Sexy Lingerie Styles for Every Decade

Sexy Lingerie in the 50s and 60s

Christian Dior's New Look debuted in 1947 and heavily influenced female dress throughout the 50s and part-way into the 60s. The principles of the New Look were to break free of the functionality of wartime wardrobes and celebrate colour, decoration and a traditional view of ultra-feminine wear. As Dior himself described it, "I wanted my dresses to be constructed, moulded upon the curves of the feminine body, whose sweep they would stylize." The silhouette required prominent breasts, a nipped-in waist and full skirt - and vastly transformative underwear to uphold it. Bullet bras and waist-whittling girdles were the norm, and hosiery was of the tan stockings-and-suspenders variety. Tights didn't come on the market until the latter half of the 60s, when hippie culture and the revolutionary movement spelled the end of physically constrictive female dress. Marilyn Monroe's an ultimate underwear icon to copy at the sexier end of the 50s spectrum, while sexy lingerie inspiration can also be taken from the decorous Grace Kelly and Jackie O.

Sexy Lingerie in the 70s

Simple, naturalistic and non-restrictive, 70s underwear reflects the increased power of women's libbers in that decade, with mainstream undergarments breaking free from the fussy, trussed-up qualities of underwear of the past. Underwear's function had subtly shifted from being a foundation for outerwear to a fashion statement in itself. 70s icons Farrah Fawcett and Bo Derek are a great inspiration for this look: go for cute white cotton bra and knickers sets, or reference the decade's bohemian trend with paisley print or fringed styles.

Sexy Lingerie in the 80s

The 80s is all about bold, brash and sexy lingerie styles - think the extravagance of the Dynasty and Dallas costume departments, all silky nightgowns and slips, OTT black lace or scarlet satin padded bra and pants sets. Madonna's another 80s figure to draw inspiration from here - a pioneer of the underwear-as-outerwear trend, you can copy her 80s look with fishnet stockings, exposed garters, bullet bras and off-the-shoulder tops designed to show lacey bra straps.

Sexy Lingerie in the 90s

Minimalist 90s style is simplest of all to copy with its fuss-free lines and easy-to-wear pieces for all body shapes. An everyday look consists of a sports or non-underwired demi-cup bra in nude or white matched with high-cut matching knickers or a thong, both either completely unembellished or with a simple lace trim if you're after a bit of detail. Up the Eva Herzigova-factor with a sexier evening or bedroom look, swapping the simple bra for a padded, plunge style in black with matching pants.

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