The Best-Ever Shapewear for Every Type of Dress

We call these undergarments "wonder-garments" because of the near-magical way they make any day or evening dress look flawless.

View as Slideshow

Under a strapless dress

01-What-to-Wear-Under-Every-Type-of-Dress-to-Erase-Lines-and-Bulges-via yummielife.comNicole Fornabaio/Rd.com, Sunny Designs/Shutterstock, via yummielife.comWhen it comes to a strapless number, the right bra is essential. But every woman knows that strapless bras are notoriously problematic, usually because they're constantly falling down. "Our Peyton Convertible Strapless stays up with ease, doesn't pull or tug, and has a closure-free back to give you a smooth, clean look under your clothes," says Madelyn Ulrich, Senior Designer at Yummie by Heather Thomson. "Plus, it's lightly padded and has seamless cups that maintain structure and offer 360 degrees of flexible, all-day support." For more fitted styles, you may want a firm control slip, like the Maidenform Endlessly Smooth Firm Control Convertible Slip. Don't miss these fashion stylists' personal style secrets.

Under a halter neck:

02-What-to-Wear-Under-Every-Type-of-Dress-to-Erase-Lines-and-Bulges-2-via-barenecessities.comNicole Fornabaio/Rd.com, Sunny Designs/Shutterstock, via barenecessities.comLike strapless, some women avoid halter styles simply because they can't find the right undergarments. We're happy to report that those days are over! With the Va Bien Firm Control Plunge Bodysuit, you can wear show off your toned shoulders, arms, and back with beautiful backless styles (and plunging necklines) with confidence. This ultra-versatile bodysuit features a deep plunge neckline, patented ultra-lift underwire cups, convertible straps (so you can rock both criss-cross and halter styles), and built-in boning for tummy and lower back smoothness. Find out the five types of dresses that show off your favorite body part.

Under a bodycon dress

03-What-to-Wear-Under-Every-Type-of-Dress-to-Erase-Lines-and-Bulges-2-via-yummielife.comNicole Fornabaio/Rd.com, Sunny Designs/Shutterstock, via yummielife.comWhen it comes to date night or an evening out with your girlfriends, a curve-hugging silhouette rules. But of course, confidence is key, and one of the ways to guarantee you look best in your favorite fitted or body hugging styles is a shaping slip. The Yummie by Heather Thomson Angelica Slip will give you comfortable, seamless coverage. Plus, it has a silicone strip at the hem to keep it in place. "What makes this slip essential is that it highlights only your best assets, giving you zoned compression that targets the areas where you need smoothing and shaping, and not where you don't. It maximizes movement potential so you won't feel 'stuffed in' and can freely transition from day to night," says Ulrich. Also try the very high-waisted ITEM m6 Shorty Shaping Shorts, which also have a no-slip silicone strip, and add butt-boosting panels to give your backside a perky lift. Elevate your look with these simple fashion upgrades that make you look expensive.

Content continues below ad

Under a racerback

04-What-to-Wear-Under-Every-Type-of-Dress-to-Erase-Lines-and-Bulges-via-spanx.comNicole Fornabaio/Rd.com, Sunny Designs/Shutterstock, via spanx.comWhile there are products available on the market that can slide through bra straps and pull them together, making them suitable for a racerback, they typically don't deliver the smooth appearance you want for a refined dress. Spanx Bra-llelujah! Racerback features SmartStretch straps and customized back zones for support and comfort. The smooth construction lies flat against your back, so there are no lumps, bumps, or visible bra lines—whether you're wearing a fitted number or a breezy silk style. Don't miss the bra myths you can (and should) ignore.

Under a mini

05-What-to-Wear-Under-Every-Type-of-Dress-to-Erase-Lines-and-Bulges-item m6-via-nordstrom.comNicole Fornabaio/Rd.com, Sunny Designs/Shutterstock, via nordstrom.comWhen it comes showing some leg, the last thing you want to do is show some shapewear. A high-waisted short—like the ITEM m6 Shorty Shaping Shorts and Yummie by Heather Thomson Cleo High Waist Short—gives you ultimate coverage from top to bottom, without riding up or falling down (translation: there's no avoiding chance of your undergarments peeking out). Try these 13 outfit tricks to fake longer legs.

Under a work dress

06-What-to-Wear-Under-Every-Type-of-Dress-to-Erase-Lines-and-Bulges-via-itemm6usa.comNicole Fornabaio/Rd.com, Sunny Designs/Shutterstock, via itemm6usa.comWhen you're in a professional setting, tights are often a better choice than bare legs. But wearing tights over shapewear can feel ridiculously bulky. The solution? Jenny Iannelli, ITEM m6 marketing manager communications and trade, suggests a shapewear/hosiery hybrid. Try: ITEM m6 Opaque Shapewear Tights or Spanx Leg Support Sheers, which reduce cling, and tame the tummy, thighs, and rear. Plus, they offer the chic, office-appropriate look of your favorite pair of tights. Wondering what you should wear to work? Don't miss the 14 easy style tricks that could earn you a promotion.

Content continues below ad

Under a knit dress

07-What-to-Wear-Under-Every-Type-of-Dress-to-Erase-Lines-and-Bulges-via-yummielife.comNicole Fornabaio/Rd.com, Sunny Designs/Shutterstock, via yummielife.comIt's always important to make sure your body can breathe and that you feel comfortable! "Our Maya Girl Short with Outlast has Outlast technology that allows you to stay cool—regulating your body temperature as you're on the move. It also has a 'hug' around the waist for just the right amount of support, meaning no muffin top," says Ulrich. Forget pilling, snagging, and stretching. Here's how to make your favorite knits last longer.

Under an evening gown

08-What-to-Wear-Under-Every-Type-of-Dress-to-Erase-Lines-and-Bulges-via-barenecessities.comNicole Fornabaio/Rd.com, Sunny Designs/Shutterstock, via barenecessities.comFor a black tie affair (aka when you'll be donning a full-length gown), a bodysuit is a terrific option. Rather than having to find two pieces that work together, a one-piece creates a streamlined shape from top to bottom. Plus, there are plenty of styles to choose from, depending on your figure and the specific silhouette you plan to wear. If you're wearing a fuller skirt, you may opt for a bikini cut style, like the TC Fine Intimates: Sheer Shaping Firm Control Bodysuit, which focuses on the upper half of the body and cuts just below the bum. For a more fitted style, a great all around pick is the Spanx OnCore Mid-Thigh Bodysuit, which features comfortable, sculpting power from your chest and back to your buns and thighs—with the added bonus of non-compressing molded bust to avoid smush. Read up on the classic dresses every woman should own. (Hint: An evening gown is one of them.)

Under a high-waisted skirt and top

09-What-to-Wear-Under-Every-Type-of-Dress-to-Erase-Lines-and-Bulges-via-yummielife.comNicole Fornabaio/Rd.com, Sunny Designs/Shutterstock, via yummielife.comWhile not a dress per say, a sophisticated two-piece ensemble often stands in for a dress. A high-waisted skirt slip (like the Yummie by Heather Thomson Yulia High Waist Skirt Slip or Spanx Two-Timing Half Slip) is a slimming essential. It smooths your upper hips, thighs, tush and belly, while providing the flexibility to wear whatever style you like on top. In addition to investing in great shapewear, try these style tricks to look slimmer in your clothes.

Content continues below ad

Want to stay smart and healthy?

Get our weekly Health Reads newsletter

how we use your e-mail
We will use your email address to send you this newsletter. For more information please read our privacy policy.