A beginner’s guide to the world of lingerie

Fashion blogging isn’t really my thing, mainly because fashion isn’t.

Fashion blogging isn’t really my thing, mainly because fashion isn’t. I’ve never been a one for religiously scouring the pages of Vogue and Elle, preferring instead to just throw on whatever involves the colour black and teaming it with lots of chunky gold jewellery.

However, that which we wear under our clothes has always been a passion of mine. Underwear always seems so much prettier and more luxurious than outerwear. Silk, lace, diamanté – you name it, lingerie shops will sell it. The colours are richer, the materials softer and the designs more intricate than anything we wear on the outside (well, for the most part anyway).

It always surprises me, then, when girls don’t share the same beliefs as me about lingerie, especially those that express a passion for fashion and beauty. The way I see it, wearing the most beautiful evening dress imaginable is redundant if underneath it is a pair of saggy cotton knickers with no elastic.

See, contrary to popular opinion, sexy lingerie as just as much for the wearer as it is anyone else. Sure, it’s great being able to show off to your boyfriend in a lovely number from Ann Summers, but it’s even lovelier to walk down the street in an old t-shirt and pair of jeans knowing that underneath them is a sex kitten waiting to pounce.

Wearing sexy underwear is a bit like having an affair (or so I imagine). It’s a naughty secret that you’re not allowed to tell anybody, which makes it all the more fun. Not only that, but well-fitting lingerie enhances our figure, meaning that we’re more likely to carry ourselves with confidence than if our boobs were hanging down by our knees in some ill-fitting monstrosity.

But shopping for lingerie can be intimidating, especially when you get accosted by well-meaning but pushy sales assistants the minute you step through the door. My first trip to La Senza saw me purchasing three expensive balcony bras because my ‘figure is perfect for the balcony style.’

It wasn’t until I got home that I realised that no, my assets did not look great hitched up to my neck and threatening to explode out of all my clothes.

So, where do we start? Do we opt for plunge bras, or push-up, balcony, t-shirt or multi-way? And what about our pants? Isn’t a Brazilian a kind of waxing? And nobody really wears those huge Bridget Jones pants, do they?

Well, worry not because I’ve created a list of the 5 things every girl needs in her knicker drawer. 

A red and black set

Red and black are not only colours associated with love and desire, but they are timeless. I bought a beautiful red silk set with black lace around two years ago from La Senza, and even now the new season sees almost identical sets available in Boux Avenue and Ann Summers.

Unlike other fashions (such as vintage floral designs or risqué 50 Shades style numbers), red and black will never age, guaranteeing to transform your body into a vessel of pure sex appeal. Whatever your size, these are the colours of passion and naughtiness, and will flatter just about anyone.

High-waisted sets

High-waisted sets are in at the minute and are really reminiscent of old-school vintage pin-up girls. This is a style made with the aim of pleasing women rather than some boyfriend or another, and allows you to truly feel as though you are stepping back in time to a different age and indulge your girlie side. What’s more, these sets tend to come in gorgeous floral patterns and muted colours, really invoking a burlesque glamour.

Bridget Jones pants

Yup, you’re reading correctly. Control pants are great for when you’re going out for a meal or wearing a tight-fitting dress. The beauty of them is that they flatten the stomach, while allowing your boobs and bum to remain the same, creating a gorgeous hourglass figure.

And they’re not as hideous as you may think! Lots of stores now stock them in colours such as black (as oppose to the dreaded flesh coloured ones made for Granny) with silky material, rendering them not miles apart from the high-waisted knickers mentioned above. Control pants are something that lots of people use, but not many people talk about, a bit like LinkedIn. Go grab yourself a pair.

Bikini Briefs

Briefs! I can’t stress enough how much I adore these things. To put it bluntly, all the other types of knickers get wedged in places that you don’t want them to get wedged.

Sure, the high-cut Brazilians look pretty, as do the flirty French, but only the bikini brief will look sexy and stay in place. I mean, at least thongs are honest about where they’re going to end up. They don’t pretend. Seriously, don’t let the continentals fool you. Stick with the briefs for an easy life.

Something unashamedly slutty

Okay, so I know I said lingerie is just as much about the woman’s pleasure as the man’s, but come on, who doesn’t get pleasure in seeing their lover drooling over them? Every respectable woman needs something show-stoppingly, heart-wrenchingly, unapologetically slutty in her underwear drawer. There is no excuse not to.

For the daring among you, try an Ann Summers body, a barely there lace number, usually crotchless with peephole cups. If that’s too much for you then what about a cute Babydoll dress, or for a more classic look invest in a garter belt and stockings. What are you waiting for?

What do you think? What advice would you have for picking the best lingerie? Have your say in the comments section below.