Summer is such a lovely time for dresses, and even better, it’s a socially acceptable excuse to not wear pants for 3-4 months. However, the heat isn’t just in the air, it’s also between your thighs; those beautiful, thick thighs rubbing together like a cricket’s legs creates a pretty painful rash which, for the sake of simplicity and whimsy all at once, I’m going to refer to as chub rub. If you’re 18 and skinny, I don’t expect you to understand – I didn’t start getting it until I was 24 and yet also at my lightest weight ever – but this rash is more than irritating. It makes it impossible to walk; at least impossible to walk like a human – walking like a penguin? Check.
Two summers ago, I stocked up on anti-chafing cream, baby powder, and bike shorts and besides being slathered in melting goo and constantly yanking down my creeping spandex shorts, it just wasn’t enough. So last year, I did some serious research and discovered my new best friend – Bandelettes.
Yes, this is a sponsored post, but I would be singing their praises either way because these things changed my life. They’re thigh guards to protect against chafing in dresses and skirts, while also looking cute and giving you the same ventilation for which dresses are intended. Think thigh-high stay-ups, but without the stocking; strips of silicone line stretchy lace cuffs that sit perfectly at the top of your thigh and NEVER budge. They don’t ride up, they don’t fall down, and they don’t roll. Just put them at the top of your thigh, under the butt (but not right in crease), and they’ll stay there no matter how much your thighs rub together. The product itself lasts a long time for something as typically flimsy as lace; I used mine all of last summer and they made it a couple weeks into this summer before I had to replace them. The size is really spot-on as well, and their stretchy material means that one size works for a lot of different people; I’ve gained a few pounds since last year’s purchase, but I ordered the same size this summer and they still fit just as they should. Comfortably, too.
As for their chub rub-fighting abilities – top notch. I’ve worn both the lace and the “unisex” ones for an entire day – even days in a row – without so much as a tingle. The lace ones breathe perfectly, providing a flirty form of protection, or even a cute little peek out of an otherwise plain skirt. The full-fabric Bandelettes (AKA “unisex”, but lace is sexy on anyone) provide the same flawless level of protection while hiding much more seamlessly under a thigh-hugging skirt or dress. I hadn’t tried the unisex ones until this year, but I’m really glad I did, as they surprisingly breathe just as well as the lace ones – witchcraft fabric! As a bonus, I see this fabric wearing out a bit more slowly than lace (especially in the event of frequent washing).
Speaking of washing, it stands to reason that at some point these would get a bit grimy; while they don’t seem to gather a lot of visible grunge, I’ve opted to hand wash mine a couple times with some soap and water. You’ll want to as well, probably after the first time you run to the bathroom in a hurry and don’t have time to yank them down to avoid splash-back (unpleasant, I know, but this is life!)
I’ve only had one or two bad experiences; every once in a while – and I really do mean once or twice a year – the lace ones make me a bit itchy while I walk, or by some fluke, a bit of that burning gets through. Maybe it was really hot that day and I was sweaty, maybe my skin was being a jerk, or maybe the planets were just aligned in a way that wanted to be cruel to my thighs. Who knows? But by owning both the lace and the full-panel pairs, I have a backup for those particularly finicky days that ensures I never need to suffer too long.
I will recommend these to anyone who listens, even the ones to whom I have to spell out exactly what chub rub is, only to sort of end up resenting someone who’s never had to deal with this problem. I remember the first time I felt the chafing and wondering what sweet hell I had fallen into – why did no one include this part in the “becoming a woman” talk?
I wanted to talk about these because I have enough nagging reasons to lose weight that I don’t need a literally burning reminder to do so. Thick thighs are glorious, and rather than diet them into oblivion or take chub rub as a sign that you’re not good enough, Bandelettes give you a way to relax and enjoy summer in pretty dresses instead of wondering how far you’re going to be able to walk today. Some people can be as skinny as a rail, but this is a problem that applies to all humans – even men. It sounds corny, but this is a product that makes me feel safer and less vulnerable in every way when it comes to my favourite summer fashions. And they’re cute as hell.
This post is sponsored by Bandelettes, and products were sent to me in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed here are unbiased and my own.