Many dance schools require students not to wear pants under their leotards or costumes. Why do they ask? What do teens and adults do when they have to menstruate?
Commando can also be distracting for dancers who wear underwear. Wearing tights and leotards ….. too tight can cause uncomfortable underwear to bunch up at the crotch. If the elastic is worn or old, it can also slide down on tights and leotards. If the underwear is too tight or pulled up too high, the wearer may constantly be trying to grab an unpleasant wedgie from their bum.
But isn’t wearing no underwear unhygienic?
Tights are your child’s underwear if they are wearing tights. Tights have a reinforced waistband that covers the feet and replaces panties. Tights for children should be washed every time they are worn, just as underwear.
Underwear for teens and dance schools is covered under costumes and leotards.
Even if your child doesn’t have a pair of tights, think about it as if they were wearing a swimsuit. Your leotard should fit snugly and be well fitted. Many leotards include extra material at the crotch to accomplish this purpose. This problem is because leotards are now mass-produced and manufactured by non-dancers for retailers like Walmart or Kmart. You might not need this extra layer to your child’s leotard if this happens.
Should my child wear underwear if they are wearing a rented outfit?
Underwear is not necessary as long as the child is wearing tights. You can purchase your child flesh-coloured dance pants from a local dancewear shop or a full bodysuit from a professional dancer. This is similar to a leotard but is more comfortable.
Want to know more? Our underwear resource page gives you an overview of the best dancewear.
The options in this guide are all good as they fit well and aren’t too tight. However, they won’t cause extra lines or creases underneath the costume or leotard. If you are concerned that it might cause problems, consult your dance instructor before purchasing.
Why does my child’s teacher require that they wear no underwear to dance class and not for exams or performances?
Your school may insist that students don’t wear underwear while in class. This could be because they want to project a certain image and high appearance standards. They may also want your child to be comfortable not wearing underwear because this is what professional ballerinas do.
My teenage daughter just began menstruating. Wearing no underwear is not realistic.
Many agree that asking any senior or teen dancer to stop wearing underwear is unrealistic, particularly if they are menstruating. While this may be possible for younger students, it might not be feasible for seniors. Senior students might have to give up their underwear, especially if they are menstruating.
There are many options for dancers, depending on their period.
These are great options, but they don’t guarantee they will be seen. That is why your teacher has asked for no underwear. While these options may look great for warming up or when your child is getting ready, they can slip down and be visible under the leotard during class.
New for dancers is the period panty or underwear. These briefs can replace pads and provide extra protection for heavy days. Thinx is one of the many manufacturers that make these briefs. They also offer a beige-coloured version, which can be worn on lighter days without needing a pad or tampon. The Thinx range is available in many colours and sizes.
You can also buy flesh-coloured underwear for dancers from any speciality dance supply store (check our guide to dance underwear here). They will be made from lycra, spandex or cotton. These are usually high-cut to fit snugly under a costume or leotard. You can choose to have your child wear a pad or tampon, depending on their preference.
You can also wear flesh-coloured underwear, or you could choose to replace them with a flesh-coloured full-length bodysuit. This looks similar to a leotard but is made of a thinner, more breathable material.
Some schools offer a slimmer booty option for students who need extra coverage. It is made of the same material as the school leotard, creating a seamless yet comfortable look.
You can also use a tampon to cover your period and wear a flesh-coloured or g-string. This is what I did as a full-time dance student and professional dancer. However, I wish the Thinx period Thong was available. It would have made me feel more covered up during my period. Even though I wasn’t on my period, a thong was the best option. It was convenient for me to quickly change from ballet clothes into contemporary or jazz uniforms and protected my modesty.