How to Choose Flattering Underwear (Bras and Briefs)


Karen – Of a Certain Age – reminded me with her fantastic post, that your bra is your foundation, and clothing will only look great, if the foundations work for you (you don’t build a house on dodgy foundations, don’t wear clothes over dodgy undergarments).

The correctly fitting and supportive bra will make you look lighter and give you a more youthful appearance.

A good bra will give you back your waist, making you look more proportionate and slimmer.

Check out Karen’s post and photos she took to prove the importance.

Choosing the correct underwear is fairly simple.

If you’re wearing smooth and tighter fitting clothes, look for a bra that is smooth cupped, no seams or lace to show through.

It’s the band on the bra that is doing the work – so that should fit well and not ride up your back. There should be no spiallge over the top or sides of the cup, and the centre of the underwire should sit against the breastbone.

A good fitter will find you the perfect bra. Brands differ, so you will need to try a few before you find the best for you. I like to wear a t-shirt, and try it over the bra so I can see what it looks like with clothes on, for my most flattering look.

I recommend ‘nude’ coloured undergarments for any lighter coloured outfits, white tends to show through too easily.

Shapewear is also fantastic, I love it to hide my post children stomach, which is no longer as firm as it once was. To get maximum comfort, whilst still getting the smoothing effect I”m after and no spillage over the top, I recommend you go up 1 -2 sizes from your regular clothing size. There is so much elastic in these garments you will still be held in.

There are so many varieties of shapewear, I’d suggest you go and try them on in a big departments store where there are a variety of brands, because what fits and is comfortable to you will be different for someone else.

For bras I love (D – J cup). They also do a great range of swimwear and clothes for the fuller busted woman.

Briefs need to not cut in to your legs to create that old VPL. I’ve never liked the G-string, I much prefer boy shorts, or other unders that are cut not to create a line. Shapewear that goes down your thigh will also remove the VPL issue.


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  • Imogen, I only buy nude bras, with a couple of black ones. I don’t like lace on my bras! I like purely functional bras and knickers! I like nude undies too, in a boyshort style, but with a SEAM down the butt to help with shaping. I’ve noticed that without the seam, I get a “unibutt” look in my jeans, eeewwww!

  • Whose boy shorts do you like?

    I only do black and nude bras and undies. I also pass on lace. I hate g-strings. I just don’t get them and why so many people love them.

  • Great post !
    However good bra fitter are very hard to find. Even the ones in professional stores often have no idea what they are doing. Since very few brands actually carry all the band and cup sizes (a good brand can have up to 90 sizes in each model !) they try to sell you whatever they have in stock, even if it doesn fit. Ie even seen bra fitters wearing the wrong size themselves.

    May I suggest Bravissimo fantastic bra fitting video:

    and bra fitting tutorial:

    As well as my detailed guide to finding your correct size:

  • I currently wear an Australian brand of boy shorts – Antz Pantz which are in a microfibre.

    I tend to find with bra fitters that if you get the older women in departments stores who have been in the game for eons, they are pretty good.

    Otherwise I’ll go to a specialist store (like one for women who are D+ cup size as I’m one of those women), and the owners who work there are great at finding a bra as they’re very invested in return customers. We have a great one here in Melbourne and they know everything about fitting and different brands.

    I love the look of pretty bras, but tend not to wear them much as they’re not so practical.

    Having been a bigger bra girl all my adult life, and 20+ years ago all the bigger bras were so ugly, that I love something pretty rather than industrial.

  • I wanted to say thanks for introducing bravissima.
    And I too reckon Brava Lingerie in Melbourne are stunningly good. I have the best-fitted bras I’ve ever worn from them.
    Hubby described by new-braed boobs as “perky” when i first bought from them! Not bad seeing they haven’t perked since my first child was born 32 years ago!

  • Bras are my nemesis. I seriously have no boobs. At all. Shaped A cups are too big. If I wear an A cup I have to stuff the cup or else it caves in. So, I wear sports bras and other soft cupped bras (when I can find them). I don't mind having no boobs and don't mind the sports bras (for the most part), but wish I could find bras that would fit well under evening wear. What little "boob" I do have is saggy, so the stick on thingies are out. It's not a pretty silhouette! Any advice???

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