Entries in Underwear (3)


Women Face Their Fears by Skydiving in Their Underwear

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) -- Imagine throwing all your inhibitions to the wind, literally.

That's exactly what Jennifer Hoffman and Marisa Gallegos, founders of Esme & Eve Photography in Los Angeles, are doing. They're going skydiving in nothing but their underwear.

On Nov. 17, Hoffman and Gallegos, along with five other brave women, plan to jump from an airplane near Lake Elsinore, Calif., wearing nothing but parachutes and their lingerie. The jump is part of Esme & Eve's "Be Bold. Take the Leap" initiative, in which they urge women, "to face their fears, take a risk and push against whatever is holding them back from carrying out their dreams."

Each of the women participating in the jump has lived through something traumatic, such as a death in the family, coping with being a rape victim, or overcoming an eating disorder. They're coming together to find ways to put those difficult times behind them.

"All these women have terrific stories," Hoffman told ABC News. "I get really motivated by these women. We all follow the tragedies of our lives, but we don't follow the triumphs. We want to highlight the triumphs."

"We really wanted to make sure we had women with different stories that people can resonate with. I know how much one person can change another person's life, and we're just trying to do that on a smaller level. I don't expect any massive change happening out of this, but I would love for it to have a ripple effect."

Esme & Eve is a woman-led company that says it is inspired by the ideas of love and creation, which the founders even have tattooed on their wrists. Hoffman and Gallegos first started contemplating the skydiving idea when they decided to take a month of their lives to explore, live out and put into action their company's ideals.

This will be the second skydive Hoffman and Gallegos are taking together, and this time around, they wanted to do it on a larger scale by inviting others to join. Gallegos admitted, however, that the idea to skydive in nothing but their skivvies was never part of their original plan.

When the pair arrived at the skydive location for their first jump last May, it was more than 100 degrees outside. Neither of the women was particularly excited about putting on the heavy, bulky jumpsuits, so they decided to go without.

"When we landed, it just hit us how powerful the experience was," Gallegos said. "We needed to come back and do it in a big way with a bunch of other women that have all faced certain fears and insecurities and moved past them. It's all about empowering them. Life is about evolving and moving past things so we can move forward."

They thought it was best to do the jump in their underwear because "it was more about baring your soul, and being OK with it, and not being ashamed," Hoffman said.

One of the jumpers, Rachel Elizabeth Murray, explained why she chose to participate.

"This cause is very dear to my heart. I was raped in college. It destroyed my confidence, but through fitness and faith I've regained it," Murray said. "I can't tell you how excited and terrified I am at the same time. I have always been one to take risks, but it's setting in that I'm jumping out of a plane and I've never done that before."

The founders hope their message inspires people to step out of their comfort zone and do things that scare them, which will eventually make them feel more empowered.

"We would like to start a yearly 'Be Bold'day," Hoffman said. "We'd love to invite women nationwide to do one thing that's uncomfortable or scares them at least one day of the year. True confidence is in the knowledge of what you're capable of. If they take a day to surprise themselves and stop limiting themselves and push themselves a little bit harder, it's amazing what they're capable of."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Electrical Shock Underwear Helps Prevent Bedsores

Project SMART(NEW ORLEANS) -- Scientists have designed electric underpants that shock the bottom to help prevent bedsores for people who are immobilized.

When a patient is stuck in the same position for too long, the skin compresses and blood circulation shuts down, leading to the formation of open wounds.  Bedsores range from mild stage 1 lesions to life threatening stage 4 ulcers that break the skin and eat through the muscle all the way down to the bone.

University of Calgary doctors tested underwear by placing two pads of electrodes on each cheek of 37 patients with spinal cord injury, then zapping them with a low current of stimulus for 10 seconds every 10 minutes for 12 hours a day.  The findings, presented at the Neuroscience 2012 conference in New Orleans this month, showed that none of the patients treated developed a sore during the month-long trial.

