Marks and Sparks do many things very well, but their bra selection is the highlight. I am in the unfortunate position of having to buy 30", AA cup bras. We often hear about the trouble larger ladies have with finding bras that fit, but is just as much a problem for those of us without any chest at all!
Most shops don't stock AA (unless for teenagers), so M&S is a lifesaver for me. Not only do they stock a range of cup sizes from small to large, but they also have a range of back sizes too! For day to day wear, I have their T-shirt bra in black and white, which is slightly padded and gives me the appearance of curves without looking silly. They are excellent quality and last for years, and I bought a pair for £10. I also own one of their push-up bras, which has more padding and underwiring, and cost £20. This too, is excellent quality and very comfortable to wear.
M&S are also a great place to find 'special occasion' bras. They were the only high street store that I could find that sells bras with clear shoulder and back straps, again in a wide range of sizes.
Whilst the M&S bras are predominantly white, black or nude in colour. they do also sell various coloured and patterned varieties in a range of sizes.
In summary, you can't go wrong with an M&S bra!
As many girls would probably agree it is difficult to get underwear that fits correctly.
Marks and spencer underwear sections are generally all set out similarly, however, not all shops have underwear departments. Their does tend to be a wide variety of items which changes often. Online is a greater choice of designs and sizes.
What I like most about marks and spencer underwear is the variety.
BASIC -M and S have a large selection of basic items. This ranges from single knickers price about £2 - £5 and come in lots of designs from tanga to sturdy briefs. Colours vary lots of black and white but some block colours and some with print. You can also buy packs of knickers starting at about £5 for 4 or 5 and sometimes they do 3 for 2 deals.
Bras in the basic ranges are often in boxes and are about £10 upwards. These tend to be more older traditional style bras, but they also do fantastic t-shirt bras which show no seams.
FANCY - my favourites are the fancy sets. Prices range widely from about £6 knickers and £12 bras up to bras of about £30. These set designs change fairly frequently and they seem to offer something for most people and occasion.
What I particularly like is that their always seems to be plenty of staff of which in my experience are polite and helpful.
The garments themselves wash exceptionally well. I have to admit I usually start by hand washing bras, but admit after a few times I forget and throw them in the machine. They have all survived and remain in very good condition for months and months. The basic knickers too, wash very well and stay true to colour for a long time. I have had no stitching issues either and items are comfortable to wear.
In all great product range which provides super value for money.
Marks and spencer is well known for there underwear to be very good.
They have a excellent selection to choose from, which include different designs, and for some women it can be the only place to go if you have a large cup size, as there seem to cater for all sizes.
The quality of the underwear is excellent, and there is alot of variety to choose from. The prices are quite high for what you are getting, as else where it may be cheaper.
There is a large changing room to try the underwear on, and if you are unsure of your bra size the shop assistant can measure you so you are getting the right sized bra.
They also sell body shapers which is a excellent buy as it hides all of your bumpy bits, and under that black dress it looks like you have dropped a dress size.
I have been wearing Marks and Spencer underwear for years and whilst I still think their bras are excellent both for fit and quality something has happened to the cut of their knickers. The last half dozen or so pairs that I have bought are sooooo uncomfortable - I seem to spend half the day pulling on them to try and stop them lodging where they shouldn't. My older pairs (which unfortunately are getting a bit tatty now) are still fine. I think I have worked out what the problem is - compare the width of the crotch in the new styles to the older ones - there is a good half inch or so difference - just enough to affect the comfort. I don't want to start wearing "old lady" underwear so am having to find an alternative shop which is a shame.
You really cannot go far wrong with Marks and Spencer, the name is associated with quality and years of trust. I thought I would touch upon some of the highlights of the men's underwear:
* The male underwear range is targetted at the more mature man with a more discerning taste in underpants. Stores like Topman and H and M go in for bold colours and wacky prints. Marks and Spencer favours more subdued designs like stripes or checked squares
* The underwear is durable and will last a while. As a comparison, I bought a pair of boxers from Primark, which split after a month down the leg. Marks and Spencer underwear has lasted me a couple of years and shows little sign of wear or tear.
