How to wear

Lingerie Confidential

Victoria’s Secret is aptly named – the land of lingerie shopping is a mysterious one. Lucky for us, lingerie experts and local boutique owners, Stacy Lipton Schumer and Marilyn Lipton Blotner of Soleil Toile (in Westport and New Canaan) and Jason Palmer of Petticoat Lane (in Greenwich, as well as five other locations in the tri-state area) have unlocked the secrets. Don’t tell Victoria.

The secret to care

If you remember one thing about undergarment care, it’s that dryers are the evil nemesis of fine lingerie. Hanging dry is the only way to dry.

When it comes to washing, the rules aren’t quite so strict. The ladies at Soleil Toile recommend that lingerie be washed by hand if possible, but if that’s not realistic for you a mesh bag on a gentle cycle, with soap formulated for lingerie (such as Forever New) is a safe alternative.  

Don’t wear your under garments past the point of recognition. If you can’t read your bra tag, you need a new bra.

The secret to fit

You are not the same bra size you were in college. Every woman changes their cup size about 20 times in her life – we gain weight, lose weight, have children, etc.

Even if your body shape hasn’t changed, your bra might no longer be the right size for you. Old bras get stretched out, so your 34B may have expanded to a 36C. To add to the confusion, the fit of various lingerie styles and companies can vary dramatically.

The secret to the perfect fit is to try your undergarments on the old fashioned way, in a brick and mortar store with the help of a professional fitter.

The secret to shopping

There are a lot of fun trends in lingerie now but Jason at Petticoat Lane reports that his Fairfield County best sellers are the basic nudes that look great under clothes. For a hot summer, comfort is king with tee shirt bras constructed from innovative materials that are lightweight yet durable.

But if you’re looking for lingerie to turn up the heat, grab a “candy” colored bra and matching panty set. Petticoat Lane stocks sexy demi cups and panties in a kaleidoscope of happy colors from luxe brands like Mimi Holliday.

Stacy and Marilyn at Soleil Toile report that designers are playing with more modern styling and adding an edgy sensuality to their basic black collections. They especially love Marie Jo L’Aventure’s line, which delivers a no-nonsense fit with a dash of sophisticated luxury.

No wonder all those Victoria Secret catalog models look so smug – being an insider on the secret world of lingerie is empowering – and now you’re one too!

Soleil Toile

14 Post Road East, Westport, CT

203-454-8688

44 Elm Street, New Canaan, CT

203-966-2887

Petticoat Lane

347 Greenwich Avenue, Greenwich, CT

203-863-0045

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