Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Don't touch the ta-tas

I was going to write about time management this morning, but then, an issue of much greater importance struck my brain as I was sorting through my sock drawer. So here it is, ladies: bras.
My issue? I can't find my good one! You know, the one, out of many, that really fits. I'm quite sure I didn't leave it at a debauched drunken revelry. The last time I was at a drunken revelry was—er, no comment. And I'm not sure I even know what debauched means anymore. But you know, it's my favorite, the newer one (newer being subject to interpretation; anything purchased this century is new to me). The pink one that's soft and seamless and—what's this got to do with writing?
Not a darn thing.
But we, all of us, women, have this one thing in common. (Sorry Guys Who Read This Blog, but I imagine you men won't mind reading about something to do with ta-tas. And for you women who don't require a bra, either because you're flat or just too young and don't give a damn? Phft!)

You see, I don't know how to buy one. Nor, it seems, do 90% of us. Yesterday Oprah replayed her bra show, the one where she jaunts around backstage in a pseudo bra-store/dressing room, peeking in on women from her audience getting fitted, giving their newly-lifted boobage a pat or two, and commenting on how the right bra is a real life-changer. I SO want to be on that Oprah show. Forget the Favorite Things show, I'll wait in line for the life-changing bra.

But I did learn that most of us don't measure around the smallest part of our chest (just under the girlfriends, ladies), and probably should be wearing a band size, or two, smaller than what we wear now. As for how they measure cup size, I'm still in the dark. But the show said most women should go up a cup or two, or three, with that.

I've never been measured. And I'm not too keen on marching into a department store and allowing a croonie older than dirt and topped by a beehive shellacked in Aquanet, and styled like 1969, to touch my ta-tas. Ain't gonna happen. Oh no.
So I still can't find the pink one. And it's not stuck to the back of my chenille sweater (that there is sock territory). And I still tug and pull and adjust throughout the day, and slip into daydreams of Oprah patting my chest and preaching to me of a life changing moment. Sigh...

So what about you? Do you know how to pick the most important garment we women own? Will you let perfect strangers strap a piece of measuring tape around your boobage and hope that doesn't mean it's a first date? Any recommendations for that perfect fit?


Debra Dixon said...


You aren't going to believe this. BelleBooks PUBLISHES Susan Nethero, nationally known bra-expert AND you saw her on the Oprah show. Yep. That's us. She's also been on WHAT NOT TO WEAR a number of times.

BRA TALK by Susan Nethero

--Debra, President of "It's A Small World." :)

Michele said...

Ohmygosh! Yes! I love that woman. I want to keep her in my glove compartment and take her in to stores when I need a bra.

Helen Brenna said...

LOL! You guys are too funny. I don't have enough "boobage" to bother fitting!

lois greiman said...

I used to have boobs. Now...not so much. But ya know...I'm done nursing babies so...

Did you hear the story about Eve? Apparently she was originally created with three boobs. God took out the middle one, said, "What should I do with this useless boob?" and made man.

Again, sorry to any male bloggers.

Debra Dixon said...

Oh, Helen--

You just don't know all the goodies they have Boob Land. Your clothes will fit and look better. Although yours already look pretty good.

It's a myth that "less endowed" girls don't need to worry about their bras. And the gals who don't think they need to worry about bras are often the most surprised realize they really aren't the same size they were in their twenties!

Debra Dixon said...

Lois! LOL! Now I have to apologize to our male riders.

Candace said...

Just gird, loins, Michele, and go get fitted for a bra. Try Nordstrom. They're pros, so there's really not a lot of boobage touching. Hardly any if you compare it to what happens during a breast exam or mammogram.

And the results are so worth it. Maybe not life-changing but it certainly improves the fit of your clothes AND makes you look thinner.

The only down side I've found is--inevitably!--the bra that fits the best and does the most for the girls is on the high side of spendy. Though, if you figure it on a cost-per-wear basis it's very cost effective.

Helen Brenna said...

Goodies in boob land! Okay, now I have to go shopping.

Betina Krahn said...

Haaaa! I'm in spasms over here! Michele-- you amazing woman you. The best laughs I've had in weeks!

Yeah, I've had the bra fitting experience, and it can be traumatizing in the extreme. I learned I've been wearing the wrong thing since Methuselah was a pup and that bra fitters are generally ex-nuns who were considered too rigid or vicious to be allowed to run around with rulers any more.

They tug and pull and scowl as if you're an offense to evolution/creation (they're equal opportunity sadists). They tsk and tut, implying that your upbringing was decifient, your womanly knowledge is substandard, and your tata's are far from regulation. They behave as if you're a singular disappointment, failing as you do to fit into the garment industry's clever and charming creations.

Do I sound bitter?

Chalk it up to PTSD. Post Tata-fitting Stress Disorder.

