4 Easy Steps to Buying Lingerie for Your Wife, Girlfriend, or Significant Other
The first time my mother took me to a lingerie store, I felt like I was on the inside of an exploding confetti factory. There were so many colors and sizes and shapes and textures, that I couldn’t make sense of it all. With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, many men are finding themselves in a similar situation.
You want to buy something special, something intimate for your woman, but you haven’t the faintest where to start. I understand your frustration, and I know how important it is to find the perfect gift. So here’s a short, uncomplicated guide to buying the perfect lingerie.
Knowing your woman’s size is the most important step of this entire endeavor. It’s like the foundation of your home: without it, you got nothing. Think about it, there is no way you can buy the wrong size and have it turn out okay. Too large and she’ll be wondering if you think she’s really that big. Too small, and she’ll think you’re hinting that she needs to lose a few.
Fortunately, this is also the easiest step of all. Just take a look inside her lingerie drawer. If you don’t have access to her lingerie drawer, then you can try checking the size while she’s in the shower or some such. If all else fails (for example, she cuts all the tags out of her bras and panties), just ask. I promise she’ll love the anticipation.
So, once you get these numbers, write them down. Rely on memory at your own peril. I suggest just jotting her sizes onto a scrap of paper and sticking it in your wallet. That way, when you go the store, you’re ready to go.
Now that you’ve discovered her size, you can move on to determining her style. The best time to do this is while you're checking her lingerie drawer. There are three things you want to take note of here: cut, fabric, and color. When it comes to cut, notice if her bras are full cup, half cup, or camisole style. Take note if she wears briefs or boyshorts or thongs. As far as fabric, do you see a lot of cotton or silk or lace? While examining color, is it mostly black or pastels or jewel tones? These are important cues.
Some folks may not understand the point of this step. “The lingerie is a gift for both of us,” they might say, “I want to buy something I’ll enjoy seeing her in.” While I understand that perspective, I think it’s flawed. The best way to ensure your lady wears your gift (as opposed to “forgetting” about it) is to buy something you already know she likes. Buying the style she prefers makes her more comfortable. A comfortable woman is a confident woman. And a confident woman is a sexy woman.
Now that you’re acquainted with her tastes, it’s time to take all that information to the store. Start by finding pieces which are pretty much identical to the ones you saw in her lingerie drawer. That’s your baseline. After establishing your baseline, begin looking at lingerie which deviates slightly from what you’re familiar with. Don’t look at the price tag yet (that comes later), just identify things that are close, but not quite the same, to what she already owns.
For example, if her lingerie drawer had a bunch of flesh-toned bras, a black one might be a nice change. Did you see a lot of boyshorts? Then a “cheeky” cut thong would be the next logical step. Chili pepper flannel pajamas? Then take a look at the lush, silk pajamas. The key here is not change more than one or two elements at once. If your wife goes to bed every night in an old t-shirt and nubby socks, you probably don’t want to leap to sheer backless teddies with matching g-strings.
By now, you’ve picked out a couple of items that you like and that look similar to what she already wears. Now it’s time to take a look at the price tag. Whatever you see, don’t be shocked. Square inch for square inch, lingerie is probably more expensive than premium real estate, and here’s why — you’re not just paying for the materials, you’re also paying for the labor. Obviously, no one wants to wear rough fabric against their delicate bits all day, so lingerie uses some of the finest threads available. But you’re also paying for what basically amounts to architecture for the human body. Lingerie both conceals and supports. For that reason, you gents who are blessed with curvy gals should be prepared to spend slightly more. It’s worth it.
While we’re on the subject of worth, let me encourage you not to pinch pennies when it comes to lingerie. I understand setting a budget, and that’s fine, but if you go too cheap, your purchase won’t last a night. Not only will you want to see your lover in her gift more than once, quality (by which I mean more expensive) lingerie tends to feel better, too. And we’ve already covered the relationship between looking good and feeling good.
To make things even easier, here’s a shortlist of what not to buy — bodystockings, cupless, crotchless, & cut-out styles, glitter, rhinestones, feathers, fringe, tassels, "strappy” or “cage” looks, pvc, vinyl, and polyester. Steer clear of all that, and you’ll be on the right track.
If you do all this and are still completely and utterly confused, find the closest salesperson. Helping you shop is their job. Some high-end stores even offer personal shoppers, and it might be worth enlisting their services, especially if you have very specific needs.
Finally, if absolutely nothing works, buy her a gift certificate. Shopping for lingerie together makes a fantastic Valentine’s Day date! Good luck and Happy Shopping.
This is a guest post by Treacle, a 25 year old knickers junkie who believes every woman deserves beautiful lingerie...even if no one ever sees it. Read more articles by Treacle: