I’m no fitting expert and have never claimed to be, but I’ve tried on a LOT of bras on both myself and other women and have developed quite an eye for what makes a ‘good’ bra for me and a lot of other women, and what doesn’t.
I have recently had a huge clear out of my lingerie wardrobe, first getting rid of the ones which are clearly not my size or that I’d fallen out of love with, but secondly I made myself try on everything that was left (admittedly still quite a fair pile – oops!) and only kept those that truly FELT amazing.
It’s gotten to a point that I will point-blank refuse to keep a bra just because it fits me ‘okay’ or just because it’s sexier than Dita Von Teese in a leather catsuit. It has to really lift and support me, and there’s something that I noticed whilst trying on fourty (ok, fifty) or so bras last week.
For me, it’s all about the way the cups are constructed. It probably goes without saying that different brands can fit very differently (sometimes even bras within one brand can differ hugely), and some just seem to ‘work’ for you, and some not so much.
For me, the ones which feel best – and the one’s I’ll buy again and again and again – not only fit beautifully but really lift my breast tissue from the root of my bust, or otherwise known as ‘breast root’.
As someone who has a bottom-heavy bust, that’s where all the bulk of the weight is and bras which aren’t constructed to literally pull it all up from there are the ones I finally let go of in my brutal bra clear out.
I have a theory, and I’ve called these bras ‘root-lifters’. They have superior cup construction (for my shape at least) and help balance my otherwise rather pear-shaped knockers. Let me demonstrate:
A ‘root-lifter’: The Freya Jolie
The bra has very soft cups, but the way it is constructed gives pretty stern support. The lift seems to come from directly beneath the breast tissue and with the help of the wires and straps, lifts the weight of the breasts upward and round. There is separation, but it is mild. The effect is ‘your boobs, but better’, and a comfortable distribution of weight.
A ‘boulder holder’: The Curvy Kate Princess
Now this isn’t meant to mean the traditional meaning of ‘boulder holder’. It doesn’t mean it’s ugly, it doesn’t mean that it’s a full cup monstrosity that your granny wouldn’t be seen dead in. It means that for, me, these bras seem to support and hold your bust in place, as opposed to lift from the root. Curvy Kate bras are prime examples of this. As you can see from the diagram below, the weight is distributed towards the sides of the cups a lot more, and the support is a lot more wide set.
Yes. I realise this is hardly a scientific test, but you can see what I’m getting at and the way the bra cups are constructed to encourage a different type of fit.
Let me now try to describe to you, again via very primitively illustrated images, in my opinion how another two bras from these two same brands fit and lift me – showing where I find that most of the support is coming from.
The ‘root-lifter’: Freya Sophia
The ‘boulder holder’: Curvy Kate Romance
All of these images were taken on the same day, from the same angle, and are all 30FFs, yet you can (hopefully!) clearly see the difference in shape and construction.
With a ‘boulder holder’ bra, I find that a lot of the weight of the bust remains in the cup area and is not distributed so well to the band and straps. The bust therefore feels heavier and not so well lifted and supported, particularly for bottom-heavy breasts like mine.
The lift in a ‘root-lifting’ bra is also a lot more ‘upward’, which prevents the dreaded ‘East-West effect.
The best ‘root-lifting’ bras and brands: Freya – my favourite for comfort being the ‘Jolie’, Claudette’s ‘Neon Dessous’, Cleo by Panache’s ‘Marcie’.
Can anyone else identify with this theory? Or have I gone a bit nuts?