*Topman underwear seems to fade quickly, Marks and Spencer underwear retains the colour for longer
*The price of Marks and Spencer underwear is reasonable. I picked up a duel pack of pants for about five pounds, whereas a single pair in Topman will currently cost you six pounds
*The availibility of M & S pants is superb, I never not been in and found them out of stock.
Overall: They might be the most riviting designs but they are sturdy, comfy and will last years, resulting in good value for money
rks and Spencer have always been known for their good quality underwear, I remember my mum 'treating' herself to m&s undies, and my gran swears by it still, won't shop anywhere else for her smalls. However in the last couple of decades it also came to be considered old fashioned, stuffy and boring, while being hugely overpriced.
But in the last few years Marks and Spencer have worked hard to re-brand itself and try to winover the younger, more modern customer, with more disposable income. Some strageries employed were shedding the St. Micheal brand and introducing designer inspired brands such as Per Una, Autograph and Limited collection, and remodernising their stores in a more contempory decor and layout.
While in a lot of area's I still feel they just didn't get there, Lingerie, for me did. Yes, they still stock thermal vests, fleecy nightgowns and every oldie's favourite 'The full brief' (otherwise known as the belly warmer) but they now stock a huge range of younger styles and labels such as Per Una, Limited and Autograph are carried on through to Lingerie.
You can buy your knicker drawer staples, wether a midi, high leg, short, bikini or string is your thing) in handy packs of 5 or 7. Costing £6 a time, these seem to be on permanent offer of 2 for 10. Aswell as the usual black, white and pastel colours, theres now a good range of modern prints too.
Then there's the bra's. An ever increasing range from balcony to full cup, t-shirt to strapless. Theres a style here to suit everyone and every size. M&S have increased the size range in many many styles. Boxed and hanging, usually white, black and skin toned these bra's retail from £6 for value to £25 for high end.
But undoubtedly my most favourite section of all is the collections. I love a matching set. And M&S now have a huge range, from the latest modern styles, to the more classic silk and satin. My favourie collection is the Per Una Lingerie collection. It's young, modern, and each design usually comes with a choice of styles, letting you combinate a padded bra with a thong, or a balcony with a short. It's also extremely well priced from £9.50 for a bra and £4 for a pair of matching knickers. And above all it retains the quality M&S and their undies are famous for.
The one downside I find with the M&S lingerie department is consistency in sizing. Sometimes a size that fits in this style, won't fit in that style. I also have found the the size range in stock can be limited, so while a bra maybe available in a good range, on the shelf theirs only a couple of sizes. You can order items free to the store, usually within a couple of days...but I tend to impulse buy lingerie so probably wouldn't bother.
If you haven't had a look in M&S for underwear for a while because you presumed it was old, stuffy comfort wear for Grannies, then I strongly reccomend you do. M&S also offer ranges for teens, expectant and breast feeding mothers, post surgery and G+ ladies. They also offer a bra fitting service, wich I found excellent, but other people have been less impressed so perhaps the quality of this service is dependant upon wich staff member you get on the day.
‘Have You Had a Boob Jobby?’ My credit card company must have been extremely grateful that I’d been using their credit facility so heavily because they sent me £80.00 of M & S Gift Vouchers. Anyone reading this will have a pretty good idea how much I’d borrowed on that particular credit card in order to get a gift like that- and in my case how much I’d paid in interest! This was three months ago and I wasn’t an M & S shopper because I still imagined crimplene trousers with elasticised waistbands and horrid floral frocks more suitable for curtains than for wearing. I therefore made a hasty visit to the underwear department in M & S in Bath and bought four pretty bras for £19.00 each. I was pleasantly surprised at the perfect 36B off the peg perfect fit as well as the comfort and appearance. I became even more of a convert to my new M & S bras when a male drinking friend of ours, who used to be in the Flying Squad, looked directly at my M & S clad bosoms and asked me if I was wearing a new bra and that my boobs looked good! How’s that for detection skills-and there was no touching either! However, there is one undergarment that I have never had any success with wearing. The pretty all in one bodies that are meant to streamline the figure whilst giving support to the bosoms, often with detachable suspenders (Uugghh!) No matter how lacy and attractive these garments looked my bosoms have always hovered a few inches lower than I like them to be and lift my arms even slightly and they always fell underneath the under-wire meaning a rapid visit to the ladies for a readjustment. I had finished my shopping in my local M & S having already paid for my goods and heading for the exit when a rack of M & S ‘Shapewear’ caught my attention. In three colours, black, white and light camel. they were described as a ‘Light Control Multiway Body’ They looked more like streamline
