Monday, December 27, 2010

The Miracle Worker - A Right-Sized Bra

Lingerie.  Yes.  It's the thing we all think about but don't really talk about. We don't talk about it because it is associated with sex and we live in one of the most sexually repressed cultures in the world. Personally, I blame the Puritans.

The thing is, lingerie in general may have associations with sex but it is far more than just about sex.  Women buy lingerie for many reasons and it does just as many things.  I'm going to forgo discussing sports bras and compression underwear or special camping underwear that you can in theory wear throughout an entire treacherous backpacking adventure without washing. In fact, I'm going to ignore panties altogether. For the purposes of our discussion, let's keep to the most fundamental piece of a woman's wardrobe - the bra.

Thankfully in recent years, women have become better educated about fitting a bra, and therefore more women are wearing the right size. Still, there is a pandemic of poorly fitted bras out there.  It is awful considering the blessed alternative. Let me tell you right now, once a woman wears the right sized bra, she will never EVER go back. Supported breasts don't just mean sag-prevention.  You hunch less.  Your back will thank you.  Your confidence gets a little boost.  Depending on the bra, you may feel sexier.  And best of all, it makes you look younger and thinner.  Yes, a good fitting bra is a multi-tasking miracle worker like none other.

It took me a long time to learn about the wonders of the perfectly fit bra.  I was lucky a friend of mine worked in Nordstrom's lingerie department and treated me to a day of fittings and experimenting with different brands.  I now know every brand that makes my size (which I can say is unusual and therefore I have limited choices of what I can buy and where I can get it). Most women in their twenties aren't lucky enough to have someone who knows what they're talking about when it comes to bras.  A lot of women I know (who shall remain nameless) only figured out what they needed several decades later, and some still haven't (or are so stuck in the A-D cup paradigm they don't understand the wide world of possibilities and perfect fitting potential).

Chances are you think you know your bra size, but you really don't.  Breasts change (some women's change over the course of every month) and so they need to be sized regularly in order to guarantee correct support. Very few women actually are an A, B, C, or D cup.  The fact that so many manufacturers cater to our ignorance, rather than trying to educate women on their bodies is wrong.  So, as a woman, do yourself the best favor ever.  Go to a nice lingerie store - a boutique place or even Nordstrom.  Don't bother going to Macy's, Sak's, or Frederick's. You won't find knowledgeable salespeople or your size.  Yes, the experience will cost you, so be prepared.  I would suggest you consider it an investment in your body like good moisturizer, a personal trainer, or organic farmer's market produce.  It is totally worth it.  Once you know your size, how to fit a bra etc, you can go down the street to Nordi's Rack and get the same bra for 20$ instead of 80$.  Your girls will love you for it, and so will your bank account.  It's absolutely worth the trouble for a daily miracle. 

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