A bit of history: Lingerie is a French word for all underwear, but through some extravagant translation it became, in the English language, a label for the highly sexually charged and visually appealing undergarments for women. Unsurprisingly, French men’s boxers qualify as lingerie too.  

Lingerie is no longer exclusively the preserve of French Burlesque shows, or the forbidden fruit of Vaseline-smeared soft-core ’70s porn. It is mainstream. You can’t walk down Broad street without the fear of drowning in the gigantically sized cleavage of the plus-sized Bravissimo model opposite Balliol. Now that we can talk about it freely and see it everywhere, can lingerie maintain its tantalising mystique? When Primark starts producing acres of identikit suspenders, is the thrill of indulging in a secretive, transgressive fantasy world necessarily lost? Has the value of lingerie been destroyed, the golden age of opium, poetry and lace-fuelled decadence vanishing, only to be replaced by the sordid world of mass produced, synthetic undergarments which demean the burlesque ideal?

Lingerie has a different role to play in today’s sexual politics. Some might claim that it panders to male fantasies in which a paradigm-accepting female swallows notions of what makes feminine sexual attractiveness. However, lingerie is not about a simpering female capitulating to some kitsch male notion of what makes back-alley kinky behaviour. Instead it establishes an atmosphere of protracted sexual pleasure. Not giving everything away immediately but titillating at a pace that suits the wearer; a form of female empowerment, in which a man who thinks of himself as in control can be brought to his knees with the brush of silk, the thrill of a hint of lace. Even the sight of lace-topped suspenders glimpsed under a dress at a restaurant can be enough to send a man into paroxysms of uncontrollable desire. The moment of consummation is prolonged, no longer reserved for the bedroom. The shared secret provides an excitement that titillates his imagination and puts her in control of what is to follow.
Few girls can live up to the sci-fi erotic fantasy of Princess Leia in her solid gold undergarments, especially without inflicting some pain on themselves or their partners. For the truly adventurous, see www.leiasmetalbikini.com to buy products like “Slave Leia merchandise.” But Mesdemoiselles, lingerie can be as sexy and attractive if you follow some of these golden rules: Nylon is sweaty, and chafing thighs are not the most attractive proposition; keep it simple, and remember it is not about dressing up, you can fulfil your man’s secret latex fantasy another day. It is about being and feeling erotic, the key concept behind this process is to embrace your sexual power. Remember the more he desires you, the more effort he will put into getting you into his bed and making you feel sexier than Scarlett Johanson. It isn’t a secret that it is every man’s dream to have Gisele Bundchen in bed in her Victoria’s Secret pants, but it is important to bear in mind that just because you aren’t six feet tall with endless legs and a 34D you are not as good as her; you are probably better… in bed.
That’s the best bit about lingerie: it makes a man think he is control. But actually girls, we know who wears the pants. Cherwell 24 is not responsible for the content of external links.