French Knickers

Know Your Knickers

I know … great title for a post, yes?!  Might get me a few more readers! Or maybe not.

Anyway, I figured it was about time to cover some of the really basic stuff that isn’t normally covered.  It crossed my mind that the less experienced amongst you will have have heard all these different names and are maybe wondering what the hell they all are. And even if you all know what they are there’s nothing wrong with going over it all again, is there? Especially when I tell you that I’ve used it as an excuse to include some gratuitous knicker pix!

And before you go getting all excited … no, I’m not modelling them!!

There are a lot of styles on panty on the market and the more experienced amongst you probably already have your favourite(s).  For most of us those favourites will invariably be one of the first two on the list.

Boy Shorts

Boy shorts
Boy shorts from M&S

Compared to the other styles these are a relatively new underwear option and are gaining in popularity amongst the female population. You may also know these as “hipsters”.

They offer full-coverage of your bum with a low-riding waistline and leg openings that rest just above the thigh. Because they sit so low on the waist, boy shorts can visually lengthen your torso.

Well-fitting, curve-skimming boy shorts can also smooth lumps and bumps on your hip and upper thigh area. Hipsters offer the same low-riding waistline as boy shorts, but the leg openings hit well above the thigh, helping to avoid the fabric “ride-up” you sometimes get when wearing longer-cut boy shorts. While hipsters are generally considered a full-coverage style, some may be cut a bit higher in the rear than classic boy shorts or briefs.

Boy shorts often look great with a sexy camisole rather than a bra. This is great for lounging around the house on hot evenings or for wearing for someone special. If you’re worried about support, wear a bra beneath your camisole or try a camisole with built in support.



If comfort is your primary concern then you’ll probably be wanting this style over any of the others.

The traditional brief (pictured) gives you full coverage in the front and back, along with a waistband that sits at or slightly above your natural waistline. Briefs also have a low, squared-off leg line.

As you’d expect, though, in the world of femininity nothing is ever that straight forward and you’ll find that there are a number of what we’ll call ‘sub-categories’ where briefs are concerned.

The modern brief style, like traditional briefs, give good coverage to both front and rear, but generally will have a lower waistband, sitting a few inches below the natural waistline.

High-cut briefs offer the same full coverage, but have high-cut leg openings in front. The waistband is similar to the traditional style, sitting as it does on or just above your natural waistline.

French-cut briefs have the highest-cut leg openings of all brief styles. The leg openings hit the highest point on the hip and are positioned more to the front of the panties than the standard high-cut brief. The waistband should sit at your natural waistline.

Control briefs are made with the primary purpose of slimming your tummy, bottom or upper thighs. They look like traditional or high-cut briefs, but feature control panels at the front, rear or both.

French knickers

French Knickers
French Knickers

I believe the American contingent amongst you call these tap pants? I’m sure you’ll correct me if I’m wrong! Anyway, these are shorts with a slightly gathered, elasticised waistband and very short, loose-fitting legs.

They probably won’t be your first choice for all-day wear because of the loose legs, but they’re great for lounging around on a lazy Sunday or for that sexy encounter.

Skimpier Panty Styles: Less Coverage


Skimpy thong

Whether for form or function, thongs are a popular mainstay of many women’s lingerie drawer.

Thongs are a special type of underwear that ride high on the hips and leave the bottom almost completely exposed.  They can be uncomfortable or barely noticeable, depending on the type and material chosen.

I’ve only got one thong In my vast lingerie collection and that’s enough for me.  I personally don’t like them but don’t let that put you off.  If you want t give them a try then go ahead.  People that where them will tell you that they can be very practical.  Number one is the fact that they eliminate unsightly panty lines under skirts and tight trousers.

While all styles of thong are backless, they come in a variety of styles:

G-strings feature little more than a triangle of fabric in front and a thin “string” of fabric around the hips and down the back. This is one of the skimpiest thong styles and is probably not very advisable for crossdressers due to the lack of material to keep your ‘bits’ safely tucked away!

V-strings are similar to G-strings but feature a rear string that separates into a “V” of two strings (or a small triangle of fabric) at the rear waistband.

T-backs have waistbands or strings that stretch straight across your waist; so from the back, the side and bottom straps have a “T” shape.

Rios are similar to T-backs except the waistband rises above the hips at the sides instead of sitting straight across your waist and back.

Tangas offer the most coverage of any thong style. They generally have wide waistbands and back straps.


Bikini panty

Bikini-cut panties are classic and flattering for women of all shapes and sizes. Bikinis give full coverage in the back with leg openings that are cut above the thigh. Most bikinis sit about three inches below the natural waistline, although with the popularity of low-rise pants, some are now cut even lower. String bikinis, as the name implies, are designed with thinner straps (strings) at the sides for a less-bulky fit under clothing.

For comfort, fit is key. If your bikini panties are too tight, they can bind up your backside and draw attention to problem areas, even under clothing. Ideally, they should fit close enough to your body that they don’t gape, but not so close that the waistband or leg openings dig into your skin.

Seamless / No-Show / Invisible Panties

Panties categorised as “seamless,” “no-show” or “invisible” are sleek and smooth and virtually disappear under clothing. Seamless designs are most often made from a stretchy, wrinkle-free synthetic material like spandex, polyester, nylon, Lycra or a blend of these. Seamless styles often come without a tag to give an even smoother look under clothing.

These panties offer a range of coverage styles, from skimpy to more conservative.

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