To be honest, for years I had a love/hate relationship with shapewear. On the one hand, I liked the way it smoothed and shaped my body underneath clothing. On the other hand, all I wanted to do upon putting them on was immediately take them off. Over the years, I’ve grown a bit wiser about my undergarment choices — and today, I’m sharing a few of my favorite tips from the hard lessons I learned when shopping for shapewear.
Let’s talk about the pros: There’s literally something for everybody. Want to shape your tush? There’s a style for that. Need to smooth your thighs? Don’t worry. There’s something for that too. Need to fake a tummy tuck? Easy. They’ve thought of everything.
How to Buy the Right Shapewear
Stick to your size.
This is important. This is not the time to go down a size in an attempt to make your shapewear “do more” for you. It’s called shapewear, so it’s already got shapeshifting properties to start with. Getting the right size is the difference between barely breathing all night and feeling confident and full of breath throughout the night. Trust me on this one. I know from experience.
Opt for high waist.
I’m a huge fan of high waist anything, but especially when it comes to shapewear. Whether it’s briefs or bodyshorts, a high waist offers a great two for one deal that shapes and smooths your bottom and your mid-section. It’s a win-win!
Work the combos.
Speaking of a win-win, look for ways to combine your undergarments into one perfect piece. There are full body suits that work as both a bra and shaper, or tights with built-in thigh and tummy control. I’m a big fan of the one-stop shapewear option.
Opt for a cotton blend.
Let’s get real. Things can get real warm under there. And if you’re in the wrong size AND it’s hot, it’s pretty much going to make your night miserable. A breathable cotton blend can help keep things cool while you look hot!
When in doubt.
These days there are a ton of “control” options out there depending on your needs. To keep it super basic, medium control helps for smoothing bumps and lines, maximum control helps to transform your body. Choose according to your needs.
Next up, check out my shapewear go-tos as well as a few other great options to add to your behind-the-scenes wardrobe.
High Waist Shaping Shorts
Probably the most used piece in my shapewear wardrobe, this wonderful under clothing BFF helps to slim, trim, and smooth my lower half while providing additional tummy control. The result? A perfectly smooth lower body with a defined waist.
Body Control Suit
This is really for troubleshooting everything above waist — although some are now adding bum boosters to add a little extra something in your rear if you’re so inclined. You can also skip your bra when wearing this shapeshifter, as they’ve often got molded cups perfect for creating a gorgeous silhouette underneath tops.
Can be used for everyday wear, I rocked these a ton post-pregnancy and loved the way they just seemed to keep everything together.
While you might not wear these all too often, it’s always good to have very specific shapers in your arsenal dependent on your needs and body type.
The weird bra/back fat situation is a thing, and these camis can help protect against it. They’re easy to wear — they’re a simple and seamless layering option when a basic tank just won’t do.
Need a bit of a lift back there? Or maybe you want to enhance your assets a bit. There are now several options on the market to give you a derriere that looks like you’ve done ALL the squats.