What to Wear Under a White See-Through Dress 

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What to Wear Under a White See Through Dress
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Last Updated on May 4, 2022

It’s a universal truth that white see-through dresses are the most difficult type of sheer dress to pull off. They require careful consideration and planning if you want to attain the right undergarments that will make them look their best. But, despite all of the problems a white see-through dress poses, it is, without doubt, one of the most sought-after styles all over the world. Why? Simply put, it looks stunning when done right! 

The magic of the see-through dress lies in its ability to offer a glimpse into the undergarments beneath the dress, putting your lingerie on display or making it look as if you have none. I know first-hand that achieving this effect successfully is not as easy as it looks on the red carpet!

It involves choosing the right underwear for your body type, the correct lingerie for the type of dress (think back-less, open-shouldered, plunging neckline, and so on), and above all a certain degree of luck to actually find the best products to meet all your needs.

This is why I’ve done the research for you and gone in deep, rummaging through several major retailers and brands for their best products to wear under a white see-through dress.

Read on to discover which products made my favorites and why!

Quick summary: What to do and avoid if wearing a sheer dress

What to do 

  • Figure out if you are going to be showcasing your underwear or hiding it.
  • Decide on the level of exposure.
  • Find the right hue that makes your underwear disappear next to your skin.
  • Always double-check your lingerie size for each brand.
  • Check how transparent your dress looks in full daylight, under flashlights, or whatever kind of light you will be exposed to.
  • Double up on any accessories you feel are needed to boost your confidence.

What not to do

  • Do not pair lace on lace, it looks tacky and messy.
  • If you can’t find the right skin-toned lingerie, go for contrasting colors instead of whatever color is closest.
  • Be aware that white cloth turns absolutely transparent if wet.
  • Some vibrant colors tend to stain, especially if they get wet under the heat. 

Nude Lingerie

Nude Lingerie Under White Sheer Dress

The most common choice of underwear when it comes to white sheer dresses is of course the nude lingerie. The trick to pulling it off like a champ is finding the right hue for your skin tone. This might sound easy, but it is actually complicated. There are of course an infinite number of skin tone variations, which makes finding an exact match taxing, but finding something more or less similar should be easy enough for the products I chose. 

Depending on the level of sheerness of the fabric, your dress might also be able to tolerate more or less of a difference between the skin tone and the undergarment color, making it look as if you are not wearing any underwear even if the fabric is not an exact match to your skin. For me, the best absolute kind of lingerie to achieve this effect like a pro is shapewear. Two very simple reasons: the range of skin tones available and the coverage options. 

Bottoms

Thongs

Ahhh-llelujah™ ‘Fit to You’ Thong by Spandex $20

Fits Everybody Dipped Front Tong by Skims $18

Honeydew Intimates Women’s Skinz Thong at Amazon (Honeydew used to be super popular but despite their decline, their underwear is still very good at very friendly prices!)

Cheekies

Undie-tectable® Lace Hi-Hipster Panty by Spandex $24 (This is my absolute favorite undie, it tucks in your tummy and side floaters without flattening your rump. Also, it is pretty much undetectable!)

Maidenform Women’s Tame Your Tummy Shaping Lace Thong at Amazon (This particular panty is so comfortable, I guarantee it will become a favorite once you try it out! The slimming effect is amazing)

High waisted panties

Higher Power Panties by Spandex $38 (Love how these slim out your waist!)

Jelly Sheer Cheeky Brief by Skims $22

Miraclesuit Shapewear Women’s Sheer Extra Firm Shaping High Waist Thong at Amazon

Shorts

Everyday Shaping Panties Boyshort by Spandex $22

Cotton Mid-rise Boyshort by Skims $22

Chantelle Women’s Soft Stretch One Size Boyshort at Amazon

Tops

Racerback

Bra-llelujah!® Lightly Lined Racerback Bra by Spandex $68

Wireless

Bra-llelujah!® Lightly Lined Wireless Full Coverage Bra by Spandex $68

Hanes Women’s Comfy Support Wirefree Bra at Amazon

Strapless

Seamless Balconette Bra by H&M $24.99

Soft-cup Bandeau Bra by H&M $24.99

Maidenform Women’s Love The Lift Demi Strapless Multiway Bra at Amazon

Push Up

Seamless Jersey Push-up Bra by H&M $29.99 (This one is also ideal for a plunging neckline!)

Maidenform Women’s One Fab Fit Modern Demi Lightly Padded Convertible Underwire T-Shirt Bra at Amazon (I love the little detail of the crossing fabric on the chest!)

The sheerness of a white sheer dress

We have previously discussed what qualifies as a see-through dress here, but can we quantify how sheer a see-through dress is? Turns out sheer fabric is generally made using a thin thread of any type of low-density knit. This means that when the cloth is woven or spun, it results in a semi-transparent and flimsy fabric. 