d swimsuits and very soft to the touch. The label said they were made of Tencel and are machine washable. The bra part was preformed and moulded and lightly under-wired and the knicker leg was rather like a pair of high cut French knickers. Thankfully there was no bottom floss and it was obvious there would be no visible panty line (VPL) under skirts or trousers. One drawback was the inevitable double row of poppers in the cotton gusset. I’ve had too many bad experiences trying to fasten those poppers after an evening out and usually arrived home with a flapping gusset piece so I almost lost interest and pondered on continuing my journey to the M & S exit. But then, an attractive, smart elderly lady stopped by me as I was examining the M & S Shapewear and said to me ‘They’re very pretty aren’t they? Are you hesitating? Don’t hesitate. If you want it then buy it as we may not be here tomorrow to enjoy things’ and she wandered off. I am so easily influenced. What with the Flying Squad mate and this elegant mature lady egging me on. The ‘Shapewear Multiway Body’ went on to describe itself as ‘Minimum effort, Maximum effect’ but where does the ‘Multiway Body’ come into it? Well it means just that-five ways to wear it. Strapless, halter-neck, one shoulder, crossover and conventional. This explained the soft but firm feel of the bra part as it was made to be self supporting if the ’Shapewear’ was worn strapless. The attached explanatory label very clearly displayed a chart with illustrative photographs of the five ways the body could be worn and informing the prospective buyer that ‘Shapewear’ body was available in UK sizes from 34 to 38 in cup sizes A-B-C-D and size 40 in C-D-DD with sizes 38C to 40DD having non-padded cups. M & S clearly know what women want because I would imagine larger busted women most certainly wouldn’t want padded cups. The R
16;Shapewear’ body was priced at £32.00. Oh how I wanted to buy one of each, a black, white and light camel body, but there was no way I could justify spending £96.00 on an impulse buy. However, when I got home and tried my new M & S ‘Shapewear’ Multiway Body in Light Camel (I would have preferred ‘Light Caramel’. I mean you wouldn’t call an item of clothing ‘Pale Goat’ would you?) I so wished I had bought all three. It is gorgeous. It gives the sensation of lightly supporting the body with no restricting sensation. The knicker legs are cut in such a way that even in hip hugging white trousers or a floaty skirt there is no VPL. My bosoms feel and look like two independent beings as the bra lifts and separates them giving me a smooth cleavage. This is important on a mature skin. When I was younger I wanted my bra to push them ‘up and in’ so they were touching, but even though my skin tone is good, pushing bosoms together emphasises any loss of elasticity on the chest area, whereas separated bosoms give the impression of smoothness. I tried several of my favourite outfits on wearing my new M & S ‘Shapewear’ Multiway Body and everything looked and felt comfortable. The bra gives me a feminine outline and even when I experimented with the ‘arms above my head’ test my bosoms remained snugly in the cups. I would even have enough faith to wear this body in the strapless mode. Many of you must have experienced the horrors of a strapless bra slipping down and flattening your bosoms into a most unnatural and ugly shape? That won’t happen with the strapless Multiway body-my bosoms sat proud and high, pointing directly to the front! Other items available within this light control range are a thigh slimmer. a string and a trouser knicker but I’m staying with my ‘Shapewear’ Multiway Body because as it says on the box ‘Minimu
m effort, Maximum effect’ We went out to our local last night and I was hoping to bump into, figuratively speaking, my Flying Squad friend but he wasn’t about. I wonder if he’ll notice my redefined shape? I’m going back to M & S this week to buy another ‘Shapewear’ Multiway Body because one is just not enough. I hope my elderly lady acquaintance is there and sees me following her advice to buy when you see something you like as we may not be here to enjoy them tomorrow!
