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Let’s Do This: Underwear Overhaul

Make that lingerie drawer look brand spankin’ new

04.14.16

“Atrocious” is an awful word to describe a woman’s underwear drawer, but it’s true: they so often are. Typically relegated to the smallest pullout space in the dresser because we assume our sweaters and sweatpants are the only clothes that need room to breathe, the underwear drawer becomes a catch-all for the misunderstood and miscellaneous — socks without mates, a foldable hairbrush, excess straps and envelopes to remind us of addresses that correspond with letters we’ve long ago trashed. We’re all hoarders when it comes to our underwear drawers. We’re even worse when it comes to our actual underwear.

More than any other item of clothing, underwear is saved for just-in-case moments. What if we need…

A white thong for white jeans

A blue thong for blue jeans (the kind where the dye comes off on everything)

A full brief with a high waist for days when something else needs to suck us in

Red lace in the case of something festive

Black lining for lazy day six of our periods

And so on.

The problem is that this habit of doomsday prepping our underwear drawers means we’re always stocked but rarely ready. When the time comes for that red lace number, we remember that actually, it has a giant hole. Anything white is not really white any longer, black has become faded navy and that which sparkled, ruffled or tied up with bows now looks/feels/is sad.

BUT HELLO, FELLOW PEOPLE WITH BUMS, we can fix this.

Step 1: Trash any ‘dwears you wouldn’t loan. Even if you wouldn’t ever actually loan them, pretend you had to. Now trash the ones you wouldn’t. (Or recycle them for your own use as dust rags.)

Step 2: Now get rid of the ones that don’t make you feel like running around nearly-naked the moment you put them on. Once the drawer is empty save for enough pairs to get you through to your refresh purchase, line it in pretty paper. I’m telling you, this will make your drawer feel special again.

Step 3: Credit card city. Start small — buy few pairs each paycheck, even, but consider this an investment in the future of your nether region.

Step 4: Do check off the basics according to your preference and wardrobe.

Step 5: And then, once your base is back, add in a few for fun. Make them absolutely impractical. Impractical may as well be the opposite of atrocious.

Featuring underwear from Hello Beautiful and Pansy with tanks and tees from Petit Bateau. Follow our guest models Shelby Macklin and Lesley Admana on Instagram @shelbymacklin and @lesleyadmana. Styled by Elizabeth Tamkin, photographed by Krista Anna Lewis.

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  • the future of your nether region

    !!! 🙂 🙂 🙂 !!!

    • Karen Frantz

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      http://mattleblanc.eur.lc

  • Krista Anna Lewis

    Side note: Cotton is so much healthier! Let your nether region breathe just like your fancy new undies!

    • I agree – wholenetherdly.

    • EMS

      Any recommendations for seamless/invisible cotton underwear and/or thongs?

      My current faves are Calvin Klein “invisibles,” but they certainly aren’t breathable

      Thx!

      • KG

        Check out bamboo undies in addition to cotton! I just ordered two from Amazon to see if I like them, and they are great! http://boodywear.com/

      • The Commando and JKNIX are great brands for seamless- Commando has a cotton line too. We work with these brands (as well as many more) – check out our service at underclub.co!

    • Gabrielle Dyson

      yes ! but also, thoughts on pure silk undies (as an alternative to cotton) health-wise?

  • On it right away!

  • Sabrina O’Driscoll

    Fellow people with bums haha 🙂 I did a clear out last year, said to myself would you be happy for people to look in this underwear drawer, not way Jose was the answer! Good idea to buy a couple on pay day, you wouldn’t be long building it up 😉

  • Sophie

    These look SO comfy and nice but I’m just not sure I can justify spending $42 on ONE pair!!! 🙁 Maybe one day when I have a disposable income…

    • Elizabeth Tamkin

      Hello Beautiful’s are $38 and SO WORTH IT — the black have a tiny red rose *bonus*

      • Andrea Cervantes

        100% Colombian Made Intimates. Supporters of Lotus House homeless shelter for woman and children. Outstanding Variety. To fit any woman out there. http://Www.myrosasnegras.com

  • Katherine Sargeant

    I want to wear all of these outside of my pants in a not weird way

    • Elizabeth Tamkin

      there’s no way that can be weird

    • Leandra Medine

      Elevated Quailmain!

