Lingerie is in my blood — my mother was British bra designer Janet Reger and I spent my childhood playing with scraps of lace and cotton in the family’s factories in Derbyshire and in London’s Paddington.
Today, I run the business and I’m thrilled bra-fitting services have finally restarted.
Because of the pandemic women have been unable to get properly fitted for a bra for months, meaning there are a lot of sagging straps and holey cups out there.
Yes, you can buy online, but, a fitting is crucial when it comes to a bra. Just a millimetre can make all the difference to whether it’s comfortable or not, or whether you’re getting the correct support that you need.
Aliza Reger, whose mother was Janet Reger the British bra designer, has shared guide to the seven pieces you need for lingerie wardrobe
But while the nation’s underwear drawer has not been restocked, the lingerie industry has continued to innovate. From high-tech lace to super-supportive sports models, new technologies mean bras are comfier and prettier than ever.
There’s nothing quite like new lingerie to lift your spirits, so go on, embrace the post-lockdown bravolution!
Here’s my guide to the seven pieces you need to build the ultimate lingerie wardrobe.
Aliza said everyone needs a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ investment bra
1. THE TIMELESS CLASSIC
Everyone needs a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ investment bra and La Perla defines quality. With such an expensive bra, it’s vital to wash it gently. I put all my bras on top of each other in a lingerie bag, to wash on a cycle no higher than 30 degrees, using gentle detergent.
Always air dry your lingerie on a rack — never, ever use the tumble dryer. If you look after a La Perla bra properly, reserving the piece for special occasions, it should last for 20 years. The Chanel handbag of bras, this is a classic. Pick pink or black, which works fabulously with an equally timeless LBD.
2. SUPER LACE GIVES SUPPORT
The High Apex Plunge bra from Janet Reger at kaleidoscope.co.uk has the right amount of support, while still being light, Aliza said
High Apex Plunge bra, £23, Janet Reger at kaleidoscope.co.uk
This pretty bra is perfect as you swap sportswear for summer frocks. It has just the right amount of support while still being light, thanks to its high-tech stretch lace. The material regains its shape after washing, holds its colour well and is a great fit. It will gently hold you in all the right places while still being comfortable.
As opposed to a balcony bra that runs straight across the bust, giving an ‘M’ shape, this plunging high apex model gives breasts a natural ‘V’. It would team well with a plunging top or wrap dress.
Bridal ranges are perfect for good-quality, sexy white bras and you don’t have to be a bride to get one
The Extreme Impact bra from Shock Absorber (£32.25) is an essential for any woman’s sports kit
3. NOT JUST BRILLIANT FOR BRIDES
You don’t have to be a bride to shop the bridal ranges; they’re perfect for good-quality, sexy white bras. White never needs to be boring, either. It is pure, fresh and looks fabulous on most skin colours.
For functional bridal pieces, Wacoal makes a strapless bra which works perfectly underneath delicate summer dresses and tops. Its Halo Lace design is deliciously feminine and romantic, and creates a flattering ‘M’ shape. Think Phoebe Dynevor’s character, Daphne, in Bridgerton.
4. BEST SPORTS BRA EVER
This Extreme Impact bra from Shock Absorber is an essential for any woman’s sports kit, especially for those who have larger busts. It’s perfect for high-impact sports that involve running or jumping. And because of the high-elastane content in the design of the cup, these bras have very good resistance and great cover. I particularly like the picante pink in this range.
5. WORKOUT WEAR THAT LOOKS GOOD
Aliza said a good workout starts with a great sports bra to protect the ligaments in your breast which can be damaged if not supported and accelerate the dreaded droop
Aliza recommends Sweaty Betty’s bra tops for lower impact activities such as yoga or Pilates
Sweaty Betty is currently catnip for every midlife woman. I recommend its bra tops for lower impact activities such as yoga or Pilates, where breasts are less likely to be put under the strain of a high-impact sport such as running. A good workout starts with a great sports bra and this one combines my love of a pretty colour with the necessity of a supportive design. I am passionate, about the importance of a good bra.
This is vital, not only for comfort, but also to protect the ligaments in your breast which can be damaged if not supported and accelerate the dreaded droop. You must ensure that you renew your bras regularly because the first thing to age is the elastane material. With poor elastane, you risk damaging the ligaments in your breasts.
Aliza said that lace, luxe and femininity will be at the forefront of daily dressing this summer and said to keep buying sexy bras
6. KEEP BUYING SEXY ONES
I went into Ann Summers two years ago and was surprised by the quality of their bras, so much so that I now have a Janet Reger collection in the shop. While this bra is not one of mine, I love it because it’s super glamorous and screams luxury.
I believe there will be an explosion of life this summer and we will dress up and have fun as we haven’t in a long time. Lace, luxe, and femininity will be at the forefront of daily dressing. This set comes in black or red and is so well priced you can treat yourself to both colours.
7. PRETTY SUMMER PASTEL
Bra, £28, briefs, £14, Rosie range at marksandspencer.com
I have always loved Marks & Spencer’s lingerie. It’s such a big company, it can produce high quality bras at a low price point, and this Silk & Lace bra, in pistachio, is bang on trend for summer.
I love matching my lingerie to my outerwear and I’ve seen a lot of pastel lingerie this year, particularly in ice cream colours to coordinate with your summer dresses. It’s a fabulous looking bra, with a great shape and is at a brilliant price. Clearly another winner from M&S.
Aliza, who loves matching her lingerie to her outwear, said that she’s seen a lot of pastel lingerie this year, particularly in ice cream colours which you can coordinate with your summer dresses