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What colour bra should I wear under white?

What colour bra should I wear under white?
What colour bra should I wear under white?

05 / 06 / 2023

What colour bra should I wear under white?

We’re all familiar with the constant ‘VPL’ issue. It’s second nature to many of us to check the rear view on an outfit before venturing outside - because most of us want to avoid seeing darker underwear shining through a paler fabric, or indeed the shape of your pants cutting in and ruining the clean lines of your dress. 

Hint: it’s not white!

Why wearing a white bra under white is wrong

Women have been wearing white bras under white shirts for decades. But have you noticed that the brilliant white always shines through? The same goes for pants. If you’re wearing white under white, you’ll have a VPL which is very far from invisible!

The fact is, to look ‘invisible’, the tone of your bra has to more closely mimic your skin tone, not your white t-shirt.

Shades which most closely mimic skin will tend to recede most successfully underneath sheer materials, and pale colours.

If you’ve noticed someone wearing a white shirt and thought, ‘How come I can’t see their bra?’, chances are that they are NOT wearing a white bra. But what shade might they be sporting so successfully?

So what colour bra will be invisible under white?

Well, some women swear by nude bras. But as we know, the beige that counts as ‘nude’ isn’t skin colour for the majority of women. This age-old solution for ‘invisible’ underwear works for only a few of us, as the pale beige that constitutes nude for many lingerie vendors is too pale for so many of us. 

Although our skin tones take in a huge colour range, the underwear market hasn’t yet caught up. So, ‘nude’ bras are stuck on beige (or, if we’re lucky, a limited spectrum of shades surrounding beige). Lighter tones will always stand out against darker skin tones, so we’re back with our conundrum (and stuck in the doldrums of beige lingerie, to boot!)

Frankly, beige is not always the most exciting colour for underwear, either - especially if it isn’t even serving a utilitarian purpose.

As this New York Times article discovered, “You’re better off with a red bra that successfully approximately the lightness or darkness of your skin than a nude bra that doesn’t.” Red is neither light nor dark - it is in the middle of the colour value spectrum. That means that it should be easier for most skin tones to find a shade of red that suits them, rather than a shade of nude.

So, what colour red will best recede into our skin tone? Confusingly, it’s not about the saturation levels of the red - bright reds for darker skins, pastels for pale skins. Instead, it’s about the undertones in your skin. You can have very pale skin with warm undertones and very dark skin with cool undertones. Match your red to your undertones.

Do I have skin with warm undertones or cool undertones?

This article suggests an easy one-step hack to work out your skin undertones. Simply check out your inner wrist. If your veins appear blue or purplish, you have cool undertones. If they appear green-blue shade, you probably have neutral skin tones. See green? Then you’re someone with warm undertones.

Why you should wear a red bra under white

So what works just as well, or even better, than beige? Red. That’s right. We’re all filled with red blood, so even those of us with cool skin tones will have a shade of red which should prove near-invisible under white.

One exception? Those with the fairest of fair skin. Some fair-skinned readers will find the ‘nude’ bra shades on offer more successful than any red, because even taking into account whether they have warm or cool undertones, the red will always appear too bright against their skin.

Our hack? Go lingerie shopping in one of your thinner, pale knits or even a white t-shirt. That way you won’t face disappointment when you return home!

Choosing your red: Empreinte Cassiopee Fusion

Our Empreinte Cassiopee Fusion line is a great, warm red for many. 

Whatever your skin undertones, avoid cool reds (reds with undertones or blue or purple). These stand out against all skins. That’s because we’re all powered by blood - which is a warm red colour! Instead of cool tones, opt for warm tones, like the Cassiopee line above.

The key to discovering the best red for your skin tone is finding a warm red with a depth of lightness, or darkness, that matches your own complexion. Darker skin tones will tend to better suit dark wine shades of red, then, for example, this Empreinte Burgundy set. Medium skin tones will better suit the true red, featured in the Cassiopee above. For lighter skin tones, go for reds or even paler shades with a less strong colour but with a warmth to them, such as this Marie Jo copper set.

How to ensure your underwear is invisible

Colour is not the only route to avoiding that VPL, or visible bra! As well as considering the shade of your underwear, you should consider the fit. Investing in underwear that fits you well is a massive priority - bulging shoulder straps, cups that dig in and cheeksters that bisect your butt cheeks will all leave a less-than-flattering, non-invisible finish through tighter trousers and skirts.

The seamless or fine lace designs, as in the Cassiopee range above, are a great fit for many. A fine lace design or a soft t-shirt cup shouldn’t disrupt the lines of your outfit with their texture, and a comfortably-fit thong, or cheekster, will often offer a more invisible finish than a full brief. Comfort is a great clue to visibility - too tight is often a warning that your undies will be making a statement!

What do you think? Have you tried this age-old trick, used by French women for decades? Explore the Juste Moi lingerie range for great-fitting underwear in every hue - and prepare to add a gorgeous red set to your drawer!