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Different Underwear Styles 101

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 a style guide so you look and feel gorgeous in every pair.

Underwear for Everyday Comfort 

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. Here’s how each type serves its purpose:

The Bikini Cut Panty 

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. 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. 

Best for those with:

  • Athletic Builds - Provides enough coverage while showcasing toned legs.
  • Hourglass Figures - Accentuates natural curves while providing balanced coverage.
  • Petite Shapes - High leg openings elongate the legs, enhancing shorter figures.

The Cheeky Panty

The cheeky underwear 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, the cheeky cut is at its best when trimmed or detailed with lace, a fun twist on an elegant fabric

Best for those with:

  • Round and Fuller Bottoms - Highlights and flatters by offering a cheeky rear view without too much coverage.
  • Petite to Medium Builds - Enhances the backside with minimal coverage, adding curves to flatter smaller figures.

The Hipster Panty

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. The hipster underwear strikes a powerful aesthetic, and a solid-colored pair of hipsters can exude a minimalistic, effortless cool. 

Best for those with:

  • Apple and Square Shapes - Offers good coverage around the waist, smoothing out the midsection for a flattering fit.
  • Curvy Figures - Supports and contours naturally, enhancing the body’s shape without restricting movement.
  • Fuller Hips and Thighs - The extended side fabric provides comfortable coverage, making it ideal for those with wider hips.

Coquette Briefs White

The Mid-Rise Panty

The mid-rise sits at or just below the navel, offering a comfortable, secure fit that aligns well with most clothing waistlines. Ideal for everyday wear, this versatile style provides moderate coverage and is suitable for a variety of activities, making it a staple in any wardrobe for its blend of comfort and practicality.

Best for those with:

  • Rectangular and Apple Shapes - Provides a smooth silhouette around the midsection, enhancing the natural waistline and offering balanced coverage.
  • Petite Figures - Helps elongate the torso, creating a more proportioned look without overwhelming shorter frames.

Why They’re Your  Everyday Go-To Bottoms 

These 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 a bikini, hipster, mid-rise, 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. 

Getting Fancy with Seamless Lingerie Panties 

Let’s face it. There’s something special about a slinky pair of lingerie panties that’s just the right amount of revealing. So when you want that extra bit of boldness, reach for your favorite G-string or thongthese seamless underwear feel like a second skin with minimal fabric in the front and a thin strand in the back showing 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 

While they’re both revealing types of lingerie, here are their differences:

The G-String 

A G-string is a minimalist type of underwear that provides the least amount of coverage. It features a narrow string that sits between the buttocks and is attached to a very small fabric triangle at the front. The waistband is also typically thin, forming a "T" shape at the back. G-strings are designed to eliminate panty lines completely, making them ideal for wearing under very tight clothing. Due to their minimal coverage, G-strings are often chosen for their potential to increase allure and minimize tan lines when sunbathing.

Best for those with:

  • Petite to Medium Builds - Minimal fabric makes it ideal for smaller frames, avoiding excess material bunching.
  • Toned or Athletic Figures - Flaunts well-defined bodies and muscles without too much skin coverage.
  • Narrow Hips - The minimal side fabric doesn't add bulk, making it flattering for narrower figures.

Oh So Sweet Thong White

The Thong

A thong is a style of underwear known for its modest front coverage and a strip of fabric at the back that sits between the buttocks but is wider than the string of a G-string. Thongs provide slightly more coverage than G-strings but still reduce the visibility of panty lines. They are popular under form-fitting pants, dresses, and skirts. Thongs can vary in the width of the back fabric and are often chosen for their comfort and practicality, offering a balance between invisibility under clothes and sufficient coverage.

Best for those with:

  • Curvier Figures - Helps avoid panty lines and smooths out silhouettes under form-fitting dresses and skirts.
  • Petite to Medium Body Type - Enhances the natural line of the body without overwhelming it with fabric.

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. 

Bonus Tips for Selecting Your G-String and Thong

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.

Find pleasure in the small things! Shop our intimates now!

Full Coverage Underwear Styles

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. 

The Boy Short

True to its name, this style of women's 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. Because of the extra fabric, pair boy shorts with looser bottoms and stay away from skinny jeans, leggings, or spandex material. 

Your favorite pair of soft, cozy boy shorts are perfect for: 

  • Pairing with dresses – The great thing about full coverage is that you can wear your boy shorts under billowy dresses. 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. 

Best for those with:

  • Athletic Builds - Complements muscular legs and hips with more coverage.
  • Pear Shapes - Offers good coverage and comfort for wider hips and thighs.
  • Fuller Bottoms - Provides ample coverage at the back and sides, offering a balanced look.

The Brief

There is nothing more chic than matching a pair of minimalistic solid-colored briefs with a cropped tight-fitting tank top. While this underwear option, 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. 

Best for those with:

  • Apple and Plus-size Shapes - High-waisted briefs provide excellent support for the midsection, smoothing out the waist.
  • Mature Figures - Offers full coverage, support, and comfort, suitable for those who prioritize these features.
  • Rectangular Shapes - Adds definition to the waistline, creating more curvature in the silhouette.

Get High End Underwear Styles from Gooseberry Intimates

Looking for the best underwear pieces that will take your lingerie 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 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.

 

Sources: 

  1. 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/ 
  2. 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/ 
  3. Good Housekeeping. A Deep Dive on 10 Different Types of Underwear for Women. https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/clothing/a32603443/types-of-underwear-for-women/ 

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