Lingerie Androgyny, Take 2: 17 Amazing Pieces of Non-Girly Lingerie

Given my love for everything pink and frilly, it may seem odd to you to create posts specifically dedicated to lingerie that  isn’t girly. But, as much as I love it, there are plenty of frilly, feminine lingerie alternatives available– it’s the more simple, tailored, androgynous (or even masculine) shapes that are difficult to find, even though many women find that style or gender expression more comfortable, more appropriate or more attractive.

Of course ‘androgynous’ is such a subjective term that it’s hard for everyone to agree on what does or does not fit. I’ve chosen to focus on pieces designed for female-bodied individuals, but of course that doesn’t meant that’s the only way to go. Check out these 17 pieces and let me know what you think!

Light Years Facet Bra $115 and Undies $50

Light Years is an Australian brand that I love for its simple, graphic aesthetic. They have a strength and an athletic feel to both their lingerie and their models, yet it never crosses over into pure athletic wear. I love the combination of the mustard, black and white— it’s unusual, but also compelling.

Zana Bayne Cruxus Harness $275.00

I included Zana Bayne’s harnesses in my post about lingerie for men, which just speaks to how appropriate it is to include in this collection. A leather harness is a bold choice; and it can be worn equally over a floaty white dress or with trousers and a blazer. (I am mentally imagining so many styles and gender expressions that could rock this harness right now).

& Other Stories Mesh Push Up Bra £25

This bra from & Other Stories is one of the pieces that inspired a refresh of the androgynous lingerie concept. I love the bold color, the use of mesh and the double straps– the only downsides are the narrow size range (32-36 A-C) and the unavailability in the US.

FYI by Dani Read Lucia Trouser $190

I honestly don’t think I’ve ever seen suspenders look so attractive. These are a nightwear or outerwear piece from FYI by Dani Read that takes from menswear in the best way. If there was ever lingerie you could call dapper, this would probably be it.

I actually own this Hopeless harness and I absolutely adore it  (look out for an outfit post soon!). As I’ve said, I’m a huge fan of harnesses because they are so interesting and versatile, either combined with lingerie or outerwear– this one has a little bit of an ominous air to it because it makes me think of fairytale forest roots reaching out and wrapping around your shoulders (in the best way possible of course).

MICHI Cosmic Bra $95

I’ve already expressed my love for Michi, but this bra has got to be the best piece yet. Although it’s meant to be a sports bra, I don’t see why it couldn’t be worn in more versatile settings (or always, if you’re one of those people who’s constantly on your way to or from the gym). Isn’t that little curved mesh window above your breasts just gorgeous?

Huit Mrs Wang Underwired Bra $78.06

Huit is honestly one of my favorite lingerie brands because their clean, confident lines are so beautiful. The ‘Mrs Wang’ set uses opaque stripes on a sheer base– and nothing else, not a bow or a frill anywhere to mess with its simple magic.

Sloane & Tate Silverlake Sleep Short $48

I must confess: these Sloane & Tate Silverlake shorts are my new obsession. The just seem so soft and have that masculine boxer-brief look to them that makes them stand out from the usual cotton knickers. In fact, the whole Sloane & Tate collection makes me wish for a softer, simpler and more streamlined world.

Avocado Nina Bra

This is an awesome bra for three reasons: 1. It’s plain, yet stunning. 3. NO BOWS. 4. It is perfect to be worn as a ‘nude’ bra for a woman with darker skin who still wants her bra to be attractive in its own right. And, as you can see from the photo, it’s a gorgeous chocolate brown that would suit any skin tone. This is again from Avocado and goes from a C-up to a European L-cup. It comes in 5 more colors, including pink, beige, white, black and mink.

ASOS Boudoir Cut Out Moulded Bra, $30.55

ASOS’s in-house lingerie line has really been stepping up its game lately– there have been so many cute pieces! This cut-out molded bra is clearly a winner as it looks absurdly easy to wear under anything, with the addition of cool cut outs. If you’re looking for one androgynous bra this summer (that is also affordable) this should be a strong contender.

& Other Stories Strapless Bra £25

This sheer bra from & Other Stories has a slightly ethereal look different from some of the others here, but has a bold palette and color blocking that are very sharp looking. I’m always drawn the the navy and black combination– the light gray is a perfect additional touch.

VPL STRIPE B BRA: SKIN $85

VPL is one of the first brands I recommend to people looking for non-girly lingerie. The shapes, the sheer inserts and the awesome color combinations mean that they always have tons of amazing lingerie sets that have nothing to do with lace, bows or embroidery.

Topshop Mesh Harness Strap Triangle Bra $36 and Mini $16

Topshop’s lingerie offerings are sometimes have great finds– like this orange mesh lingerie set. It’s plain and gorgeous with matching undies that finish off the look.

Fleur’t Side Panel Bandeau Bra $32.00

Although I’m not necessarily usually a fan of bandeau bras, I appreciate how Fleur’t has made a stylish lingerie set with just the simple application of 2 matching thick, black stripes.

Marlies Dekkers Triangle 10 Balcony Bra $99

Marlies Dekkers was the first to add strappy additions to molded bras and hers will always be the first I recommend for those who want a t-shirt bra that refuses to be boring. The turquoise color and the metal pieces make this bra a stand out.