The way to express how see-through any given fabric is done in deniers, through values from 3 (barely visible), to 15 (standard stockings), to 30 (semi-opaque) until 100 (fully opaque).  The denier of any given fabric refers to the thickness of the yarn used in the fabric. The greater the denier, the more durable the material will be (also less prone to tearing!).

Materials used in sheer fabrics include gossamer (can be made of silk/cotton/wool), silk, rayon, and nylon. Nylon is the most budget-friendly of the three and silk is the most expensive, generally. 

White Lingerie

Wearing White Lingerie Under See Through Dress

White is the second most popular choice of undergarment color to wear under a white sheer dress. Depending on the level of sheer of the dress two main effects are achieved: either the lingerie is distinctly shown or it is sort of hinted at but can’t be properly seen under the fabric. In both cases, either lacey lingerie or basic minimal designs can be worn depending on personal choice, style of the dress, occasion, etc. 

Keeping it lacey

Lace Push-up Bra by H&M $12.99 with matching thongs

Unpadded Underwire Lace Bra by H&M $17.99 with lacey panties (For a see-through dress lacey panties are not recommended unless it comes with an underskirt or if you are wearing them under something else, of course!)

Maidenform Casual Comfort Convertible Bralette at Amazon

Free People Women’s Adella Bralette at Amazon

Pro tip: Lace underwear tends to give a sexier vibe to the outfit, which makes it ideal for romantic occasions, nighttime, or achieving a more alluring look.

Cute but minimal

Push-up Bra by H&M $24.99 and matching panties

Soft-cup Push-up Bra by H&M $17.99 with matching panty (I actually just found this set, but I can guarantee you I’ll be getting it!)

Seamless Push-up Bra by H&M $24.99

Hanes Women’s SmoothTec ComfortFlex Fit Wirefree Bra at Amazon

Maidenform One Fab Fit Modern Demi Lightly Padded Convertible Underwired Bra at Amazon

Pro tip: Basic underwear with very little or no lace makes a sheer outfit feel more accessible and less exposed, perfect for a daily ensemble, a summer look, or a relaxed coverup. 

Black Lingerie

Black Lingerie Under White See Through Dress

Wearing black underwear under a sheer dress is not for the faint of heart. Using black lingerie under white garments tends to always garner attention, and it has a bit of a reputation as being something that only rebel or rocker girls do. With a white see-through dress, the effect is exponential! Black underwear tends to really pop! That being said it really looks striking, so if you are looking to try something daring, by all means, go for it!

My favorite black lingerie recommendations

Push-up Bralette by H&M $24.99

Super Push-up Bralette by H&M $24.99 with matching panty

Seamless Microfiber Push-up Bra by H&M $24.99 (This is my absolute favorite everyday bra, it is super comfy, has great support, and looks seamless under whatever you wear it!)

Maidenform Women’s Love The Lift Push Up & in Demi Bra at Amazon

Magic Accessories and some extras for Pregnant or Nursing Women

Magic Accessories Under White Sheer Dress

Being pregnant should be no reason to refrain from wearing a see-through dress. So, in case you are needing some support, here is a list of very useful accessories that will come to your rescue!

Nipple Covers

Boob-eez® Headlight Hiders (6CM) by Spandex $16

Boob-eez® Headlight Hiders (8CM) by Spandex $20

Nursing Bra

Bra-llelujah!® Mama Nursing Bra by Spandex $58 (Spandex tends to be a little pricier than other brands but it is totally worth it. My favorite ever control briefs are from Spandex because their fabrics are always top quality, super soft, and offer the most support!)

Momcozy Seamless Nursing Bra for Women Ultra Comfort at Amazon

The Slip Dress

Nursing Slip Dress by Adore Me $52

Anytime Strappy Dress by Adore Me $38

Tallulah Nightie Unlined by Adore Me $44

Essential Accessories

Leakproof Nursing Pads by Adore Me $8

Support Accessories

Maternity Support Wrap by Saks Fifth Avenue $25

Support Wrap by Saks Fifth Avenue $40

Tummy Band by Saks Fifth Avenue $70

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Lorena Lombardo is a fashion designer specialized in trend forecasting and fashion journalism. She studied at the UAL (University of London), ORT (Universidad ORT Uruguay), and taken various courses about traditional craftsmanship while living in Tokyo. Some of her favorite memories during the 90s include wearing bucket hats and trying to copy Rachel’s hairstyle. Her absolute favorite show was Buffy: the Vampire Slayer but she was also a huge fan of Clueless because of its amazing fashion choices. Her top track of the decade is currently disputed between How soon is Now? by the Smiths and Here with me by Dido. Both also happen to be the opening songs for two great 90s shows: Charmed and Roswell. Coincidence? I think not!