What material makes the best Shapewear?

When it comes to choosing shapewear there are many different suppliers and products available, and many of them will use different materials. While it may seem that shapewear is just high compression under garments and the material composition isn’t a significant factor. You should think again, and here’s why.

In this short blog we will cover the 3 main materials used in shapewear, highlighting the key benefits of each composition, and ultimately which material is the best for shapewear.



We’ve all heard of polyester; it is one of the most used products in fitness clothing. Polyester is more breathable than materials such as cotton however it isn’t as robust as materials such as spandex or other moisture-wicking fabrics like nylon. Another downside of polyester is it tends to trap in bacteria and often holds odours, it also doesn’t dry as rapidly meaning bacteria can linger for longer within the material. The other reason polyester may not be the best material when looking for shapewear is it doesn’t provide as high compression as other products like nylon or spandex.


As a material Polyester is probably better suited for casual clothing or low impact activewear due to its bacteria holding properties. Also due to its lower compression it’s probably not the first-choice material when choosing your desired shapewear.



This material is widely used throughout the world, it provides very high compression and it’s often used in gym wear, activewear and weight training due to its high elasticity. The material was made famous by the brand Lycra who were the first to bring the material into commercial production for training purposes. The key benefits to spandex are its tight comfort fit, however it does lack moisture wicking properties so they material can become heavier once sweat and moisture accumulate. For shapewear spandex offers a great product due to its high compression but it may not be the best option in warmer conditions.



This is a product which is often referred to as the gold standard material for both activewear and shapewear. This product takes the best attributes from materials such as polyester and spandex but is additionally more durable and mark resistant. Nylon has also been designed to be quick drying and a moisture wicking material which makes it the perfect material for both shapewear and activewear. From a compression perspective nylon provides comparable compression to spandex so it is also regarded as a great product for shapewear.



Which is the best material?

At shape clothing we design all our products to use a combination of what we believe to be the best materials. We use only spandex and nylon combinations to produce shapewear that provides high compression but is also breathable and quick drying. This means you can enjoy maximum results with our products and feel comfortable in them all year round.


Would you like to view our range of Shapewear?

Click the links below to see our range of women's & mens Shapewear

Mens Shapewear

Women's Shapewear