Looking for more tips on how to shop in Paris like a local? Be sure to get our 2019 INSIDR Paris Shopping Guide! Lingerie is so quintessentially French that we didn’t even bother to create our own word for it, we simply borrowed theirs. From the classic corset to the modern triangle, the City of Lights might as well be called the City of Lingerie. You’ll find lingerie boutiques all over town, including in the famous Red Light District but you might be surprised to find a lingerie shop on every city street! Just because we don’t always see it, doesn’t mean it’s not important!
From the highest-end luxury brands to accessible everyday options, the city has endless choices. If you’re looking to dress up your inner (and outer) Femme Fatale, or for a romantic day in general, Paris is the best place to do it!
A word of caution though – Parisians take their lingerie very seriously. Size, quality and style are of the utmost importance. Since there is such a wide variety of options available and French specificities, we’ve put together the ultimate guide to buying lingerie in Paris to help make your lingerie shopping experience a true pleasure. If you want to continue your Parisian shopping spree after finding the perfect lingerie, check out our shopping guide.
What you need to know buy lingerie in Paris
French lingerie size conversion
French lingerie sizes are calculated differently than in other countries. They first have the bust size (measure directly under your bust) in the number of centimeters. The number is followed by the cup size. Cups are roughly the same as in other countries, however panty and chest sizes tend to be very different!
You can ask to be measured at most lingerie stores, but we’ve also created a chart to help you find your size in France:
Finding your size in French lingerie
If you go shopping at some of the trendy French lingerie stories including Princesse Tam Tam or Ysé, you’ll probably be surprised how their size options don’t cover the needs of all women. They tend to have a lot of choice for colors and styles but only a few sizes for each model. It can be a super frustrating experience since it’s often quite challenging to find generous sizes. Your best option will be a department store, they have a wider selection of options.
Must do when buying French lingerie
You’ll encounter hundreds of lingerie brands at all price points: high-end luxury, trendy, casual, sporty and budget-friendly. Pieces come in all sizes, though as mentioned, if you go to certain stores, you might have trouble finding all sizes. Chantelle, Maisons Lejaby, Simone Pérèle and Aubade create high-quality pieces and offer shapes for all woman. The largest selection can be found at the amazing Galeries Lafayette, it truly has the most choice in all of Paris. Choose from a multitude of different brands and try everything on at once. You’ll save time and be able to better compare fits, there’s no need to run all around town. The helpful staff will advise and guide you along the way!
Which are the best French lingerie brands
Luxury and designer lingerie brands in Paris
Sometimes life requires splurging. Whether you’re a longtime lingerie fan or want to treat yourself to something special, we definitely recommend purchasing at least one quality piece of lingerie during your time in Paris.
Chantal Thomass is an iconic French name in lingerie. The quality of their lace just can’t be beaten and it’s a great choice for a quality item. You also can’t go wrong with French brands Fifi Chachnil, for a classic Parisian look, or Eres for tantalizing options. Not sure what’s best for you? You can find all three brands, and many others, at the Galeries Lafayette!
Mid range lingerie brands & trendy lingerie in Paris
If you prefer more mid-range lingerie, Chantelle, Aubade or Princesse Tam Tam are great options. Pieces are flattering, comfortable and still have that “oh la la” effect. The detail and lacework remains very impressive and won’t set your bank account back as much as some other brands! Find them around Paris and of course also at the Galeries Lafayette (have we mentioned that we love this store). These three brands are especially popular with French women and it’s no wonder why!
Affordable brands and every day lingerie in Paris
For everyday use and unbeatable prices we recommend Etam and Undiz. Both brands have an incredible range of styles – push-up, classic, triangles (super trendy in Paris), strapless and we could go on. Most of the younger Parisian crowd shops at these stores, though they have options for all ages and occasions. Oysho is another one of our favorite brands… Not only do they have an impressive collection of lingerie, their loungewear is super comfy and cute as well and numerous options in 100% organic cotton.
Where to buy the best lingerie in Paris
Special focus on the Lingerie department at Galeries Lafayette
Shopping for lingerie should be a treat, it’s fun, and let’s be honest, a bit of a splurge. You shouldn’t have to worry about finding the right size or style. That’s why we also go to the Galeries Lafayette. They have pieces from all of our favorite brands, including the iconic Chantelle, Aubade and all of the other brands we’ve mentioned previously, plus tons more. We know we’ll never have to worry about finding our size, they have the widest range in town.
Picture a full floor dedicated to lingerie of 3500 square meters with over 50 brands located at the 4th floor of the main building. From high-end to trendy, more casual looks and even sportswear. After finding the perfect ensemble, we also like to head up to their secret rooftop to grab a drink, to celebrate your successful lingerie shopping experience!
Lingerie and beyond at Galeries Lafayette
A little honesty on our end – we like things to be easy here at INSIDR. We like to be pampered. We don’t like running around all over town, especially when we go shopping. That’s why we are such big fans of Galeries Lafayette! Not only is everything available at your fingertips, the lovely staff provide precious advice every step of the way. We also love that we can get nightwear and swimwear all in the same spot.
Their swimwear collection is largely regarded as the best in all of Paris. You might even be lucky enough to be in Paris during one of their bi-annual sales, the best time for excellent discounts on high-end lingerie.
They’re open until 8:30PM on weekdays and all day Sunday, also a rare event in the French capital. You can also get your VAT refund immediately, a bonus for your shopping budget! As mentioned, if you’re lucky enough to be in town during one of the two sales periods, you really should check out the massive discounts.
The most exclusive shopping experience in town
If you’re looking to indulge, the best shopping experience in Paris can be had at the Galeries Lafayette. For you fashionistas, they have private fashion shows twice a week held in a lovely private showroom. Reserve you place now and get a 10% discount for this exclusive fashion show experience with our code “INSIDR”!
Their VIP experience gives you access to a lounge with a dedicated concierge service. If you’re planning on making big purchases, you can even have your own personal shopper! With the personal shopper you can gain access to all brands without waiting for the long queue outside the shop and access to the limited edition items in the store! Contact our team and get more information for reserving the VIP shopping experience with personal shopper at Galeries Lafayette through firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lingerie stores in Paris
You’ll find lingerie stores in every corner of Paris, though each neighborhood has its own vibe. Check out our shopping guide to identify the best shopping streets in Paris and decide which areas best fit your personal style and budget.
In addition to the shops we’ve already mentioned, you can head to Cadolle, whose owner is credited with inventing the bra in 1889! Louise Feuillère is also a lovely store, appropriately located on the rue des Dames. Finally, there is Un Amour de Lingerie located in the center of Paris.