Personal Style, Pop Culture

Wear the Rainbow: Bra and Panty Trends for 2021


Who runs the world? Women, obviously. So why do we do it, day in and day out, in beige and black? For an inspiring, empowering, thrilling change of pace any given Tuesday, we highly recommend reconsidering your bra and panty palette.

Color is arguably the most direct way to boost your mood—something we could all use more of in the winter in general and this year especially. Through a fashion lens, color is a tool we can count on to convey a feeling or idea to others and, maybe most importantly, to ourselves. A bra or pair of panties in your signature power color or, conversely, a bold hue that you wouldn’t wear in a head-to-toe outfit, can subconsciously brighten your outlook on the day. Such a small move, such a big payoff.

Whether you’d prefer to match your top and bottoms or come up with a pleasingly clashing combination, make spring—no, all of 2021!—more vibrant from the inside out. Start now.

Red is all tied up with love and luck the world over: Valentine’s Day revolves around passionate, fiery red; Italians wear red underwear on New Year’s Eve; red is the auspicious color of Chinese New Year. In bra terms, red goes astonishingly well with a white shirt. At the end of 2020, the Pantone Institute, the first and last word on color theory, even introduced a new shade, Period, to normalize the conversation around menstruation. Clearly, this is the color that adds intensity and brilliance to the everyday.



Sweetly attention-getting orange melds red and yellow into an energetic, exciting color that’s surprisingly wearable and flattering thanks to its warm undertones. Bright, bold orange signifies you’re ready for action (that’s why this shade is so excellent in a sports bra); peachier shades make for a more subdued ways to play it. Whichever way you slice it, tangerine is thought of as “the happiest color” for good reason.



There’s actually nothing mellow about yellow. Overtly, it’s got unmissable presence; covertly, it channels a kind of friendly, sunny optimism. Pantone named Illuminating Yellow one of its two “colors of the year” for 2021. While very much embodying the feeling of this moment in history, no one is saying yellow is a cinch to pull off. Chose golden shades for deeper complexions and pale, buttery shades for fairer skin, and wear them straight through summertime for a fresh twist on innerwear to rival a certain iconic polka-dot bikini.


In life or in style, go green whenever possible. Evoking positive vibes like nature, healing, freshness, growth, approval and good luck, green is really the color of a bright future. There’s a whole world within it, too, from quiet mint and cleansing sage to vivid emerald and kelly. And since everybody is Irish on St. Patrick’s Day, may as well get prepped now.



Free up more room in your life for blue-sky thinking. From midnight navy to pale blue dawn, Caribbean turquoise to deep, dark Mediterranean Sea, the possibilities are expansive, if not downright endless. Blue is steady and sure, peaceful and painterly (artist Yves Klein has an ultramarine blue named after him), effortlessly cool and calming and, as a result, near universally beloved.



Purple is having a noticeable resurgence in popularity not for its regal connotations but for the way it unites red and blue in a way politics can never seem to do. Feminine, romantic and rare, purple has an otherworldly, spiritual quality about it (amethysts come to mind) that never gets old. From spring shades of violets and lilacs to autumnal lavenders and plums, this jewel tone gets along well with other colors and reliably holds its own.


We have zero problem with pink’s girly associations. This one gentle color conveys love, sweetness, playfulness and even good health, and it has the ability to make viewers feel nurtured and comforted. But there’s a marked difference in energy between a pastel ballet pink and a juicy, tropical fuchsia. Lucky for us, there’s room in an underwear drawer for both.

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Brooke is the editor of this here blog. In a previous life, she was an editor at Good Housekeeping and O, The Oprah Magazine. Brooke has written for Glamour, Travel+Leisure, New York Magazine and more. She’s into concerts, travel and her exceptionally adorable daughter and husband.
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