With the rise of body-positivity awareness, more and more women are embracing their true selves and no longer afraid to show it.

This, combined with the financial pinch most of us are feeling due to the Covid-19 pandemic, is leading to women opting to shop for more practical underwear over the racy lacy thongs.

Women are opting for more practical underwear. Picture: Viktoria Slowikowska/Pexels

On the home front, Runway Sale has reported that underwear is often one of the top-selling items on its e-commerce platform, with the company selling thousands of bras, boxers and panties monthly.

“Over the last few months, we have noticed a significant increase in the sale of underwear on our site. The 32% year-on-year increase could be attributed to the recent surge in ‘lounge wear’ or the popularised ‘work from home’ fashion trend,” says Rob Noble, the chief operating officer.

“It might seem strange to deep dive into data about underwear, but this is a hugely successful section of the market and we’re seeing significant changes in what people are shopping for when it comes to undergarments.

“This includes wanting more inclusivity when it comes to the colour and size of underwear. A nude bra, for example, means so many different colours given the skin shade diversity in the country. This is proving that adaptability and agility is key when making purchasing decisions from the buyer’s side.”

Women want more inclusivity when it comes to sizes of underwear. Picture: Roberto Hund/Pexels

Interestingly, the South African woman’s choice of undies varies across cities.

City statistics

Durban women prefer sticking to the trusty, classic underwear pieces. The online retailer released data which reveals that the women of KZN for example, are more likely to opt for a wine-red classic lace bra paired with black bikini briefs.

The women of Cape Town, on the other hand, prefer coral and black bikini briefs, as well as white high-waisted briefs, which are comfortable.

White high-waisted briefs. Picture: Roberto Hund/Pexels

Moving up north, the ladies of Gauteng prefer cost-effective purchases such as multipacks. These are particularly popular with the women in Midrand. This makes for a sensible choice of undies for anyone who isn’t looking to splurge on underwear, and prefers a good quality pair of knickers, sans the aesthetics and frills as popularised by the Angels.

Seamless suburbs

Online shopping provides evidence that women in suburbia have distinct preferences in their choice of underwear. While Sandton’s best-seller is the black lace bra, Bellville prefers dependable nude seamless shapewear.

Over in Modderfontein, women are clicking “Add to cart” on bikini briefs, while Douglasdale ladies opt for playful pink floral high-waisted briefs.

Of all these mentioned, the most popular size for panties sold is large, and the most popular bra size is a 34C.

Most-loved items across the board

It’s clear that of all women’s underwear sold online, there are a few items more popular than the rest. However, South African women on the whole opt for simpler, comfortable and more practical underwear.

The top three winning choices are navy and black high-waisted briefs, white and navy basic support bras, and red and white classic lace bras.

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