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'The Italian Victoria's Secret': Meet Intimissimi Lingerie

Intimissimi lace shirt

I admit, I had never heard of Intimissimi until recenty. Although the company has been around for 15 years, they stay close to their Italian roots. While there are 1200 stores in 31 countries, none of them are in the US. But they have a huge presence in their native Italy. With 500 stores in that country alone, Intimissimi is to Italy what Victoria's Secret is to the United States.

Speaking of Victoria's Secret, if the Intimissimi name sounds vaguely familiar to you, you may have seen the brand at your local mall. Intimissimi was carried at 240 Victoria's Secret stores from 2007-2010. It was all very hush-hush why the partnership dissolved. Many have speculated that the superior fit and fabrication of Intimissimi may have played a part. Though more likely it was due to Victoria's Secret deciding to focus on their core brands. Since then the lucky few who were able to get their hands on the Italian label stateside have been terrifically disappointed.



Well, there's good news! Intimissimi now has an extensive online catalog that specifically caters to its US audience. With its commitment to offering competitively priced lingerie with high quality control standards, Intimissimi is poised to gain considerable market share over its once-partner Victoria's Secret. With a well designed ecommerce site that is priced in US dollars, straightforward shipping and return policies, and no worries about duties and taxes, it is easier than ever to try this beloved Italian brand.

Intimissimi has a wide range of offerings beyond intimates, including sports bras, shapewear, nightwear, loungewear, and men's underwear, tees, and pajamas. Where they really shine, though, is in their lingerie category. There are some really pretty fabrics and laces here that are surprisingly affordable. The standouts are the sheer tulle and lace skirts, tank tops, and shirts. While the shirt above doesn't appear to be for sale (which is such a shame!), it's hard to believe that gorgeous lace skirt is just $44. Also notable are the two bodysuits, both priced at $65, which are crafted in sheer tulles with delicate laces.

Intimissimi lace tank and skirt Intimissimi Tulle Longsleeved Bodysuit Intimissimi Bodysuit

While there are definitely cut and sewn bras to be found on their extensive site offerings (the lace bandeau style is an example), most styles feature some sort of padding, from subtle to extreme. The lightly padded 'Elena' bra features a beige molded cup overlaid with dramatic floral tulle and dotted tulle side wings. The 'Manuela' bra is a push-up style with wirefree cups and lace applique (the matching knickers mirror the dip and curve of the lace and form a heart shaped front which is pretty cute). The 'Simona' is a "super push-up" which is guaranteed to boost you up a cup size. This style is fabricated from the same rich lace of the shirt above, and features an oversized tulle bow at the center. All of these bras are priced from $49 - $59. Coordinating panties are all around $22.

Intimissimi bandeau bra and panties Intimissimi lace bra and pantiesIntimissimi wireless push up braIntimissimi lace bra and briefs

Other notables pieces for Spring include the 'Watercolor Flower' silk top (cut in a straight camisole style) and coordinating push up bra set. The print is really lovely and the orchid-colored lace picks up the rosy hues of the flowers. The bodysuits and chemises are a bit more easily sized and are available in S-L (fitting US 4/6 - 12/14). The bras have a much narrower size range, with most available in band sizes 32-38 with cup sizes B-C. Many only offer B cups. Since Intimissimi is competing with Victoria's Secret for market share, it makes sense that they look into expanding their size range.

Intimissimi floral chemise Intimissimi push up bra Intimissimi floral top Intimissimi SlipWhat do you think of Intimissimi? Have you ever tried this brand? Do you think they offer stiff competition to Victoria's Secret?


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Laurie
Laurie Shapiro

Laurie Shapiro is the former owner and designer of the luxury lingerie label, Toad Lillie. Based in Seattle, WA, she now helps lingerie businesses engage their customers through brand communications and social media.

13 Comments on this post

  1. Dara says:

    Im both a fan of I and VS. For bras, in both brands, i have had difficulties to find right match. But panties, all these brazilian cuts, lacey in Intimissimi my fav; also love Pink knickers. Intimissimi is more mature, but cant find sports bras.
    I use Pink knickers as bikini bottoms too!!

  2. Tacara says:

    I absolutely love Intimissimi seamless underwear! Maybe it’s TMI but it’s the only underwear I wear. However, I’m annoyed that Intimissimi does not have A cup! I ordered two bras and now I need to send them back. I was sooo disappointed in the supposedly seamless underwear I tried from Victoria Secret. Mainly because they felt tight and were not actually seamless and could be seen through tights or tight clothing. Also, Victoria Secret bras don’t last.

