Friday, July 20, 2012

Adventures in Shape Wear

Shape wear has been around for a very long time.  Boned and wired corsets come to mind when I think back to a time when women's bodies were tortured into eye pleasing silhouettes. I'm sure if I were to delve into history I would find that the creators of these "cages" were men.  I don't know why a woman would fantasize about going back in time and living like that.  I think high heels were designed by a man, possibly a king, who wanted a shoe that would disable a woman when she tried to run away from his advances.  I've seen photos of Asian women whose feet are completely misshapen from "binding."

Now it's 2012 and we have "shape wear." Most people have heard of the brand "Spanx" by now.  Other companies sell similar products like Victoria Secret and Vanity Fair. I am old enough to remember wearing a long leg girdle to high school.  It had garters sewn inside the legs to hold up our stockings.  I was too thin to wear a girdle for the obvious reasons.  I wore one to have a smoother line on my backside since an elastic garter belt cut across my bottom in a very unflattering way.  Pantyhose were invented when I was around 16 or 17 but they were a far cry from the pantyhose of today.

A lot of women I know haven't owned a pair of pantyhose in over a decade. It was always a hassle to find the right size and fit and then if you got a runner in one leg you had to throw the whole garment away, unlike stockings.  Most women just wore slacks and Knee Hi's if needed for foot comfort.

I'm not sure when it started but perhaps we can blame the "no stocking legs with high heels" on shows like "Sex in the City." It IS true that your foot does not slip and slide as much when heels are worn without slick hose.  Unfortunately not all women's legs look good bare.  Many women over  certain age have varicose and spider veins.  Hosiery improves the look of legs that are less than youthful.  Many women opt for laser removal of the veins and enjoy the benefits especially when self tanner is applied frequently.

Control Top Pantyhose used to take the place of a pantie girdle.  When women quit wearing them it meant that their clothing was not going to be as attractive from the waist down.  Some women wear thong underwear which sometimes makes their backside look worse.  Thong underwear is for younger women who have zero cellulite and almost no loose skin or "jiggle." I've seen plenty of older women get up from a chair and have their dress, pants or skirt actually stuck in their "nether regions." I don't know a graceful way for a woman to pull out that fabric in public without embarrassing herself.  Thongs may work for some with pantyhose and sturdy jeans.  New underwear fabrics can make a panty line almost invisible.

The next time you go shopping in a store or on-line check out the new shape wear garments.  Buying a size larger than you think you will need will enable you to get used to wearing shape wear. After you are used to the fit and feel you can order a size smaller for times when you really want to look slimmer under a nice dress for a special event.  These garments can raise the self-esteem by making a woman feel thinner and more put together.  As with all undergarments you really only need to buy Nude and Black.  Nude looks best under whites and pastels and black looks best under dark and black clothing. I have a black one made by "Miraclesuit," the bathing suit company.  It is black and goes from the bottom of my bra to my lower thigh.  I love the way it makes me feel under my black and dark dresses and skirts.  Try'll never know until you do!

Look below at my "Shape Wear" Set for some examples of new ways to look and feel your best.

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