It’s about time you learned how to buy the perfect lingerie for the lady in your life. Let’s start at the beginning with three basic rules: avoid anything red, never buy crotchless pants, and stay away from anything with multiple straps. Start your credit cards, gentlemen.

e all know that lingerie makes for the best present – everybody wins. But cursed are we for our weaknesses – lingerie is terrifying to choose and confusing to buy. So where on earth do you start? Here’s our guide to buying the right lingerie for your girlfriend, wife or partner.

Know her size

It’s the cardinal rule of buying her underwear: know her bra size, know her knicker size. It is honestly best to rummage through her underwear drawer or have a cheeky look next time you’re unhooking. Never, ever try to guess. Her knicker size will probably be her dress size, but check her jeans to get it exactly right. Some lingerie Outfitters deal in slightly scary sizes. Agent Provocateur, for example, label underwear 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 – “Heh?”, I hear you cry. Don’t panic, as long as you know her bra size and her dress size, just ask a store assistant. If your lady finds it difficult to get bras that fit (they have a small back and a big bust or vice versa).

Know her bra style

We hate to break it to you, but a bra isn’t just a bra. Different shapes/styles suit different boobs. Balconettes are great for bigger boobs. They’re sexier than a full cup and lift cleavage without overdoing it. Heidi Klum Intimates provide a stunning selection of this style: the Sofia Contour Bra is our favorite. A triangle bra (a bikini-esque, non-wired bra) can be delicately sexy on a smaller bust. For Love and Lemons do a great line in vintage-style, floral non-wired bras. Rose Huntington-Whiteley’s collaboration with Marks & Spencer, Rosie For Autograph, provides one design in a range of shapes/styles – so if you know she’ll love Rosie’s gorgeous lace designs, you’ll be able to find a bra that fits great too. Again, if you’re stuck, don’t be afraid to ask a store assistant.

Lingerie doesn’t have to be red

Your partner may love red lingerie – but she also may not. It may be hard to believe but there is a whole rainbow of choices out there. Be different, buck the trend and find something that really suits her. Lingerie superpower will offer the same style in a range of colors. This everyday-sexy bra from the Body by Victoria range comes in 13 different colors – Green Haven is our favorite. L’Agent, an Agent Provocateur spin off that credits Penelope Cruz and sister Monica at its helm offers some really colorful sets including the Rosella in this bright and confident Royal Blue – it couldn’t be less red if it tried.

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