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The Best 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.

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shape wear for every dress Cavan Images/Getty Images

The best-kept smoothing secrets

The wrong undergarments can quickly turn a fashion do into a fashion don’t. Underwear lines, bras that cut into your back, and thongs that stick out are just a few of the problems the right undergarments will help you avoid. You also need to consider fabric breathability, long-wear comfort, and price point.

Ready to look your absolute best? Follow these tips for pairing your outfit with the perfect shapewear to flatter your body and accentuate all the right places. By the way, this is what happens when you stop wearing a bra altogether.

True Body Lift Bra shapewearvia nordstrom.com

Best shapewear for a snug top

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Bra bulges under your favorite tee are one of the signs you need to buy a new bra. This buttery soft bra removes all of that nonsense with a sleek design that practically hides any unwanted extra skin. Its soft fabric doesn’t cut into your skin and it’s also breathable for long wear. A soft-style bra is just one of the types of bras you need in your wardrobe.

Sculpting Seamless Mid-Thigh Bodysuit SKIMSvia nordstrom.com

Best shapewear for a jumpsuit

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Wearing shapewear under a jumpsuit used to be a no-no because of the limited undergarment options out there. Fast forward a few years and the perfect jumpsuit companion has arrived. It slims thighs and waist, and relieves back bulge while tightening your tummy. It packs a punch, but the best part about this design is how comfortable it will feel under your trendiest getup. And while you’re at it, don’t miss these smart solutions to common underwear problems.

Higher Power Shorts SPANX®via nordstrom.com

Best shapewear for a knit dress

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Knit dresses can be forgiving with tiny imperfections, but they can simultaneously accentuate major ones. For these reasons, your best bet is pairing your favorite knit dress with curve-hugging shorts. Shapewear like Spanx Higher Power Mid-Thigh Shaping Shorts will pull in your tummy while lifting and smoothing your derriere. Even your thighs will get love from this firm control garment. Check out these tips on how to make your favorite knits last longer.

Sculpting Seamless Mid Waist Briefs SKIMSvia nordstrom.com

Best shapewear for a pencil skirt

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Kim Kardashian West knows a thing or two about flawless dressing. She imparted all of her wisdom into Skims, her new line of undergarments that pull and cinch in all the right places. These mid-waist briefs are perfect under a pencil skirt, where they will create the illusion of a smaller waist and tighter bum. You can add them to your list of best gifts for her.

 DETAILS & CARE This luxurious plunge bra from Kim Kardashian West's SKIMS provides invisible support and a second-skin feel. Available in four different shades, this underwire bra features a low center-front panel that remains unseen under most necklines while bonded seams create a sleek look beneath clothing. Double-lined fabric on cups to enhance support 71% elastane, 29% polyamide Hand wash, line dry Imported Lingerie Item #6014850 Helpful info: Bra Fit Guide See details and tips from a salesperson (video) Free Shipping & returns See more GIFT OPTIONS Get free gift wrap when you pick up your order at a Nordstrom store! Choose gift options when you check out. Some items may not be eligible for certain gift wrap options. Pickup & In-Store Gift message (free) DIY gift kit (free) Packaged in a Nordstrom box (free) Wrapped with holiday gift wrap (free) Delivery Gift message (free) DIY gift kit ($2) Packaged in a Nordstrom box ($3) Need help finding the perfect gift? We’ve got you covered. Shop Gifts SKIMS SKIMS was founded by Kim Kardashian West as a new approach to figure-enhancing undergarments intended to lift, support and flatter. Fueled by Kim's passion to create truly considered, unique and highly technical solutions in shapewear and underwear, SKIMS is for everyone and for every body. Available in nine tonal colors and sizes XXS-5X. Earn up to 10 Points per dollar!Details (18) Naked Underwire Plunge Bra SKIMSvia nordstrom.com

Best shapewear for a low V-neck

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The cut on this bra makes it perfect for your most revealing V-neck shirts. The design is seamless but does include a wire to provide additional support. It comes in a variety of tones that can camouflage with your skin to make the undergarment basically disappear under clothes. Consider wearing this bra beneath your favorite tops for video conference calls.

Never Say Never Sexy High Waist Thong Shapewearvia cosabella.com

Best shapewear for under a tight dress

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Cosabella has developed a cult following for their stretchy thongs. Although lacy and delicate, they are virtually indestructible and can withstand years of washes without losing shape or color. They’ve used the same great materials to build this high-waisted thong. The extra thick top will compress any sign of a belly and the thong area is comfortable enough to wear all day. Hint: Here’s how to find a bra that fits.

Mother Tucker® Corset BELLY BANDIT®via nordstrom.com

Best shapewear for post-pregnancy

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New moms can rejoice at the comfortable fabric and adjustable fit of this waist trainer. Considered a long-time closet staple for new moms, these types of undergarments are designed to slim bellies and to pull everything in. This particular design also hides any pesky back bulge and can be comfortably sported under a casual tee or a more formal dress.

Control Top Leggings COMMANDOvia nordstrom.com

Best shapewear for a comfy night in

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These control-top leggings are your best friend for comfortable nights in when you still want to look your best. The brand uses an internal control-top waistband to smooth out the belly area. It also offers support in the derriere and offers quality fabric that won’t make for embarrassing moments when you bend over.

Yummie Women's Peyton Seamless Wire Free Strapless Convertible Bravia amazon.com

Best shapewear under a strapless dress

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When 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.” Find out the best bra color to wear under white T-shirts.

Va Bien Women's Ultra Lift Plunge Satin Panel Bodysuit 1500via amazon.com

Best shapewear for a halter neck

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As with strapless styles, some women avoid halters 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 show off your toned shoulders, arms, and back in 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 crisscross and halter styles), and built-in boning for tummy and lower back smoothness.

Convertible Slip YUMMIEvia nordstrom.com

Best shapewear for a bodycon dress

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When 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 your best in fitted or body-hugging styles is to wear a shaping slip. The Yummie Convertible 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,” says Ulrich. “It maximizes movement potential, so you won’t feel ‘stuffed in’ and can freely transition from day to night.”

Cleo Inshapes High Waist Shaping Shortvia yummie.com

Best shapewear for a mini

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When it comes to showing some leg, the last thing you want to do is show some shapewear. A high-waisted short like the Yummie Cleo High Waist Short gives you ultimate coverage from top to bottom, without riding up or falling down. (Translation: There’s no chance of your undergarments peeking out.)

MYSEXY Body Shaper for Women Tummy Control Shapewear Plus Size Seamless Bodysuitvia amazon.com

Best shapewear for an evening gown

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For 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 shapewear 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 low-cut dress, you might want to opt for a style that lets you wear your preferred bra, like the MYSEXY Body Shaper, which focuses on the upper half of the body and cuts just below the bum. Read up on the classic dresses every woman should own. (Hint: An evening gown is one of them.)

Hidden Curves Firm Shaping High Waist Skirt Slipvia yummie.com

Best shapewear for a high-waisted skirt

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While not a dress per se, a sophisticated two-piece ensemble often stands in for a dress. A high-waisted skirt slip, like the Yummie Hidden Curve High Waist Firm Control Shapewear Skirt 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.

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Priscila Martinez
Priscila Martinez is a freelance writer and award-winning brand specialist living in Los Angeles, California. She covers topics like health, beauty, fashion, travel, celebrity, workplace and the public relations & entertainment industries. She writes for publications like Forbes, Adweek, Mane Addicts, Radio Disney's Sweety High, Extraordinary Health, Asia Times, and dozens of other publications.