Should You Wear Bridal Shapewear? Here Are the Essentials

Sometimes, the secret to the perfect fit is just some great undergarments.
by The Knot
white lace lingerie
photo by Shutterstock

Bridal fashion has taken a sexy turn in recent years—and we're loving it. Designers like Galia LahavInes Di Santo and Rivini are redefining the traditional wedding dress with sheer details, daring necklines and curve-hugging styles that leave little to the imagination. But even if you don't find yourself in love with a sultry silhouette, there's still a chance you don't know what to wear under your gown (hint: your usual bra and panties probably won't do). Luckily, we're here to help. From clingy fabrics to simple strapless necklines, we've got the answers to all of your undergarment dilemmas.

  1. Your dress has a deep V-neckline.

    fashion forms deep plunge bodysuit

    Look for a bra that has a plunging front to accommodate your low neckline. Most likely, this bra will have extra support on the side (or, in this case, is designed as a bodysuit) to make sure everything stays put despite the deep dip. 

    Fashion Forms U-Plunge bra bodysuit, $32, LordandTaylor.com

  2. Your dress is clingy and formfitting.

    Miraclesuit sexy sheer extra firm control high-waist thong

    If your dress clings to your tummy area, you'll need some high-waisted shapewear that can smooth and pull in the lower stomach. Look for one with either boy shorts or a thong bottom to ensure a seamless finish.

    Miraclesuit sexy sheer extra firm control high-waist thong, $40, BareNecessities.com

  3. Your dress has a classic strapless neckline.

    Parfait Elissa low back bustier

    Your regular strapless bra with grips on the inside is one possible solution to the elusive slipping strapless bra; another answer is the longline bra. This is a bra that's attached to a corsetlike bodice, which gives it more support against slippage since it wraps around your waist.

    Parfait Elissa low back bustier, $58, Nordstrom.com

  4. Your dress fits snugly around your upper body.

    Spanx Haute Couture Nouveau slip

    Ban the dreaded bulge with an upper-body undergarment that will smooth out your back. Look for one that's lightweight and flexible, so you can still move around (and more importantly, dance) naturally.

    Spanx Haute Contour Nouveau slip, $168, Spanx.com

  5. Your dress is extremely formfitting around the hips and thighs.

    SPANX light tummy-control smart stretch thigh slimmer

    Target the problem area with shapewear that falls above the knees. The key is finding a pair that's tight enough to firm up any possible wobbly bits and give your silhouette a smooth finish—without giving you a muffin top.

    SPANX light tummy-control smart stretch thigh slimmer, $35, Macys.com

  6. Your dress has a sexy, open back.

    Fashion Forms U-Plunge backless strapless adhesive bra

    Your best bet when it comes to a backless gown is a bra that has adhesive cups. Silicone cups will give you the most natural feel, while the nude color will make it nearly invisible. (Plus, this one works for daring dresses that have plunging necklines and plunging backs.) 

    Fashion Forms U-Plunge backless strapless adhesive bra, $55, BergdorfGoodman.com

  7. No clue what kind of wedding dress you want? Start by finding your wedding day style by taking our Style Quiz. Once you know what you want your day to look like, finding your dress will be so much easier. After that, create a free, personalized wedding website to keep your guests informed (and excited!) about your plans, and a time-saving Guest List Manager to organize your attendees. Even better? You can sync your Guest List Manager and wedding website to update everything at once.

Up Next
bride and bridesmaids getting ready
Here's Who Actually Pays for Bridesmaid Hair and Makeup (Plus the Average Cost Per Person)
We combed through The Knot 2017 Real Weddings Study and consulted some experts to weigh in on this wedding day budget question.
by Maggie Seaver3 min read