I've learned that having the right foundational garments are key to a great outfit. But it can be hard to find those right pieces. Plus-size underwear, in particular, is pretty impossible to try before you buy. In order to ensure that underwear is sanitary, it can't have been tried on by anyone before. And while you may be able to glean a bit about the fit from seeing the silhouette of the panties or seeing them on an e-commerce model while shopping online, it's still hard to tell if they'll fit well and be comfortable all day long. Even when you do put them on, they might feel fine until you're a couple of hours into your day and the panties start to roll down, bunch up, or become otherwise uncomfy.
I turned to our Facebook Group to get recommendations for the comfiest plus-size undies, and they were quick to tell me their favorite brands, styles, and fits. I bought each style so that I could try each pair, gave them for a test drive, and now I can say with confidence which pairs I will be reordering.
First up: Cacique by Lane Bryant
Many, many, many of you recommended a style offered by Lane Bryant's Cacique. This wasn't surprising to me, because Lane Bryant's intimates selection is impressive. A large section of every Lane Bryant retail store is reserved just for intimates, where you can get properly fitted for a bra and leave with panties that fit a lot better than what you'd find at Victoria's Secret. But again, there were too many options for me to know exactly which styles to try so I took the advice of the group members for the best styles. I ordered 5 different styles, all that came recommended, and took them for a spin.
Sizes: 0 - 28
Prices: Prices vary, but they offer 5 for $35 on many styles.
I knew how I would feel about this underwear the second that I put it on. The wide waistband is not a good feature for me. It flips and flops, and isn't sure if it'd like to be higher or lower waisted. I wore it for another full day, after first trying it on, and it bothered me a little bit less than I expected it would, but it was still noticeable and in that way, annoying.
The Cotton Hipster Panty with Wide Waistband for me is a big thumbs down.
Right away, I felt like I was going to love these panties. I loved that the waistband wasn't a thick and uncomfortable strap that hit my body at an awkward place, but that this higher waist and much thinner band was so much better for my body. I really enjoyed the coverage both in front and back. I was pretty much ready to call this style a winner right away.
But, then I wore it for an entire day. At the end of that day, I was so excited to take them off. The legs felt a little too tight, the entire feeling was more constricting than I expected. So while I like the idea of them very much, they're not the winners for me.
The Cotton Full Brief Panty was a thumbs down in the end.
Right away, I wasn't sure about this pair. They were more low-waisted than I expected them to be. I ordered them in nude which, while super practical, doesn't exactly appear well on-camera. They felt thin, maybe too thin, but the leg opening felt like it wouldn't dig in too much.
Then I wore them for a full day. Now, I'm in love. I never noticed them, ever. Seriously. All day long, I totally didn't notice them. That's the true test of comfy undies: if you notice them, they're not comfy enough. Jeans seamlessly slide up over them thanks to their silky smooth fabric. There's no digging in at the waistband or at the legs.
The No-Show Hipster Panty is a big win for me!
Right away I thought that I liked these undies because they reminded me of the Cotton Full Brief Panty. But the way they are lower waisted gave me pause. Since they aren't the slipperier no-show material and instead are cotton, they stayed put on my body a bit better even though the rise felt in between a lower and a higher rise which initially made me confused.
After I wore them for a full day, I decided I actually like them. They weren't my favorite of the bunch, but they certainly weren't my least favorite. The rise was nice, the waistband didn't dig in, the legs didn't dig in too much either. While I wouldn't go back and buy 5 identical pairs, this style will definitely remain in the mix.
The Cotton Hipster Panty gets a thumbs up, but not the most enthusiastic thumbs up ever.
In some ways, the name "Extra Soft Cheeky Panty" says it all. They are indeed extra soft and also a much cheekier cut, making them more revealing in the booty. Right away I wanted to write them off. I didn't feel like I got any coverage and I didn't love the silhouette.
But then, I wore them for a day. And I loved them. While I am not much of a cheeky girl and I would probably opt for different coverage in the booty next time, I still found these to be incredibly comfy. They're seriously soft and I never noticed them the entire time I wore them!
The Extra Soft Cheeky Panty gets a surprisingly enthusiastic thumbs up from me!!