In 1987, it was estimated that approximately one in every three people wore Marks and Spencer's underwear. This means that there must have been a lot of women in England wearing girdles with the Marks and Spencer's brand name on them. Marks and Spencer's did not used to create the garments themselves. Instead they used big manufacturers such as Courtauld's to make them for them. A wide range of girdles was available, ranging from light and average control through to firm, and even super firm control clothing. Nowadays Marks and Spencer's offer a huge range of lingerie suitable for everyone tastes. If women do not already own a pair of Marks's knickers, then they are certainly missing out. From personal experience I can reveal that they are the most comfortable knickers I have ever worn, and they're not too frumpy too. The feel of the different textures against your skin is really nice. They sell the sorts of knickers that you would love to wear when going out on a hot date, knowing that your date might see them at the end of the evening - they are certainly nothing to be ashamed of. I mean, yes, they still sell the sort that your granny might like the look and feel of, but this doesn't mean that you can't find nice, pretty and feminine styles too. Their slogan at the moment is 'Lingerie to fall in love with' and it is exactly that. Even when I'm browsing through the different ranges in Marks and Spencer's, as soon as I spot something, which I like, I automatically want to buy it. My favourite sort of underwear is usually not too flash, but nice in its own way. I tend to go for silky garments with no lace on because I find lace to itchy for my skin. I have been told that the lace in Marks and Spencer's underwear does not rub or cause rashes, particularly after it has had a few washes, so maybe this is something that I will try in the future. I like the fact that the under
wear always seems great value for money, particularly for the wonderful quality that you are getting. This isn't the cheap sort of material that you could pick up in BHS or from a catalogue (no offence to anyone who does purchase underwear from these places - each to our own, eh). You can pick up a pair of knickers for only a fiver, and a decent bra for around twelve pounds at Marks's. Most of the underwear seems to be machine washable, even the under wire bras, which I was surprised about. I have always washed my bras by hand if they are under wired and my mum always used to put them in one of those delicate bags that you then put inside the washing machine, so that the wire wouldn't pop out of the side! Most of the underwear comes in standard ordinary colours such as white, light camel (beige) and black, but you can get some of the underwear in girly pastel colours such as light green and sky blue. There are also more outrageous colours such as shocking magenta for the more 'I want to make an impression' sort of girl, and also animal prints such as tiger skin or zebra stripes for special occasions. The bras come in a huge range of sizes, right from a miniature 30 AA all the way through to a 40G (lucky girls!), possibly even bigger in some of the ranges. The knickers come in a big range of sizes too, with the smallest starting off at an 8-10 to a fuller figure size 28. This could come in handy for me when I have eaten too many take-away's during the week. They do a nice plain minimiser bra, which is ideal if you have a bust which you wish to appear less large in size. The bra is very comfortable and the under wire is there to provide maximum support. A bra, which is good for people who wear tight fitting t-shirts, is the Smoothlines under wire bra. It has seam-free cups and low profile edges, so only you will know that you are wearing it. The bra has recently been reduced from £16.00
to £12.80. They do matching high leg knickers, to give you the definitive outline, which I noticed were reduced from £6.00 down to £4.80, last time I was in my local store. If you do like lace, and unlike me, don't find it itchy, then the lili lace would be a lovely bra to have. It's made from a soft, luxurious lace that is so comfortable that you could wear it as 'everyday underwear' if you wanted to. This bra is up the dearer end of the price scale at £19.00. I love embroidered items because you can tell that so much care and attention has been made to them, that it may almost appear as If it has been hand made. Marks's do an all-over embroidered bra that has little daisy flower cut outs towards the top of the cups. In my opinion, the best under wired bra that Marks's do, is the 'adored padded balcony bra', because it does all of the jobs that it should, and comes in two lovely colours: bright mauve and pink mix. They also do an excellent range of non-under wire bras, if you find that bras with wires give you that little too much support. Like with the under wired bra's though, they offer a minimiser bra. Obviously it does not offer much support and does look a bit like a crop top, but it does appear to do the job well. They have many of the same bras as in the under wired range, in the non-wired range, so this is an advantage to those who like the style of bras in the under wired range but thought they were unavailable in the sort that they wanted. The light support non-wired bra is a total bargain at only £6.00. It is perfect for women with smaller breasts and looks wonderful under a plain work shirt. The worst bra in the non-wired range has to be the Total support embroidery bra. Yes, I may like my embroidery, but this bra is awful. The top of the cups comes up so high, that there is hardly any strap at the front, and the cups are massive, even in the smaller
