Peeling It Off

black and white striped tights

My wife once told me about how she commiserated with a girlfriend about Spanx.

For the uninitiated, Spanx is a popular brand of shapewear — tight-fitting underwear designed to smooth, lift, and otherwise manipulate the female (usually) body, particularly the lower half, in hopes of providing an appealing shape for certain outfits. According to the inventor of Spanx, they’re basically cleverly-marketed pantyhose with the feet cut off.

My wife likes Spanx because they even out certain features and help her feel more comfortable in short skirts and dresses in certain situations. I like them for other reasons, but more on that later.

Anyway, my wife explained that she and her girlfriend loved Spanx until it was time to take them off. They work hard to look their best for a date, and the Spanx facilitate one aspect of that effort. In general, the girls’ plan would be to look so good they’re irresistible for their husbands by the end of the night. However, the tight elasticity that gives the undergarment its utility also makes it require an act of Congress to remove.

She hooks her thumbs into the waistband of the Spanx and engages in a performance that combines the squirming of a slow-motion peepee dance with the grimace of severe menstrual cramps and the soundtrack of the final moments of childbirth.

My wife and her friend painted an amusing picture involving the smooth, sultry removal of a slinky dress while her husband looks on with desire. Then, she hooks her thumbs into the waistband of the Spanx and engages in a performance that combines the squirming of a slow-motion peepee dance with the grimace of severe menstrual cramps and the soundtrack of the final moments of childbirth (possibly even including the classic “I hate you; you did this to me” line). This grunting, gyrating (in more of a convulsing way than a dancing way) display is the epitome of unsexy to them, surely unraveling whatever sex appeal they had so meticulously woven throughout the evening.

Personally, while I might acknowledge an unsexy factor when experiencing flashbacks to delivery room scenes best left forgotten — it’s a special moment for sure, but not a sexy one — I disagree with the underlying premise that it’s impossible to be sexy while taking off Spanx. I’ve heard similar complaints about the impossibility of seduction when removing other tight garments (sports bras, compression athletic attire, swimwear, etc.), and that presumption is equally flawed, at least in my case.

I like seeing my wife in exceptionally tight (even too-small) clothing, and perceivable difficulty in the removal of an article of clothing only evidences how tight it actually is. That’s not inherently a turn-off. Psychologically, it has the potential to be just the opposite!

I could do without the accompaniment of sustained groans of exertion that are reminiscent of digestive irregularity, but I can actually appreciate watching as she slowly, methodically peels off this painted-on layer of fabric one inch at a time.

No, it might not be the type of dramatic reveal as seen in a silky negligee falling suddenly onto the floor, but the growing anticipation of a continued painstaking effort is merely another highly enjoyable type of drama.

To my wife, I said, “It’s only awkward because you see it as awkward. Be patient with taking it off — I am, and I’m enjoying every second of it.”

Photo credit: ThomasLong / Foter / CC BY
About Phil (251 Articles)
Philip Osgood is a Christian husband, father, and writer who considers himself a passable video game player, fiction reader, camping and hiking enthusiast, welder, computer guy, and fitness aficionado, though real experts in each field might just die of laughter to hear him claim it. He has been called snarky, cynical, intelligent, eccentric, creative, logical, and Steve for some reason. Phil and his beautiful wife Clara live in Texas with their children in a house with a dog but no white picket fence. He does own a titanium spork from ThinkGeek, though, so he must be alright.