Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Curvy Kate: Portia and Angel bras

Bear with me on lack of pictures/crappy pictures for current posts... as mentioned on Twitter, I just have a halfway broken camera and a cell phone to work with currently :P

The other two Curvy Kate bras I received in my last package besides the Tease Me were the Portia and the Angel bras, both in a 28GG. I decided to wear each one while making notes on them (which proved surprisingly difficult, as you'll note in a moment).

Bra Log 12/18/11
Portia Bra:
Bra very VERY tight, so much so that it prompted me to buy an extender and try it that way. Center gore stabbing painfully. Cup fabric cutting into breasts, very noticeable quadboob (on the left, my bigger side, especially). This effect a bit more pronounced without the extender. Cups comes up a little high on the armpits and are rubbing there, and cup wires don't go back far enough to encase all breast tissue on the side. Red indentation left where center gore was stabbing. Did I mention wearing it is painful? I couldn't wait to take it off.
Besides all of that, I liked the overall front shape that it gives (ignoring the quadboob, etc)

Angel Bra:
Band feels a bit on the tight side. Cup fabric comes up high under the armpit and is rubbing. Slight quadboob effect for left side. The shape feels too "spread out", and the cups aren't as uplifting as I like. Not a good look.

Despite the pain I endured with wearing the Portia, I'd be willing to give it another try in a different size because I liked the overall shape it was giving (and it was cute!). I'm assuming the band felt so tight mostly because the cups were too small. I'm guessing if the bra were going to work for me, a 28HH might be my go-to (up 2 cup sizes from my "usual").

I had heard good things about the Angel, but I don't think it's a bra for me. I might try it again if I was in a store with a wide variety of sizes, but I don't think I would order it again just based on the shape it gives me (spread out, doesn't feel terribly supportive). You can see from the links above that even on the models, the Angel bra seems to give a more "spread out" and lower shape than the Portia. The Angel may work much better for someone with a different shape and preferences than me.

So far with Curvy Kate bras, I've learned that I would seem to need a 26J in one (Tease Me), a 28HH in another (Portia), and I don't like the third (Angel). I'm surprised at the seeming disparity between what my size seems to be for these bras and what my size is for other bras. I need to try on more Curvy Kate bras before I come to any solid conclusions, but right now I'm feeling like their sizing between styles is not at all consistent. I decided to line up my 28GG purchases to compare bands and take a look at the difference in lengths:

(from top - Panache Tango II Plunge, Curvy Kate Portia, CK Angel, CK Tease Me)

I'm rather astounded at the differences in band length between these bras, which are all labeled as a 28GG - and three of them are the same brand! Why such difference?

Curvy Kate, I haven't given up on you yet, but I'll be proceeding with caution. I know some people love Curvy Kate, so it may just be that it's another brand that doesn't work well for my shape...

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Curvy Kate, why do you Tease Me?

I recently received my Brastop order of 4 different bras (3 Curvy Kate, one Panache), so more reviews will be coming after this!

After hearing so much about Curvy Kate's Tease Me bra (and the similar Thrill Me and Tempt Me of their Showgirl range), I knew I wanted to try it out for myself. I was able to quickly try the Thrill Me bra when I was in the UK earlier this year without success (the band was too loose and the cup shape wasn't ideal), but I had higher hopes for the Tease Me, which I ordered my usual 28GG as well as a 28H.

...Alas, my hopes were dashed. The bra was oh-so-comfortable and I loved the shape, but the band was too stretchy and loose even on the tightest hook. Also, the cups of the 28H were too small, especially when the band was pulled tight.

Tease Me in 28H
I've read that most people need to go down a back size and up a cup size or two for this bra, but unfortunately sizing down isn't possible for anyone who wears a 28 band. I'm guessing I would need a 26HH or 26J in this bra for it to fit really well, which seems very far off of what I "should" be or am in other bras.

Panche Tango II Plunge vs CK Tease Me, both in 28GG - the Tease Me band is also stretchier.
The most frustrating part for me is that the Tease Me is one of those bras that almost fits if I tighten it up all the way. It feels very comfortable, but even on the tightest hook the wires shifted around a bit, and I get the quadboob effect (I realize that this is supposed to be a cleavagey bra, but there was obviously an issue of cups being too small). If someone had given it to me, I would probably have kept it, even though I knew I would only get a few wears out of it before the band loosened up too much.

What it looks like under a shirt, for those curious. Yay quadboob!

Curvy Kate, I love that you offer so many band and cup sizes in all of your bras, but why, oh why, must the bands run so big on this line of bras? It's difficult enough to find larger cup sizes in a 28 band, so it's disappointing when the "must go down one band size" rule applies to a particular bra.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

In Bra-related News....

Great news for those of us who may need a band sizes smaller than 28 - it seems to be confirmed through their respective Facebook pages that both Panache and The Big Bra Bar.com will be offering a 26-band bra in the near future! The Big Bra Bar will be piloting a set in a 26 back in March 2012, and Panache is planning to offer 26 bands in select styles in their Spring 2013 collection. According to Butterfly Collection, Panache plans to offer the 26 bands in at least some Cleo bras.

If you or someone you know needs or wants to try a 26-band bra, be sure to support these two companies as they come out with the new size! They're certainly taking a risk by offering a bra out of the "usual" market, but I give them a lot of kudos and credit for listening to their customers and offering what so many people have been requesting. I look forward to seeing and hearing about the new sizes!

In other news, Curvy Kate will be offering a moulded bra up to a J-cup in Fall 2012. This is awesome for ladies in bigger cup sizes who struggle to find any kind of padded or moulded bra in their size, although I do hope that they'll be able to offer up to a K cup like most of their other bras sometime in the future as well.

A few other good bra-related links to check out:
Fuller Figure Fuller Bust recently did a "high street bra fitting challenge" - check it out! I'm always somewhat appalled at how ostensibly "good" bra stores fit (or don't fit) women (see also my own Victoria's Secret experiment). Also, check out her post on the lack of smaller band sizes offered in stores and why they're needed.

Linda's Unhooked has a helpful post about the importance of budgeting and caring for good bras.

This is a great post from The Butterfly Collection that goes along nicely with my previous post and addresses misconceptions about the fear many women have of being a D+ cup.

Pairing with the above post is this one from Hourglassy, which addresses the issue of younger girls with larger busts and the difficulties they face (something I was quite familiar with).

New bra-review posts coming sometime soon...