A to Z of Lingerie: D is for Dessous

Dessous is a word I see a lot now when I'm shopping for lingerie or researching on blogs.  It's a word that's been used in literature (check out 1000 Dessous: A History of Lingerie by Gilles Neret) and brand names (Les Dessous Chics).  But what does it actually mean?  Well, dessous is a French word which means "worn underneath" and in recent years it's become quite trendy to use this word to describe the more expensive items of lingerie on the market.  I've even witnessed it being used in French conversation as a slang term, for example they would use "dessous" for "undies."

Would this word ever be used by those outside the fashion industry?  Probably not.  In fact before I began blogging about lingerie and had a French brother in law I don't recall ever hearing it, and if I did I probably just glazed over it.  However, it seems to be used quite often now (or perhaps I just notice it more) and being a French word it sounds fancier than saying undies.  You never know, it might catch on in English speaking countries and be used more commonly!

Do you know any foreign words that could be used for slang in lingerie terms that sound better than dessous?


  1. As you know, it means "underneath", in this case under the skirt or the dress, or perhaps even (when such things were still worn) petticoats! I don't think it's much used in today's French either, outside "la couture". :)

  2. I've not heard this term...but it's added to my word dictionary now.

  3. Loving your A to Z posts. I never thought there were so many words to describe lingerie. I'll be popping back to throughout the month to find out more.


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