Christine Roos

Christine Roos

Think Shapewear Is Unnecessary? Think Again.

Your ultimate shapewear guide.



Dress trends and lingerie styles come and go – but one thing will always stay constant: how much you need shapewear in your wardrobe. It might not be the trendiest, funnest items in your closet, but those high-waisted control undies and flesh-coloured slip dress that just sucks everything in are key when it comes to feeling confident and looking great.

Celebs have known about this wardrobe superpower for ages – do you think Scarlett Johansson steps foot on a red carpet without a pair of supertight Spanx on to ensure her dress looks flawless? Kim Kardashian loves shapewear so much she launched her own line. Shapewear gives you that secret oomph to look your best, with high-tech fabrics and design cinching you in where need and holding everything together for a sleek silhouette. Feeling a bit bloated? Step into high-waisted control briefs. Not keen on showing underwear lines? Shaping shorts will give you the security and confidence you need.

A word of caution, though: while shapewear is supposed to give you a sleeker silhouette, it should never be too tight or uncomfortable, or too difficult to put on. Too tight shapewear can impair circulation, which is a health hazard.

With so many options out there, which pieces do you need, and how do you wear it? Read on for your ultimate guide, and our shapewear picks to shop now.

THE BODYSUIT

A bodysuit will help smooth your stomach, lift your bosom and perk up your bottom. Some have built-in bras, but you can also look for a bodysuit without a built-in bra, so you can wear your own.

Problem areas: Tummy, waist, bottom

Wear with: Almost anything – trousers and tops, shorts, dresses, skirts

Our pick:
M&S Collection Secret Slimming light control shaping body
M&S Collection Medium Control lace wear your own bra shaping body
Spanx Thinstincts open-bust mid-thigh bodysuit
Dorina Air Sculpt shaping body
Wolford Jamaika sleeveless bodysuit
Wolford Mat de Luxe shaping bodysuit

Secret Slimming Light Control Shaping Body A E

aed 225 M&S Collection

Medium Control Lace Wear Your Own Bra Shaping Body

aed 175 M&S Collection

Thinstincts Open Bust Mid Thigh Bodysuit

aed 381.99 Spanx

Air Sculpt Shaping Body In Pink

aed 220.38 Dorina

Jamaika Sleeveless Bodysuit

aed 639.10 Wolford

Mat de Luxe Shaping Bodysuit

aed 841.12 Wolford

THE BODY CONTROL DRESS

Also known as a shaping slip, a body control dress helps give you a defined waist, lifted bust and shapely thighs. While a good body control dress will smooth your silhouette – and is easier to go to the bathroom in than a bodysuit! – it won’t make you magically look a size smaller.

Problem areas: Tummy, waist, thighs

Wear with: Party dresses

Our pick:
M&S Collection Secret Slimming medium control full slip
M&S Collection seamfree shaping medium control full slip
Wolford forming mini shapewear dress
Asos Design Marcia underwire shaping slip dress

Secret Slimming Medium Control Full Slip A E

aed 210 M&S Collection

Seamfree Shaping Medium Control Full Slip

aed 125 M&S Collection

Forming Mini Shapewear Dress

aed 969.67 Wolford

Marcia Underwire Shaping Slip Dress with Lace and Mesh

aed 220.38 Asos Design

SHAPING CAMISOLE OR TANK TOP

If you want to smooth your tummy without the possible discomfort of shaping panties, try a shaping camisole. It’s also great if you’re wearing a slightly sheer top or just want some added layering and shape on top.

Problem areas: Tummy, waist, bust

Wear with: Flared dresses; fitted tops

Our pick:
Hanro seamless black cotton tank
Chantelle soft stretch almond seamless cami

Seamless Black Cotton Tank

aed 167.83 Hanro

Soft Stretch Almond Seamless Cami

aed 153.44 Chantelle

SHAPING SHORTS

If you want to lift your bum and smooth your thighs, without a tell-tale panty line, shaping shorts are for you! You can also get longer length leggings to help shape your legs.

Problem areas: Bum, tummy, waist, thighs

Wear with: Slim-fitting skirts; skinny jeans

Our pick:
M&S Collection firm control waist & thigh sculpt no VPL cincher
Max Fashion thigh shaping briefs
Spanx Thinstincts girl shorts
M&S Collection Magicwear sheer shaper shorts
TC Fine Intimates Middle Manager high-waist thigh slimmer shorts
Spanx Suit Your Fancy high-waist butt-enhancer shorts

Firm Control Waist and Thigh Sculpt No VPL Cincher

aed 185 M&S Collection

Thigh Shaping Briefs

aed 19 Max

Thinstincts Girl Shorts

aed 231.40 Spanx

Magicwear Sheer Shaper Shorts

aed 45 M&S Collection

Middle Manager High Waist Thigh Slimmer Shorts

aed 269.30 TC

Suit Your Fancy High Waist Butt Enhancer Shorts

aed 348.51 Spanx

WAIST CINCHERS

Looking for an hourglass figure? Slip into a waist cincher, which will help nip in your waist. It’s a bit like a wide belt and helps smooth our your stomach area

Problem areas: Waist, tummy

Wear with: Figure-hugging dresses and tops

Our pick:
Splash lace shaping belt with hook and eye closure Use code SP370 for upto 10% off
Spanx waist cincher
Pour Moi Definitions hook and eye waist cincher

Lace Shaping Belt with Hook and Eye Closure ON SALE

aed 40 Splash
aed80 50

Waist Cincher In Black

aed 246.09 Spanx

Definitions Hook and Eye Waist Cincher ON SALE

aed 117.54 Pour Moi
aed147 20

CONTROL BRIEFS

If you’re just dipping your toe into shapewear, start with a pair of control briefs. By lifting and rounding the bum, they help give you a shapely behind, with many pairs also featuring tummy control panels for added confidence.

Problem areas: Tummy, bum

Wear with: Jeans, dresses, skirts

Our pick:
M&S Collection medium control waist cincher knickers
Max Fashions set of 2 seamless shaping briefs
Spanx OnCore high-waisted briefs

Medium Control Waist Cincher Knickers

aed 160 M&S Collection

Set of 2 Seamless Shaping Briefs with Elasticised Waistband

aed 22 Max

OnCore High Waisted Briefs

aed 308.53 Spanx

ARMWEAR

Did you know shapewear is not only for bums and tums, but can also help you feel more confident about your arms? Arm shapers can also help with your posture, as they can help pull your shoulders into a more back-friendly position – perfect if you’re perched in front of a computer the whole day!

Problem areas: Arms

Wear with: Tight long sleeves, jackets, blazers

Our pick:
Spanx arm solid shapewear pullover
Slagon women arm shapewar upper compression vest
Wolford Buenos Aires bodysuit
Wolford Colorado turtleneck bodysuit

Arm Solid Shapewear Pullover

aed 110.19 Spanx

Slagon Women Arm Shapewear Upper Long Sleeves Beauty Shapewear Compression Vest Posture Corrector Breasts Underwear

aed 39.99 Amazon.ae

Buenos Aires Turtleneck Bodysuit

aed 866.83 Wolford

Colorado Turtleneck Bodysuit

aed 815.41 Wolford

Image Courtesy

@skims, photo: #VanessaBeecroft