I’ve been a fan of What Not to Wear for years, mainly because I think Clinton Kelly is adorable and wish I could add him to my gaggle of gays. One of the first things they always make women on the show do is get a professional bra fitting because the key to looking good in clothes is having the proper under garments and 8 out of 10 women are wearing the wrong bra size! I’ve always wanted to have a professional bra fitting but was also always a little bit scared. Do I really want to know how enormous my breasts actually are? I wasn’t afraid of them being smaller than I thought they were. I know they’re gigantic. And trust me, all you small breasted ladies out there: it’s a curse, not a blessing. I was measured once at a Bali store in an outlet mall. But after my new knowledge I can identify that fitting for what it was: a half-assed job by a bored teenage mall employee.
A few days ago, on the recommendation of a friend I trust, who works in high end retail and knows her shit, I went to the lingerie department at Nordstrom and had an honest to God, professional bra fitting and it was nothing short of a revelation.
The no nonsense, Certified Fit Specialist, Ingrid, took me to a dressing room, instructed me to remove my blouse, yanked the insufficient bra I was wearing into approximate place, whipped the measuring tape that was hanging around her neck over my torso and measured me. On the bra I was wearing my band was two sizes too big and my cup size was two sizes too small. JIMINY CHRISTMAS. Then as I waited in the dressing room, my angel Ingrid proceeded to go out on the sales floor and gather the correct size bras for me to try on. Such a difference! Everything is now in the right place, tightly controlled, but perfectly comfortable. Because I had been wearing my band size too large, my bra was shifting as I went about my day, causing redness and irritation to my delicate skin, failing to keep my lovelies high and in place, and allowing for unnecessary bouncing. Now? My bra band stays firmly in place and my cups are large enough to control my lovelies so that there is no irritation, they don't sag unflatteringly, and they don't bounce indiscreetly.
Ingrid also shared with me the longevity rules of bras:
1. Never wear the same bra two days in a row. After a day of wear, the bra must be allowed to rest and fall back into its original shape.
2. When you buy a bra the band should fit snugly on the outside set of hooks. You will use this set of hooks for up to, but no longer than, the first two months of the bra’s life.
3. After two months at most, you will switch to the middle set of hooks. You will use this set of hooks for the next five to six months.
4. After those five to six months, maybe a bit longer if you feel the bra is holding up well, you will switch to the inside set of hooks. Once you switch to the inside set of hooks, your bra is at the end of its life. It will only perform well for you for about another month or so.
5. Have you calculated that? Yep, only 9 months give or take, so if you’ve had a bra for a year or more, it’s time to retire the bra. You should be able to feel when a bra stops performing for you. Once it’s not doing its job 100%, get a new bra!
5. A bra can be worn five times before washing. Always wash on gentle cycle, always wash it inside a mesh garment bag so it doesn’t get twisted or hooked on other clothes, and never use Woolite.
6. Never put a bra in the dryer, always hang to dry. (I already knew that one.)
I know this is a funny thing to blog about, but I feel so much better that it seems an important thing to share with women. Go get a professional bra fitting! Preferably from an older, experienced, Certified Fit Specialist. Take care of your lovelies, look great, and feel great about yourself. We all deserve it.
Oh and for you Las Vegas locals, Ingrid works at Nordstrom at Fashion Show Mall. The phone number is 702-781-1240. Call her!