Underwear: it’s something we all wear just about every day, but buying it is such a pain. What’s even worse is finding plus size panties. It’s like hitting the jackpot if you can track down a pair that fits comfortably and flatteringly and doesn’t manage to ride up or create visible panty lines. Is there an easier way besides sheer luck for how to buy plus size panties that you actually love?
The following tips will make shopping for plus size panties less of a hassle and more of a joy:
- Know your fit
- Choose a cut that flatters you
- Select the right underwear material
- Find lingerie brands that cater to plus-sized gals
- Shop online and in stores
Ahead, we’ll elaborate on these 5 great tips so you can finally get some underwear that you’re proud to rock. If you’re often the victim of wedgies or squished bulges around your hips because your panties are too tight, then you’re not going to want to miss this!
Table of Contents
5 Tips for Finding the Right Plus Size Panties for You
Know Your Fit
We women put so much attention in getting our bras fitted that we sometimes forget about our panties too. That’s mostly because panty sizes are so easily understood, right? You can only get undies in small, medium, large, and XL, maybe XXL panties too.
Just because it’s easy to shop for panties doesn’t mean you’re necessarily buying the right size. Here are some signs that your drawers are filled with ill-fitting undies:
- The waistband of your underwear is loose because it’s become stretched from so many months or years of use (you’re only supposed to keep panties for a year at most)
- The panties ride up all the time, giving you gnarly wedgies you have to precariously pull out in public
- The seams of your underwear scrape into your thighs and even leave marks behind, making wearing them all day very painful
- You have bulges in the rear or at the hips that make your clothes look like they don’t fit right
So how do you ensure your panties fit better going forward? You want to take some measuring tape (or even better, have a friend do it) and wrap it around the middle of your waist where your waist naturally breaks, aka becomes slimmer. You can bend at the side and where that bend occurs is where the measuring tape should go. Then, you want to measure around your hips, focusing on the biggest area.
Here’s how you take that info and use it to buy the right panties for you:
- Small: 35 to 36-inch hips, 25 to 26-inch waist
- Medium: 37 to 38-inch hips, 27 to 28-inch waist
- Large: 39 to 40-inch hips, 29 to 30-inch waist
- Extra-large: 41 to 42-inch hips, 31 to 32-inch waist
- XXL: 43 to 44-inch hips, 33 to 34-inch waist
- XXXL: 44 to 45-inch hips, 34 to 35-inch waist
- XXXXL: 45 to 46-inch hips, 35 to 36-inch waist
Choose a Flattering Cut
There are so many types of underwear out there to choose from that surely no matter your size, you can find a cut that both flatters you and feels great. Here are your options.
Boyshorts are some of the comfiest underwear around. As the name implies, these shorts are mens’-like in that they offer a lot of coverage. You will have some rear exposed in these undies, but not much. Boyshorts may sit right at your hips or even go over your belly button depending on the style. You may have more panty lines when wearing boyshorts than some other underwear cuts, but it depends on the material and fit.
Cheekies are a standard pair of women’s underwear. They sit naturally at the hip with partial coverage at the rear (hence the name cheekies). These panties have more of a flirty edge to them than boyshorts, but they don’t sacrifice comfort too much.
As a plus-sized woman, mid-rise panties may be one cut you gravitate towards. This underwear is naturally high-waisted, sitting at about your belly button or just under. The front cut is not all that different from cheekies, but the back is full-coverage so you’re not showing too much of your butt. Make sure you choose your underwear material carefully to avoid panty lines.
4. High Briefs
Another plus-size-friendly cut, high briefs offer even more coverage than mid-rise underwear. These panties don’t just hit at your belly button, but may cover your belly and go even higher in some instances. The front cut offers a lot more coverage than mid-rise panties, and the rear coverage is the same.
Hipster briefs are more akin to cheekies than mid-rise undies or high briefs. They have a much lower-rise cut that hits snugly at the hips. The rear coverage is pretty good, but shows a smidge more butt than the last two cuts.
The swimwear this panty style is named for tells you what you can expect of the fit and coverage. The front is higher-cut while the back covers your rear adequately. These panties sit at your hips like hipsters do.
Your last underwear cut is by far the most daring, the thong. A thong offers the least coverage, with your butt completely exposed. The benefit is you don’t have to worry about panty lines, which is pretty nice.
Consider Your Underwear Material
Besides the cut of underwear, the material is also a big indicator into how comfortably your panties will fit on your frame. Here are your options.
