Almost every bride wears shapewear, but somehow, some people still act like it’s a secret.
But face it, once you’ve said yes to the dress, it’s time to do the same with the shapewear under the dress! Most women today opt for some kind of extra support under their bridal attire to feel extra secure, confident and picture-perfect on their special day.
Actually, not that many brides wear shapewear to feel slimmer or “tucked-in” - although nobody is complaining about that added bonus. The greatest demand for bridal shapewear comes from the fact that most wedding gowns are made from not-so-forgiving fabrics. Believe it or not, it’s the number one option to avoid creasing and dimpling!
So here’s a little guide -based on our own team’s experiences- about everything you need to know about wedding dress undergarments to end your frustrations, from finding the ideal strapless bra, to picking the best shapewear for your wedding dress.
First Off, What About Your Bridal Bra
Nothing ruins a perfect wedding dress more than having your so-called skin-toned bra play peek-a-boo. To not have this happen, make sure your bra matches your wedding gown color, NOT your skin tone!
What would be more uncomfortable than having to fix and adjust your bra every 15 minutes during your wedding day? Nothing. So make sure you take your bra for a long test drive before you actually walk down the aisle. Wear it for a night out clubbing or dancing with your girls or your fiancée.
Want to make sure the bra you like will actually fit as if it were made just for you? Do the “two-finger” check. Try sliding two fingers underneath the band on its loosest hook, if it slides through while still holding your girls in place, then that’s the bra for you.
Your Bridal Shapewear Depends on the Fabric of your Wedding Dress - Here’s Why:
Fabrics are like people, some are more forgiving than others. Heavier silks and textured fabrics add structure. Some come with a slip or built-in corset for extra support.
But lighter fabrics such as lighter silk fabrics are almost transparent and show every little detail under the dress, including the dreaded visible panty line. So essentially bridal shapewear is a definite must-have for any type of sheer or light-weight fabrics.
Your shapewear will also depend on the style of your wedding dress
If you are adamant about not wearing bridal shapewear on your big day, then go for a big ball gown, so you’ll have the support for your bust and conceal all visible panty lines and flaws.
Mermaids, sheaths, trumpet and any other wedding gown styles will need a little extra smoothing underneath. If you are wearing a backless or halter-style gown, try wearing lingerie’s most innovative item: adhesive bra cups. The days of duct-taping your girls in place are long gone!
For the streamlined look you are looking for, you'll need seamless shapewear. Seamless undergarments sit perfectly flat on your body, hugging your every curve without digging into your skin. Nylon, spandex, microfibers and fine mesh are the best fabrics for this.
You can choose built-in shapewear - but that only goes so far
Be realistic, girls! Built-in shapewear doesn't do much for your body or the gown. If you have ever worn exercise pants with built-in underwear, you know that in the end it really doesn't eliminate the need to wear panties.
Most undergarments for wedding dresses are designed to support your body and not the dress. Your wedding dress is only going to look good, if you look good in your bridal shapewear - or, most of all, if you feel good in it!
Buy at the right time
The right time to buy bridal shapewear for your gown is NOT right after choosing your dress or the day before your wedding. The best time is after your first dress fitting, since it gives you the time to see what types of undergarments would look good under your dress, taking style and fabric into account.
After purchasing the dress of your dreams, you might gain weight or lose weight; hopefully, it’s the latter. That’s why it’s a good idea to purchase your shapewear after the first fitting.
What wedding shapewear should you choose for your special day?
1 - Your dress is clingy and form-fitting
If you are wearing a dreamy slip gown, then you will have to deal with that clingy silk. This type of dress is all about creating a streamlined look by wearing seamless shapewear. We just love Empetua shaper shorts for these kinds of dresses, especially if they have a tummy compressing panel that is completely invisible under the sheer silky, clingy fabric.
Avoid shapers with seams or steel bones down the center to avoid any awkward looks. Trust us on this one!
2 - Your dress fits snugly around your upper body
In this case look for shapewear that is lightweight and flexible. It should move with your body and not constrict it, especially while dancing and hugging - you will never be hugged more in your entire life than on your wedding day.
If you are looking for allover compression under your slip, try the Co'Coon Seamless Antibacterial Hip Hugger Bodysuit - its low profile will be completely invisible under even the sheerest of dresses. Or you can try the Co Coon Bodysuit: Co'Coon's Raw Edged Vitamin E Shaping Bodysuit, that’ll give you a streamlined look from top to bottom, making you feel and look your best.
3 - Your dress is extremely form-fitting around the hips and thighs
Look for shapewear that’ll smooth everything out and free your mind from cellulite, creating the illusion of a smoother, slimmer silhouette. The key here is finding shapewear that will target your hangup areas, which will be at full display during your big day.
4 - Your dress is a bona fide bodycon dress
For this popular look, bridal shapewear plays a key role in slimming and smoothing under your dress, as it helps the dress slide over the entire body, contouring and accentuating your every curve. If you find that your dress isn’t embracing your body as you wish, then add an extra layer of shapewear under the dress. Our favorite here is the Empetua Shaper Panty (see some shaper panty reviews) or any of the shaper shorts from our collection (the Co’Coon Racy Lacy High-Waist Hip Hugger Boyshort even has the lace to go with the big occasion!).
5 - Bridal corset dress and Shapewear - do they work together?
Good news! If you're wearing a corset dress, there's no need to double up with another corset. If you are looking for a little more oomph in your bust, then ask your tailor to add in some push-up cups into the dress.
This dress style is about looking sexy and embracing your body - so have some fun with the lower part of the dress. Wear a high-waist brief or a booty-boosting thong for a sexier look and feel.
Too much information to take in? Need a recap? Here are the basics of what you need to know:
- Choosing the right bridal shapewear depends on your body type and dress.
- We highly recommend wearing seamless garments or shorts, which smooth things over without squishing your booty.
- Overall, when it comes to shapewear color, nude or cocoa is usually the best - depending on your skin tone.
- Be sure to bring more than your dress to your final fitting at your tailor - take along your shoes and shapewear. Once you have all of the pieces in place, you will finally be able to envision your wedding day.
- Accessories, including a veil (if you are using one), will help you to see if everything balances out together.
Wearing your shoes and wedding undergarments to the final fitting will ensure that everything fits properly and that the length hits exactly where you want it. If you can’t bring your bridal shapewear with you, make sure you can at least bring something similar in compression.
But whatever you do just breathe, relax and remember: you’re going to rock this. And there’s no harm in looking that extra inch of confident and happy in your wedding pictures, without worrying about what’s happening underneath your clothes ;-)