines or skin.

  • Brief: The stereotypical granny panty, which is cut much larger than other styles.
  • Bikini: Offers full coverage in front and back with more narrow sides than the brief. A string bikini has ultra-thin sides that may be unflattering if they cut into your hips.
  • Thong: Similar to a bikini in front and sides but with a thicker strap in back. Good to hide bikini lines.
  • Tanga: A French style thong with more coverage in the back.
  • G-string/V-string: String-cut sides with a single string as back coverage. The strings may connect as a “T,” “V” or triangle shape. The front panel is minimal.
  • Hiphugger: Longer to sit straight across the hips with full coverage in back.
  • Cheekster/cheeky: Shows hints of cheek with their higher cut in back. Can still be modest in front.
  • Boyshort: Has a more masculine cut that covers the butt cheeks and sits lower on the thighs. May be trimmed like boy's briefs.
  • Crotchless: A slit in the crotch provides access for sexy times. Typically bikini style, but this can vary.
  • Strapless: This final panty style is a “C” shape that's simply worn to cover your labia and tucks between your legs.

Many lingerie sets come with included G-strings or thongs, which may not fit you well. Don't be afraid to ditch the included panty for something better-fitting and more flattering.

Bras 101

Bras can be an important part of your lingerie collection. A good bra helps your clothing to fit better and to promote that hourglass shape, but it also looks amazing when paired with matching or complementary panties. Here's everything you need to know about bra styles.

  • Full-coverage: The most coverage for your breasts.
  • Demi: Is cut lower across the entire front. Shows about half your breasts.
  • Balconette: Similar to the demi but curves upward in pinup style. Straps are wider set.
  • Push-up: Adds padding from the sides and bottom to give your bosom that extra oomph. Some push-up bras add 2 cups.
  • Plunge: Cups plunge toward the center for maximum cleavage, but remain higher toward the outside.
  • Shelf: Sits below your breasts to push them up, but your breasts and nipples are exposed.
  • Unlined: No lining. Nipples may be visible through the bra.
  • Lightly-lined: Light lining but minimal shaping.
  • Underwire: Helps shape your breasts with the curved wires on the bottom of the cups.
  • T-shirt: Designed to be worn under t-shirts without showing lines. 
  • Longline: Extends further down your abs like a cross between a bustier and bra.
  • Strapless: Perfect for wearing under strapless dresses.
  • Stay-up: Use the power of suction to stay up.
  • Racerback: Straps cross in the back for wearing beneath racerback tops.
  • Convertible: Straps can be worn regular, racerback and sometimes even across.

It's not just about the style.  Many people misunderstand how cup sizes work. Bras have “sister” cup sizes, which are actually the same cup size on a different brand size. For example, a 38C is the same cup size as a 36D or a 40B. When you go down a band size, you go up a cup size, and the opposite is also true.

It's important that your bra fits well. A properly-fitted bra won't gap in the front or cut into your back and sides. However, bras should be snug enough to provide support.

As you finish off your sexy outfit, don't forget about the details. Hair and makeup can make you look like a sultry star. Stockings are sophisticated and look amazing with heels, which many people like to keep on during sex. And jewelry can be the finishing touch.

Of course, lingerie sometimes comes off more quickly than it goes on, so you needn't fret about the details every time. Just make sure you feel comfortable and confident, and don't forget to wear your smile!

By: Adriana Ravenlust
Follow on Twitter @adriana_r