One of the best things about underwear is that it comes in all shapes and styles. From women's underwear to men's underwear, you’re bound to find the perfect pair for a wide range of occasions and situations. But at the same time, the bevy of underwear style options can make it feel like being in a candy shop—making it difficult to curate the pieces that will leave you feeling sweet and satisfied.
Are thongs just fun or also functional? Is there a difference between hipsters and bikini cuts? And is there ever really a time to pull out those classic briefs?
Keep reading for the low down on the different underwear styles, from barely there to full coverage. We’ll share the strengths of different types of undies, occasions for wearing them, and how to style them so you look and feel gorgeous in every pair.
Let’s face it. There’s something special about a slinky pair of undies that’s just the right amount of revealing. So when you want that extra bit of boldness, reach for your favorite G-string or thong—those bottoms with minimal fabric in the front and a thin strand in the back with little to no visible panty line.
These are the ideal underlayer for a variety of outfits, including:
- Statement dresses from the tight-fitting little black dress to the gorgeous floor-length gown
- Professional attire such as pencil skirts, work pants, or jumpsuits
- Casual wear including jeans, shorts, and rompers
In fact, there really isn’t a wrong way to wear your thong or G-string, and “just because” is always a good reason for some strappy fun. But let’s dive deeper into what makes these seamless panties and undergarments so versatile. Keep the following essential elements and factors for the best underwear in mind to get the most use out of your delicate undies for everday wear:
No panty lines – If you have ever put on a tight pair of jeans or a silky smooth dress that wraps around perfectly only to realize the outline of your underwear is clear as day, then you know just how useful a thong or G-string can be. These barely-there undergarments mean seamless silhouettes and no headaches over unwelcome panty lines.1
Just revealing enough – While still providing coverage, these whispers of fabric will also leave you feeling sexy and special. Dainty, lace-filled pieces strike an elegant, timeless look. So next time you’re shopping for a staple lingerie collectible, don’t pass up the thong or G-string.
G-String vs. Thong
While thongs and G-strings are easily grouped together, an important difference between G string vs. thong is the width of the strand in the back. G-strings are as close to minimal coverage as you can get whereas thongs have slightly more fabric to them. This can lead to the following differences:
G-strings are better when you need no pantylines and want totally seamless underwear, for example, if the fabric of your outfit is very delicate and tight and would show even the tiniest wrinkle.2
- In terms of comfort, you may find that you prefer one over the other, so choose the width of the fabric that best suits you.
Make It Your Own
With the G-string or thong, there are endless ways to add your own charm to the basic design. Throw in your unique flair by paying attention to the details in each different style of undergarment. Even though these undies don’t come with much fabric to begin with, they can be very intricately crafted. Consider these example variations to get your creativity sparking:
- Choose a G-string with a higher waistline to elongate the legs and create a bold, powerful look.
- Opt for a thong with more fabric in the front—similar to the bikini or cheeky cuts below—for a laid back, casual chic design.
- Select a G-string with double strap detailing around the waistband to create an extra strappy, modern aesthetic.
When it comes to the different women’s underwear styles, there are no more dependable and versatile options than the bikini, hipster, and cheeky cuts. While these three types all offer medium levels of coverage, they come with important differences:
The bikini panty has a flat silhouette – The classic bikini underwear cut draws inspiration from the swimsuit bottom, featuring a low rise and high leg openings.3 With not too much or too little fabric, it’s a comfortable, practical option for the everyday. Whether you’re working hard at the gym or running around town for errands, the bikini has your back.
The hipster hugs the hips – If you need a little more to feel supported or want a high cut brief, opt for the hipster underwear instead. This style is defined by more fabric around the waistband than the bikini.1 The hipster cut strikes a powerful aesthetic, and a solid-colored pair of hipsters can exude a minimalistic, effortless cool.
The cheeky shows off the back – Chic, sassy, and spicy, the cheeky has the most personality. Somewhere between a thong and a bikini in terms of the back,3 the cheeky cut is at its best when trimmed or detailed with lace, a fun twist on an elegant fabric.
