I was thinking about undergarments the other day. I vividly remember the girdles my grandmother and mother used to wear when dressing for church or other outings that required a dress. In a designated drawer the serious shapers waited to perform their duty. Most were cream or nude in color, but all of them required shimmying determination to get up the legs and over the hips. I recall enough elastic material, prettied up via lacy control panels, to squeeze any inappropriate fat up to their necks if necessary. At the bottoms were little dangling garters waiting to hold up pre-contoured silk stockings. My mom’s rough farm hands required the use of cotton gloves to guide the hosiery to the garters, and then a quick looping of the metal over the bump, and walla! Sleek and feminine curves thanks to Playtex. Grandma used her girdles religiously (mostly on Sundays), but still felt her youthful curves denied to middle age spread.
Today we pay big bucks for Spanx and light weight shapers. The burning of the bra, let it all hang out, feminist era has found comfort in tummy flattening conformity. It’s funny how life cycles. Some remain in brazen braless abandon, and others seek the safety of undergarment traditionalism. I think, underneath it all, we accept what we think will make us loveable.
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