Ababydollis a short nightgown or negligee that often comes with matching panties. Babydolls usually compare in shape to today’s empire-waist style of shirt or dress. They consist of form-fitting cups, with loose-fitting fabric that falls somewhere between the hips and the belly button. This piece of lingerie is typically trimmed with lace, ruffles, bows and ribbons, and is made of sheer fabric, like nylon, chiffon or silk.
The term “babydoll” came from the 1956 movie titled Baby Doll, starring Carroll Baker. The film opens with Baker lying on her bed wearing the piece of lingerie. Although the babydoll appears tame for contemporary standards of lingerie, it was very risqué for the time. In fact, the movie was widely condemned by the Catholic Church.
Abodystockingis true to its name: It is fitted hosiery that covers your entire body, from the shoulders to the feet. This lingerie is similar to a leotard or a cat suit. It can be worn underneath clothes during winter or more-often-than-not as a sexy piece of lingerie. Because the bodystocking is usually made of a tight, sheer material (like nylon, lace or fishnet), it highlights all parts of the body, making it a perfect fit for any confident woman.
Thebra, or brassiere, is a close-fitting piece of lingerie that is worn to help lift and support a woman’s breasts. While bras do serve a functional purpose, they also are usually one of the first pieces a woman gets when creating a collection of lingerie. Bras come in various sizes, fabrics, styles and colors made to serve each and every woman’s needs.
The first brassiere was made in 1913, when New York socialite Mary Phelps Jacob tied two handkerchiefs together with ribbon to cover the whalebone sticking out of hercorset, which was visible through her sheer dress. She soon began making brassieres for her family and friends. By 1914, Jacob had a patent for her design and was marketing it throughout the United States. Although women had worn brassiere-like garments before, Jacob's was the first to be successfully marketed and widely adopted.
Demi or Shelf Bra
A demi or shelf bra covers only the lower half of the breast and is used to give a lift to the breasts, but does not create cleavage. It is great for low neckline clothes.
A push-up bra lifts the breasts to create cleavage. Push-up bras often come with padding, giving the illusion of a larger, fuller chest.
An underwire bra contains metal wires in the lower edges of the bra, giving extra, often-needed support for the bust. These bras are great for women that have C cups or larger.
Thebustieris a bra that extends to the waist, providing additional support, control and sex appeal. Although it usually comes with straps, it is most often compared with the corset. Both are structured to give the torso a sensual, hour-glass shape. Many wear bustiers under their clothes, while others wear it as a top with a pair of pants. They also look exceptional with garters and stockings.
Acamisole, or cami, is a short, lingerie top, fitted around the bust, and ending at the waistline. Camisoles come in any kind of fabric from mesh and lace to silk or leather. Depending on how revealing the fabric, camis can be worn as outerwear or just peaking out of an open jacket or blouse. They’re great for wearing layers, or if you just want to wear it — as is — in the bedroom.
Charmeuse(pronounced shär-mōōs) is a lightweight, satin-finished silk, which is soft and drapes beautifully. It is perfect for lingerie, used in loose-fitting designs, like a babydoll or camisole. However, it’s important to treat it delicately because it can tear easily.
Achemiseis a one-piece, shirt-like undergarment that is the same in shape as a straight-hanging sleeveless dress. It is similar to the babydoll, but it is fitted more closely around the hips.
The term “chemise” refers to a classic smock or shift: an undergarment in the European Middle Ages worn to protect clothing from sweat and body oils.
Corsetsare boned and close-fitting lingerie that create structure and control. By reducing the waist and exaggerating the bust and hips, the corset emphasizes a woman’s curvy figure. Corsets begin either above or just below the bust and extend down to the waist or below the hips. They compare in shape to the bustier, but are often strapless.
The corset has quite a history in women’s fashion. It was first used in the 16th century, as a way of making the torso look more cylindrical by flattening the breasts and creating cleavage that would spill out over the top. Since then, the corset has changed in many ways to fit the style of the times. While some still wear them to create a slender shape, today’s corsets allow more breathing room and are mainly used to create a sexy outfit in the bedroom or as a top, used as outerwear with a pair of jeans.
Hosieryor stockings are close-fitting, elastic garments that cover the feet and legs. Hosiery comes in various styles including silk, nylon, and fishnet. Because the material is usually sheer, the legs are still visible but appear silky, smooth and unblemished. Many women wear them with skirts or dresses, but hosiery can also add an extra touch of sex appeal when paired up with most lingerie garments, especially when paired with garter belts and leg garters.
Garter Belts & Leg Garters
Garter beltsandleg gartersare made to hold up hosiery. Often made of silk, lace, or even leather, garter belts are worn around the waist and have dangling straps that clip or snap onto stockings. This type of lingerie has a wide array of styles, ranging from cute and flirty to an exotic dominatrix look.
In the early 1900’s, before the invention of pantyhose (a combination of panties and stockings), garter belts were the only thing you could wear to hold up stockings. Now, they’re a great way to add excitement to any piece of lingerie. Add some shoes, and you have a whole outfit!
Pantiesare underwear that come in all shapes, fabrics and colors, allowing you to have lots of coverage or barely any coverage at all. From hiphugger or bikini panties to cotton or silk panties, these undergarments are made to fit and suit any version of the female body.
Women's panties, as they are seen today, were originally designed in the 1920's when bloomers (or long underwear) became shorter and looser as the flapper look came into fashion. The panties of this time were called step-ins.
Boyshorts are a relatively new kind of underwear that continues to grow in popularity. They are tight and extremely short shorts that go beneath your clothes. Because they provide more coverage than bikini underwear, they tend to stay in place better and not bunch up. Some styles only have partial rear coverage, allowing part of the lower rear to show, while others have full coverage. Either style, however, does a great job of covering the hips and upper part of the thigh.
The G-string (sometimes known as the V-string) is about as close as you can get to wearing no panties at all: It’s essentially a skimpy thong. While the thong has minimal fabric in the back, the g-string has even less. True to its name, the g-string includes a single piece of string that attaches the front side to the back. G-strings help prevent panty lines and are even more erotic than the thong, adding some extra excitement to when your clothes come off at the end of the day.
A thong is a popular type of panty that is great if you want no visible panty lines and a smooth appearance through your clothes. This smooth look is possible because of the minimal amount of fabric in the back of the undergarment. The fabric creates a "v" shape at the waistband, and then gradually thins out by the time it reaches the crotch.
Ateddycombines the look of a camisole and panty into one mood-setting piece. It resembles the shape of a one-piece bathing suit because it is typically sleeveless, and sometimes even strapless. This style of lingerie is made with all sorts of materials — lace, leather, nylon or vinyl — and is made to accentuate the body.