European Secrets To Shopping for Lingerie

Editor Paige Stoll channels her days in her Europe and shares the next best thing to shopping the streets of Paris for elegant lingerie and undergarments.
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What are the moments that lead you to own your femininity and to find empowerment in your own skin? Do you remember the first time you felt like a woman? Sit with the questions, letting the memories come to you in all their sweet subtlety. It’s not often that the change comes overnight. For most it’s a series of stepping stone events that happen over years or a lifetime.

I was a young twenty-year-old the semester I spent abroad. Having just experienced my first love, and then first heartbreak, I set-off for an adventure that began in Paris before going on to university in Greece. So many things would happen later that spring that would foment in me a sense of womanhood, but as I sit here right now, what comes to mind, is the time I first stepped into a French lingerie shop.

I had grown up in Belgium, and Paris was as familiar as the house next door. But in those few days I spent rediscovering her and her cobblestone streets, we both seemed as bright and curious as les chatons. No longer was it the colors of la patisserie catching the eye of a Young Paige, but rather the small neighborhood shop, run by women who spoke softly, filled with indistinct white boxes that held within lacy things, pink and blue and purple things, jungle print things.

And I wanted them all. To come back to the states with all of the languages, and all of the fake romances with Roman sculptures, and a suitcase full of beautiful lingerie. It was the first time I had wanted to invest in myself.

My love affair with lingerie did not wane in the years that followed. I even made a career writing about “How to Build the Perfect Lingerie Wardrobe” as a Merchandising Editor for Harper’s Bazaar. But as pressures became more about padding, faux perfection, and duckfaced pouts, part of me longed for the intimacy of buying intimates.

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Then last week, I returned from traveling abroad to find a small, discreet brown package at my doorstep (not unlike those minimal white boxes). And, as I sat around the kitchen table with my mom and sister telling stories about a weekend in New Zealand (not unlike those I told returning from months as a foreign exchange student), I unwrapped this gift to find three elegant bras that seemed made just for me.

ThirdLove is the closest thing I have found to the private fitting of that teeny French lingerie shop in this digital age. As three uniquely different women of different shapes, my mom, my sister, and I looked to ThirdLove's genius shape guide to sensibly steer us to the right bras and styles that seemed tailored to us individually, while we coquettishly cooed over the gorgeous colors and fabrics.

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Mom announced that she proudly wants to show her natural shape moving forward – real Jane Birkin-like – and swooned over the naked hue and softness of the 24/7 Classic Tee Shirt bra.

Each of us tried on the 24/7 Classic Strapless bra. It is an absolute essential – the perfect transitional piece should you have ONLY ONE bra. Truly as universal as your little black dress, as comfortable as your broken-in jeans, and it won’t creep to your knees by the end of an evening.

But for me, my forever favorite is the 24/7 Lace Balconette. It makes me feel like me, at my most lovely, all the time. It’s romantic and feminine, and even when no one else unwraps me, I wear it for myself.

ThirdLove has a generous 30 day return policy that I never plan to take advantage of. What I do plan to take advantage of is wearing this Plush Robe in Midnight in Paris blue and a lovely lingerie set while drinking champagne and dreaming of my next voyage to the City of Lights. Or while I sit paying bills like the independent woman I am, one who deserves to feel everyday beautiful every day. 

This post is sponsored by ThirdLove. All opinions (and bra selections) are our own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Clementine Daily possible!