Temptation. Seduction. Desire.
They are only three words, but their meanings are as countless as the women who embody them. They are the caress of satin against skin, the catch of fingernails on lace, the flare of heat sparked by your lover’s gaze. They are the promise of excitement and pleasure, and they are yours for the taking.
Lingerie is just one tool of seduction. Though it’s brought delight to couples for centuries, it’s largely misunderstood, even today. Many of us ask, “Why wear lingerie at all? It’s only fancy underwear, bought for the whims of our partners, worn solely for the purpose of being removed. Why even bother?”
But lingerie is more than just clothing. It’s an embodiment of feminine power, a power that drives our private and public lives, a power that cannot be contained by closed doors or restrained in tangled sheets.
Picture yourself at your job: the high collars, prim hemlines, and sensible hair and makeup. Now visualize the possibilities of what can hide beneath your conservative work attire. There’s the nostalgic innocence of lace, the submissive bite of straps and knots, the provoking press of leather between breasts and buttocks.
Or you can go with something sheer, something that can heighten your senses and add a bit of rebellion to a dull and tedious workplace. The barely-there fabric lets you feel everything more intensely, like your blouse brushing against your breasts as you move or the chill office air slipping beneath your clothing to leave a trail of tightened skin and goosebumps in its wake.
No boss, coworker, or client can imagine the secret world you shield beneath your blouse and pencil skirt. On the surface, you are compliant. But beneath, you are the empress of your own body.
Lingerie is a secret, and you get to choose who you share that secret with. A button left undone may offer a tantalizing glimpse of skin and lace. A skirt, garter belt, and carefully crossed legs can reveal where your stockings end and his – or her – fantasies begins.
Lingerie can also be a way to escape the box the world has put you in. You are not merely the role prescribed to you. Whether mother, daughter, mistress, or wife, you have the right to remind your lover, and yourself, that a single word cannot define who you are.
Imagine this: You’ve recreated the Stepford dream of 1950s America, if only for a night. You’ve sent the children (if you have them) to an impromptu slumber party. Your husband – or whoever you choose to play your husband – is on his way home from work.
Maybe you’ve taken the time to bake a casserole, green beans, and cherry cobbler; or maybe you’ve just ordered in. Either way, it doesn’t really matter. This may be about hunger, but it’s not about food.
When your husband walks in, he finds you leaning over, meticulously setting the table. You’re wearing pearls, an apron, and very little else.
The choice of what “very little else” entails is entirely up to you. Maybe it’s as sweet and traditional as the stereotype you are trying to invoke. Or maybe you juxtapose the demure with the devious and wear something more strap than cloth, the crisscross of strings tracing over your shoulder blades, beneath your breasts, and between your thighs.
Either way, your efforts don’t go unappreciated for long. Most likely, your husband will caress and grip, use tongue and teeth. Maybe he won’t even remove what little you have on; maybe he will merely push it aside to get to the most sensitive parts of you. He might even take you right there as you’re leaning over the table, casserole be damned. Thank god the kids aren’t at home.
This is only one pathway you can take in your erotic pursuits. Virginal white lace can hide beneath black leather. Austere pantsuits can give way to bodysuits that leave little to the imagination. Whether loyal or adulterous, chaste or wanton, you get to reveal to your lover whatever side of yourself you choose.
But lingerie is more than just a vehicle for expression. For those of us who enter the bedroom, nervous and unsure, bound by the insecurities of our own flesh and upbringing, lingerie is also a suit of armor.
It shields you and gives you the confidence you need to let loose with your partners. The sensation of luxuriant fabric against your breasts and between your legs makes you feel desirable.
You get to choose how you reveal your beauty to him. You can wait for him in bed, already exposed and ready to be ravished. You could even try out a little striptease to rev him up, or let him unwrap you slowly, piece by piece. And with his eyes fixated on you, whether you’re still in your lingerie or out of it, you know he is exactly where he wants to be.
When we feel confident and safe in our own skin, we have room to become playful as well. The “what-ifs” of sex are innumerable.
Take powerplay as an example. Whether in the boardroom or the bedroom, women are often seen as the weaker sex. But have you ever wondered what it would feel like to take charge, to literally bring a man to his knees, the scent of leather and sweat rolling off you as you choose what pleasures to take for a change?
Or maybe you want to be the one on your knees, looking up as you are being gazed down on, every erotic part of your body emphasized by the lingerie you picked out solely for his pleasure.
Lingerie is more than pieces of underwear. It’s a wicked little secret; a mirror reflecting your most adventurous self; a talisman that shields you from your own self-doubt; and a way to experiment, play, and define what sexual pleasure means to you.
So next time you see a sexy bit of leather or lace, you can ask yourself, “Why should I?” Or you can let temptation take over, give seductions a try, let your desires run wild, and instead ask, “Why shouldn’t I?”