Q: I haven't worn sexy lingerie since my wedding night. With Valentine's Day coming up, can you recommend some options that are pretty, not tacky?
A: Relax—naughty French maid outfits aren't required. Think sensuous, not racy: Underpinnings are chicer and more sophisticated now, so you can spice things up for the 14th without violating your style or taste. Red lingerie isn't a great idea because it can look trashy; I think black lace (timeless) or nude colors (very on-trend) are much sexier. Nor do you have to do see-through and thongs: There's gorgeous stuff out there—slips, robes, boy-short panties—that doesn't risk overexposure.
If you blush easily, begin modestly—with a pink silk and spandex slip (Mary Green, $56), a stretch lace tankini and boy shorts (CLO, $73 and $35), or a femme fatale bra-and-panty set (Elle Macpherson Intimates, $60 and $26).