Insight into the UK Underwear Industry


Over the last 12 months, underwear has been moving out from beneath the shadow of clothing and other areas of fashion that have dominated for so long.

The underwear industry is experiencing a great period of the growth, as new trends and styles emerge that favour the customer’s needs. It’s been predicted that the UK’s lingerie market is set to grow 11.4% between 2016 and 2018, reaching a value of £3 billion according to Mintel.

Even when consumer spending is restricted and customers are pulling back amid economic worries, the industries of underwear and hosiery still continue to emerge as popular purchases.

This could be down to lower price points, or a clear need or desire for such styles. New underwear brands are emerging constantly that offer consumers more choice in styles and sizing, as the average shopper becomes savvier in choosing labels that are more open to inclusivity and a broader product range.

best-lingerie-for-womenRecent lingerie trends
One of the biggest shifts in underwear styles is the prominence of comfort. Sports- inspired silhouettes are becoming more popular among bra designs, as opposed to heavily padded or push up styles. Intricate bras, bralettes and bodies are being designed as part of an outfit, and are meant to be seen instead of being hidden away under an outfit.

With the huge influx of athleisure styles, it’s no wonder that it has found its way into underwear. However, women are looking for more feminine variations, which is making bralettes a popular go-to for any occasion.
Over the last few months, bigger briefs have made a huge comeback as women areon the lookout for high waisted styles that offer a more flattering look. It’s not always about showing off as much skin as you can! With that in mind, there is a growing demand for shapewear amongst a society that is now very much in favour of body positivity and inclusivity.

Whilst this idea of comfortable lingerie isn’t new, it is so much more prominent amongst lingerie brands. Comfort is key with those softer, sports-inspired shapes being more favourable amongst shoppers. Brands are looking to create a second skin experience with ultimate comfort that make it easier than ever to enjoy wearing beautiful underwear.

By the same token, this appreciation of body positivity has also created a demand for sexy lingerie for all shapes. Customers are becoming bolder in their choices, due to higher self-assurance with their figures; and they expect underwear to follow the same fashion direction as other areas of the industry.

Those non-wired styles and bralettes are more popular because women are more confident. This is the similar theme for the increase in racy, daring designs, as women are understanding the idea of being sexy for themselves, not others.

Vicki Ashman, CEO of luxury knicker brand Scrumpies of Mayfair, comments “We are seeing a huge interest from women and women in our high-end lingerie, as the demand grows for women to express their personality in their lingerie. The market is now for knickers that are both beautiful and comfortable, but affordable enough to be part of an everyday wardrobe.”


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