When it comes to formal looks, lingerie pairings can make or break an ensemble. With the right pieces, you can say no to visible panty lines, exposed straps, and the classic flash photography-induced exposure of a white bra under a black dress. Since underpinnings come in all shapes, colors, and fabrications these days, even the tiniest of strapless minis can be outfitted with a figure flattering foundation. Below are three things to keep in mind.
Consider fabric. Thin textiles tend to appear sheer and lay closer than their thicker relatives. Try smoothing lingerie and pieces that boast “no panty lines.” Slips are also a wonderful way to add a layer and a bit of opacity to sheer apparel. Note that bias-cut pieces tend to cling to the body regardless of fabric, although these shapes are usually constructed of slinkier materials. High waisted, no-line thongs are your best option there.
Think about the cut of your garment, looking at necklines and hiplines to see what’s required. When you think you have a match (i.e.: halter dress, meet halter bra), move around in your look for at least 30 minutes. Be free with your movement and consider arm position when you're eating, drinking, and holding your handbag. Do the bra straps reveal themselves? If so, reach for Low Beams or a NuBra—no straps, no problem.
Lastly, color is key. In most cases, I reach for nudes or a color that matches my look. If you can safely match a red dress with red lingerie, go for it. If color is off, nude is a good option. You won't run into any embarrassing photos since flashes tend to only expose contrasting lingerie. Otherwise, if you're feeling adventurous, lingerie can be a statement. Exposing colorful bra straps or showing a panty under a sheer skirt can be interesting to say the least. To ensure the look is fab and not a flop, I recommend proceeding with extreme caution and consulting a professional if possible!