New Year, New Underpants: Tips on How to Build a Lingerie Wardrobe

Lola Haze designer and lingerie expert, Laura Mehlinger, offers her tips and tricks for buying perfect underpinning for any occasion.

10 photos
1/10
Lola Haze/Bella Bella Boutique
We wear them everyday, yet underpinnings and lingerie remain largely overlooked fashion essentials. "We figure that if no one is there to see our baggy sleep shirts or Kmart bras, then we're off the hook," says expert Laura Mehlinger—designer of Lola Haze lingerie and contributor to The Lingerie Addict.
2/10
Lola Haze/Bella Bella Boutique
We wear them everyday, yet underpinning and lingerie remain largely-overlooked fashion essentials. "We figure that if no one is there to see our baggy sleep shirts or Kmart bras, then we're off the hook," says expert Laura Mehlinger, designer of Lola Haze lingerie and contributor to The Lingerie Addict.
3/10
Lola Haze
According to Mehlinger, a lingerie "novice" should start with an alluring chemise or slinky slip. "Give your wife-beater and sweatpants a furlough and slip into something that feels amazing against your skin," she advises. "A simple silk chemise is a great place to start, or for ladies who want a little more support, try a baby-doll." Liquid Lace Chemise, $169 at Lola Haze.
4/10
Bella Bella Boutique
Dress-up occasions call for undergarments that will do some of the work for you. "The last five years have really seen a revolution in shapewear," says Mehlinger. "Most importantly, it's no longer taboo to admit to giving yourself a little nip and boost here and there." The Vedette Shapewear bodysuit won't leave pesky lines at the waist or leg openings. $52 at Bella Bella Boutique.
5/10
The Gap
For everyday wear, Mehlinger recommends a classic T-shirt bra. "We've all had our bra faux pas -- like when we don't realize how transparent our shirt and bra are in direct sunlight, or when that lacy bra that was so cute in the dressing room ends up a bumpy mess under a t shirt," she says. "A good, plain T-shirt bra with light lining is essential." The Favorite T-Shirt Ba, $36 at The Gap.
6/10
Lola Haze
For the more daring lingerie-wearer, Mehlinger suggests experimenting with a lacy teddy. "Wear one under jeans and a sheer top with just a tantalizing bit peeking out during the day, or wear it alone for a steamy evening." Try her Embrace Teddy to add a flirty, "peek-a-boo" touch to your next ensemble, $89 at Lola Haze.
7/10
Lille Boutique
We adapt our wardrobes from summer to winter, but is it necessary to do the same with lingerie? "There's nothing as comfy as cotton undies in the summer or as cozy as high quality tights for winter. " Her top picks: Hanky Panky's cotton briefs ($29 at Azaleas) and statement-making tights ($60 at Lille Boutique).
8/10
Lola Haze
Like ready-to-wear, lingerie trends go in and out of style. This year, lingerie collections focused on romantic lace looks. "Lace has made its way from traditional inner-wear to ready-to-wear, so let's embrace it -- and let it embrace us!" Try a racy lace look with a pair of lacy briefs, or go for the knockout "Gift Me" slip, $129 at Lola Haze.
9/10
Lola Haze
While there's no set "expiration date" for lingerie ("Don't confuse your skivvies with your dairy products," Mehlinger advises), there are a few tricks for getting the most our of your underpinning. Mehlinger recommends hand-washing (even while in the shower and "waiting for your hair conditioner to seep in"), or using a lingerie bag for items that are machine-washable. Try her candy-colored mesh bags for a cute yet functional option, $15.
10/10
Getty Images
Of course, some undergarments eventually bite the dust. Happily, "the more you wear out your old stuff, the sooner you can buy cute replacements," says Mehlinger. Signs that it's time to go shopping include stretched out panty elastic -- "so you're getting fabric bunch-up" -- or bras with a stretched out back strap. Most importantly, "If you're still wearing Hanes 3-packs that your mother bought you in high-school, replace them with something more fun immediately!"
Contact Us