You’ve seen thousands of photos, tried on dozens of gowns. But you may have missed some small items in your search for the perfect wedding-day look — those essential unmentionables that go under the dress. Undergarments provide the foundation necessary for your outerwear to look how it’s supposed to. They can change the way your dress fits, so you’ll need to purchase them before your first fitting. Read on for the lowdown on lingerie.
The bra is the uberundergarment, that leading piece of lingerie to which all others play supporting roles. You’ll need a good, supportive bra to lift you up as you walk down the aisle and keep you comfortable for hours of dining, dancing, and posing with relatives. Many bridal boutiques offer decorative bras that are as creative — and nearly as costly — as the gown itself. While some of these elegant brassieres have unique proportions that can be quite useful with the right gown, make comfort your priority: You don’t want insufficient support or annoying wires cutting into your sides on your wedding day. And remember, you can slip into provocative, flimsy lingerie when you take the gown off.
Before you buy, ask about the store return policy. You’ll likely want to try on a few different bras with your gown, so make sure that as long as you leave the tags on, the garment is returnable for a full refund.
Regardless of which style you choose, try not to have unrealistic expectations for your bra — or yourself — on your wedding day. If it’s too uncomfortable to wear for a five-hour stretch on a normal afternoon, why suffer?
While old-fashioned girdles have long been out of style, you might try one of the several contemporary slimming undergarments that use Lycra or Spandex rather than stiff stays or ancient whalebone.
Make sure you take your bra, slimmer, stockings, and shoes to your fittings; a body-support garment will give a slightly different shape than just sucking in your gut, and changing your “support” down the road will affect the way your gown fits.
As with the bra and slimmer, choose panties that offer comfort over sex appeal. (There’s just no way to discreetly rearrange a pair of creeping panties through a wedding gown!) If your gown has an unusually slinky cut or is made of very thin material, you may want to use pantyhose with built-in underwear.
If you want to wear a fancy garter belt with hooks to hold up thigh-high hose, make sure you choose one that fits snugly around your waist — and won’t be seen through your gown! The pressure of the hose can pull an inexpensive, elastic garter belt downward, leading to wrinkly knees and an evening of endless attempts to hitch up your hose (a task nearly as hard to hide as panty-tugging).
A garter belt is a pretty superfluous item, given the variety of sleek and sexy pantyhose available. But some women feel extra sexy just knowing they’re wearing one. If you go with a garter, you’ll need to test it out to make sure you can bear the inconvenience.
Before your wedding, try on your gown — with your undergarments — under the watchful eye of a close friend. Once you’re sure you won’t show more than you intend to show, forget about it and have fun!
Getting the most out of your wedding day shouldn’t be contingent on your lingerie, but it will definitely have an impact on your memories. Take a chance on your styles, and do it differently than all others. Make your day more special for bride and groom with the little details that are so memorable.