When my stepmom gave my dad a pair of Icebreaker merino wool boxer briefs last winter, it was The Perfect Gift: luxuriously soft wool to cosset him, sporty functionality to affirm his love of outdoor pursuits and therefore, his manliness.
But when I asked my pops if he would ever buy lingerie for my stepmom, he said “no way.”
My dad is not alone. Most of the men I surveyed for this blog also said that buying undergarments for a lady friend is fraught, the classic hurdles being (a) the awkwardness of being a dude in a panty store, (b) sizes more befuddling than Sudoku, and (c) the risk that said lady will read the wrong message into the gift (“So my birthday suit isn’t good enough for you anymore?!” Christmas by the fire instead becoming waterworks, a stormy exit and a lonely scotch at the bar.)
What a shame, because comfortable, beautiful, well-made underwear is the basic “gear” of a woman’s daily life, and therefore makes a great present. So let’s take each hurdle in turn, and get you on the road to Man of The Year gifting.
Turn “Dude in a Panty Shop” Into “Dude in a Candy Shop”
Candy jars filled with rolled lace thongs at the Hanky Panky Panty Bar at the Grand Central Terminal Holiday Fair, now through Christmas Eve.
Face it. My mom can buy sail boat print boxers at J. Crew for my brother without raising any eyebrows. But a man in a lingerie store does not have such an easy time of it. (Double standards are annoying, huh?)
Some practical workarounds:
1. Stop by Hanky Panky’s booth at the Grand Central Holiday Fair now through December 24, 2014. (We’re open Monday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.) You’ll find a wide assortment of styles and colors, expert advice, packed-in savings on gift packs, and our always-popular-with-the-ladies Thong Roses.
The Hanky Panky Thong Rose is a Signature Lace Thong wrapped around a silk rose bud. Available in Original Rise ($27, Style No. 4811RB), and Low Rise ($27, Style No. 4911RB), at the Panky Bar and on hankypanky.com.
And while you’re at the Holiday Fair, buy yourself a hand-painted tie at Telos New York, a cooler-than-thou messenger bag at The Lodge, or a chew toy for Fido at The Life of Ryley.
2. Check out hankypanky.com, or even easier, call our Customer Care team for recommendations and let them place the order for you. Call us at 877.447.4811, or Live Chat with us, Monday to Friday, 9 am to 6 pm EST.
3. Not in New York and want to shop in person? Visit the Intimates section of your local Nordstrom, Lord and Taylor, Neiman Marcus, Saks, Bloomingdales or Macys during off-hours, like the middle of the afternoon on a weekday, or right when the store opens on a weekend. You’re likely to be the only customer there, and one of the perks of shopping at these better department stores is the highly trained sales staff.
Decoding the Size Chart (Or Better Yet, One Size Fits All)
The World’s Most Comfortable Thong® is one size fits most, so you can skip size headaches.
Hanky Panky Signature Lace Low Rise Thong ($20, Style No. 4911) in Sour Cherry. Our Low Rise Thong fits pant sizes 2-12, and our Original Rise Thong ($20, Style No. 4811) fits pant sizes 4-14, our. These styles are also available in Plus and Petite sizes.
Too good to be true? Nope, it’s just your lucky day. In Design Revolution, we explained that the lace used in our signature thongs has enough elasticity to be truly one size fits most, without pinching your honey’s skin. The V-shaped waistband of our thongs also flatter women of different shapes and sizes. If you do want to buy a sized item, take a peek at her dress or pant size and then find her size using our size charts (or call the Hanky Panky Customer Care team and we’ll figure it out for you):
Use our size chart to buy your Hanky Panky gift in the right size. Or skip the heroics and buy her a Hanky Panky One Size Fits Most thong. I recommend the Original Rise Thong if she’s tall or curvy, or its younger sister, the Low Rise Thong, if she wears low rise jeans.
Choosing the Right Style
I could sing all day about the wonders of our thongs, because that little piece of lace changed my life, but if you’re worried about gifting lingerie that is overtly sexy, here are some subtle, but still smokin’, options:
Our BARE Boyshort ($30, Style No. 6J1281) is a must-have for every woman’s wardrobe. BARE is made of a super-soft, Italian microfiber, and is invisible under work suits, yoga pants and other form fitting clothes. Thanks to superior Hanky Panky construction, our BARE styles do not ride up or roll down. Available in six colors on hankypanky.com.
- You’re sure to score points by pairing our Signature Lace Classic Camisole ($48, Style No. 1390L) with a matching Signature Lace Boyshort ($29, Style No. 4812). Many women wear the cami and boyshort as a sleep set, and both pieces double as practical, everyday luxury. Available in more than 20 colors on hankypanky.com.
Of course, if overtly sexy is what you are going for, the Hanky Panky After Midnight® collection is a veritable garden of delights, including these lovelies:
The Heavy Metal ensemble. Bralette ($49, Style No. 487294), Brazilian Bikini ($36, Style No. 482644) and Cuffs ($16, Style No. 48STCUFF).
- Signature Lace Keyhole Teddy ($69, Style No. 488406). Available on hankypanky.com in Tulip Pink (shown here) and Black.
Plus Size Peek-a-Boo Lace Babydoll with G-String. ($108, Style No. 9C6814X). Available online at hankypanky.com and at Macy’s Herald Square.
Click here for tips on styling your ladybird from Hanky Panky’s Senior Designer, Larissa Shirley King.
Let the gifting begin!