Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Confessions of a Bra Blogger

This is going to be a "reveal all" post. Yup, I'm going to show you all of the regular bras I own (besides my Enell Sports bra). There is a point to all this at the end, don't worry!

I will remind you that my underbust measures about 27 inches. I'm veering towards a 28H rather than my old 28GG, methinks, and I sometimes find 28 bands too big for me.

Bra #1:
 Just Peachy brand bra in a 30G. (no, it's not even hooked on. I'm being silly.)
Band measures: 30 inches stretched.
Fit: The wires are stiff, so they rub and give me rashes, and I can't wear it for very long. The band is too big, cups are too small. The band runs a bit small for a 30 in general, though.
Story: Bought gently used around a year ago.

Bra #2
Panache Tango II Plunge in a 30G
Band measures: 31 inches stretched.
Fit: Much too big in the band. Too small in the cup. Gives me back and shoulder pain.
Story: Bought new last month out of desperation. *shame*

Bra #3:
Freya Zara in a 28GG. This is definitely the way to model bras.
Band measures: 30.5 inches stretched
Fit: The band is too big, and the cups are too small. Gives me shoulder pain.
Story: Bought gently used around a year ago.

Bra #4
Cleo Poppy Bra in a 28GG.<3
Band Measures: 28 inches stretched
Fit: The band fits well; I do get some quadboob with the cups,  but because of the style of the bra it doesn't look as bad, and the band is supportive enough so the bra doesn't give me pain.
Story: Bought new (from Bravissimo!) about 6 months ago.

And finally, Bra #5
Freya Deco in a 30GG

Band Measures: 31 inches stretched
Fit: Band much too big, cups seem to fit about right (perhaps very slightly roomy)
Story: Bought new (at Nordstrom) a few days ago with the intention of altering the band down to a 28.

So, why did I decide to show you all of my bras? To illustrate a few things.

First, just because I blog about bras doesn't mean that I have piles and piles of lingerie. Some bra bloggers do, some don't.

Second, the utter lack of bras in my size in stores makes it difficult for me to buy anything (especially quickly), so even I, as an advocate for correct size, sometimes feel forced to buy something "close enough" in the hopes that it will work or that I can somehow alter it. I've known that I'm a 28 band for years and yet I've still bought/owned bras in a 30. Is this a good thing? No. But I've still done it.

Third, some people lose weight and go up in bra size - I tend to do this. Not everyone will lose breast tissue when they lose weight. It depends on the person.

Fourth, if anyone, fitter or otherwise, tries to tell me that I should wear a 30 or larger band, that person is wrong. Sorry.

Out of the five bras I own, three do not fit well and I need to get rid of them as soon as I get something to replace them. Of the other two, one fits well enough so that it doesn't give me pain. One I hope will fit when I do some alterations on it. The three bras that give me pain are "close" to my size. Yet they do not work for me. They cause me back, neck, and shoulder pain (and sometimes marks and rashes). Please, please note this and do not fall victim to thinking that you can just get by with a size that's "close enough". Any fitters reading this, please do not try to get small-banded girls to buy 32 or 30 bands just because that's all you carry. It will not work for girls who need a smaller band.

In the past month, I have spent a total of $120 on two bras that I know didn't fit me. Why? Because I wanted to get a bra quickly, without having to order online. I bought the first because I felt bullied into it by a fitter, and I was desperate for any bra that was close to fitting (this majorly backfired). I bought the second because I love the Deco bra and it doesn't come in my size, and I want to see if I can alter it to fit me.

I know I need to order bras online if I want to get my actual size. I'd love to get rid of the three bras that give me pain and never wear them again, but that would leave me almost bra-less, with a wait time of around a month before I'd get anything else that worked. I've actually ordered around 8 bras within the past several months online. But none of them fit, so I had to return them. Since my size has slightly changed, I'm going to need to order a fairly large quantity of bras to figure it out, then send most of them back. So yes, buying bras online can be hard, annoying, expensive, even depressing.

But you know what's even more annoying, expensive, and depressing? Buying a bra that doesn't fit and trying to wear it. That's more painful than having to order a bunch of bras online.

Do I want my size sold in stores? Heck yes! And if you want to do something to help make people more aware of all bra sizes and get more sizes sold in stores, you can do things like contact bra stores, participate in awareness projects like The Bra Band Project, and more.

But for now, I need to do and wear what's right for me, and not be bullied, pressured, or discouraged from wearing the bra size I need to wear. I need a 28-26 band. I need about an H cup. And I don't deserve to be in pain just so someone can make a sale. And neither do you.


  1. Very passionate post. I loved how you wrote it with a strong voice, as well as showed pictures, and explained everything. The ending tips were great too. You have an awesome blog!

  2. Sorry to hear about your sizing problems and can't find any 26/28 H size bras. I was just looking on eBay for those sizes. I didn't find any 26H, but there was a nice selection in 28H. Are you in the US? I only found one that was sold be a US seller. It was a Panache Tango and the price is only $17 and they have free shipping. I have ordered from that seller previously. Check it out!