sizes, and make you feel a bit intimidated if you haven't got enough to fill the cups right out. One thing I do love about Marks and Spencer's is the way that they offer a measuring service so that you can find out what your real bra size is. This saves with all of the kafuffle of getting a tape measure out and then measuring. One point to note is that you shouldn't feel embarrassed of letting them measure you. My mum took me along to get my first bra in there when I was about fourteen and I was like 'Arghhh, I am as flat as a pancake - they're going to tell me to get a vest from the kiddie section'. This wasn't the case thankfully; otherwise I would never of forgiven my mother. The trained bra fitters just ask you to lift your jumper or shirt up (it's best to be wearing a crop top or a loose fitting t-shirt), and then they measure you with their tape measure, that has all of the lists of bra sizes written on it, for more accurate fittings. If you are too shy to get yourself measured in-store, or you are planning to buy underwear online, then this is the way to measure yourself. When measuring yourself, try wearing a bra that fits you fairly well. 1. Measure underneath your breast, around your rib cage - very snugly, but not too tight, otherwise the band on the bra will feel too stiff. Make sure that the tape measure lies straight all the way around, with no twists or anything. 2. Add 5 inches to the rib cage measurement that you just got, then round it to the nearest even number. The result is your bra size or band measurement. For example: If you measured 28 inches around the rib cage, you would add 5 inches, equalling 33 inches, and round up to the nearest even number - 34 inches. 34 would therefore be the number that goes in front of the letter. 3. Measure loosely around the fullest part of your bust (usually across the nipples), keeping the tape measure straight all the way around your body. Round to the nearest whole number. For example, you might be 37 inches around the fullest part, so you round up to 38 inches. 4. Subtract your bra size (band measurement) in step 2 from the bust measurement in step 3. The difference between the two determines your cup size. A - 1" B - 2" C - 3" D - 4" DD - 5" An example: If my band measurement was 34 inches, and the fullest part of my bust was 38 inches, I would do the easy sum of 38 minus 34 to give me 4 inches, meaning that I would be a D cup. (Bra size: 34D) Anyway, back to bra styles. The multi-way bras are a marvellous idea. The Microfibre moulded padded bra is a bra which you can wear under strapless, off the shoulder, halter neck and one shoulder tops. In other words, it is the ultimate bra! The bonus is that it comes with clear straps - so you can choose to leave them attached or not, and either way, they won't be seen. The new 'stick on bra' is interesting - to say the least. Clearly, the bra cannot be returned once the seal is broken, because basically the entire bra is made up of two cups with a join in the middle and a bit of sticky tape to hold it in place. It is great for wearing under elegant evening dresses though. I don't know if I would buy this bra because I am not sure how many times it would stick back down on me again and the bra tape is fairly expensive so I hear (£10 a pack apparently). Also, I am not sure if it can be purchased in Marks's itself. The bra alone is priced at £20.00, so, is it really worth it? The frontless bra is nice for low cut tops and dresses that reveal a little cleavage. The bra is just like a normal bra apart from the straps and the bit across the middle attaching both cups, is clear plastic. The sheer backless wrap bra has clear straps at the back, but they are like twisted lower down than where you would normally find the back st