Your Everyday Go-To Bottoms
These three underwear styles are most commonly worn on a daily basis, perfect for a variety of situations. The benefits they provide include:
Plenty of protection – With bikini, hipster, and cheeky cuts, you don’t have to worry about your clothing chafing against your skin. This means that these underwear styles are particularly suited for wearing with heftier fabrics such as denim, corduroy, fleece, or wool.
Ease of mobility – If you’ve ever sat down in a chair only to feel your underwear pull, you’ll be glad for the breathing room and extra freedom these styles often. Still skin tight and without excess fabric, bikinis, hipsters, and cheeky styles don’t cut into your range of motion. As such, they’re perfect for when you’re on the go.
Don’t be afraid to wear these extremely versatile styles for occasions as diverse as:
- A mid-morning stroll along the coastline in a flowy summer dress
- An hours-long car ride to the mountains where you’ll be spending the day hiking
- A relaxing day spent lounging around during your staycation at a ritzy downtown hotel
If you’re looking for the maximum amount of protection, boy shorts and briefs are the answer. These two full-coverage styles mean extra support, and given the higher waistbands and lower leg openings, you can even wear them on their own when you’re lounging around. Let’s take a look at the unique characteristics of each style.
True to its name, this style of underwear most closely resembles the square, boxy shape of men’s briefs, high across the hips on the top and extending to the upper thighs on the bottom.1 Because of the extra fabric, pair boy shorts with looser bottoms and stay away from skinny jeans, leggings, or spandex material.
You favorite pair of soft, cozy boy shorts is perfect for:
Pairing with dresses – The great thing about full coverage is that you can wear your boy shorts under billowy dresses.1 Step out feeling completely confident without fear of any fashion mishaps waiting to happen.
Wearing to bed – If you don’t want to looseness and extra fabric of pajama pants and briefs but still want plenty of coverage in the sheets, boy shorts strike a perfect balance. Throw on a flowy white button down for that cool factor, or opt for a cropped, lightweight tank top on those warmer nights.
There is nothing more chic than matching a pair of minimalistic solid-colored briefs with a cropped tight fitting tank top. While this style of underwear with its higher rise and full coverage in the back has not always been considered the sexiest option, it’s actually a hassle-free, understated yet tasteful choice for wearing by itself around the house.
With briefs, you can be sure to have your pick. They come in a host of variations, including:
High-waisted – For those moments when a tad more fabric around the waistline can only help, high-waisted briefs are your friend. These offer greater control and shaping than the original version, especially if made from a tighter, elastic fabric.
High cut – Referring to the sharper angle of the leg openings, high cut briefs make your legs look miles long. They complement the extra coverage perfectly, giving you an elegant, lean silhouette, perfect for those sunset photos.
Gooseberry: Sustainably Sourced High End Intimates to Elevate Your Collection
Looking for the dream pieces that will take your underwear drawer to the next level? Try our intricately detailed Dainty thong in five richly luscious colors, or find those vacation vibes with the Tosca thong in a jewel-toned teal. Complete the set with the stunning Tosca bra, a feminine demi cup style trimmed with scalloped hand-cut lace.
Want a lounge-worthy option instead? For those days when you sit back and relax, look no further than our minimalistic Les Girls collection in soft neutral shades. From bodysuits to crop tops to loose cotton shirts, our delicately crafted pieces exude simple elegance.
Thinking to yourself “how long should you keep your underwear?”. The variety of undergarments at Gooseberry can help to give you a diverse array of regular underwear and intimates that can help to prolong the life of your garments.
All our intimates are designed with love and care, adhering to Fair Trade and sustainable best practices. Shop Gooseberry when you’re in the mood for something sweet, spicy, or anything in-between.
Cosmopolitan. A Breakdown of ALL the Types of Underwear You Might Need in Your Lingerie Drawer. https://www.cosmopolitan.com/style-beauty/fashion/a28194554/underwear-types-styles-women/
The List. When Should You Wear A G-String Or A Thong? https://www.thelist.com/614429/when-should-you-wear-a-g-string-or-a-thong/
Good Housekeeping. A Deep Dive on 10 Different Types of Underwear for Women. https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/clothing/a32603443/types-of-underwear-for-women/