Underwear is something we put on every day, it provides the foundation to our overall attire experience. Male and female, underwear gives us protection and support to our important bits and protects our outerwear from soiling. Donning underwear has become a second nature habit and generally few of us give any thought to what we put on during the day or whether our underwear is fit for purpose or suited to the right occasion. Our underwear habits can speak volumes about personality and can have a marked effect on underwear production globally. Superstition, personality and lifestyle are all things that can affect our choices in underwear and can have a marked effect on our health if we are not careful. The following facts about underwear should give you some food for thought in underwear choices and habits and a head start in ensuring you are properly attired and healthy in mind and body.
15. Keeping abreast of things
Bras keep breasts in check, enhance the appearance under clothing, provide support and help prevent back strain if you have large breasts. It is recommended that a bra should be replaced every 6 months to ensure you are getting the support you need. A new bra should be fastened on the first hooks, (the ones at the end). Once the bra is worn a few times, and elastic becomes less effective, you should then use the middle set of hooks and eventually the third set. Straps should be tightened to a point where they can only be lifted to an inch above your shoulders. The panel between cups should sit tight against your skin and should remain there when you lift your arms above your head. These steps will ensure you have a good fitting bra. If you have reached the point of using the third set of hooks you start to lose proper support and the bra has little or no effect and it is time to replace it.
14. Pretty in pink
When it comes to the most popular colour underwear women like to wear, pink appears to be the one that trends most often, with black and white coming close, which are in fact the most popular colour for men to buy. So, what can the colour pink tell us about personality? Pink is a lightened version of red only more gentle and romantic. We associate pink with femininity and use it to distinguish girls from boys right from birth. A light pink is a passive colour which gives the feeling of youthful, girlish innocence, perhaps even a little shy. However, if you choose a darker pink, rather like red, this brings out more of the woman in you as it is seductive and more daring. It indicates more confidence. There is always a rise in the purchase of pink underwear around Valentine’s Day to bring out the spirit of the occasion. It sends out subtler signals than red in the course of romance.
13. Single measures
It is a fine line, but statistics say that ‘Singletons are much less likely to put on fresh undies that their married counterparts—82 percent versus 88 percent’. 1This applies to men more than women. So, is the reason simply to cut down on laundry or because single people are lazy, or because single people have no partner in life to impress? One theory in regards to men is that their mum used to go out a buy it for them, so getting into a routine of regularly buying new underwear themselves is a slow process and of course mum used to do the laundry. The downsides of not changing underwear daily are, and this goes for women as well as men, a build-up of bacteria, causing irritation or infection, increase in odour, yeast infection, and urinary tract infections (UTIs) such as cystitis. And remember what your mother told you about wearing a clean pair every day in case something happens to you.
12. Thongs are not your friend
On the upside, thongs are great if you want to avoid a visible pantie line, but there are also downsides to think about if you are a thong wearer. The thong, out of all underwear, has the most intimate relationship with your body because it fits between your buttocks and so sits closely over the anal and genital areas. Bacteria sits all over our body and in particular likes warm, wet places and the anus is a favourite. Yeast will also grow in this environment. Despite being of minimal material, a too tight fit will restrict airflow and encourage hot, sweaty conditions. If your thong picks up any bacteria or yeast from the anus it can reach the genital or groin area through movement thus spreading infection, causing urinary tract through the urethra and yeast infections. Also, friction from the thong can cause irritation to the skin, so make sure your choice of thong is comfortable.
11. The bare facts
Why do we wear thongs? In modern times the most obvious answer is because they save us from that all embarrassing pantie line as there is no cover over the buttock area. Just one step from going commando. Worn by themselves, thongs are the closest we get to nudity. They are one of the earliest forms of clothing known to man and were originally worn by men as a means of support to the genitals in the style of a loin cloth. In the modern day regular thongs have a thin waste band connecting front to back, worn by both men and women. The G-string has string-like straps and the C-string has no strings at all, just a sturdy wire that holds its own. The latter two reveal even more flesh. Made popular in the 1970s, G-strings were worn on the beaches and provided a way to get an all over tan. Popular with erotic dancers the C-string is a means of getting away with bearing as much flesh as is acceptable or respectable in public.
10. The average woman owns how many pairs?
Knickers or panties, call them what you will, have a rummage through your underwear draw and see how many pairs you have. A lot right, probably too many, and there will definitely be some that have seen better days and would make good dusters. In fact recent research reveals ‘women own 42 pairs of knickers each, of which 31 are ‘special,’ aka never see daylight.’ 2 So what is our fetish with panties? A lot of the time we buy new panties for special occasions, wear them once and then never wear them again. Furthermore, as long as a pair is still in tact and serves the function it seems we just don’t throw them away, yet we still keep buying. We tend to wear the same panties over and over so when they become unwearable, rather than look in the drawer, we just get more. It is however important to have enough to serve any occasion so a variety of choice is essential.
9. Ten years of togetherness
The average guy has underwear that is 10 years old. Well not exactly, ‘The typical pair of pants is four years old, but one in 10 stingy men have held onto their underwear for more than 10 years.’ 3 You do have to ask though, is it stinginess, economics or lifestyle. As previously mentioned some guys keep a pair of pants going for days before changing them, one pair goes a long way. On the whole men’s underwear is more durable than women’s so perhaps a single pair will last longer. An average of 20 pairs is how many a man will own at one time. When you think about it women’s panties get pulled around more. Women have to drop their undies when using the toilet. We pull at the sides, stretch them out around our ankles and then spend time readjusting them. Men generally don’t have this problem as most men’s pants have a convenient front opening ready for the man to stand and pee.
