Thursday, December 1, 2011

How To Buy Lingerie & Shapewear For Cocktail Dresses

For many people, Christmas time means lots of cocktail parties, which means lots of fabulous cocktail dresses! One big thing to think about when you’re going dress shopping is the lingerie you will be wearing with your dress. You want pieces that can support, cover and fit with the lines and straps of your outfit.

In a recent Twitter #LingerieChat, Lingerie Diva, along with some of our Twitter friends, discussed some ways to make sure you find the right foundation for your dress.

  1. Think about how much coverage and support you will need. A backless dress is harder to find support options for vs. a full back dress. Same goes for plunging necklines. Can you find and afford a bra to go with the dress?
  2. Remember that there are alternatives to the traditional bra. Don’t get stuck thinking about how you can hide straps when you have the option of backless bras, adhesive bras, pasties, body tape, etc. Think about how these could work with the dress you have in mind and how comfortable you are using these methods.
  3. Consider getting the dress altered to better fit in the chest, or having a bra sewn into your dress. @Piperewan swears by this method, rather than using adhesive.
  4. Do some research before you go shopping. @PlumsLingerie made a good point that a clothing sales associate might not be able to offer great advice on lingerie.

And finally, consider shapewear. Shapewear comes in many forms that can work with different necklines and backs, creates a smooth line and will slim you all over while offering breast support. But remember that shapewear isn’t an instant fix. @Swimwearlingeri reminded us not to assume that you can go down a size with shapewear and try to fit into a smaller dress size.

When buying shape wear, @Premierejourpj says a general rule of thumb is to take your underwear size and go down 1 size and work from there. The look should be smoother and trimmer, not like a stuffed sausage, says @Lingerie_Addict. If that’s the case, go back to your original size.

Also, consider the level of compression needed and the areas you want to look smooth, says@LingerieBuyer. And @Swimwearlingeri says that the shapewear should be supportive, not restrictive. It needs to be comfortable and you need to be able to move around in it. After all, what good is wearing a fabulous dress if you're too miserable to enjoy it?