What to Wear Under a White Dress

By Whitney DeGroat

Work a white dress the right way -- with the perfect lingerie. Keep in mind the color and texture of your undergarments, as a white dress requires a smooth and seamless appearance underneath. For the best results, eschew the frills and stick to simple lines and neutral shades.

Portrait of young couple on swing in park
credit: altrendo images/Stockbyte/Getty Images
Woman in white dress being pushed on swing by her boyfriend

Go Nude

Contrary to popular belief, white lingerie is not your best bet beneath a white dress. The effect can be what "Real Simple" magazine calls a "double opaque effect," where the white underwear and white dress combine to look more opaque than the rest of your dress. Opt instead for a nude shade, choosing a color as close to your skin tone as possible. This creates a seamless, "nude" effect underneath your dress that won't show through. Another option is to wear a slip -- half or full-length -- to ensure that what lies beneath your dress looks all the same shade, even beneath a very thin white dress.

Smooth Move

Keep it simple and stick with smooth-textured undergarments. Bras and panties with ridges and ruffles tend to show up more easily underneath a white dress, which doesn't have the camouflaging powers of a garment in a deeper shade. Smooth shapewear can be helpful, as it hides body lumps or bumps. Pull on a mid-thigh shaper, camisole or even a full bodysuit in a color that resembles your skin tone.