The Art of Seduction

There’s nothing that says “I love want you” more than a sexy piece of lingerie. When it comes to giving Valentine’s “intimates,” perhaps no one knows better than Sara Sanfir of Sara’s Lingerie, with stores chock full of Parisian pretties in both Encino and Studio City.

Best advice for buyers? 
Touch the lingerie and make sure it feels fabulous. I believe lingerie can be sexy and comfortable, whether it’s a demi-bra or a vintage corset. 

When a woman wears lingerie, is she supposed to feel like her sexiest self or like someone else (i.e. her lover’s fantasy)?
Her sexiest self. If you don’t feel sexy, you can’t project sexy.

Do all men love lingerie?
Yes. Some women say, “My husband prefers me naked.” I always take something super-sheer out and say, “Then wait until you see his reaction to this!”

What’s red hot right now?
Garters. Women are attaching them to everything—not just stockings. We’ve never sold more garters than this past year. Black and red seem a little cliché. Oh, we have every color here. I love to wear lingerie seasonally. I wear pastel pink and blue in spring and aubergine and forest green in winter.

Do you have anything in your stores for men?
Other than the Italian body oils, no. When I started out in the ‘80s, we sold robes, smoking jackets and silk boxers. But they didn’t sell well.

What if you get lingerie as a gift, and you aren’t into it?
I tell women—regardless of whether they’ve been married for decades or are just dating—when your lover gives you lingerie, he or she is telling you their fantasy. Listen.

Do you have a specialty?
We aren’t just sellers. We’re specially trained “fitters.”
Come in, and we will take a look at your body and help you make the most of your curves. That’s especially important for bras. Many women wear the wrong size. They could look so much better in their clothes with the correct size. It’s true. You just proved it after I stripped down in the dressing room. Yes, you were a cup size off and wearing the bra strap too high on your back—so instead of a 36 you should be wearing a 32 or 34. With the right bra, we reduce the space between breasts so cleavage looks more ample. By putting the strap lower on your back, your small waist and torso are emphasized.

Speaking of bras, what size do you sell the most of?
It used to be 34B, but nowadays its double D and F. It’s hard to find much of a selection in the more uncommon sizes. Not here. That is another specialty of ours. Doesn’t matter whether you are a double A or an I—we have all the styles and colors, from tomato red to bright orange. What are your personal favorites? I love our unique items, like the hand-painted silk robes, silk PJs with hand-applique flowers, and cotton modal nightgowns, which feel luxurious. The vintage pieces, which are very popular right now, are also terrific.