What To Wear Underneath: Undergarments That Work Wonders
by: Rachel Harris, Managedmoms.com
Sometimes the outfit seems just right until you realize that you don't own the right bra for the perfect clothing fit. Will that tank you own work for what to wear underneath? How about something to conceal for the super sheer outfit? How do those Hollywood actresses get away with that red carpet attire? Tank tops seem to come in all different kinds of styles now. Which tank for which cut of clothing? The undergarment department can be overwhelming, so I did some research with a fashion expert to streamline the different bras, undies, camis and more to help us figure out what underwear essentials are worth having on hand to complete an outfit. I interviewed Managedmoms.com fashion contributor, Heather Cisek to get the update on the undergarments and she shared some terrific tips. I will dive right in and start with the undies that she says you have to know about...
Underwear that Flatters & Works Well In Our Warm Climate
Commando Better Than Nothing High Rise -- Featured in O Magazine, these top performing undies that will cover a muffin top. The Commando Better Than Nothing High Rise Thong panties are also bare in the back, so panty lines won't be a problem. Heather says that the Commando is a great alternative to Spanx here in our hot climate because the material is light-weight and functional. Made out of sleek stretch microfiber, these are cool, comfortable, flattering and they stay put when they are worn. Commando even offers a higher rise panty than the one that I showed in the segment for even more coverage. These work well to wear under silk dresses and maxi dress styles. These sell for $39 locally at The Purple Skirt Boutique in Ahwatukee at 40th Street and Chandler Blvd and at Dominque R Boutique in Scottsdale.
Hanky Panky Thongs -- Breathable, comfortable and panty line free, this line has been my personal top pick for the last 10 years. The line also sells a higher rise and a lower rise. In my opinion, this line is the most comfortable thong on the market. $18 to $20 a pair at The Purple Skirt, Dominque R and Nordstrom's (prices vary here).
Bras That Do It All
A Conceal The Back Fat Bra:
Soma Intimates Vanishing Back Full Coverage Bra ($48 for solid colors; $50 for pretty prints) -- This bra conceals back fat because the back is made with no elastic or stitching along the back and bottom, providing a seamless fit. Plus the material is wide and smoothing, so excess fat in the upper back area is hidden with this bra. The front works well for t-shirts due to the smooth contour cups that has some padding, but not too much padding for those women that don't want added bust when they wear a form fitting t-shirt or top. The padding that this bra does contain is just enough to keep covered when cold weather or a cool air conditioning location can result in a self conscious situation. This bra keeps the front of your breasts covered with just the right amount of padding.
To Lift and Add Some Bust:
H&M Balconette Bra -- Believe or not, one of these was wrapped under the Christmas tree for me and it was from my tween daughter! I figured I would need the receipt because how would she know what kind of bra would work well for her Mom?! Well, to my surprise I love this bra for when I want some lift and added bust, but I will say that it isn't the most comfortable bra in the world because it is so supportive that when it is removed, I can feel that I had quite the extra lift all day. However, I love this bra when I'm looking for an increased bust for the day. It is made of microfiber and lace with padded cups with underwire and removable inserts for lifting and shaping. Plus it has detachable shoulder straps that can be worn in various ways. This bra sells for $17.95 at H&M stores.
Best Bra for Comfort:
Anemone Women's Seamless Removable Strap Bras -- One of the reviews I read about this bra calls it the bra for women who hate to wear bras because it is so soft and comfortable. I also found this to be a good first bra for my tween girl. She did remove the pads so she didn't look like she grew overnight and that is another nice feature about the Anemone bra - that the pads and the straps are removable. With this bra, you can have straps, strapless or a criss cross back making it as versatile as it is comfortable. $16 at The Purple Skirt Boutique and Dominque R.
Tubes To The Rescue
Nikibiki Bandeau Tube Top -- I knew these work well to wear under low-cut tops and dresses, but Heather pointed out another advantage of the Bandeau tube top that I hadn't considered and that is when worn over a bra, cleavage is a little more concealed when a woman bends over. That is a plus for sure. This is a terrific layering piece that can also be worn in place of a bra and is comfortable and light weight, which is another plus in our hot Valley of the Sun. Made with a nylon/spandex blend, this gives stretch, so one size fits most.