Chromat Leather Rivet Bra $375

Chromat has its own point of view and I love that. This leather bra might not be the most wearable as an undergarment, but it’s got a strong, ‘don’t mess with me’ look to it that can either go masculine or femme, depending on the circumstances.

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Do you prefer your lingerie more feminine or more androgynous? Do you have a favorite piece?

28 Comments
  1. yeah, loooving the Sloane & Tate Silverlake shorts! I do love a bunch of these but the Marlies Dekkers strappy molded bra is hot!

  2. Thank you so much for doing this post! While I do enjoy looking at all types of lingerie- these simple, modern pieces are what I want to wear. Take away bows and frills and you get beautiful clean lines, interesting shapes and some gorgeous colourblocking. My favourite pieces are the two by & other stories… it’s a real pity I don’t fit in their range! I’ll definitely be looking into avocado though.

  3. I also really love frilly, lacy underwear – but I love looking at more androgynous pieces too. I think often androgynous designs are more creative, bold and daring with cuts, colours, shapes etc. which is always so interesting to see.
    Aaand it means I can feed my lingerie addiction by buying things for my girlfriend and not just me (!!)

  4. This has long been one of my complaints: I can’t find bras which aren’t frilly/sexy/girly. Sadly, Avocado is the only brand I fit into (I’m glad you included it) and I don’t find their offerings especially androgynous.

    I like how some of the other bras you included don’t appear to focus on the breast: the MICHI and & Other Stories for example. With larger cup sizes the focal point is always the breast, for instance on the Avocado Nina where it is outlined in ribbon. Don’t get me wrong, ribbon is a lot less frilly than bows and lace, but the emphasis is still on the breast. The bra has to be on the breast in order to support it, but it is possible to visually give a different shape instead of always following the shape of the breast, as those two examples show.

    I also like strappy designs, which are not to be found in my size. I don’t think I’d like to wear something more over my bra, though.

      • Today I was doodling and drew something I would like. It was a longline which was made to look like black suspenders over a striped background. Basically, the fabric of the straps went down over the cup and then all the way down to the band as if the breast wasn’t there, and then the rest of it was pinstripe with the stripes carefully lined up so that there was an overall stripe to it even though it was seamed. There was nothing special to mark the gore and no trim on the top of the cups or anything like that.

        That’s the sort of thing I’m looking for, something where the design doesn’t focus on the breasts. But since I can’t sew, I guess I won’t see anything like that soon.

        I do own the Panache sports bra but it isn’t comfortable enough to be worn as a regular bra and it doesn’t really work well as a sports bra for me either. Function always comes first for me, which is why I own tons of frilly, girly lingerie even though that isn’t at all to my taste. I even own Tutti Rouge Liliana, all because of the fit.

        Sigh.

      • Yeah, function first makes sense. I had heard awesome things about the panache sports bra comfort-wise, actually, which is why I asked! There are so many full-busted brands popping up nowadays, I don’t think we can to give up all hope– maybe they’ll be something awesome soon.

      • That’s a cheery outlook. There are new brands popping up all the time, so I can hope!

        I find the fabric too heavy and the bra too warm for daily use, also the shape is awkward and it is bulky. It’s comfortable enough for a sports bra, but sports bras are just not comfortable compared to everyday bras, at least not for me. Since it doesn’t rely on compression but encapsulation it would probably not harm someone to wear it as an everyday bra, but I certainly wouldn’t want to.

  5. I should mention that I do like Avocado and own one of their bras, but it’s sadly not an especially good fit for me.

  6. I feel as though I’ve been introduced to a whole new world of lingerie for me to become enamored by. Thanks :)

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  8. Love it, especially the & Other Stories and Light Years pieces! Besides Avocado, I don’t think any of them come in my size. I think I should hunt for what’s in larger sizes…

  9. Thank you thank you for once again challenging the world in general and the universe of lingerie in particular!!!
    Like few other commenters here I also found the Sloane & Tate Silverlake Sleep Short a very intriguing design, mostly because of its cross gender appeal.

    “Lingerie was made for anyone who chooses to enjoy it, regardless of anything else!”
    (an old Chinese proverb, circa 2013)

  10. These are all fantastic. It is so very refreshing to see such beautiful pieces that are more my style. I love lingerie, but am not quite comfortable in all the lace and bows of more traditional pieces. Thanks!

    • I’m so glad you like them! One big goal for my blog is to disseminate my large amounts of bra knowledge in a way so people who want a specific thing can get what they’re looking for– there’s nothing worse than feeling frustrated and left out.

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  12. I love these kind of posts. While I do like girly lingerie, I also love the non-girl stuff. I like to find lingerie that doesn’t quite follow normal gender expression guides. My only problem is that most of the non-girly stuff out there (for bras at least) tends to be far to small in the bust for me. I got big boobs and 95% of the more androgynous bras out there are not designed for my shape. Thank you for linking to the Avocado Nina. It’s one of the first non-boring androgynous bras in my size that I’ve seen.

    • I’m so glad you like this post! I think it’s really important to have a lot of different gender expressions available. It’s really hard to find anything not super girly in larger bust sizes, but I think there are some changes that are coming– you should check out the new brand ‘All Undone’ lingerie that is launching on Monday: https://www.facebook.com/UndoneLondon

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