Introducing new nude options to our customers was a really important move that we wanted to make sure we got right. We consulted with Lingerie expert Wen ahead of introducing this exciting expansion, adding 3 new nude options in Biscotti, Toffee and Espresso to join the original Butterscotch. Wen is a Montreal based blogger and Lingerie connoisseur. She is the founder and writer behind Comics Girls Need Bras, a Lingerie focused blog that speaks on everything original and everything pretty in the world of Lingerie. We chatted with Wen about nude trends in Lingerie and why this launch is so important to supporting an inclusive narrative in the industry. Read on to learn more about this launch and how you can shop your new nude selections with confidence.
What is new in the world of CGNBs and how are you easing out of pandemic mode and into the "new normal?"
Honestly, appreciating the world outside of social media after so many months of being physically away from the rest of the population feels amazing. It's actually refreshing to get creative and put on a full outfit. I am an introvert and I don't always like being surrounded by lots of people in the street, but I am making a point to recreate daily rituals and carefully pick each piece of clothing to make sure they'll make me feel good throughout the day. It's one of the ways I give myself appreciation. Also, Comics Girls Need Bras now has a Youtube channel!
As a lingerie expert, why is a launch like this so special for the industry (speaking to nude materials, price point, design, inclusivity)?
The discussion about inclusivity started years ago. Back in 2014, having basic pieces of underwear available in many shades seemed revolutionary (although clearly needed and requested way before that). Basic lingerie is the bread and butter of the industry even now. However, the concept of skin tone inclusivity didn't seem to expand much outside of the basic area. More than 5 years later, illusion mesh and tattoo embroideries are trending and yet, most brands continue to offer one shade of mesh that is usually beige. This launch is a step forward in the direction of making people of color feel that they are finally considered and appreciated as customers. It's also amazing that it includes plus-size customers who are also often left out of popular trends. The fact that T&S offers inclusive ethically made lingerie at a relatively affordable price point stood out to me. I have often heard plus-size customers complain about not being offered the possibility to opt for ethical fashion as most fashion options in their size are only available in fast-fashion stores.
Wen in the Medusa bralette and high waisted bikini in Butterscotch
“CGNB was born from a need to share Wen’s lingerie addiction and to help other women to find the lingerie that could make them feel comfortable in their body.”
When you launched Comics Girls need bras in 2015 what trends were you seeing in nude lingerie trends? How did that compare to what you're seeing now?
When I launched my blog in 2015, the industry was acting on the aftermath of Nubian Skin's recent launch. After years of ignoring women of color's interest in basic nude lingerie, every brand was now interested in offering at least one option of darker brown to their customers. It was all about microfiber basics. There was a discussion about "how to stop calling the color beige nude" but instead acknowledge that beige isn't neutral for everyone. We didn't have many plus-size or full-bust options for these basics, however. I think that's still something that is hard to find nowadays for the average customer, though a few brands are offering these options.
Why are fit options and nude options important in making anyone feel included in the industry narrative? How do you feel when you see companies making more of an effort to be inclusive of a larger audience?
Having the option of wearing something created with your body in mind shouldn't be a luxury when it comes to basics. While not every person wants to wear lace and embroidery, the society we live in still expects people to wear basic underwear. If it's not seen as acceptable to go braless to a job interview then it's important that everyone gets to wear something in their size and that will "disappear" under their clothes. I am really happy to see all the new product offerings especially in the plus size and full bust area. One thing I have been hoping for is that the progress will go further than basic lingerie and reach actual fashion trends and aesthetics in order for POC to not have to compromise all the time and feel like an afterthought.
Wen in the Medusa bodysuit in Toffee
What advice do you have for choosing your best shade?
If you have fair skin, and usually can't find a nude that is light enough for your complexion, definitely go with Biscotti. Butterscotch or Toffee might work for many light brown skin tones. If you are hesitant, know that both will probably look amazing but Toffee is on the "orange" side, so if your skin has warm undertones it might be a good option if you have more cool/neutral, yellow undertones, Butterscotch might be best. For dark brown skin, Toffee and Espresso are the way to go. Toffee seems to be a great middle-ground for most brown skin tones but I would recommend darker tones to go for Espresso as it will blend beautifully. Check out T&S's shade guide and keep in mind that you can easily exchange a product if you need to!
Wen in the Medusa bralette and high waisted bikini in Toffee
How are you styling your T&S into everyday outfits? How would you style from day to night?"
The Medusa bralette is very easy to wear under most of my plunging tops, but I recently discovered that I could get an even more dramatic decolletage by not closing the top metallic clip. This is a solution I have found for very open tops when I still want to feel supported. For a night out, I love the open back of the Medusa bodysuit under a halter neck dress!
You can read more of Wen’s work on the Comics Girls Need Bras blog and enjoy her recent review on Thistle and Spire’s new nude options here.