the best. really.

What Is the Best Women’s Underwear?

Panties for everyone. Photo: Courtesy of the retailers

Underwear: You wear it every day, so you better get it right (much like jeans and white tees). Here, we’ve gathered intel from 21 experts (stylists, rappers, models, designers, and Amber Rose) for a collection of the best in women’s underwear.

Mesh bikini

On Gossamer Mesh Bikini

“My underwear drawer is the most boring place in the world, because all I have are dozens of pairs of the same thing: On Gossamer’s Mesh Bikinis. It is so far and away the perfect underwear that I have a hard time understanding why anybody wears anything else: It’s superlight, highly breathable, and — most importantly — hugely VPL-resistant. Seriously, it’s as VPL-resistant as a thong, but without the annoyingness of a thong.” — Kim France, founding editor, Lucky

Cotton bikini

Logo Cotton Stretch Bikini

“I am very loyal to Calvin Klein underwear. Just ask my boo, he sees them every sleepover and probably assumes they sponsor me, but it’s my hard-earned dollars maintaining this luxury. They gives me a smooth finish under fitted clothing and their fabric keeps the coochie fresca. I have every color Calvin in these cuts.” –Junglepussy, rapper

Amber Rose’s thong

La Perla Freedom Brazilian Thong

“So my friend Chyna, we were at Neiman’s the other day, and I was picking out some La Perla underwear. They were like $120, and Chyna is like, ‘What the hell are you doing? Why are you buying such expensive underwear?’ And I was like, ‘Girl this is going to change your life,’ so I bought her a pair. I know this sounds crazy, but wearing expensive underwear under your clothes gives you a certain type of confidence in a really cool way. She wore them, and was like, ‘Oh my god, they just feel different than Victoria’s Secret!’ I got her a thong. Chyna will not wear anything but thongs. She’s a thong girl. I prefer thongs when I have clothes on, but at night when I sleep, I like good old-fashioned boy shorts. I’ll do Victoria’s Secret if I don’t have a man around, but I won’t wear regular cotton briefs if I have a man over.” — Amber Rose, model, actress, entrepreneur

Wedgie-free bikini

Commando Cotton Bikini

“For me, it’s all about comfort and functionality. Not only do I love Commando-brand underwear for myself, but for my celebrity clients as well. These seamless undies create a super-flawless fit (a.k.a. wedgie-free), and everything looks perfect — whether I’m wearing them under leggings or a silk cami dress. I’m obsessed.” — Jasmine Caccamo, stylist

Emily Schuman’s no-show thong

Commando ‘Butter’ Stretch Modal Thong

“Okay, so here’s the thing about these thongs: There is nothing remotely sexy about them — they’re devoid of lace, have superthick sides, but they lie completely flat against my skin and don’t show under even the tightest, lightest pieces. And the fact that there are no seams or tags makes it feel like you’ve gone commando (hence the name). Best of both worlds!” — Emily Schuman, founder, Cupcakes and Cashmere

Microfiber thong

Commando Microfiber Thong

“My favorite underwear are Commando’s thongs. They are seamless, and come in great colors and an array of sizes. The best underwear you forget are even there, and that’s what these do.” — Tiffany Gifford, stylist

Lace boy shorts

Hanky Panky ‘Signature Lace’ Boyshorts

“Hanky Panky boy shorts are so soft and comfortable, and never show a panty line!” — Leesa Evans, costume designer


Cosabella Dolce G-string

“My favorite for every day are Cosabella G-strings. They’re cotton and I like that they sit higher, and just generally make you look good in a ’90s Empire Records way. For nighttime, I wear La Perla, which is my favorite because, well, it’s La Perla and I feel like Pretty Woman, after she went to Rodeo Drive. These nighties are what I spend 95 percent of my time in.” — Alexandra Spencer, model and creative director

Barbara Corcoran’s lace thong

Hanky Panky Signature Lace Original Rise Thong

“Everyone seems to wear these. They come in every color, like 30 colors, and it’s like a lace crayon box when you open your drawer. Here’s what it is about them — they’re inexpensive and last forever. I don’t think I’ve ever thrown a single pair out. The stretch material never gives up on you, and they don’t feel like you have underwear on. I can’t say I’ve worn just these with a skirt (I need pantyhose), but they’re just great and never, never wrinkle.” — Barbara Corcoran, founder, Corcoran Group

Cotton hi-waist

Marieyat Black Bex Thong

“I love a good hi-waist; they bring me back to Christy Turlington days. Sometimes, hi-waists are comfy, but the cut can be unflattering. Marieyat has a very strong point of view that resonates with today’s woman. Her aesthetic is beautiful; the cuts are really flattering and unconventional. In my store in Williamsburg, we also sell a style called the Canova ’90s Overt that’s cut ’90s bikini with an overt, in a fine Italian sporty mesh, that makes a woman look long.” — Christina Viviani, co-founder, the Great Eros

Hari Nef's no-show's

Victoria’s Secret Bare No Show Hiphugger Panty Panties

“These li’l panties disappear underneath whatever you’re wearing. I always wear them to shoots. There’s this rule for models that you have to wear a nude panty because you don’t know what they’re going to put you in. If it’s a white sheer dress, and you’re in your Hello Kitty underwear, that’s not the look. So wearing a barely there panty is the norm and expected. These are like a nudeish color, though that’s a heavily politicized word in the fashion industry. Let’s check if they’re in a variety of skin tones. I know they have the anemic colors, which is me, and they have the darker ones, but I don’t think they’re the ones a black woman would call a nude, you know? Colors aside, they really don’t show under a dress. You can wear a body-con dress, and it’s fine. And it’s also not a thong, at least not the way we traditionally think of them. I hate those.” — Hari Nef, model and actress

Editor’s Note: While these are no longer available, there is a similar pair at Victoria’s Secret.

