It's not just enough to buy body-slimming lingerie, you also need to know how to wear and preserve it. So we quizzed the brilliant founder of Spanx, Sarah Blakely, on all of our must-know questions.
Tip 1: Know Your Numbers
"When rocking shape wear, always make sure you buy the correct size," warns Blakely. "If you're in the right fit, your shaper shouldn't roll, ride, or pinch. Sometimes women think that sizing down drastically will give them extra slimming compression, but it often sacrifices fit and comfort."
Tip 2: Step and Repeat
"For the right placement and ease of entry, step into shape wear, including camis, strapless slips, and body suits," advises Blakely.
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Tip 3: Create Long Lines
Thinking about wearing a mid-thigh shaper with pants? Don't. "I recommend that people go with a style that doesn't stop on the thigh. It's always better to create a line by wearing footless pantyhose instead," explains Blakely.
Tip 4: Choose Smooth Fabrics
"When wearing clingy fabrics, go with a sleek, seamless shaper versus control-top hosiery," explains Blakely. "They don't show any lines, and still offer great shaping, even under the tightest knits."
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Tip 5: Wash With Care
"Save yourself a pre-party meltdown, and never put shape wear in the dryer," explains Blakely. "It will break down the slimming magic overtime-I like to wash my pieces in a lingerie bag on the delicate cycle and then hang them to dry."
Tip 6: Hide Your Muffin Top
"To mask a muffin top, look for high-waisted shapers with laser-cut or bonded leg openings," Blakely suggests. "The silhouette smoothes unwanted lumps, bumps and rolls, and the leg-band-free styles won't dig in or be visible under clothes."
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Tip 7: Conceal Cellulite
"To eliminate the dreaded cottage cheese effect, opt for a shaper that gives you the most coverage on your thighs, hips, and rear," Blakely says. "If you are looking for extra thigh-slimming power, choose a shaper that hits below the hips as opposed to a boy short style because it offers more compression."
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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.