The Charlotte Set.
When I think ‘Expensive Lingerie’, the first thing that comes to mind is a titillating classic movie. A young, overtly sexy girl, more than likely French, is swiftly yet seductively rolling up the second leg of her semi-sheer hold up’s, one leg on a bed, while her gentleman friend walks in the room- instantly aroused of course, and then intimidated by the sheer feminity of the situation. In reality, it’s just me hastily squeezing my (less than leading lady-esque) body into some sausage casing entrapment style garment. Meanwhile, I’ve sent my boyfriend away to ‘leave an air of mystery’ or something along those lines. I’m left inching my way into a lightly perfumed and paper-wrapped monstrosity, sweaty but definitely NOT defeated, as my determination wins over a wayward suspender clip. Then my boyfriend comes back, a man who is genuinely proud of ‘that time he cut a girl’s bra strap off’ (as the mechanism got the better of him), mentions I look hot, and goes about his business. Not only did I then realise that this appalling attempt at flirting was way off, but that I was also sweating and he meant that I looked hot, like really hot- and flustered!
The Bound Corset.
Right then and there I decided sexy lingerie is for me and me only. I will buy what I like and sod everyone else. That was a mistake. I started to like lingerie. A lot. In fact, I brought so much and so often, I was even offered a job interview based on my knowledge at my local Honey Birdette store. As long as you try before you buy, designer lingerie can fit your body like a surgeons rubber glove on his steady hand and give you the confidence of 5 tequila’s- boosting your good bits, skimming the crappy and making you comfortable all the while. Going into a store like Honey Birdette you are greeted with a glass of bubbly (much needed if you accidentally stumble upon some of the XXX section hidden away) and a sales assistant will guide you and ask what you’d like. From here you can just browse but the best part of luxe is the treatment. Your items are brought into the changing room for you- after a quick back and booby measuring (if you want), your SA- or sales assistant for those that don’t talk retail jargon, will keep bringing different sizes, colours, cuts and options to tailor to your body and also what you want. Coming from a retail background that ranges from Topshop to Tom Ford, I can without a doubt tell you these girls are not intimidating, even if some of them do occasionally wear latex leggings and walk around with whips for display. They are there to make you feel comfortable, to educate you in a way that empowers you and not feel like an idiot for not knowing the difference between a bustier and a balconette. This type of service is the biggest pro of luxe lingerie. You get to know the staff and them you, making sure you’re never left looking in an unflattering changing room mirror, half teary-eyed as the only bra you like leaves your nipples to the wind and the ones that fit- a dreaded sea of beige.
The Belle Bra in Ivory.
Of course, this isn’t an everyday occasion and I do have a drawer full of budget-friendly undies, however, the luxury market also has killer sales that don’t give you buyer’s remorse at the end of the week while you’re eating those £1 super noodles because you wilfully ignored your budget for the month. Boutique lingerie for me, at the end of the day is for me, I enjoy it aesthetically (just have a cheeky Instagram scroll and you’ll see that) but it can boost the way I feel about myself, even if it’s a rainy Monday and all I’m going to achieve is watching Netflix till the grey box of ‘Are you still watching?’ shame pops up while I’m making a substantial dent in a pack of biscuits. Try the experience for yourself and you’ll understand just how great it can be, not only for your confidence but also getting to go home with a gorgeous store bag with hand-wrapped knickers giggily from the couple of free glasses of bubbly- or maybe I‘m just a lightweightght.