Wearing A Mini Skirt Or Something Sheer? You Need Tap Pants (PHOTOS)

I recently pulled out a pair of pants to wear to work. The pants in question are one of my greatest vintage finds: Oscar de la Renta pink palazzo pants which I scored for $25 in an off-the-beaten path thrift shop in Santa Fe. I slipped them on, only to find that they are completely sheer (I guess you really do get what you pay for). In an effort to make them office-appropriate, I wore Spanx bike shorts underneath, which offered the much-needed layer of coverage. Sadly, the tight undergarment, when worn in 100 degree weather, had the effect of a sausage casing, and I must admit to feeling rather uncomfortable the whole day.

This is when tap pants really would have come in handy. The shorts, so named because tap dancers wore them when practicing, are usually silk or chiffon, and can be lace-trimmed, or plain. The lingerie is short enough to stay hidden under other garments, but loose enough to be a comfy bedtime alternative to the ol' t-shirt.

A few years ago a friend pointed out a pair online that she had purchased (and loved). I scoffed at her, because, why, in today's culture of body-conscious fashion, would any women want a loose-fitting pair of silk shorts? I'll tell you why: In summer many ladies wear short dresses and skirts, and tap pants offer another layer of coverage from those times when you're walking up the stairs and well...you know. Or, when you bend over to grab something at your office, only to remember (too late) your short hemline.

Here, ten pairs of tap pants that will CYA -- literally.

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