I've been looking forward to this series of posts for a while and am anxious to exchange information on a feminine issue we all face.
Like many women before me, I embarked upon a quest to find the perfect bra.
Not that there is only one perfect bra manufactured out there somewhere, but the perfect bra for me. I am still on that quest and I want to share with you what I've discovered so far. Like me, you will probably already know some of this, but hopefully you'll learn something new.
Today, we're going to examine the reasons WHY women need a good bra, and part of what that entails.
- ALL women need support and shaping, no matter how large or small your breasts. Even the tiniest of breasts can flop, giving up on its job of enhancing your feminine figure. Don't make the mistake of thinking boobless can equal braless. The picture below illustrates what happens when a bra doesn't do a proper job of supporting and shaping.
- Proper support helps preserve breast fullness and firmness while preventing back pain and poor posture.
- Proper shaping helps more than just the look of the breast. As you can see on the "before" side, the breast has sagged low on the ribcage - encroaching on the smallest part of the woman's body. Any woman will look better if she can keep the area from the bottom of her breasts to her waist as long and lean as possible. This is a crucial style tip! The only difference in the two halves of the above picture is an ill-fitting bra vs a well-fitting bra. She looks 20 lbs thinner and significantly taller in the "after" half.
In the next post in this series we'll go in-depth into how a bra should fit to properly shape and support your bosom buddies.
- A good bra saves money. Make no mistake, well-made bras aren't cheap, but they can save you a small fortune over time. Several years ago a friend of mine was lamenting how much she had spent on clothes that year and still wasn't happy with her wardrobe. It was easy to see that one of her main problems sagged, I mean, sat squarely on her chest. She was full-bodied up top and was clearly wearing bad baggy bras. When she asked for advice, I told her that getting a few great bras is where I would start. She balked at the idea, stating that "expensive bras don't do anything special." I told her I didn't mean "expensive" I meant "well-made and well-fitting." She finally agreed to get fitted and at least try some on. And as expected, she was amazed by her transformation. Miraculously, most of the new clothes she had complained about now looked great, as did a mountain of clothes she had stopped wearing.
- A good bra is one that shapes, supports... and perseveres! The elastic in bras simply doesn't last forever, but those that give up the ghost too quickly are a waste of money. If you have a bra that refuses to do it's job after a month or two of wearings, steer well clear of that line in the future! That being said, you shouldn't wear the same bra two days in a row. Elastic needs time to rest and retract. Your bras will last longer and wear better if you rest them between wearings.
- Bra sizes are a joke. Did you know that while band size is fairly standard, CUP size varies by manufacturer AND by band size? That's right. An A, is not always an A. The volume of breast that a cup holds will vary depending on who makes the bra and what band size it is attached to. This stunned me! I had no idea. I know many women who think like I did until recently, that their cup size is pretty consistent but their band size can vary. In actuality, the reverse is true! Just like you should disregard clothing sizes and buy what fits and flatters - the same holds true for bras. It's best you learn to laugh at the sizes and search for what truly fits. (We'll discuss the fine art of bra fit in the next post.)
- Fitting "experts" can be anything but! When I started this quest I'd read on many blogs the horrible experiences other women had had with "expert bra fitters" and I must say, I ran into some who took the term "pushy saleswoman" to new heights. One was so unabashedly condescending I had to remind her I was not the scarecrow in search of a brain but a woman in search of a bra. And the bras she put me in fit terribly. The bra quest is not for the faint of heart! You have to be prepared to strap a pair on! Boobs, I mean. And not be afraid to question the fitter. Armed with the right information you will be able to find bras that fit you properly - you're just going to have to break a few saleswoman's hearts in the process. Collateral damage is often unavoidable.
Please share your experiences and advice! How did you find your great bras? Or are you still struggling against the sag?
1. An absolutely hysterical and informative look at breaking out of the Bra Matrix!
2. A rant against the fitters!