  3. Bianca says:

    I have ONE Intimissimi bra and panty set that I purchased at Victoria’s Secret years ago and I absolutely LOVE it!! All my other bras and panties from VS have come and gone but this Intimissimi set is still like new! I signed up for the Intimissimi e-mail before it was ready to sell here is USA. Now they are up an running and I can’t wait to order my first set! I just have a hard time deciding what to buy.

  4. Cristina says:

    I’m Italian and I hate Intimissimi with all my heart. Their cups are mostly just B and C, I can’t find a great bra for me there (and I’m only a 32D! Not a strange size). The shop assistants are stupid, they haven’t no idea of what bra fitting is, and the brand isn’t interested on help women find their perfect bra, they just want to sell. Maybe you don’t know but in Italy 98% of people don’t know that bra sizes are formed by number and letter, and Intimissimi is one of these brands that don’t open their mind to other countries way of making bra pattern (because it’s expensive). One day a shop assistant told me my size doesn’t exist! Also their advertising are false, their slogan is “fatto su misura per te” that means “custom made for you”, but as I told you, their cups are B and C, and of course it’s an industrial product, and for me, as young lingerie designer that fight everyday for her job, for what an handmade product means, this is really demeaning. Sorry for this post but this is the situation in Italy, and I hate that.

    • denocte says:

      Cristina I so feel you! as mentioned above, I love Intimissimi but yes, the points you are making are about 100% correct! Living in Austria I experienced a lot of what you are talking about too, especially the “your size doesn’t exist” part. I think they are expanding sizes, is that true for Italy too? I get the feeling their sales strategies vastly differ between countries.

      • Mariso says:

        Hello guys ! I have worked for Intimissimi in France and I can definitely assure you that Intimissimi goes from B cup up to E cup. You should go and check again they can still order it or you can online. Considering the growing requests we had for bigger cups they made them ! Im a 36DD and it fits perfectly ;) They are really listening to what clients are saying about the products and what they can do better about it ! Go check again really ;)

        • Cristina says:

          I fully agree! I have worked for Intimissimi in Switzerland. However, being an Italian myself I have also had the same experience in Italy (also some Italian (and some German) customers have told me that they struggled to find their size. Sometimes sadly there are sales assistants who do not know their products really well and/or are too lazy to check their system whether there are other sizes available.
          For girls with a “larger” bust (like me, I wear 34D – 36C), I suggest you try the styles Sofia (best. balconette. EVER.), Francesca (for more coverage), Daniela (unlined balconette). Since I “only” have a 36D, I can also wear a 36C Elena (demi-coverage), Stefania, Sara (both unlined) and even Monica (which is a light push up). If that weren’t enough, there is a strapless bra that I swear by – Laura! It is wireless but believe me, this is a bra ready for war. – As you can tell I love this brand. Absolutely and without restraints. They have such a large variety of styles, colours and fabrics, and still the price is reasonable. As Mariso said, go check again! (:

  5. Vidra Lutka says:

    I’m french, and in France there are a lot of Intimissimi stores. I have a bra&panty set, in night blue color, and two black garter belts. I like this brand, it’s more delicate than VS, which is for me not very “mature”. The price isn’t very high and the quality is relatively good. In stores we’ve got more choice for the bra sizes, it’s only the e-shop which has this problem. This brand can have a good future.

  6. denocte says:

    I JUST bought the matching knickers to the blue-ish set the other day! Intimissimi is one of my favourite brands ever, especially since they expanded their sizing range (they used to only have B cup bras, now they have A-C in most bras and up to E in some). Yes, it’s still a small range, but there is a LOT happening with this brand. they just introduced their first sportswear too!

  7. Mich says:

    Been a big fan of Intimissimi for some time as I’m in Europe where they’re much better known than in the U.S., for now at least. However if they put together a good marketing campaign to publicize their online catalog, I definitely think with their fit and fabrics, they could make a big dent in VS market share across the pond too!

  8. Robin M. says:

    There has only been 1 Intimissimi chemise that I liked, and despite the below cross sharing/selling of merchandise, I was not able to find it at V’sS.com.
    Acc to wiki, “Intimissimi clothing had been sold through Victoria’s Secret’s retail system in a third-party partnership arrangement. In 2007, this partnership has been expanded to sell Intimissimi in 240 Victoria’s Secret stores.”

    • Cora Cora says:

      That partnership ended in 2009 or thereabouts. I don’t think any official announcement was ever made, but it was the beginning of VS phasing out all third party brands.

  9. Florence says:

    Intimissi is great! If the bras came in my size, I would be all over them. I liked them when they were at VS and also went to the stores in Europe. I have a top from there that I wear for going out because it gives the best cleavage.

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