Dubbed Smart e-Pants, the undies work by delivering an intermittent shock to the patient's nether regions.  The mild jolts of electricity mimic fidgeting movements and shift a patient into a slightly different position.

"This helps relieve pressure on the skin, increase blood flow and prevent the sores from forming," said Dr. Sean Dukelow, a physiatrist in the department of clinical neurosciences at the Hotchkiss Brain Institute, University of Calgary, and the paper's lead presenter at the conference.

Besides people with paralysis, the elderly are also at high risk for developing bedsores.

"Their circulation is compromised to begin with, they don't move around as much, and they have less body fat to pad them" said Dr. Albert Levy, an assistant professor of medicine at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine who specializes in geriatric medicine.

For those who suffer from Alzheimer's disease or some other form of dementia, bedsores can be especially troublesome because these patients are often unable to take care of themselves properly or may lack the ability to articulate their pain and suffering to their caretakers, Levy said.

More than 2.5 million people develop bedsores at a cost of more than $10 billion each year, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.  Medicare statistics show that each pressure wound adds $43,180 to the cost of a hospital stay.  And, the group Wrong Diagnosis reports, more than 34,000 people die from infection and other complications due to bedsores yearly.

The Smart e-Pants were popular with both nurses and patients who participated in the trial.  They only take a few minutes to put on and are easy to use.  Dukelow said the next step is to do some larger studies to find out if the underwear can prevent bedsores in larger populations.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Creepy or Cute? French Company Sells Lingerie for Girls 4 to 12 Years Old

Used to be "dress up" meant putting on a pair of Mommy's shoes. Ryan McVay/Thinkstock (PARIS) -- Little girls, clad only in bras and underwear, pose carelessly cool, wearing sunglasses and heavy makeup, in an online photo gallery of Jours Après Lunes' new clothing line. They're far from the age where they might need bras, but the "loungerie" line is meant for girls as young as 3 months.

While the French company's babywear consists of typical onesies for infants, click on the fille (girls) section of the site and find little girls dressed in lacy, frilly, silky undergarments with tousled beehive updos and mascaraed stares.

The Jours Après Lunes website says it is the first designer brand dedicated to "loungerie," calling it an "innovative" and "unexpected" brand in the current realm of teenage and children's fashion.

Some call it fashion. Others call it appalling.

"This kind of marketing does sexualize young girls, it does serve as a model that inspires very young girls to think that minimizing what they wear and revealing as much of their body as possible is appropriate, and 'fashionable' and 'cool,' and that this is the way that they should think of themselves," Paul Miller, associate professor of psychology at Arizona State University in Phoenix, wrote in an email to ABC News.

Jours Après Lunes' did not return calls from ABC News requesting comment.

"The cultural message goes beyond 'lingerie' but to girls' self-image, body image, and what it takes to build a 'good' image of one's self," continued Miller.

But the "loungerie" line is only the latest kiddie fashion craze to cause public outrage.

Two weeks ago, 10-year-old French model Thylane Loubry Blondeau made headlines when she graced the cover of Vogue France. Many believed her high-fashion posing put her in an exceptionally mature position that was too sexual for her age.

This week, clothing retailer American Eagle drew ire after marketing a push-up bra that promises to add two cup sizes to girls as young as 15.

American Eagle's website has one review of the bra, claiming that "it gives so much push-up that other bras don't let me show off," reported ABC affiliate WTVD.

"Girls want to look pretty, but they do not want that icky sexual attention," Ann Soket, editor-in-chief of Seventeen magazine, told ABC News. "They just want to feel good in their clothes, they just want to feel pretty, and that's what these bras are about."

But many child development experts would disagree with Soket. The American Psychological Association recently created a task force to respond to the "increasing problem" of the sexualization of girls in the media, which it found could influence a girl's well-being.

"We don't want kids to grow up too fast," Shari Miles-Cohen, senior director of women's programs for the American Psychological Association, told earlier this month. "We want them to be able to develop physically, emotionally, psychologically and socially at appropriate rates for their age."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio