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Who doesn’t dream of a refined, versatile, organized lingerie collection? Whether you’re getting ready in the morning for work or in the evening for date night, your underthings are the first thing you reach for in building an outfit. And if you have a thoughtfully assembled, thorough collection, you won’t waste time hunting for that one bra or panty that’s going to make or break your ensemble.

If you feel like your wardrobe is looking a little lackluster lately, it might be time for an overhaul. And what better time for a refresher than the start of a new year?

Without further ado, here are some tried-and-true tips for revamping your lingerie collection:

Out with the old

The first step toward upgrading your lingerie collection is getting rid of all the pieces that don’t fit, or you simply don’t wear.

Set aside an hour or so to try on every piece you have, and give it an honest assessment in the mirror. There’s no reason why this has to be a dreaded chore, either: Turn up some tunes, pour a glass of bubbly, and make a fashion show out of it. Start a “keep” and “toss” pile. Anything that’s worn out or stretched out doesn’t fit you flawlessly, or that you haven’t worn in the last several months, should get tossed. Really inspect each item carefully. Is the color of the fabric fading? Is the underwire slightly bent? Are the molded cups a bit misshapen? Are your breasts spilling out of the top or sides of the cups a tad? Is the band riding up? Bid farewell to anything that doesn’t make you feel fabulous.

There are so many wonderful organizations you can donate new or gently worn bras to — so those pieces don’t have to go to waste, because another woman in need may be able to use them.

Once you’ve cleared out the clutter in your collection, you can forge ahead with the fun part: shopping.

Related: The Best Places To Donate Your Old Bras

donate bras

Marion Unlined Wire Bra P5392 in Tango Red

Cover your bases with basics

Now it’s time to evaluate what’s left in your collection. Every woman needs to keep a certain number of bras and panties in her collection so that she has something clean to wear in between laundry sessions, and also so that she can rotate her bras in order to preserve their lifespan. This number will vary depending on how often you do laundry, of course. For example, if you do laundry every other day, then having three bras might suffice (but it’s worth noting that they may get worn down more quickly than if you have more bras to cycle through).

On the other hand, if you only do laundry once or twice a week, you’ll need at least four or five bras to get you through. As for panties, it’s a good idea to have six or seven basic comfy pairs for everyday wear, and at least two pairs for special occasions. If you don’t do laundry very often (as in, once a week or less), you’ll definitely need more.

Since you’ve cleared out the pieces that aren’t working for you anymore, now you can get an idea of what you need to shop for. Every woman has her go-to styles, so keep that in mind while you’re looking for some basics to restock. For example, if you know you wear a T-shirt bra most days and you only have one or two of those, it’s time to find a couple more to add to your collection.

Before you shop for new bras, ask yourself: When was the last time I was fitted? If your last professional fitting was six months ago (or more), then it’s time to get measured just to make sure that your size hasn’t changed. After all, you wouldn’t want to invest in new bras that don’t fit you perfectly!

Splurge on something special

Basics are great and all, but what’s a girl to do on those special occasions, like a wedding, an anniversary dinner with your SO, or a glitzy holiday party? It’s important to have a few luxe pieces in your collection that you can pull out on certain occasions — you know the kind of pieces that make you look — and feel — like a goddess. Even if you do have one or two garments like this already, a new year presents an opportunity to try something different. So consider taking a chance on a unique piece that’s unlike anything in your collection.

For example, if you tend to buy demi-cup bras, why not go for an elegant longline bra instead? You’ll still get some amazing lift, but it has a slightly more sophisticated look. Or, if you’re a push-up bra kind of gal, why not give a plunge bra a chance? You’ll still be able to show off your cleavage, but as an added bonus, you’ll be able to wear it under those low-cut dresses and tops. Maybe you have plenty of bras and panties in your collection, and you’re looking to take things up a notch with something completely different. In that case, consider adding a flirty babydoll or a seductive teddy to your collection.

Lingerie is the first thing you put on your body, so it definitely shouldn’t be an afterthought in your wardrobe. Follow these tips and you’ll not only save time while getting ready, but you’ll be able to put together even more flattering ensembles by putting more thought into your underthings first. By taking the time to refresh your collection, you’re setting yourself up for a stylish, stunning new year.

Related: Bra Shopping Guide: Tips For Buying New Bras

where to donate bras

Marion Contour Padded Bra P5391 | Marion Hipster P5395 in Tango Red

We Highly Recommend

Whether you’re shopping for new everyday bras or lingerie for a special occasion, it’s always a good idea to seek out a second opinion. We know how hard it is to find bras that fit well and feel good, especially when you’re doing it on your own. If you’ve ever felt unsure about your bra size or you just don’t know where to go to find good bras, it’s time to let a bra fitter help.

Many specialty lingerie boutiques offer bra fittings. Their expert bra fitters will take the pain and frustration out of bra shopping and do all the work for you. Even better, their product knowledge can save you time and money. Plus, they know where all of the best bras are hiding.

If you’ve struggled with finding bras in the right size, it’s time to make a change. Visit our specialty store locator to find a store near you and schedule an appointment.

Happy bra shopping!

Featured image lingerie:
Charlotte Padded Bra 6901 in Red/BlackBlackFloral ShimmerWoodroseDusty Rose/BlackBronze
Casey Plunge Padded Bra 2801 in Black/Rose Print
Estelle Padded Bra P5231 in Black
Sandrine Plunge Longline Bra P5351 in Cameo Rose
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Published by

Rebecca Strong

Rebecca is a Boston-based freelance writer who focuses on style, fitness, food, and travel. She has contributed to such publications as HuffPost, Elite Daily and U.S. News & World Report. When she's not writing, she can be found at home or in the studio working on the songs for her upcoming album. Her favorite bra is a black demi-cup style with all-over-lace — timeless and feminine.

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