• If you're baffled by basques or confused by corsets, Lovehoney's easy lingerie guide will explain everything. Armed with this information, choosing the perfect lingerie to make you or your partner feel sexy and confident should be easy.

    We've split this guide into structured lingerie (basques, corsets and other figure-hugging and body-sculpting garments) and unstructured lingerie (flirty, feminine and comfortable lingerie like babydolls, chemises and camisole sets) to suit your mood or your partner's style. We also explain the different types of knickers, thongs and g-strings as well as sex-on-legs hosiery (from stockings and suspenders, to bodystockings and tights).

    Structured Lingerie: Stylish & Seductive

    With figure-hugging and body-sculpting effects, structured lingerie is the perfect way to create a classically seductive lingerie look, while enhancing your shape at the same time.

    1. Basque

      What is a Basque

      A basque is like a corset or bustier, but has cups and is made from lacier materials. Think of it a bit like a longer version of a bra. It may have plastic boning to give extra shape, but it won't reduce your waist.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Oh La La Cheri Suspender Basque and G-String Set Oh La La Cheri Suspender Basque and G-String Set
    2. Bustier

      What is a Bustier

      Bustiers look like corsets, but will not reduce your waist. Bustiers are an attractive and more comfortable option for people who do not want to change their shape, but like the way that corsets look.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Seven Til Midnight Some Like It Hot Bustier Top and Thong Set Seven Til Midnight Some Like It Hot Bustier Top and Thong Set
    3. Corset

      What is a Corset

      Corsets are specifically designed to reduce your waist, boost your bust and when laced up tight, they're a huge turn on. Most corsets cover the bust whereas others (underbust corsets) expose the breasts.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Classic Satin Over Bust Steel Boned Corset Classic Satin Over Bust Steel Boned Corset
    1. Mini Dress

      What is a Mini Dress

      A mini dress is just that - a dress with a shorter-than-normal hemline. Normally tight-fitting, a slinky mini dress can take you from nightclub to bedroom.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Pink Lipstick Slinky Seamless Mini Dress

      Pink Lipstick Slinky Seamless Mini Dress

    2. Catsuit

      What is a Catsuit

      Make like Catwoman in a sleek, sexy catsuit! Catsuits are a full body, tight-fitting suit that normally feature a zip along the front (and sometimes hold a crotchless secret!)

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Fever Miss Whip Lash Catsuit Fever Miss Whip Lash Catsuit
    3. Merry Widow

      What is a Girdle

      A merry widow is a shape-smoothing, cupless basque, with built-in suspenders. The merry widow is an excellent choice for those who want a more risqué or fetish style of lingerie.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Exposed Liquid Cupless Merry Widow and G-String Set Exposed Liquid Onyx Cupless Merry Widow and G-String Set

    Unstructured Lingerie: Flirty & Feminine

    If you prefer a less restrictive and more flirtatious lingerie style then choose something playful and floaty that allows you to roll around the bed (or kitchen counter) without restriction.

    1. Babydoll

      What is a Babydoll

      With cups and a full skirt, a babydoll is a playful and provocative piece of lingerie that enhances the bust and shows the legs. Because babydolls flare out from under the bust, a babydoll is great for drawing attention away from your tummy.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Sweet Streak Pleated Georgette and Lace Baby Doll SetSweet Streak Pleated Georgette and Lace Baby Doll Set

    2. Flyaway

      What is a Flyaway Babydoll

      If you love the look of a babydoll but want to show off your stomach at the same time, a flyaway option is for you. It takes all the best features of a babydoll and makes them that little bit more exposing with a split front or back (or both).

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Soft Line Nadine Flyaway Babydoll and G-String SetSoft Line Nadine Flyaway Babydoll and G-String Set

    3. Chemise

      What is a Chemise

      Chemises are practical yet sexy, and can be worn easily as nightwear or loungewear. They're loose fitting, with gentle tailoring at the waist and a slim fit at the hips for a slinky look. Chemises are flattering for all body shapes, so make an ideal gift.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Livia Corsetti Liliana Sheer Chemise with Floral Lace and G-StringLivia Corsetti Liliana Sheer Chemise with Floral Lace and G-String

    1. Cami Sets

      What is a Camisole

      A camisole (or 'cami') is just another name for a vest top. They're usually sold with matching knickers or shorts in cami sets. A camisole set is a great way to emphasise a cute bottom and beautiful bust. Remember: a figure-hugging lace or mesh cami will give a different feel to a floating silk or satin top.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Livia Corsetti Aurea Polka Dot Camisole and Shorts SetLivia Corsetti Aurea Polka Dot Camisole and Shorts Set