8. Should you sit in satin?
Satin underwear is very pretty and essentially comes under that special occasion selection. However if your underwear is all satin then you need to be aware of the downsides that can occur from wearing the fabric. Satin is a non-breathable fabric and when those enclosed areas around anus, groin and genitalia get hot and sweaty a breeding ground for infections is created. Satin will not soak up the moisture so it stays put. Most panties will have a cotton gusset which will help to alleviate the problem, so do check them out before you buy. Bras too, especially if you suffer from boob sweat , can allow bacteria to thrive on the underside of the breast, which can cause sores to develop. Loose fitting satin camisoles are ok as they allow air between the fabric and the body. There is no need to ditch the satin, just keep it for those special occasions.
7. Lucky in red
Red underwear is for those feeling lucky because Italian women ring in the new years by wearing red underwear because it is considered lucky, and not just women, the men do it to. The same tradition happens in Turkey too. It seems that the wearing of red underwear wards off bad. In China, if the year you were born under (horse, pig, rabbit etc.), is happening, then you should wear red underwear for the entirety of that year. In Poland, students wear red underwear when taking exams, as a lucky charm after rumours spread that top grades were achieved by girls wearing red underwear. Red is a colour that protects you, which makes sense when you consider red for danger, not a wise idea to go near. It is superstition but if it helps then why not. On the one hand red spells danger but it seems that if you are feeling lucky then red underwear has the pulling power.
6. Second-hand underwear
Second-hand underwear is a no no unless you can guarantee it has not worn it before, yet in some countries the selling of second-hand underwear is common. For instance, in Zimbabwe, ’the import of used underwear was so common’ 4, it was banned back in December 2011 in an attempt to address its own economic situation and health concerns that can arise from used underwear. In Japan you can find some used underwear being sold from vending machines and indeed women from all over the globe sell their used underwear to curious onlookers from the comfort of their own homes. Apart from potential stains remaining on the underwear which may never come out despite washing them, consider what those stains are, what bacteria or fungi they could harbour, such as thrush, and not forgetting any infection from faecal deposits. You have to wash clothes at a really high temperature to kill the bacteria off, which would ruin most fabrics and so would rarely be washed effectively.
5. It’s a match
Making sure you have a clean pair of panties on in case of the unexpected is one thing. Another is, as much as possible, to ensure you are wearing a matching bra and panties, or at least common in fabric and or colour scheme. Only a very small percentage of women (approx. 15%) wear matching underwear. How many times do you go out without thinking about it. We have a tendency to just grab the first pair of panties and bra that come to hand. Some may say that at least you are wearing some, however it is so much nicer to have something on that sembles a match, to make you feel properly dressed. It shows you have given some thought to your appearance. Next time you purchase new underwear also give some thought to what bras you already have at home and do your best to select panties that will look good with them.
4. Biggest boobs
So which country do you think has the biggest boobs? Currently it is the USA. And we are talking natural boobs not those enhanced with implants. So what factors can determine breast size? Diet, genetics and hormonal balance all contribute. Breasts grow during puberty and like all growing things they need the right nutrients to flourish. Your genetic makeup may also determine how large your breasts will grow. And of course as we grow and get older so our body shape changes and our hormones start jumping all over the place. Sedentary lifestyle and health issues such as thyroid problems can all affect our hormonal balance, which is turn can affect the size of our breasts. Being overweight is a major factor in breast size. Breast tissue is made up of fat and muscle, so the more unhealthy fat you intake the more it piles on and unfortunately this includes the breasts, so be careful when eating those leftover tit bits.
3. What sort of woman are you?
Does the type of panties you wear give away the person you are? Research suggests that they can. If you wear white cotton panties you are low maintenance and down to earth. Put it to the test and check out the type of panties you have with the person you are. Perhaps you are high maintenance and wear frilly, lacy ones, or are a daring confident women in a thong. Style and colour all play a part in giving our personality traits away. Who knew that underwear could speak for us. If you are one of the lads, sporty or up for a laugh then boy shorts or boxers are for you. Bikinis suggest you are laid back. Are you a passionate red, or a joyful bright yellow, a peaceful blue or romantic pink? Our moods fluctuate so wear something that reflects your mood and if you want a change then just go change your panties.
2. Things to consider when buying underwear
So, you need new underwear. Are you the sort of person who just goes out and buys the same as always or do you give more thought to this very important purchase? It is estimated that about 80% of women are wearing the wrong sized bra. What’s the point if it does not fit properly. A good bra outfitter will always provide a measuring service. Underwear should fit comfortably and correctly and serve the purpose for whatever reason you are buying it. For example, if you are wearing a tight fitting dress there is no point wearing bikini or midi’s, the last thing you want is a visible pantie line, better to go for a thong or shapewear. Materials can react to each other too and make clothes cling to your body, so bear in mind every aspect of your outfit. Make sure your purchases are appropriate and cater for the occasion. Underwear serves a purpose, so get it right.
1. Global underwear market
Every piece of underwear you buy contributes to a massive billion dollar global underwear market. Forecasts estimate global underwear market to be somewhere in the 80-90 billion US dollars range in 2016. Our smalls it turns are really quite big in the greater scheme of things. Whilst a lot of your underwear is made in Asia, the companies who sell it are elsewhere. The top global producers are the USAs L Brands (Victoria’s Secret), Hanes (Wonderbra) and Europe’s Triumph and Calzedonia group. Other independent brands also hold their own in the market with a smaller percent. Movement in the underwear industry largely depends on demand and the latest fashion trends. If one style becomes popular you are likely to see more of it for sale on the retailers’ shelves. It really is important to producers of underwear that they provide what both men and women want, so the next time you pop out to buy your panties just think about how much you can influence the underwear industry.