Do I Have to Wear Shapewear Under My Dress?

Updated 10/29/16

Select Studios

Every bride wants to look and feel her best on her wedding day, from finding a super-flattering wedding dress to perfecting her hair and makeup with a trial (or two!). For many brides, that also means finding the best smoothing, supportive shapewear to make her wedding dress fit and fall properly and flaunt her figure. But while shapewear may make you look your best, those suck-it-in garments are not always so comfortable. If "beauty is pain" is a mantra you have no desire to adhere to (or you just want to be able to eat your wedding dinner comfortably!), do you have to wear shapewear under your wedding dress? Here's what our experts have to say.

Shapewear is 100% optional, on your wedding day as well as any other day of your life. If you love how it makes you look and feel, go for it! But if the thought of squeezing into something constricting beneath your already structured, boned, zipped, and buttoned gown makes you shudder, skip it! The smile on your face will be much more genuine if you're comfortable in — and under — your dress.

When you're trying on dresses, keep your undergarment opinions in mind. Let your consultant know if you'll be skipping the Spanx so she can help you find a style of dress that will look fabulous on your body no matter what. We love the way gowns with fuller skirts allow you to wear whatever underwear you'd like. Bring on the cozy cotton! And if you have a bustline that needs some support, either look for silhouettes that allow you to wear a bra or consider styles that have boning and structure built in.

During your fittings, your seamstress will want to make sure you have the underwear you'll be wearing on your wedding day. Consider shopping for a few different styles in case what you thought was seamless and no-show is actually visible beneath your gown. If the dress you fell in love with didn't have enough structure or support already included in the design, your seamstress can help you add cups (or even sew in a strapless bra!) and adjust the seams and fabric so they are as flattering as possible.

Then, instead of bracing yourself for the moment you'll have to shimmy into your shapewear on your wedding day, revel in the fact that you won't have to peel it off at the end of the night!

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