ra p. This is so that your dress can be worn fairly low and the back straps come below that, and are clear, just like the arm straps. Gel Pads can be bought for only £5.00, and are excellent for that extra bit of padding that normal foam padding can't give. The great thing is that they feel and appear like real breasts - terrific say the lads! If you already own a strapless bra and it has hooks on it for straps to be attached, then it might be handy to note that they sell clear plastic straps for only £3.00 a pair. At £30.00, the Changeant Lace Bustier may set you back a bit, but it is definitely worth it. It is made of black lace with a purple and magenta colour silk underneath it, to show through. It is fabulous for that 'one of occasion', and a definite for any honeymooner. If you are more of a sporty chick and find your boobies going 'bom ba bom bom' when you are playing your game of tennis on the courts, then I would recommend investing in one of Marks and Spencer's great sports bras. They do non-wired, total support and light support bras. Also they have shock absorber bra that can prevent pain in the shoulders and neck. Mesh crop tops prevent the bounciness during high impact exercise. I must own at least 20 pairs of knickers from Marks and Spencer's. This is great when I go away on holiday, because I don't have to take washing powder with me, and at such great value, it is very affordable. The Mini style is my favourite because it isn't too high up on the leg and it isn't too high on the waist either. The high legs are a bit too high cut for me, around the legs and they sees to come up almost to my belly button, which is a pain when I wear hipster trousers, which I often do. The cheeky mini is a nice style of knicker, because the sides on it are very thin and string like, and the front is almost like a mesh material. The best thing is that it comes in only bl
ack - my favourite colour choice for underwear. Knickers also come in full briefs and shorts style I personally don't find these very nice because I feel completely ugly wearing them. They feel a bit like granny bloomers because there is so much material to them, and I would be completely embarrassed if I was in a changing room trying on a pair of trousers, if people were looking at me wearing these boxer short style knickers! I suppose it is comfort that is the main factor that influences people's purchases, but if I don't think that I look alright wearing it, then I wouldn't step out of the house wearing it - even if it is only underwear and no-one would be seeing it. Just knowing that it wasn't the right sort of style for me, would ruin my day! Knickers can be bought in multi-packs of about 5 pairs, for a bargain price of only £10.00. This works out at only £2.00 a pair, which is extremely cheap considering they are about a fiver each to buy separately. 'Shapewear' is what I would recommend to anyone who is on the verge of stepping across to the full brief or shorts designs. This is because they give you a nice looking figure at the same time as looking fairly attractive. They are not just plain white and cotton like the average full briefs; they come in lace and with string sides too. The wild hearts collection contains products, which would have made ideal Valentines Day presents. It is like a black lace with a red material underneath. The lace is cut out in hearts and flower shapes to give a sultry and seductive look. The orchard leaf collection is made up of exquisite lacy and embroidered designs. It is very stylish, especially in the gorgeous blue colour that it is available in. On the cups of the bra, there are many silky leaves and the same appears on the top of the matching knickers. Salon Rose has to be my favourite collection. It looks superb in the black mix collecti
on, be cause it is all sorts of zigzag patterns in baby pink on a black background. In the middle of the crisscross design is a lovely baby pink bow, just to finish it off. If you are feeling in a very sexy mood, then the suspenders might just be your thing. Marks and Spencer's specialise in Maternity underwear, which is good because your body needs a lot of care and attention at that important time. Every single woman is different during pregnancy but due to increased hormonal activity, it is common for breast to enlarge and even change shape. It has been known in cases, for women to increase up to four bra sizes, during pregnancy. They say that there are five stages during pregnancy that you need to be measured for a bra at. 1. As soon as you find out you are pregnant 2. 18 weeks 3. 26 weeks 4. 30-32 weeks 5. 37 weeks I am not going to be able to give you as much information about maternity bras as I could, but that might be because I have never experienced pregnancy yet. All I can say is that the ranges that they do are not completely old fashioned and unattractive, because pregnancy is not an illness at the end of the day - and is supposed to be one of the happiest experiences in women's lives. I did say at the start of this opinion, that Marks and Spencer's did not sell frumpy underwear - or not too much of it anyway. But here is a little bit about the lovely thermal underwear that they do, which is guaranteed to keep you warm on a cold winters day. Keep the heat in with one of the items in their thermal range, including: camisole, long sleeve vest, leggings, short sleeve vest, and ordinary vest. The Marks and Spencer's brand has stood for quality for a long time in the United Kingdom, and even the girdles produced in 1987 that were still being made right up into the 1990's, were no exemption to this. Like I mentioned before, you can also shop online. The webs
ite to go to is at: www.marksandspencers.com, although when purchasing underwear, I would recommend buying it from the actual shop itself as it is easier to get the right size.
