Summer = Bikini Season!

I thought I would let you all see my choice for a bikini this year (and since I’m not swimming in dollars, the next 5 years too!) I was hoping for a bandeau style, and while I really, really wanted the Panache Stella bandeau, I finally settled on the Panache Marisa in 32G, with size XL (US) bottoms. They finally arrived, and I immediately tried them on. I found the bottoms to be just slightly large on my ~40″ hips, but not so much that I can’t wear them. The top… Well, I haven’t tried on too many bras recently that were THAT much too small, but wow. Currently I measure 31″ underbust and ~40″ bust. This bra measured 32″ band (stretched) and a precisely 9″ depth. I require at least a 10″ cup depth. I didn’t even take a picture, the quadboob was so bad. So it was back to looking for a hard to find 32GG. The Marisa was released Spring 2014, so there’s not too many left! Finally tracked one down from Figleaves. The result was so much better!

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32G

I do have to note that there is a couple differences between the 32G and the 32GG. The G had 3 “panels” making up the front of the bra, while it clipped with a simple but tough plastic clip in the center. The GG has 4 “panels” on the front. The back closure was one I’ve never seen before; two small wings crossed in the back, hooking with small metal hooks almost on the side of the bra under the arm.

So what did you pick this season? I had such a hard time deciding! My top contenders, besides the Stella, were the Panache Eadie, the Cleo by Panache Lucille, and the Panache Britt.

Curvy Kate Tease

I’ve been losing weight after my second baby, trying to get back to my old “comfortable” weight. In the process, I’ve lost several cup sizes and am having to get a whole new bra wardrobe. I had been a 32H, then went up to a 32J during pregnancy, and now, 9 months and a good 50 pounds later, I’m around 30GG/30H/32G/32GG. I recently bought the Curvy Kate Tease (the new style, not the old Tease Me) on sale from Amazon, in a 30GG. They redid their sizing, but i still size down to a 30 band, but that’s another post. So here’s what I found. Band: Perfect with an extender. Straps: In just the right place on my shoulders. Underwire: Possibly a touch too narrow for me. Cups: Exactly what I want in a bra, except they are just slightly too small. They are shallow enough for my empty shape, and give me nice cleavage. I think the 30H might be the perfect fit, but I am still losing weight, so I kept it. Hoping it fits perfectly very soon!

Panache Andorra at last!

I ended up taking new pictures, as I couldn’t find the original photos. So this is a mainly photo review since I just did the basics and comparison between two sizes here. The ivory one I’m wearing in the photos is a 32H.

Panache Andorra 32H

Panache Andorra 32H

The best features of the Andorra are the stretchy lace that accommodates different shapes and the side panel inside the cup that pushes the breast forward.

Side panel

Side panel

The center gore lies flat like it should.

Center gore

Center gore

I do get slight overspill (quadboob) even though the lace is stretchy. But it’s slight enough that it rarely shows under clothing.

Overspill or "quadboob"

Overspill or “quadboob”

The Andorra often rolls under or out at the underwire, especially if there is fat or flesh below it.

A common Andorra problem

A common Andorra problem

And the back looks good! No riding up, no cutting in… it’s very comfortable!

No riding up!

No riding up!

All about correct bra fitting

There is a very important (and often confusing) piece of clothing that every woman wears. A bra. It’s not a common topic, since it’s not outerwear. Unlike panties, bras are not so generic in sizing. Bras are very specific, in fact, the more I understand bras and women, the more specific I realize they are. My interest in bras and bra fitting began a while ago. I am now a certified bra fitter, and I would love to help anyone with finding a better bra. So here are some reasons why I am concerned about bra fitting: Wearing the wrong bra size can cause many problems, including:

  • Neck Ache
  • Shoulder Ache
  • Back Ache
  • Skin irritation caused by straps digging in
  • Irreversible damage to ligaments can cause breast pain and sagging
  • Wires can stick into the breast tissue, causing unnecessary pressure and discomfort
  • Bad body image and/or depression
  • Clothing not fitting due to the bust being too low

Wearing the right size bra will:

  • Be comfortable
  • Be supportive
  • Lift the bust revealing the waist to give a slimmer appearance
  • Fill the woman with confidence
  • Create a better posture and a smooth silhouette under clothing
  • Often fit her into a smaller size of clothing
  • Help prevent chiropractor visits

So what constitutes as the wrong size? Well, anything that looks like the “before” photo here:

Bad vs. Good

and in this one:

Bad vs. Good

Although this look is commonly sought after as “sexy” in the US, all it actually is, is a badly fitting bra:

So called sexy is only a badly fitting bra

And another one:

This is a horrible fit

And she sure looks better!

So much prettier!

For larger women, sometimes it’s hard to know what a good or bad fit is. But here are a couple examples:

Her bust is very low

Her bust is sagging a lot

And now for properly fitted bras:

Wow, that looks nice and very supported!

The one on the right looks so much more comfortable!

Snug on the loosest hook


So here are two links for proper bra fitting! One is a video, the other is written out with photo helps: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=daVcDlAWN58 https://www.breakoutbras.com/sizing

Some added thoughts: Most likely your size is made. The most you should ever add to your band measurement is 2-3”. Never more. Never get fitted at Victoria’s Secret, or most other places for that matter. (Nordstrom’s can be ok, but it’s usually hit or miss, so I can’t really recommend it) The price of the bras is definitely worth the better fit, less back ache and neck ache. Always check eBay or Bratabase for some of the best prices. Breakout Bras has free shipping. Her Room has a large selection. Good brands to look for are Curvy Kate, Freya, Fantasie, Panache, Bravissimo, etc… and for nursing bras: Panache, Freya, Hot Milk, Royce, and Anita. I hope this explains why I blog about bras, at least somewhat! If you have any questions or thoughts, please feel free to comment below.

***I do not own any of these photos or videos. I found them via searching on Bing Images***