The empowering force of lingerie

By Loreen

Photo: La Perla

Lingerie has been misappropriated for years as simply a vehicle for sexual desire, now it's time women reclaimed that message

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A common misconception when it comes to lingerie is that it’s more of a treat for the spectator that for the wearer. Indeed, practices like the now-defunct Victoria’s Secret show, where models paraded along the catwalks in the skimpiest of lingerie, have endorsed this. But in recent years – thanks, in part, to the body positivity movement – the focus for lingerie is less on how it makes you look, than how it makes you feel when you wear it.

The right undergarments can have an effect on your body language, your mood, your confidence and your self esteem. Most people shun lingerie because they think it’s uncomfortable, they don’t feel they have anyone to wear it for, or they're too self-conscious to try it. These days, brands are making lingerie in all shapes and sizes and from a wide variety of materials, so you’re bound to find a set that feels easy to wear all day – even if you’re the only one who sees it. For brands that put fit first, look to Wolford, Natori and Cuup for seriously comfortable designs that look incredible to boot.

If the reason you’re slow to refresh your underwear drawer is because you’re nervous about how you look, seek out models like Tess Holliday, Ashley Graham and time-honoured icon Dita von Teese for proof that empowerment comes from owning your image and sexuality. Try Kim Kardashian’s own brand Skims, or ThirdLove, which offers more than 80 sizes.

Of course, lingerie in the bedroom is always a bonus, but not just for your partner. Feeling in charge of your own sexual energy – and having a way to express that – is one of the most empowering feelings, which leads to better communication for a couple in the long run. For something really eye-catching, trust the titans of Agent Provocateur and La Perla, the sustainably made neon brights by Dora Larsen, or Scandi brand, OW Intimates.

A piece of exquisite lingerie, made from delicate materials and with careful craftsmanship, is a beautiful thing: wearing it is a sensual experience in itself. Think of lingerie as a way to treat yourself, to explore your own sexuality, and get comfortable with your body without the interference of anyone else. And if you feel good enough to show it off, so much the better.

Here, we’ve rounded up our favourite pieces of lingerie that will have you feeling your best:

OW Intimates
Flora bra

OW Intimates

Dora Larsen
Dolly stretch-tulle underwired bra

Dora Larsen

Lombard Street silk-blend satin soft-cup triangle bra
Lombard Street silk-blend satin soft-cup triangle bra

I.D Sarrieri

La Perla
Underwired corset in black Italian Jacquard lace

La Perla

Rachel bra