Cotton boy shorts

Commando Women’s Cotton Boy Shorts

“Commando’s boy shorts are both elastic and trim-free — which means they won’t dig in, bunch up, or cause lumpy, unflattering bulges under a flattering pair of pants. They don’t ever shift around, slide, twist, or reveal themselves once you start moving and sweating. Best of all, the wide sides help them stay securely in place — because a wedgie under a body-conscious dress is not a good look or feel. If you’ve ever wondered what the stars on the red carpet were wearing underneath those sheer, unforgiving gowns, the answer is almost certainly a pair of Commandos.” — Alison Freer, costume designer

Peggy Siegal’s jersey briefs

Eres Lumière Monica Stretch-Jersey Briefs

“I wear Eres underwear. Wouldn’t leave the house without it. I can’t believe I am telling you this. It just fits. It’s expensive, and you get what you pay for.” — Peggy Siegal, publicist


Baserange Bell Modal-blend Velour Briefs

“I love Baserange underwear — this season, we have them in baby-blue and pale-yellow velour that’s so soft. They also make really easy pullover bras that have no hardware, which I love because I’m not always a fan of feeling wire or hook closures. And obviously, one must get the matching panty for a comfy set.” — Carnelia Garcia, buyer and store manager, Maryam Nassir Zadeh

Editor’s Note: While these are sold out, there is still a Baserange Bell Basics Pack at Need Supply Co.

Low-rise thong

Nude v1 Essaouira Thong

“I love Negative Underwear because they are super comfortable, cute, sexy, and also functional. By functional, I mean they stay in place comfortably when worn with the various skirts and high-waisted pants I wear, and no lines ever show through.” — Christina Pacelli, stylist

Cotton thong

Hanky Panky Low Rise Cotton Thong 3 Pack

“I am equal parts proud and embarrassed that I have only been wearing Hanky Panky underwear for, oh, about 14 years. I don’t have to think about them, and they just work.” — Iva Pawling, co-founder, Richer Poorer

Cotton briefs

Natori Bliss Cotton Girl Briefs

“For everyday underwear, I need them to feel comfortable and breathable. I also need them to appear smooth, and not pinch my skin in any place or ride up. And this is the only pair that does all of the above! They will eventually replace almost all of your underwear in your drawer.” — Dolley Frearson, co-founder and creative director, High Fashion Home

Lena Dunham’s string bikini briefs

Joe Boxer Women’s 6-Pack Low-Rise String Bikini Panties — Assorted

“I love a slightly baggy, but fun underpant … Joe Boxer was cool and hip when I was 12, and now it’s a Kmart property. Leaving aside the ethical implications of that, I fucking love the underwear. I now order the string bikini brief in a large, even though a medium might be more supportive of my butt, but this gives me a little tail. A six-pack of three solids and three patterns for me is the perfect balance.” — Lena Dunham

Granny panties

Jockey Women’s Underwear Elance Brief — 3 Pack

“These measurements are not titillating. Unlike the chic — even slightly sexy — grandma-esque briefs from lines like Araks and Baserange, the plain cotton Elance leaves pretty much everything to the imagination. But that’s part of the Elance’s magic. You don’t wear these undergarments — they wear you. More exactly, they swaddle you. They’re the underwear equivalent of a hot water bottle, or curling up with a puppy.” — Margaret Rhodes, “These Granny Panties Feel Like a Warm Embrace

Organic hi-waist

Botanica Workshop Astra Hi-Waist Brief

“I prefer underwear that I can’t feel on my body. It has to just feel like an extension of my outfit. I’m really into Botanica Workshop right now. The Astra high-waist briefs feel like you’re going commando. They’re so comfortable. Everything they make is 100 percent organic and so comfortable. They’re also made in the USA, so that’s a big bonus for me, personally.” — Adele Tetangco, founder, Garmentory

VPL-free hi-waist

High Rise Hipster

“A good high-waisted moment can make your butt look like it’s starring in its own ’90s Calvin Klein commercial. These slide right up to your navel, hug but don’t squeeze your midrange, and don’t lose their shape or bunch up around your hips during the day. They flatter your waist and hug your curves, but don’t pinch at the waistline like other elastic briefs or ride up. You’d have to be really squinting to detect any VPL, too.” – Lori Keong, writer

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The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best women’s jeans, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, ultra-flattering pants, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

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What Is the Best Women’s Underwear?