    2. Teddy

      What is a Teddy

      A teddy (also called a playsuit) is bodysuit-like lingerie that combines a vest top and shorts in one. They are extremely sensual to wear and are perfect for flattering both athletic and curvy figures. They range from being fairly covering (great if you're body conscious) to very exposing, if that's your desired look.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Fantasy Vintage Satin and Lace TeddyFantasy Vintage Satin and Lace Teddy

    3. Body

      What is a Body

      A body is similar to a teddy, but much closer-fitting: it's shaped like a traditional one piece swimsuit, with the vest top and bikini style briefs in one. Showing off more of your legs than a teddy, a body is a great choice for those who want to display their curves in a cosy close-fitting all-in-one garment.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Cottelli Peephole Sheer Crotchless BodyCottelli Peephole Sheer Crotchless Body


    Knickers

    The easiest (and least expensive) way to add something new to your underwear drawer, feeling sexy starts with a new pair of knickers. Choose from knickers and briefs for fuller coverage or something skimpier to showcase a peachy bum.

    1. Briefs & Shorts

      What are Briefs

      Briefs, shorts, French knickers, booty shorts, boy shorts and hot pants - with so many names, they can get confusing! All these types of knickers have a full front and a covered rear for a demurely sexy look.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Seven Til Midnight Crotchless Lace Boyshort KnickersSeven Til Midnight Knickers

    2. G-String

      What is a G-String

      The main difference between a thong and G-string is the width of the fabric that passes between the buttocks - in a G-string it's barely there. The skimpy rear gives an even more revealing bedroom look.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Seven Til Midnight Butterfly Crotchless ThongSeven Til Midnight G-String

    3. Thong

      What is a Thong

      A modern classic, the thong leaves your bottom cheekily exposed. Perfect for avoiding VPL, a thong is highly erotic for the wearer as well as the onlooker, making this the perfect choice for bedroom or everyday wear.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Hustler Classic Lace ThongHustler Lace Thong


    Hosiery & Stockings

    Stockings are the perfect way to complete a lingerie set for a top-to-toe sexy look. Whether you want sheer, fishnet, fencenet or back-seamed, choose from hosiery to smooth your legs (and body).

    1. Hold Ups

      What are Hold Ups

      Hold-up stockings and thigh highs stay have elasticated tops or gripping silicone material, so they stay in place without needing a suspender belt. Unlike tights, they make a feature of their tops which can be trimmed with lace, ribbon or PVC.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Seven Til Midnight Fishnet Lace Top Thigh High StockingsSeven Til Midnight Fishnet Lace Hold Up Stockings

    2. Suspender Stockings

      What are Stockings

      Suspender stockings need a suspender belt or straps on your corset to stay up, otherwise they will end up around your ankles. Matching your suspender stockings to your lingerie is an art form, but when it's pulled off the effects are eye-popping.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Leg Avenue Sheer Suspender StockingsLeg Avenue Sheer Stockings

    3. Suspender Belt

      What is a Suspender Belt

      A suspender belt, sometimes called a garter belt, is a strip of fabric that fastens around the waist with straps that attach to suspender stockings to hold them up. They usually have 4 straps but some retro-styled belts have more straps, for added security.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Classified Frilly Suspender BeltClassified Suspender Belt

    1. Bodystocking

      What is a Bodystocking

      Bodystockings are stretchy head-to-toe garments made from the same materials as tights. They're a fanastic base for outfits as well as a sexy all-in-one lingerie solution. Although they cover large areas of the body, the fabrics make them sexy and crotchless varieties don't stop play.

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Rene Rofe Criss-Cross Strap Crotchless Fishnet Bodystocking

      Rene Rofe Crotchless Fishnet Bodystocking

    2. Tights

      What are Tights

      With smoothing and shaping properties, tights are fantastic for creating a sexy silhouette. While many people find tights extremely sexy, they are usually worn as part of an everyday outfit rather than with a lingerie set. If that's the case for you, why not have a look at some stockings?

      Lovehoney recommends:

      Leg Avenue Fishnet Tights with Backseam

      Leg Avenue Fishnet Tights

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    You can Contact Customer Care, who will be able to help you find the right lingerie. You can email, telephone or live chat to an experienced advisor 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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