This also works well if you want to wear a lower cut tank top, but don't want the sides of your under arm area to show. These conceal and can also give you a stylish layered multi-colored tank top look.
A great option is that these bandeau tops also come with a strap, especially for smaller busted women who are worried that the bandeau may fall down. The strap solves that problem. The strap is also a nice option for the bigger breasted gals because it offers some added support by pulling the bust upwards.
Get these in all sorts of colors and prints for only $13 a piece at The Purple Skirt Boutique and at Dominque R.
Thanks to Tanks!
A tank top can make or break an outfit, so it is important to know which ones work for which ensembles. Thankfully a good tank top can comfortably do a lot for your figure. Here are a few examples of tanks that make us give thanks...
To enhance an outfit with a slimming splash of color...
Go for a Nikibiki's Bright Neon Camisole because not only will the fun colors make your outfit pop with a crisp and clean accent color, but these camis are well made to boot. It won't ride up and it will cover the tummy area for a more slimming appearance. Plus these tanks are lighter than a lot of heavy shape wear that is on the market, so the Nikibiki line works well for us desert dwelling folk.
The Versatile Racer Back Tank...
I was under the impression that a racer back top was only worn under a racer back blouse or dress, but Heather showed me some fun options that a racer back tank can offer. For example, put a coordinating color racer back under a fashionable low cut cute tank that sports a design and you have spruced up a tank for a complete outfit top piece. Watch the segment above to see the example I show. Heather also tells me that a lot of women get double the use of their racer back top because they use it as a workout piece, too. The racer back that I show in the segment is made by Nikibiki and sells for $26 at The Purple Skirt Boutique.
A Little Lace Under That Suit...
My personal favorite undergarment line has added a Classic Signature Lace Camisole that adds a soft touch underneath a business suit. Redbook Magazine recently showed this lace cami as a great accent piece. This sells for $55 on the Hanky Panky website, but The Purple Skirt has them for less at $48.
I love leggings because on a day where I feel a little blah or want to conceal my tummy, lovely and comfy leggings are the answer. Watch the segment to see how Heather showed me how to turn a pair of cute leggings and a standard white t-shirt into a fashionable and comfortable outfit. The patterned leggings I show in the segment are made by the NikiBiki line. These leggings will suck in the tummy in a form fitting, but relaxing manner, so they feel great to wear. Each pair of the cute patterned styles sell for $33 at Dominque R and The Purple Skirt.
Hollywood Barely There Undergarment Tricks
If you decide to try a revealing Hollywood style and wonder how the stars pull it off, here are three of their style secret products that do the trick and they are all conveniently sold in the Phoenix area at The Purple Skirt and Dominque R Boutique. You don't have to go all the way to Hollywood to get these styling secret tools. They are:
*Girlfriends Breast Lift-up Tape ($17) -- For under a halter top or a shapely silhouette, this tape will give your bust two inches of immediate lift and the adhesive strips are sweat-proof and waterproof.
*Girlfriends Smooth 'em Nipple Concealers ($17) -- These re-usable silicone discs gently adhere to the breasts and keep you covered in a seamless silhouette form, which is perfect for sheer outfits. These can be worn with or without a bra and even under a swimsuit, too.
*Commando Low Beams ($13) -- Similar to the Girlfriends concealer above, these adhesives conceal, but are not reusable. These are super sheer and are made with latex free hypoallergenic materials that easily adhere to the nipple to give coverage. As the packaging says, "headlights are for cars" and I love the packaging, the product and the marketing of this handy helper for us gals. The little envelope like box can be kept in your purse for quick emergency coverage situations.
Do you have a favorite undergarment that works overtime for you and gives your figure a lift or a slimming silhouette? Tell us about it in the comments section or visit my blog at www.managedmoms.com for more beauty news, fashion, recipes, parenting talk, pet stuff and more. Treat yourself to some undergarment shopping at The Purple Skirt Boutique located at 40th Street and Chandler Blvd. in Ahwatukee or visit Dominque R Boutique located at 15035 N. Thompson Peak Parkway in Scottsdale. It is amazing what a difference the right and proper fitting undergarment can make.