Six of the Best: Body Shapers

The right underpinnings can protect your modesty and give you a fabulous figure so you look great in your party dress. Stephanie Smith picks out the best from the High Street and online.

Black pannelled body suit

From: Savida at Dunnes.

Price: 13.

DETAIL: This lovely all-in-one bodysuit has a padded bust and effective reinforcement via a toning and slimming tummy panel and also around the hips, in a shorts style, blending seamlessly under clothes, which means it should not create any unslightly bulges and ripples. Great price, so buy two.

Suits: Apple and pear shapes.

Key accessory: J by Jasper Conran red heels, 35, Debenhams.

Strapless black lace control suit

From: Simply Yours at

Price: 32.

DETAIL: There's a real Fifties' retro feel to this lovely cream lace-covered bust which would look sexy peeping out under something sheer or beneath a daringly low-cut top or dress. The brave could even try wearing it alone with black tux trouser or skirt suit, or with jeans and leather jacket.

Suits: Busty and curvy shapes.

Key accessory: Gold mule bow shoe, 64.99, River Island.

Black floral detail Shapewear body

From: Marks & Spencer.

Price: 28.

DETAIL: M&S is the Queen of the Bodyshaper, offering them in a variety of control strengths. This one has an underwired and non-padded bust plus sheer net sides with a reinforced tummy panel, and the lovely embroidered lace detail make this a comfy body to wear, if you buy the right cup size.

Suits: Apple and petites.

Key accessory: Sequin shoes, 22, by F&F at Tesco

Nude V-shaped bodysuit

From: Ultimo at Debenhams.

Price: 45.

DETAIL: Ultimo specialises in shapewear solutions and this is a real classic. Called the Miracle Solutions V-Shaped Body, it also comes in black, and it's a good one to wear with a plunge neckline dress or top, providing support for a great cleavage.

Suits: Small to medium busts.

Key accessory: Gucci ponyskin peep toe, 585, Cruise.

Black lace side Shapewear bodice

From: Marks & Spencer.

Price: 35.

DETAIL: Another winner from M&S, this has sturdy underwired cups with pretty purple lace detail, and it's a lovely body suit suitable for wearing under sheer tops, with its excellent tummy control panel.

Suits: All, especially curvy.

Key accessory: Pink platform court shoe, now 20, at Barratts.

Black backless bodysuit

From: Ultimo at Debenhams and

Price: 40.

DETAIL: For under backless dresses, with control panels to shape and flatten tummy – comes in black and nude. Removable gel in the bra gives option of cleavage, and super-smooth finish gives comfort.

Suits: All especially curvy.

Key accessory: Black and gold bow T-bar party shoes, 95, French Connection.