My HERO product: Bandelettes

Last summer, it suddenly felt as if everyone was talking about the ‘thigh gap’.

Woman in a red dress on the red carpet wearing bandelettesAs someone who hasn’t had one of those since I was 12, it was all a bit demoralising, not least because I was about to have my first holiday somewhere hot in a while, and I was dreading the ‘chub rub’.

What’s that? Well, for those thin-thighed lovelies out there, I should explain that it’s what the rest of us without a thigh gap risk getting on the skin of our inner thighs when we dare to wear skirts without tights.

In the past, I’ve resorted to wearing shorts under my skirts, which guarantees a hot and sweaty crotch area, and definitely doesn’t deliver the cool, wafty feeling I am hoping for.

This time, I was determined to find a better solution, so I did a bit of Googling and discovered Bandelettes. These are lace cuffs that you wear on your thighs over the area that would normally rub.

They look a bit like stocking tops or very close-fitting garters, but they are far more comfortable, as they come in a wide range of sizes to ensure a good fit. Miraculously, they stay put because of discrete silicon bands inside the top and bottom.

The size guide suggests getting the next size up if you are at the top end of a size bracket, which I did. I was a bit nervous that they would fall down, but thankfully they stayed put.

3 women wearing bandelettesI wondered if they would be like the tops of hold-up stockings, but they definitely weren’t – much less clingy and sticky feeling and they showed no sign of wanting to roll down.

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The lace ones were my favourite. Not on aesthetic grounds – though they do look really nice and might even look sexy on the right thighs – but because the top and bottom edges are scalloped, which made them more comfortable to wear. Plus, the open weave of the lace meant that there was no sweat build up at all.

I was finally able to live the dream, wafting about in light cotton dresses and enjoying the breezes that my skirts created.

Bandelettes kept me comfortable even in 30º+C heat, and ensured that chub rub didn’t even whisper its name. The silicon band did need adjusting now and then, but that was more me learning which slight angle changes made them fit best. I washed them at the end of the day, and they were dry in half an hour.

The plain Lycra version was okay, but I found that the top of the bands collected more moisture, and the edge just didn’t sit as comfortably.

However, they were still pretty effective, and would be a good choice for anyone – even chubby-thighed guys keen to try a sarong or kilt –  not wanting the lacy look.

They’re not just for summer either – as the party season approaches, try them under your cocktail dress or evening wear if you’re going for bare legs. Then dance the night away without chafing!

It really is great to not have to worry about what I’m wearing. It’s like a whole new wardrobe has been opened up to me…

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About Tracey Lloyd

I’m an environmental educator in Nottingham with a wonderful community allotment to play in, called Windmill Community Gardens. I teach people how to grow, cook, eat and preserve their food in low energy and low cost ways, as well as having a lot of fun making useful and beautiful things with junk. My lovely husband and kids just about tolerate my tendency to hoard waste items for future projects! Photo by Jonathan Cherry.