      • Andrea Cervantes

        Hey Leandra. Loved this article ?. Thank you !
        My Compny Rosas Negras Intimates. Is a company that seeks to empower woman through a single garment. Building up from the inside out. 100 % Colombian Made and proud supporters of Lotus House a holistic homeless shelter for woman and children. A percentage of sales go to this specific organization. We help woman reach their goals by empower them.
        Please check out our company.

        http://Www.myrosasnegras.com

  • I need store recommendations (possibly in New York)! I’m always on the lookout for beautiful undies but I also need some nice comfy cotton ones!

    • TJMaxx or Burlington’s. (Remember the interview with the Girls costume designer?) I discovered Izod seamless and promptly replaced all of my underwear with 30 pairs. Sold in 2-packs and 3-packs for $5-7

    • Andrea CErvantes

      Hey There! Panties are our specialty
      Check out some amazing intimates.
      http://Www.myrosasnegras.com

  • Ahh man I so need to do this! Thanks for the tips x

    http://www.wonkylauren.com

  • Amelia, were u in my underwear drawer??? I literally found like four scraps of return addresses while trying to organize that damn thing.

    • Amelia Diamond

      SORRY

  • I recently purged my underwear drawer but haven’t yet replenished. Thank you for the reminder! Question…. where on earth would you store old pantie dust rags?

    • Amelia Diamond

      Under the sinK!

    • Andrea Cervantes

      Hey There! check us out, seems like you are looking for the perfect panty.
      http://Www.myrosasnegras.com

  • Cinamaron

    I love buying underwear but have yet to upgrade mine to investment/nice underwear. I’ve been working on my sleepwear (got an eberjey robe for $20 today yesssss) and this really inspires me to keep on going and start on my underwear drawer.

    I am super good at making enormous aspirational shopping carts on journelle tho

  • I guess i’m just relieved that i’m not the only one who uses hers as a catch all. My niece’s leather moccasins are in mine. Tell me how that happens.

  • I love this. Don’t forget period panties! I tried THINX recently and they’re actually amazing/the Ryan Gosling of underwear. “Hey girl, I got this, don’t you worry about a thing”

  • Linda Kenyon

    Time to put the once-white-now-gray-and-limp bra out of its misery!

  • Aggie

    Love this! I have so many ‘just in case’ undies that are so pretty but either squeeze out my butt chicks or are too see through etc…along with this please please do an article on how to go shopping for bras, not necessarily how to find the right shape but what type of bras do you guys where according to the tops you pick on any given day; strapless, skin-colored, lacey,t-shirt bras…THIS IS A LIFE STRUGGLE FOR ME!

  • Gabe

    My advice is to go buy Uniqlo’s seamless nylon undies, they’re the best! I’ve not needed to wear a g-string ever since I got these.

  • Kelly

    I did this a few years ago and now I feel like a grow up. No embarrassing or uncomfortable undies anymore, practical basics and a few fun sets have me covered. Life’s too short to be wearing bad undies!

  • Andrea Cervantes

    Excellente article. Suggestion for new intimates http://www.myrosasnegras.com
    Created to empower woman all over the world. Supporters of lotus house homeless shelter for woman and children. Great variety in fabrics and patterns. 100% Colombian Made.

    http://Www.myrosasnegras.com

  • Janet

    What are the rules of donating good, clean underwear that I just don’t wear anymore. I feel so bad throwing the away but I also can’t quite bring myself to donate them. Does some unlucky woman really want to wear my used wear?

    • Allegra

      no.

  • We’re all for an #undervention! We curate a pair a month for you (everything from basics to your date night options) so you’re never caught in a rut! https://underclub.co

  • Catherine Bohner

    I feel weird using even clean but old and gross underwear for dusting, but it’s good for cleaning leather shoes, especially nasty work boots.

  • Hillary

    Here’s a good tip, y’all. Instead of using one of my actual drawers for my underwear and stockings, I bought a beautiful flowered, pastel, mini-chest from Hobby Lobby. Now I have more room in my drawers, and I don’t throw random shit in my underwear storage. Plus, the chest looks so pretty!

  • Ashley Molco Castelló

    thank you for these non-photoshopped beautiful bottoms