Pants are not something I normally get that excited about - I'm not the sort of person to waft around in something lacey and provocative, I like my clothes simple, functional and largely made of natural fibers. I also like them to fit. So here I am, 8 months pregnant, with a waist bigger than the tape measure - I'm now taking a size 24 in most things. As a result, none of the size 16 pants I used to wear fit any more. I had a long quest for pants, resulting in much irritation, because the vast majority of shops do not go over a size 18. Then I tried M&S. Marks and Spencer do a wide range of pants from the one lacy scrap of fabric for a lot of money through to the hugest of granny-style knickers. The best buys are the mutli packs - a range of sizes and shapes and colours, usually in packs of five, and sometimes with excellent offers - I spent 12 pounds on ten pairs of pants last time, and you can't argue with that. If you want cute lacy thong like stuff, and are under a size 18, the world is your oyster and you don't need any advice from me, so the rest of this is for bigger ladies and those possesed of baby bumps, to whome pant manufacturers are less kind. I've found that there's a lot to be said for natural fibers - they keep you cooler, they are less tempermental about being washed and they tend to last better as well, plus it is possible to repair any minor damage with a bit of sewing. Marks and Spencers multipack pants are cotton for the greater part. The shapes vary - height of leg, of waist and width across bum being the biggies. There are illustrations on the packs to give you some idea, and I've mostly found these helpful. I tend to wear midis, as I've found these to be the most comfy. In pregnancy, you want pants with a bit of give in them, with a bit of bump support and elastic that isn't too tight. If your bump is high up, you might be able to wear your pants underneath it for a while
, but eventually the baby will drop and you need to be prepaired for this. (fine if its mid summer and you can do without, evil in winter.) M&S do huge pants - big comfy pants that you can get both you and the bump into without any trouble. They do them in black and white, and in a few more girly shades if you must. They do mixed packs. I've never seen size 24 pants anywhere else, but if memory serves these weren't the largest they had. Survivability - because its not much good buying pants that fall appart in no time. I've had some M&S pants for over a year now (not continuous wear, before you make funny nosies). They wash well, they do not fall appart (Peacocks pants do, regardless of how careful you are) they keep their colour tolerably well, although if you dry them in bright sunlight they will fade like anything else. They keep their shape, and the elastic doesn't die off that easily - so no pants round ankles moments when you arne't expecting them. On the whole, I think these are an excellent buy if you have some girth to accomodate. Furthermore, its a pleasant enough place to shop and they tend to have aisles wide enough that you can get around said with a bump. (many shops are not at all bump friendly.)
M&S are probably the place where most women buy their underwear. I think it was said that 90% of women own a pair of knickers from M&S - it's probably true! A large majority of girls get their first bra from M&S so it does have a special place in the hearts of many females. However, in the year 2000 is it still a major player in the expanding underwear retailing market as it used to be? There is competition from specialist retailers such as La Senza and Knickerbox and all department stores have lingerie sections selling a wide range of makes from gel filled bras to boned corsets. The one main area that M&S exploit that the others don't is in the boring everyday underwear market. For staple basic underwear sold in multipacks that are reasonably priced you can't beat them. Their range of white cotton underwear is fantastic. The elastic lasts for ages, doesn't loosen and you can wash them hundreds of times and they don't go a horrible washed out grey colour. Another thing I cannot fault them for is fit. I have very narrow shoulders so getting bra straps to stay up has always been a problem! Their bras always fit me perfectly and are really comfortable, you don't know that you are wearing them! They also have extensive ranges of what you would call underwear for the more mature lady - it must be one of the few stores that still sell this kind of underwear! That's what I like about M&S, there is a great range to choose from. Off the top of my head I can think of at least 5 different ranges including microfibre and underwear without seams - great for those close-fitting tops! M&S have realised that in the underwear market competition is heating up and so they have tried to keep up with the times. They have a huge selection of bras including maximisers, minimisers and sports bras. All their staff are trained in bra measuring so if you are not sure you can check to see if you are buying the correct size. I've had this
done and I can recommend it - very professional! Another great range is what I call the tummy tuckers! These are the items that hold in all those lumpy bits that you wish were flat. They do items for your bum, tummy and hips, perfect with Xmas coming up and all those little black party dresses you have to get into! Their Salon Rose range is an indicator of M&S moving with the times. I suppose they are trying to copy more exclusive underwear ranges such as Agent Provocateur but I'm not sure if they have succeeded. I don't like this range - it's the colours that do it. Instead of sticking to more traditional underwear colours such as red, black, white, they have gone for purple, turquoise and cerise. I have nothing against these colours, it's the colours they team them with! Turquoise and brown - I think not! It's a good attempt to move with the times but they haven't got it quite right which is a shame. Compared to places such as La Senza I think M&S are good value for money for your everyday cotton underwear. For special more luxurious underwear, there are better places to go. Until then I think M&S had definitely got the niche in the market and I will be shopping there for my multipacks for a long time to come!