Which of these responses is not like the others? Valentine’s Day is: A) A day created for couples to show affection, dedication, and commitment towards each other. B) A time to express utmost love and care for the special person in one’s life. C) An excuse to wear lingerie. If ever there was a perfect day to wear lingerie, it would be no coincidence that the date would land on February 14th. Because while it may be expensive and not practical, lingerie definitely has the ability to set the mood for a romantic night with your significant other. And after all, isn’t that what Valentine’s Day is all about?
There exists an argument that claims that Valentine’s Day is a holiday specifically designed to help corporate greeting card companies and chocolate/stuffed animal sales — but the reality is that it’s also an excuse to spend time with loved ones. However much we may deny it to friends, companions, or even to ourselves, anyone in a serious relationship is probably going to be celebrating Cupid’s day one way or another. Whether you’re going on a date, seeing a movie, or even staying in, the outcome of your Valentine’s Day is almost guaranteed to involve hand holding, smooching, and maybe something more. And this is where lingerie comes into play.
Lingerie comes in all shapes and sizes — just like relationships. There are lace sets that might reflect a relationship with a passionate nature; there are bandaged numbers with corsets and garters that might connect a pair of intense, dedicated lovers; and there are silk, sheer pieces that might suit a couple with a long-lasting connection. Whether or not it’s Valentine’s Day, it’s obvious that lingerie is a shared effort between partners. But that being said, can a male in a heterosexual relationship correctly suit his lady with the lingerie she'd most enjoy? And how would the woman's perception of sexy lingerie differ from the dude's perception of sexy lingerie? These are questions I'd love to know.
I asked four sets of couples a survey of questions to test their opinions and tastes of lingerie, to see if they matched up to one another's. Perfectly in time for Valentine’s Day, this experiment asked the males to identify what kind of lingerie they would like to see their partner in, and then asked the females which lingerie they would most likely wear. The couples then explained their choices and how they tied back into their individual relationships.
The first survey question gauged what kind of lingerie the male or female would prefer. In order to give provide variety, I selected six options. As the list went on, the choices got more and more traditionally sexy, with A being the most modest and E being the, well, raciest.
This pink and lacy romper is pretty, but lacks dark colors, bandaging and sheer fabric. Although cute, it is definitely on the modest side for lingerie.
Floral Eyelash Lace Sleep Teddy Azalea, $70, Soma
This sheer black number is, again, on the modest side compared to the other choices, but still features sheer fabric and a structured bra.
Inner Secrets Women's Plus Size Flyaway Babydoll With Bow, $20, Target
This set of a basic blank tank top and boy short panties is, in terms of lingerie, simple and practical. Yet the black definitely takes it to the next sexy level.
Lace-back Cami Set, $15, Forever 21
Sheer, nude-colored, and skin tight? This body suit is quite the undergarment and definitely alluring.
Tulle Nervures by La Perla Bodysuit, $468, La Perla
Arguably the sexiest option, this is a corset/garter combination with a built in bra. Featuring metallic stitching and a ribbon-caged bra, this piece is quite the quintessential sexy lingerie.
Chantilly Lace Garter Slip, $78-$88, Victoria's Secret
The couples were asked why they picked their specific choice in lingerie for their partners, and/or why they picked it for themselves. They were then asked how it might reflect on their relationship, and what lingerie means to them overall.
1. THE MADE-FOR-EACH-OTHER COUPLE
One cannot function without the other. They’re basically always together, and when they aren’t, they’re talking about each other endlessly. There is obviously a strong bond between these two lovers, but do their lingerie tastes match up?
Man: Choice C
Woman: Choice D
While the guy chose a more modest choice, the gal went the full nine yards with the sexiest option. You could say the roles were seemingly reversed in this couple, revealing the guy’s simplistic nature and the gal’s intensity. The main take away from their sound-offs shows that they’re quite the serious couple.
Man: "We are a modern couple, living together before marriage with our own lives, but the twist is that we are secretly traditional. We want to get married and have babies one day!"
Woman: "I'm all about her feeling comfortable, and I think that lingerie is not the answer nowadays. Especially in the winter. That said, I think that men wouldn't be opposed to seeing their significant other in a lingerie every now and then. Just not on a daily basis."
Guess they'll have to duke it out to decide on lingerie come V-Day.
2. THE HIGH SCHOOL SWEETHEARTS
Everyone knows a couple like this. They met in high school and haven’t looked back since. They’ve pretty much devoted each of their lives to loving one another. And if you’re not gagging by now, then you’re probably in this kind of relationship.
Man: Choice E
Woman: Choice E
We have a winner! The results from this couple were quite the match. Both replied with the sexiest choice: E. In their written replies, both the guy and gal expressed that lingerie is an extra step in a relationship that shows comfort around each other.
Woman: "I think that it shows a certain vulnerability, showing that much and wearing that. It shows that you trust your significant other enough to be vulnerable with them and not feel self-conscious or scared."
Man: "Shows that we’re comfortable."
3. THE BOHEMIAN LOVERS
These two partners were probably looking for each other in every previous relationship before they found one another. They think, act, and speak on the same wavelengths, and effortlessly understand each other.
Man: Choice EWoman: Choice E
Another match — although they admitted lingerie isn’t a huge factor in their relationship.
Woman: "Continuing to surprise each other (including with new lingerie) is vital to keeping romance alive."
Man: "It's fun and a great surprise."
I wonder if they’ll be surprised on Valentine’s Day?
4. THE BUDDING YOUNGINS
These two are new to the dating game, but they have a strong bond. They're serious about relationships and are looking for something beyond just a hookup. That being said, they're young and still have lots of mistakes to make.
Man: Choice C
Woman: Choice C
This couple may just be the simplest of them all. They’re not about fancy or fuss; they know each other better than anyone knows them and that’s the way they like it. The guy even says that lingerie means “very little” in their relationship.
Man: "It's about the person, not what she's wearing."
Woman: "I would love to dress in lingerie every once in a while, but at the end of the day I’d rather be comfortable and try not to force anything. It’s all about him and I, everything else is just material."
Lingerie is not ideal for every couple, as evidenced by this experiment. One person may prefer an ultra-sexy number, while their partner might be fond of a more modest set. While Valentine’s Day seems like the perfect time to wear fancy lingerie, it doesn’t have to be that way. I thought every male’s response would reflect their hegemonic masculinity and desire for their woman to be dressed in something extremely sexy and risque (option E, for example). And although there was more variety in their replies than I initially expected, I’m sure a larger survey would only capitalize on that shared sentiment.
Valentine's Day doesn't have to be all about relationships and couples, even it if manufactured for various corporate companies looking to increase their sales for this somewhat fake holiday. That being said, romance is undeniable. All these couples stress that fact that lingerie is a great idea every once in a while, but perhaps not for every day. And while there was some variation between couple's replies, three out of the four demonstrated consistency.
If this survey is of any note, you might want to grab some lingerie for V-Day — and don't forget to ask your significant other's opinion, too! Teamwork is sometimes way more fun than a surprise. And they'll enjoy seeing you in it no matter what, obviously.
Images: Getty; Giphy; Courtesy Brands