Tuesday, May 07, 2013

bra talk

My bras and I have a love/hate relationship. There is nothing I enjoy as much as putting on an almost new, perfectly fitting bra. Feeling supported, knowing my chest isn't going to chafe (underboob chafing is about my least favourite thing, ever), a band that doesn't budge around my back.

My weight, though? It has not been super stable. I'd been on a year of careening downwards and slowly levelling off, and I've been on a slow upward tick that I'm trying to take control of right now. Unstable weight makes for tricky bras. Ten pounds can mean a whole new bra size, and I wear "specialty" sizes which makes life difficult.

Technically, if I'm throwing comfort and fit out the window, I can find a bra at a normal store. Except it doesn't fit properly, and there's underboob sweat, and because the band is too big things just don't stay in place. This is how wound up with me, running to catch a bus, suddenly busting out of my dress in university. I'd rather not relive that, really.

The smallest properly fitting bra I've ever owned was a 30F. The biggest was a 34G. I'm pretty sure that if I'd walked into my bra store at my highest weight I still would have only been buying a 36 or a 38 ... though maybe with an H cup??

Which is all a lot of love on my bras. I love a well fitting bra. I don't love when it's been a year since I've bought new bras, though, and I only buy 2 at a time because they're expensive, and I need to start thinking about a trip downtown to spend more money on fancy bras and get a new bra size. I don't love when I've just gained or lost 5 pounds and my bras feel just a little bit off, but not quite worth going out for new ones.

Of course this whole rant mostly just means it's time to go buy new bras. My good ones aren't holding up so well anymore - the elastic is shot and the band is starting to ride up my back and I'm starting to get some awkward boob spillage that isn't normal for me. Which also signals that I'll need to get re-sized as I'm at it, because none of that is normal. Shopping time soon, I suppose.

What items of clothing do you kind of dread shopping for?


  1. I can relate, I hate shopping for bras too, mainly because I STILL don't know my size, and even when I do think I've got the perfect bra, a few weeks later, it starts to fall off. It doesn't help that I don't have shoulders and the straps are always falling off AHH. In fact, I hate it so much that up until very recently, my mom shopped for my bras.


    Love your blog, btw :) would love for you to stop by mine!


    1. One tip that I've found works for fit is making sure the band is tight at the loosest hooks. That way when the elastic wears you can tighten it slightly as you go (this was a revelation for me when I found out).

  2. Oh dear.. bras. Yes, those can be a pain, especially because so many stores and brands just haven't caught on to the fact that that the majority of women do not fall on the 34B-42D size spectrum. And America sizes differ from the British ones, which differ from the Aussie ones and the continental European ones..

    I don't know what shipping costs would be, but some of my more endowed, yet small-banded friends love Bravissimo. Their cheapest 30F runs at about $36. I've heard that their return policy is good, too.

    Personally I really, really don't like buying jeans. If the hips fit, there is a massive waist-gap. I almost never have enough room in the upper thigh, yet have plenty of space everywhere else. And then leg length: the normal length is just a tad too short, but the longs are just a little too long. Grrrr.

    Now, when I find a bra or a pair of jeans that fits I just buy several. It's a bigger bite out of my budget, but at least it limits the moments of fruitless searching and trying.

    1. Basics like bras and jeans definitely need that two at a time (at least!) policy. I'm still kicking myself for not buying doubles of my favourite pair of (now defunct) jeans.

      I've thought about ordering online, but things shift size wise often enough that even with reasonable prices I'm not willing to forgo the woefully painful trip to the store.

  3. Bras... ugh! I am convinced that stores get some kind of signal from the cosmos that I'm about to walk in to buy a bra and hide all 38Bs they have! It seriously feels like a mission trying to find a 38B... Bra shopping, definitely one of my least favorite things.

    I dread going shopping, period. But I SPECIALLY dislike going shopping for anything for my lower half. Fortunately, at least for jeans I've found that Bongo and Old Navy fit pretty well.

    1. Old Navy is my dirty jeans secret. It's not a brand I'm proud to support, and I don't particularly like their ethics but I can usually shop for jeans and find a really good fit there. Anywhere else? I'm more likely to end up in tears than taking jeans home.