Arq is an undergarment brand that started making undies and other under layers for children, before expanding to carry similar styles in adult sizes. Their emphasis is on comfort, but they don't believe kids should be the only ones limited to extra comfy pieces. More than one person in the Facebook Group was adamant that Arq's undies are their absolute favorites, that they have purchased multiple pairs and swear by them. I had to give them a try.
My first impression was a little confused. Why is the rise so high? And why is the fabric so thick? Eventually though, they got a little bit comfier. The leg opening felt a little too low for me, more like boyshorts. The rise a bit too high. But overall, I actually don't hate them. I'm wearing them as I type to you right now and I can say that these are the kinds of undies that you will want to wear around your house with no pants on. They offer much more coverage than any other undies I tried, and the thick and soft fabric is comforting. It feels like there is too much fabric at the leg opening, which can bunch a bit when I sit. I don't think I'm going to buy any more pairs.
Overall, Arq's High Rise Undies are a meh for me. I see why they're loved, but they're not my favorite.
Size: XS - 3X
While Torrid offers many cuts and styles of plus-size undies, I only picked up one. And to be completely transparent, I had low expectations. Not that many people in the Facebook Group had a ton of positive things to say and I didn't like that many of their styles were $14.50 for one pair and "Buy 3, Get 2 Free." Why would I buy 5 pairs of undies that I even know if I'll like? But of course, that was before I ever put a pair on.
Black Wide Lace Cotton Cheeky Panty
I liked these undies as soon as they got on my body. I instantly loved the lace waistband, compared with the thicker and thinner waistbands from Cacique this laid much flatter and was extra stretchy which told me it would stay put.
I wore them for a full day and can tell you for a fact, these are my favorite undies on the list. While they're called a "cheeky" silhouette and I definitely do not believe they are in fact very cheeky, I don't care. I love them. The rise is perfect for me. The stretch lace waistband is so much better than I could have imagined. And for the individual price of $14.50, I am ready to come back and buy a few more pairs to participate in the "Buy 3, Get 2 Free" bundle.
Torrid's Wide Lace Cotton Cheeky Panty gets all the thumbs up from me!
I had never previously shopped at Duluth, but so many members of our Facebook Group were encouraging me to give it a try. And the way Duluth messages their undies was really compelling too- with words like "Dang Soft" and "Buck Naked" and even how the packaging said that it was "Better Than Bare" made me think this could be a problem to my underwear solution. Not to mention, the 1000+ 4.5 star reviews on their site was pretty compelling.
I was truly impressed. The fabric is soooo light that I felt like I was wearing almost nothing. I wasn't sure how I would like the mesh texture, but that was only on the outside so I never really felt it against my skin. Right away, I thought that this is the perfect underwear for those of us that are butt-sweaters. Got a sweaty butt? Prepping for summer? Grab yourself a pair or two of these, you won't be sorry. I haven't gotten super sweaty in my pair just yet so I can't say for sure, but the wicking factor is a big plus.
Yep, the Buck Naked Brief Underwear gets a big thumbs up from me!
Sizes: XS - XXL, which aligns with a size 2 - 24
Price: $18.50 (I got mine on sale for $9.09).
Here's the ranking, each style of underwear in the order of the pair I loved most to the pair I liked the least:
- Torrid's Wide Lace Cotton Cheeky Panty
- Cacique's No-Show Hipster Panty
- Duluth's Buck Naked Brief Underwear
- Cacique's Cotton Hipster Panty
- Cacique's Extra Soft Cheeky Panty
- Cacique's Cotton Full Brief Panty
- Arq's High Rise Panty
- Cacique's Cotton Hipster Panty with Wide Waistband
And, for what it's worth, here's what I discovered about me in the process:
- I don't love high waisted underwear. I like the idea of them more than I actually like wearing them. A slightly lower rise works better for me.
- I don't hate lace like I thought I did. Turns out, I was wearing poorly made lace. But power lace built with serious stretch is a totally different game.
- I hate thick waistbands or leg openings. Hate them. Some may find that they keep the underwear in place better for them, but they just irritate me!
- Price doesn't really matter. Underwear that you love could be super affordable or a little pricier.
What do you think? Any brands or styles we completely missed? Let us know in the comments!