- Silk: Silk panties are undeniably sexy, and the smooth coverage might boost your femininity. You get more breathability with silk than you might expect, but this still probably won’t be your everyday underwear material. In colder weather, silk panties won’t insulate well, which can leave your nether regions and thus the rest of you cold.
- Lycra: Lycra or spandex is your next underwear material choice. These panties have a stretchy quality that makes them easy to fit into even on those days when you’re feeling bloated or full. That said, since Lycra panties fit so close to the body, they trap in heat well. All that excess heat could put you at an increased risk of developing a yeast infection.
- Polyester: Your next option for undies is polyester, which is a thin and lightweight panty material that’s quite breathable. If you like your jeans tight, polyester panties are the right choice to wear with those skinnies. This material can even wick moisture so yeast infections are less likely to happen.
- Lace: Lace is sexy, elegant, and beautiful. Every woman of any size should have a pair or several of lace panties in her underwear drawer for those special, intimate nights. For everyday use though, lace is not a highly recommended material. It keeps heat and moisture trapped in your panties, once again putting you at risk of getting a yeast infection.
- Cotton: By far, the mostly recommended underwear material is cotton. You’ll find great comfort wearing cotton panties, and these are a good material for everyday underwear. Since the material dries itself out well, you don’t have to worry about yeast infections.
If you find that you’re in love with a pair of lace undies or another non-cotton material but you don’t want to worry about feminine itching, make sure the crotch is at least cotton.
Find Plus-Size Lingerie Brands
Even though it’s a blessing to be able to do so much shopping online these days, that doesn’t mean you can’t be disheartened if you’re browsing around for panties on the Internet but find the sizes only go to large. By shopping brands that cater to plus-size women, you can prevent that kind of embarrassment and self-consciousness.
What are those brands? We’re so glad you asked. Here’s an overview.
- H&M: Yes, that’s right, we just went there. H&M has grown to expand what they carry so they can cater to all sorts of shoppers. These days, you can shop their H&M Home line, kids’ clothing, men’s clothing, and indeed, plus-size women’s clothes and lingerie. Whether you want shaping briefs or everyday cozy panties, you can buy them through H&M for very reasonable prices.
- Ann Summers: Find your sultry with Ann Summers’ lingerie, including bras, panties, bodysuits, corsets, babydolls, and everything you need to spice up the bedroom. Theirs is more lingerie than everyday undies, but hey, you have to treat yourself every now and again. Also, although Anne Summers is a UK brand, they ship to the US.
- JBC Lingerie: JBC stands for Just Babes Club. If you don’t fall in love with the brand’s attitude, you’ll love their body inclusivity. You’re sure to find a model on their site with a body like yours, which is always refreshing. As the name tells you, it’s mostly lingerie panties you’re looking at here, but for lower prices than you’d expect.
- Cacique: Of course we have to mention Cacique, which has panties in every style you could ever want. Their offerings include briefs, bikinis, hipsters, boyshorts, cheekies, and thongs, so shop away!
- Torrid: Another store where you can pick up panties in all the above styles is Torrid. Even better is their underwear is very inexpensive, so you’d pay under $10 for a pair of boyshorts. If your panties are all too small, you can afford to stock up here.
- Viva Curve: Viva Curve, once known as Viva Voluptuous, has cute panties in all sorts of materials. Even better is the low prices ala Torrid so you can find exactly what you’re looking for without paying a fortune.
Shop Both Online and Offline
You now have some brands to begin hunting around for. Our recommendation? Shop both in stores and online if you can. While most of these brands don’t have a presence in your local mall or plus-sized retailer, some do.
At the very least, you want to try on the style and material of underwear you were eyeing up online before you commit to buying it. Just because something looks like it fits doesn’t necessarily mean it will. You’ll want to put the time in before spending several hundred dollars on all-new panties that all have to be returned to the store.
Oh, and yes, we know it’s embarrassing to try on underwear in a dressing room, but in this case, it’s necessary. If you want to be extra precautionary, you might wear a thong or even a G-string and then try on the panties over top of your underwear. This way, you’re not making direct contact with the garment so you don’t have to stress about infections, yeast or otherwise.
We all have to wear underwear, but if yours is bunching, rolling down, or making for an unflattering silhouette, it’s time to buy anew. You’re now ready to choose which style and material of women’s underwear are best-suited for you, and you have plenty of cool plus-size retailers to explore. Also, check out our top picks underwear page.
Once you find panties that fit your body well, that’s one less thing to worry about in your day-to-day life. Good luck!