“a consumer reports for the cheap” — the new york times
Home » blog

Cheap Lingerie

Lingerie for Less: Alluring Alternatives to 3 Upscale Pieces

Posted on 2/5/2014 12:01 EST

No matter what you wear, sexy is a state of mind. Behind closed bedroom doors, though, some might prefer their birthday suits, going au naturale, while others might want to spice things up with lace, leather, bows, netting, and more to accentuate favorite features or to bring something new to the table. Whether it's a see-through babydoll dress, a sheer chemise, or a lingerie set with bra, panty, robe, and garter belt, you don't need to shell out hundreds of dollars for a few pieces of material that probably won't stay on very long.

Elle Macpherson Eyelash Chemise

Like any article of clothing, think practically about the kind of lingerie you want and your budget for this special (Valentine's?) gift to yourself and/or your partner. What's the cost per wear? Will you be donning this sexy lingerie often enough to balance out a brand-name splurge, or will it retire to the back of your dresser drawer? Also consider the level of comfort if you plan to wear it as an undergarment. Do you want smooth lines and pure fabric, or will a few inexpensive scraps of lace do the deed? Chemises and slips come in a variety of colors and sensuous designs and offer the double functionality of concealing unsightly lines and seams.

Luxury lingerie brands like Agent Provocateur, La Perla, and Carine Gilson will leave a rather large dent in your wallet; Carine Gilson boy-styled coral shorts start at $395. But you can go cheap without losing much in the way of sexy styling and selection. Most major department stores and even big-box retailers like Walmart and Target, as well as some clothing-only chains, sell lingerie in their Intimates sections. There are also specialty vendors, like Frederick's of Hollywood, that carry a variety of lingerie, accessories, and bedroom heels in a broad range of prices.

Ramping up for Valentine's Day fun, we compared three cheap (but very sexy) lingerie items and three similar luxury exemplars sold by Journelle, a high-end online vendor with lingerie boutiques in New York City.

Starting off at $155, you can feel sexy in an Elle Macpherson Eyelash Chemise, a "Persian" red and "inky signature" blue piece that boasts double layers of lace at the cup and hem. But at the sale price of $14.40, you can pick up a Kaitlyn Babydoll at Frederick's of Hollywood in "icicle iris" (three other colors sell at a higher price point) that features lace halter cups and a peek-a-boo side slit; the deal includes a matching G-string thong.

Beautiful Bottoms Winter Rose Lace Night Slip

Channel your dreamy side with the pink and navy-trimmed Eberjey Mabel Chemise for $76. The dreamier online price of $21.99 at Target buys the white mesh Gilligan & O'Malley Bridal Babydoll, which also comes with a thong. Consumers who posted reviews at Target tell of being impressed with the style and quality of this inexpensive lingerie item and the support it provides without rigid underwires. Some say it is very comfortable for sleeping, even in hot weather.

Wrap yourself in silk for $132 with the Beautiful Bottoms Winter Rose Lace Night Slip, featuring lace cups and a floral design on the body. Compare that to the $9.99 sale price (plus $4.88 shipping) on the ROSEMANDY Sheer Lingerie Set at Amazon. Reviewers expressed pleasant surprise at the vibrant purple color, the quality, and the unbeatable price. This item ships from China and comes with a sheer robe, babydoll, and G-string. There are scores of lingerie sellers on Amazon and it's helpful to check estimated shipping times before confirming your purchase, especially from an international seller.

Other ecommerce vendors with stocks of inexpensive lingerie are worth checking out. To name just a few, Spurst Apparel & Lingerie offers babydolls for less than $20; Yandy sells lingerie sets, corsets, cami-sets, and more at starting prices of $6.95; and Lingerie More carries babydolls and corsets under $10.

by Olivia Lin (Google+ Profile)

Cheapism.com on Facebook