Designers are upping the ante and challenging the line between foundation garments and beautiful lingerie. So go ahead and ditch that grandmotherly girdle—these are pieces you won’t be ashamed to have in your top drawer.
From classic shaping pieces like thigh-slimmers and tummy-controlling tanks to slightly more specialized items (think minimizing bras and postpartum panties) Leonisa has definitely carved out a niche in the world of slimming skivvies. Many of their pieces come in an array of different “nude” shades—as opposed to the industry standard of only pale tan and black—so more women will find something that works with their skin tone.
To buy: Vintage interlace control short panty, $22; leonisa.com.
Va Bien caters specifically to special occasion cosmetic lingerie—bustiers and waist-cinchers built for wedding gowns and bras artistically crafted to work with tricky necklines or low-backed dresses. The designers bring these high-end touches to their shapewear as well, including bras created to comfortably contour fuller figures (this one goes all the way up to a 44H, with band sizes ranging all the way up to 52).
To buy: Full figure embroidered bra, $49.50; vabienusa.com.
The “Glamouflage” line of SkinnyGirl’s shapers and briefs is accurately named—this smoothing slip reads more “pretty underpinning” than “total torso and thigh control” (even though that’s exactly what it does). The other products in this line, which include a brief and a camisole, feature similarly discreet styling.
To buy: Glamouflage slimming shaping slip, $58; skinnygirlshapers.com.
When a lingerie house has more than 80 years of expertise (and French expertise at that), you know it’s going to be good. Scandale’s beautiful breed of shapewear adds details like satin and lace to a category that was once bland beyond belief. Some of their pieces are even available in a daring shade of red.
To buy: “Sirene” Bodysuit, $80; nancymeyer.com.
A long-standing leader in the foundation industry, this bodysuit from Maidenform is proof that these garments don’t have to be relegated to shades of nude or black. Customers rave about this particular product’s comfort and flawless fit (which is measured by bra size).
To buy: Embellished firm control bodysuit, $64; barenecessities.com.
Underpinning afficiandos, rejoice! The luxury lingerie house does in fact make shapers as gorgeous as their core line. You’ll find body suits and shorts, bras that smooth, and full dress slips. It come at a premium price, but these pretty pieces will last a lifetime if you can make the investment. And for those who don’t need a fully slimming bottom, La Perla has created a thong that employs their smoothing technology to avoid a skimpy strap digging into your hips—consider that the absolute end of visible panty lines.
To buy: La Perla shape-allure thong, $124; laperla.com.
Another brand with Parisian roots, Simone Pérèle is an eponymous line of lingerie started by an expert corset maker in 1948. Today the company pairs the exquisite detail work—like lace, satin, and ribbons—of their lovely underthings with advancements in textile technology to create shapewear you won’t mind being seen in.
To buy: Revelation control body suit, $165; simoneperele.com.