Essentials: Top 10 Minimalist Undergarments
Quite a long time ago, somebody asked me to do a post on undergarments: what bras, underwear, etc. that I would recommend since those items can really “make or break” an outfit. Well, at the time I was still searching for my favourites as well so I didn’t feel like I had good contenders to write about. But, here we are! A roundup of my undergarment recommendations.
Bear in mind that these are all based on my personal preference (I guess that’s pretty obvious, but still). My top requirements are:
Neutral colours: no colours or patterns
No “extras”: no frills, bows or cutesy things
Flattering for a pear-shaped body: no bust, big hips
Breathable fabrics wherever possible
These are truly seamless and the most comfortable bras ever (feels like nothing!). Not a lot of support, so probably not ideal for those with a bigger chest. I like wearing these with super tight tops or high-neck bodysuits. I got mine at Nordstrom rack for around $20 or less, so definitely try there instead of the CK website! My suggestion is one in your "nude" and one in black.
These are a great lounge bra when you want the option of padding. I have always purchased these at Winners (Marshalls, Nordstrom Rack, etc.) type stores for $10-$15, so definitely check out those places - they seem to always have them!
$25 - longline triangle lace bralette, pull-on style
The Renfrew bralette is a tried and true for me and it's at such a great price point. It's a longline triangle bralette that is a pull-on style with adjustable straps. I actually own the older version of this (link: here - but I think this older more simple lace model is being phased out - so get it while you can).
Both these Aritzia bralettes just look really flattering on and I think Aritzia chooses such pretty neutrals and understated colours to release them in. No padding in either. The Monterey bralette has a hook closure at the back, so it's a little easier to get one. I really like to wear these with loose linen tops that have deeper necklines - that way if my bra shows a little, it's a bit of a prettier one.
Another very flattering fit and a great no-padding option!
For padded & more traditional bras, I’ve tried Aerie, Victoria Secret, Calvin Klein, La Senza, Pink... but honestly, the ones that are the most comfortable and have lasted well are from VS. Sadly, a lot of stores closed and my size is usually no longer available so I’m going to need to try more brand options in the future!
A strapless bra can be essential, depending on what you wear. So this isn't part of my list of "core" items - but may be something to have on hand. I have no specific brand or style preference but currently own one from VS. I went a long time without a strapless bra, but now with all the square neck top trend - I kind of needed one. But honestly, I went probably 6 years without one so it’s not absolutely necessary - just depends on what you wear!
This is a bra that I’ve been wearing for years, but VS either discontinued or really cut down on the smaller size scale so now this is virtually impossible for me to find in my size (at least in store and I don't love the idea of ordering it online). Currently looking for a new favourite but if your size is available, I have loved these for years and they hold up really well! These can be turned into racerback bras as well but I’m too lazy to swap my bra straps. If I need a racerback, I’ll opt for the Calvin Klein bralette (mentioned above). This is lightly lined and a really soft comfy material - it does have underwire too, if you're looking for extra support. As silly as it is, I cut off the bow and charm detail on the bra (in the middle front) because I’m really not a fan of all those tiny frilly extras!
I am team “no panty lines” so all of these suggestions reflect this - however all the recommendations I’m giving come in all the underwear cuts: thong, bikini, etc. With all these underwear, be gentle when washing! I usually try to use a garment bag, wash in cold and I air dry them. That may seem a little overkill, but the materials are soft and I’m sure they would get destroyed really quickly when washing in hot water and drying on high heat.
3 for $48 reg. price - can usually find the 3 pack on sale for the $34 range
These are truly some of the comfiest underwear. In my opinion their seamless underwear (InvisiWear) ARE NOT GOOD (they stretch out immediately), so definitely go for the *UnderEase* line. The fabric is thin, soft and breathable. Pricier, but they always go into the sale section, it’s just a matter of finding your preferred colour-way on sale. I think if you purchase them in the 3 vs 5 pack you can save some money too (but it’s not that much of a savings)! They recently came out with a style called “Seamless” and I have not tried those yet, so I can’t speak to that.
The Most Flattering
3 for $60 or $34 each
These are not seamless, but a very flattering cut. As always, beautiful neutral and understated colours and I love that SKIMS always makes it easy to get a matching set. Mostly cotton with a tiny bit of stretch. In these I would stick TTS.
3 for $60 or $34 each
These are truly seamless but not a cotton underwear (most seamless underwear isn’t), although they do have a cotton gusset. I would size down 1 size because this material is super stretchy. Just like the cotton rib dipped, these ones have a flattering v-cut front.
The 100% Cotton
$12.50 each - often on sale or opt for the bundle deal in-store
For 100% cotton underwear, I’ve had a lot of pairs from GAP - but they’re not close to being seamless and they don’t always have the colours or styles that I like. The seams on this style are very prominent and can sometimes dig in (for example, I wouldn’t want to wear these with compressive leggings). GAP always has sales going on, so out of all the options presented here, I think these would be the cheapest (around the $6 mark if you catch it on sale). The only issue is with colours and sizes being sold out. They do hold up very well (like several years) with washing & tumble drying (I’m not as gentle with these because I wanted the seams to loosen a bit). I don't want to deter anyone - these just aren't *the comfiest* but are the best cotton option I've found!
Hope this list of minimal undergarment essentials helps you out!