    1. I am in the US - so 28H is very rarely sold here! I've had to order bras online for a long time, but since my size has changed a bit, I'm going to have to order a bunch of bras in the 28H range (rather than the old 28GG range) to see what works. Ebay is a good idea, if I can find anything! Panache bras don't tend to work for me, sadly. However, I'm very used to paying overseas shipping for things - I just have to buckle down and do it!

  3. Christine I can relate so, so, so very much to this post. Ugh to living in a Bra desert. Right now I'm also waiting on bras and I have actually a few in way too big sizes from before I lost weight still with tags on them but selling them on ebay etc is a pretty daunting task when you live in Brazil!

    As of right now all my 28HH's are clearly too small so I'm waiting on 28J's but I'm worried that 28JJ's might be more of what I need.

    The wait times kill me too, especially because it seems like I always drop a band size in between placing my order and having it arrive. Plus the Brazilian post is just SO unreliable when it comes delivering stuff (sending stuff to other people seems to be fine, though?). I have an order that has been sitting in customs in my city for a week now!GRRRRRR Why won't they just deliver it???

    Ok, rant over. :)

    1. Thanks June :) I'm glad there are lots of people who understand! The wait time is just the worst :/

  4. Have you ever thought about ordering from Ewa Michalak? You have to order 30s that definitely won't fit with the intention of returning them when you've figured out your size, but from then on being able to order custom-made 26 bands for the same price is fantastic. It's just the waiting for them to be made and then the international shipping which is a killer.

    P.S. I love the modelling! ;)

    1. I've definitely thought about ordering from EM! I know I would have to order some 30's first and return them, though, and that's what's been slowing me down. I think 28's would work pretty well for me - I hear the 26 bands stretch only to about 26 inches, so I'm pretty sure they'd be too small for me. It's mostly just the brands that run big or stretchy that I have issues with 28 bands being too big! (*cough*Freya*cough*)

    2. EM bands really vary with the style. I have two 26 band halfcups from them (I overshot, and 26HH only barely fits when I'm pre-period), and the CH bands are stretchier than the HP bands. I needed an extender with my HP bra, but not with my CH bra. And I have a HM halfcup (the non-padded kind) that fits me just fine in the band even though it's a 30. I don't know about the plunges. (My ribcage is ~26.5, and I definitely agree with you that Freya bands are too stretchy! Unfortunately, I need their close-in gores that nobody else seems to have besides Ewa Michalak.)

      Good news is, they seem to be consistent in size within each HP/HM/CH category: I've tried on a few styles within each category, though not in different sizes, and they fit as I'd expect given the previous ones. That is, the CH Toffik and CH Ceilus both had stretchy bands and deeper cups, the HP Koktajl and Nina both had firmer bands (but not as firm as HM!) and shallower cups. I did notice more variation between the HM Grantaowy Motyl and HM Halfek Milosc. In all, my n=2 for each category probably doesn't give me much of a statistical leg to stand on, but it gives me confidence when shopping for more.

  5. Good luck with your Deco! I got a 28FF when I probably should've gone 30F, but I don't care. I love it. I just get quite squeezed by the end of the day xD Have you been able to wear a Deco before? It would suck if you did manage to alter it and then the style didn't work for you.

    I hope bras in your size get sold in physical stores near you soon! I hope that happens for me, too (not that my situation is quite as dire). I also hope I've submitted my photo for the bra band project, because I can't remember!

    1. I've had it before in a too-small 28G and 30FF (the 30FF was free!), so I know the shape works and I really love it... the trick is just borrowing a sewing machine and hoping I can work out the alteration and it'll fit okay in the end!
      Ha, I'm not sure you have (there's no way to tell who's who really!), but you can always resubmit to be sure (you can submit more than one picture overall in any case!) :)

    2. Oh, that's good! I hope you can alter it to perfection. How did you get a 30FF for free? I'm impressed xD

      Haha yeah I'll just keep submitting different photos of myself until I take up half the gallery :D

  6. I'm sorry about all of the issues that you've had with your bras recently... but I just really want to comment that you have the most lovely eyes!! I've never wanted to have blue eyes before but your picture is making me revisit that concept. :)

  7. Just stumbled across this whilst looking for matching knickers for the Cleo Poppy bra as I've just got one off ebay lol and had to comment as I can SO relate to these issues! Recently lost a fair bit of weight and been struggling to figure what my new size is, and having tried a few 30s (30F seems to be about the closest fit) I'm starting to realize that I might need a 28, as I've had a couple of 30Fs for a few weeks that are already on the tightest hooks and starting to feel a bit slippy :( Went through the whole round of ordering 30s in all sorts of cup sizes and now faced with doing the same with 28s, if I can even find a good amount TO order... its all most depressing and frustrating!