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Independent Brands Redefining Women’s Undergarment Market

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NEW YORK (CBSMiami) – While more traditional styles of women’s underwear dominate the market, a number of independent brands are catering to a much larger market.

At the New York headquarters of Lively, the unmentionables on display aren’t necessarily meant to be kept under wraps.

“These styles look like you could wear them outside, not just under your clothes,” said Karina Mitchell.

“And they’ve certainly been styled that way,” Alexandra Alquiza responded.

Underwear is big business, and Victoria’s Secret has helped shape the industry.

According to IBIS World, in 2016, L-Brands, the parent company of Victoria’s Secret, known for its enticing looks, accounted for 83 percent of the U.S. retail lingerie market.

But Lively’s director of marketing, Alexandra Alquiza, says a growing number of women want something different.

“Ultimate comfort coupled with high style… really tapping into a new definition of sexy,” she said. “The sexy that resonates with women today is around being active and outgoing and confident.”

Athleticwear has taken off and is now finding its way into intimate apparel.

More businesses are creating a diverse range of undergarments that include larger sizes, increased comfort and styles that can blur the lines.

Adore Me CEO Morgan Hermand Waiche says his range of innerwear covers every size from petite to plus.

“It’s not about being seductive or trying to be a femme fatale… like Victoria’s Secret. It’s just about yourself feeling good in your skin,” he said.

People who stopped by the label’s New York photo shoot seemed interested.

“I really like the more flexible casual look,” one person said.

Another person added, “As long as it’s comfortable and gives you support, that’s all that matters to me.”

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