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Working in shapewear for the best part of a decade, I have heard over and over again 5 common myths about shapewear. They really can put people off trying shapewear, as if they were true shapewear would just be awful!
1. SMALLER IS BETTER
No no no. And NO again. It is a really common misconception that you should go as small as possible in size when choosing shapewear.
But surely, the smaller the shapewear, the smaller I will look, I hear you say?
Just NO! If you choose shapewear that is too small for you, you will look AWFUL. It will accentuate your lumps and bumps and possibly make you look EVEN BIGGER!
The people that make shapewear have taken into account the fact you want to look smaller. So always choose shapewear to fit the size you are NOW.
2. SEAMS ARE BAD
Okay, so some seams, especially on cheap shapewear (Chinese imports and fakes I’m talking about YOU) are bad. If the seams are bulky and raised with lots of stitching on the outside they are never going to lie flat and look all nice and neat.
However, most GOOD shapewear manufacturers make shapewear with FLAT SEWN seams. This means that the seam is barely noticeable from the outside. There should be very little ridge and very little stitching visible from the outside.
Once you put the shapewear on everything should stretch out and lie pretty flat on your body. If you are worried about seams, look for the terms “flat sewn” “laser cut” “non-binded” and “invisible edge”.
3. SHAPEWEAR WITHOUT STRAPS ALWAYS ROLLS DOWN
Well yes it does if it doesn’t fit you properly.
If your shapewear is TOO SMALL it will be too stretched at the top and so will slowly descend or roll down your body.
If it is TOO BIG it won’t grip your skin and stay in place.
Always choose shapewear in the size you are now. Also, be prepared to accept that not all shapewear (just like clothing) will fit you. If you have an unusual shaped body it may take a bit of hunting around to find something that fits and works for you.
4. SHAPEWEAR IS ALWAYS UNCOMFORTABLE TO WEAR
To an extent this is true. Some shapewear is strong stuff. In order to create a different body shape it needs to compress you somewhat.
However, the discomfort should only be in the form of “compression”. It shouldn’t dig in, create marks on your skin or stop you from (completely) breathing.
If you are wanting shapewear that you can’t really feel is on you need to go for light, medium or firm slimming control. These garments are pretty comfortable to wear for long periods of time. However, do bear in mind that they are not as “shape changing” as EXTRA FIRM or MAXIMUM control shapewear.
5. THE FAT HAS TO GO SOMEWHERE
No it doesn’t. Shapewear should hold you in and firm you up. It shouldn’t squeeze you like a tube of toothpaste.
If you are over a size 14 or carry any weight around your middle section, never choose shapewear that finishes at the waist. This WILL make you look squeezed out over the top. This look even has its own name – The Muffin Top Effect! High waisted shapewear was invented for precisely this reason.
Shapewear should taper off against your skin where it finishes, creating a smooth line. If it doesn’t then send it back, you have chosen the wrong type of shapewear.
So to sum things up:
- Always choose shapewear in the size you are now, not the size you would like to be.
- Don’t be put off by seams on shapewear, good manufacturers make good seamed shapewear.
- If your shapewear rolls down (or up for that matter) it is probably too big or too small.
- If you are worried about shapewear being uncomfortable choose light, medium or firm control.
- If you look like you are being squeezed like a tube of toothpaste either the shapewear is too small for you, or you need to choose a different style.
Happy Shapewear Shopping x