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Bridal Lingerie, pt. 2: Why I'm NOT Wearing Spanx on My Wedding Day

This article is part of an ongoing series about the journey of buying bridal lingerie for my upcoming honeymoon and wedding. You can find the first installment, which reveals my thoughts on what honeymoon lingerie should be, here.

Simone Perele

When I announced my engagement last March, I got a lot of well-intentioned advice from the lingerie community about the kind of undergarments I should buy. I needed, in no particular order: a strapless bra, a longline bra, a bustier, a thong, a pair of seamless briefs, a waist cincher, pantyhose, stockings, a garter belt, and a pair of Spanx. If I weren't a lingerie blogger, it would all be very daunting. How in the world is the average woman supposed to choose between all that?

So I decided, pretty much in that instant, that comfort would be my guide. Not just for the wedding dress, but also for the wedding lingerie, the wedding shoes, and anything else wedding related. I don't want to come across as judging the choices of others, because that's absolutely not what this article is about, but I hate the notion that comfort should be a bride's last concern... one that comes five or six bullet points after looking "thinner" which is often equated to looking "prettier."

To me, the wedding day is a celebration. It's a party for me and my new husband. I want to eat, drink, dance, hug, kiss, cry, and just generally be merry. I don't want to have to run the restroom every 30 minutes because my lingerie is twisting, binding, riding up or (horror of horrors) falling down. And it's kind of funny because as I was going through my blog archives recently for the TLA FAQ, I found an article I wrote two and a half years ago (i.e. way before I got engaged) about shopping for bridal lingerie. And the very first thing I mentioned was that it needed to be comfortable.

I actually haven't bought the set I'm wearing on my wedding day yet, but I am going to try my dress on again this week (I purchased a sample off the rack about nine months ago, so it's time to start thinking alterations), and I'm giving some thought to what other qualities --- besides comfort --- I want my wedding undergarments to have.

First of all, I want my lingerie to be invisible. That means no panty lines, no bra lines, no random seams or ridges beneath the gown, no visible bra bands, etc. My gown has a low back which means most bra options (strapless, bustier, longline, etc.) are a no-go. I tried on my dress braless, and had no issues with the fit or lift (the structure of the dress is very supportive), so there's a very good chance I'll be braless on my wedding day (scandal!).

Blinged out panties with the word 'bride' in Swarovski crystals aren't really my thing either, so as far as my lower half goes, I'm leaning towards a basic pair of lace boyshorts in white, ivory, or cream. I love the idea of being able to wear my wedding day knickers as everyday knickers later on without feeling awkward or needing an excuse to dress up (because strapless bras and shapewear aren't exactly everyday go-to items for me).

Looking back at this article, I just realized this all sounds really unimpressive for a wedding day. There are no high-end, luxury brands. No fancy, expensive lace or special occasion items. Just more of what I wear everyday, albeit in a different color palette. Because the truth is, the honest-to-goodness last thing I want to think about on the happiest day of my life is my underwear.

Cora Harrington

Founder and Editor in Chief of The Lingerie Addict. Author of In Intimate Detail: How to Choose, Wear, and Love Lingerie. I believe lingerie is fashion too, and that everyone who wants it deserves gorgeous lingerie.

12 Comments on this post

  1. Frank says:

    Pretty much what KathTea said.

    Your problem is *too much* choice since you know more options than most women will ever know,
    but the comfort idea make so much Common Sense.

    After going to more wedding than we thought we could count, the Mrs. and I say a lot of ‘What Not To Do’s. I’ll forever feel sorry for one of our friends who went around yanking up not only her strapless dress but also her bra the whole day. Luckily, she found this amusing, because she showed off a lot more of herself and the bra to a lot more people than she had intended.

  2. Irene says:

    Comfort should definitely be a top priority when looking for bridal lingerie (and the dress!). I made the mistake to alter my dress months before the wedding, and then unexpectedly put on quite a bit of weight. It all resulted in me trying to lose those extra pounds in the last weeks before my wedding when I realized my dress wouldn’t fit on the bust, not a pretty experience! It all worked out in the end, but I had to wear a corselette that was kind of uncomfortable. Another piece of advice: if you’re not wearing strapless lingerie, make sure you have some fashion tape at hand. That I also learned the hard way!

  3. Autumn says:

    Spanx also get in the way if you want a bit of in-between ceremony and reception foolin’ around, if you know what I mean. Ease of access, it’s really for the best.

  4. When I got married, the woman who made my (beautiful) bias cut silk satin dress kept suggesting I wear Spanx under it and I ignored her, opting to go for nothing but a Cosabella Soire Thong. Everything worked out fine!

  5. Sara says:

    It’s strange because I’m thinking of wearing a cincher but that IS part of my daily life, I wear a corset at least twice a week, but I’m definitely going to horrify my mother and go without tights or stockings because I HATE them. Pretty in pictures but give me stress! My mum will kill me and I just don’t care. :D seamless knickers so I don’t have to worry about wedgies in my bum (comfort!) and a fantastic bra because otherwise my tits look like bananas ;)

  6. Meg says:

    Yes! I am getting married this summer and just bought a Hanky Panky lace bikini in ivory. My dress has a corset top, so I shouldn’t need a bra and shapewear is right out. I want comfy, basic, easy-to-wear again knickers for my wedding :)

  7. Janey says:

    I fully support your choices here! I wanted to be comfortable as well for my wedding day. However I originally intentioned for me “something old” to be a vintage merry widow-esque garment that belonged to my mother, however was visible under my dress and not at all comfortable for the duration in which I would be wearing it. I’m also of the notion that it is YOUR day, and you get to wear whatever you want.


  8. MoonCatMSW says:

    THIS!!! This is so amazing and wonderful, and heartily feminist. I’ve already reposted it on facebook and pinterest. Do you think you’d be willing or able to submit this post to OffBeat Bride? It’s such a wonderful, simple, what-really-matters post and I think all the folks over there would get such a kick out of it!
    Thank you a hundred times for writing it. ^_^

    • Treacle says:

      I’m so glad you liked it! Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment, and I’ll definitely look into submitting to OffBeat Bride (I love her blog!). :-D

  9. KathTea says:

    Wear what YOU want to wear, that’s what matters :)

  10. Larissa says:

    Hear, hear! I wore a Chantelle lace demi bra and an ivory lace Hanky Panky hipster panty under my tea-length, v-neck wedding dress. I was adamant that I be comfortable, and I did not want to deal with boning or silicone gripper elastic.

    And I didn’t think about my underwear once on my wedding day. I was too busy cursing my shoes.

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