What lies beneath

Smoothlines slip
Smoothlines slip
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Too late to diet for Christmas? Never fear, Stephanie Smith has found shapewear and lingerie to make you look sleeker and slimmer.

With just two weeks to go before Christmas Day, there’s practically no chance of dropping a dress size – especially not once all the festive drinks and nibble-heavy parties get going.

But bye-bye diet needn’t mean resigning ourselves to a frumpy festive season. Say hello to shapewear.

Now, it’s no use pretending that even the most hi-tech of modern-day corsetry can work miracles, because it can’t. But, what it can do, if you choose with care, is give sleek, toned lines and support in all the places where it’s most needed, to boost or minimise, and make the most of the body’s natural shape and curves.

Soozie Jenkinson, head of Lingerie Design at Marks & Spencer, says: “When choosing the perfect lingerie to wear under your party dress, it’s important to make sure that it not only suits the style and shape of your dress, but also complements your figure. My advice is to get measured to ensure you buy the correct size, as well- fitting lingerie will enhance your total outfit, and be a real confidence boost.”

Whatever your size or shape, Soozie advises trying out M&S’s glamorous Waist Sculpt range to flatter or create an hourglass silhouette. “The bonded panels are designed to flatten the tummy and shape the waist, leaving you with a smooth, sleek shape,” she says.

Spanx is a brand that many celebrities use as underpinnings for red carpet dos, and it’s just been named “Shapewear Brand of the Year”. If you have a strapless gown to wear, try the Slimmer & Shine Strapless Slip, which sucks in the torso and boosts the bust, while the Simplicity Lingerie Strap is pretty enough to be a part the whole outfit. Lingerie and shapewear does not always have to be hidden, no matter that anyone says – if it gives perfectly decent coverage while playing its supporting role, let it go on show.

Rigby & Peller, which stocks Spanx, will soon be opening its first shop up North, in Harrogate. It is scheduled to debut around January 29, on Station Bridge and promises to become a destination stop for those in search of the perfect underpinnings.

Meanwhile, don’t forget hosiery, because tights can really help streamline the hips, thighs and tummy, plus they don’t leave your legs with an unsightly pouched effect where the support stops. Spanx does high-waist ones, although they do cost £35, but they control over-waist tummy spillage, too.

Anyway, this is my pick of great supporting pieces to try under your party outfit.

Twitter: @yorkshirefashQ