After decades of wearing too-tight, tortuous lingerie made for the male gaze, a new class of intimates purveyors are ushering in a fresh approach: underwear fashioned for womxn, by womxn. Whether they’re working in an entirely sustainable way or broadening our beliefs of what’s sexy now, these five independent designers are flipping the script in the intimates world.
For When You Want to Look Like A Proper Lady: Fortnight
Every woman deserves to experience the confidence boost that comes with a perfectly fit lingerie set. That’s the feeling Fortnight’s put-together pieces bring to your intimates wardrobe. The Toronto-based design house creates made-to-last lingerie with an aesthetic that’s rooted in feminine energy. The unnecessary embellishments we’re familiar with, like bows and keyholes, are replaced by plush fabrics and a supportive, technical design.
For the Sustainable Babe: Botanica Workshop
Their extra-comfy soft-cup basics and stretch silk briefs made Botanica Workshop a fave among style insiders, but the Los Angeles-based design studio is also doing everything right by slow fashion standards: utilizing natural, sustainably sourced materials like organic cotton and recycled nylon, and manufacturing small runs through their partnerships with local artisans. The kind of skivvies you can feel extra good wearing.
For the Confident Spirit: JBC Lingerie
“Size does not dictate sex appeal.” It’s the hyper-inclusive motto of Melbourne-based JBC Lingerie, a body-positive brand that bridges super-sensual intimates with the plus size lingerie space. You won’t find any padding or underwire here—slipping into their signature bralettes is an all-natural, all-you experience. And by offering up to a cup size H with a supportive, three-hook closure, JBC provides an opportunity for even the bustiest babes to get into their ultra-soft bamboo options.
For the Dreaming-in-Colour Queen: Dora Larsen
Since when did black become the official shade of sexy? London-based lingerie line Dora Larsen is countering this long-held cultural notion with a fresh, colour-happy take on feminine underthings. Deriving their palettes from hues found in nature, the brand finds beauty in uncommon combinations (think sky blue, blush and earthy lichen all meeting on one silky set) and splashes them across a range of vintage-inspired silhouettes.
For the Outerwear-as-Underwear Enthusiast: The Great Eros
With a design ethos that’s informed by “women in motion,” The Great Eros, a luxe lingerie line out of New York City, creates intimates meant to be worn all day, even as stand-alone pieces paired with closet staples like high-waisted jeans. The brand’s minimalist, 90s era appeal—picture wispy, Italian-lace bralettes and Monica Belluci-esque pullover bustiers—is supported by comfortable fabrications and expert fits (the designer is an alum of Donna Karan, so expect runway-level detail.)
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