I don't care what I measure under the cups-- I ain't wearin' a frickin' tripple E!!!!

What was the name of that bra goddess again?

:I Betina

Betina Krahn said...

Oh, and Michele. . . what, no pics with this one?

;) Betina

Michele said...

Yeah, I had considered pics, but it was either Madonna's dangerously pointy duo, or some lacey number that I'd be too jealous to post because I can't wear the lacey ones any more!

I mean, are there any pretty bras for the bigger cup babes?

PTSD. Now I'm really freaked about going to get a fitting. I once considered it at Victoria's Secret, but please, those girlies there don't know a thing about support, it's all about the tease.

Triple Es? But isn't that better than an F? :-) I'm guessing I need something larger than the D I currently get at Kohl's, but they just don't go larger, unless you go to the fancy stores.
Aggh! Does this mean a trip to Macy's is in order?

Candace said...

Whatever you do, don't--and I repeat DON'T!!-go to Victoria's Secret for a bra fitting. It will make a traumatic experience worse and, besides, there's nothing in there over a C cup.

Which, by the way, was what I used to think I wore until I got "fitted" at Nordstroms. I went down two sizes in the band to a 36 and up two in the cup (is a double D going up two or just one-and-a-half?)

And, yes, Michele...unfortunately to get pretty bras in the larger cup sizes you have to go to the high-end stores. It ain't fair but it's a fact of life!

Helen Brenna said...

You mean I could move UP a cup size. Heck, maybe I'll suffer thru some PTSD's afterall, and besides, I went to Catholic grades school for 8 years. Those bra fitters can't scare me.

anne frasier said...

lois: LOL!

i know this is bad boob health, but since moving to MN i quit wearing bras. that's the one thing i'm really going to hate if i move south. back to bras.

Michele said...

Okay, Anne, help me here. Why no bras in MN and in the south? I'm wracking the brain, but I just don't get it.

Kathleen Eagle said...

Losing weight has thrown me into a tizzy over bras. I passed the pencil test most of my life, then gained weight in the last few years and the damn pencil started sticking. Now I've lost weight and boobage--haven't taken the pencil test lately, but I think the droop is permanent. And I haven't found the right bra for this new shape I'm wearing. I've gone to the fitter, and I've gone home satisfied. For a day or two. But the girls start complaining. I might have to sign up for one of those lingerie parties.

Debra Dixon said...

The EUROPEAN cup sizes are different than ours. You might even find you wear a G ! LOL!

The European bras have many more pieces sewn into many of the models to achieve a better fit. Hence a bigger price since they are a little more labor intensive. And I'm sure there are some American manufacturers who have good bras as well, but the Europeans have had a better handle on bra-fitting for much longer than the U.S.

There are some gorgeous styles for the well-endowed woman. You can even show cleavage. You don't have to wear a squashing minimizer to look better.

Susan's store Intimacy has shops in New York, Atlanta and Chicago.

A good fit professional is just that...professional. They are there to make you look better. Not to make fun of your old bra or your common sense!!! They're helpful because they know that XYZ has a slightly rounded cup with a deeper mid cut. Or that XXX has better lace models in your cup size. Or that if you want a seamless, you should ...

You get the point. You're paying them to know your options. Every brand offers a different fit experience and they're supposed to know not only what your size is but which manufacturer has the best model to meet your fashion and health objectives.

Get fitted. You don't need as many bras as you think. So the price is higher but you don't need 10 bras. I think Susan recommends about 3 and of course you can go up from there but 3 will get 'er done.

Betina Krahn said...

Deb, do you mean three bras or three kinds of bras?

See this really hit a sore spot with me. . . two, to be exact. I've complained here before about my favorite bras-- which fit GREAT-- being discontinued in favor of some stupid embroidered and pointy styles. I was devastated and I have to say, I have not adjusted well to the replacements. I even tried a pricey "Way-cool" (ahem)brand. . . without much success. I'm still searching. I guess I may have to go back to a fitter somewhere. I wonder if it's worth a road trip to Atlanta? Hey, why didn't we hear about this before national last July?

My kingdom for an old-style Olga!

:) Betina

lois greiman said...

Geez MiHauf, who would have thought we would wax so profound over underwear?

anne frasier said...

michele, i wear so many layers of clothing here that i rarely need a bra. okay, in the summer i break down and wear one if i go out in public. but september - june -- no bra. basically just need one part of june, july, and august. in the past year i'll bet i've only worn a bra 20 times. the problem is that now when i do wear one it's like a harness. i can't quit thinking about how uncomfortable it is, and how i can't wait to get home to take it off! i detest them.

but i'm weird in that i hardly ever wore a bra until i had kids. oh, i had a few bras, but wore them kind of like i do now. only when i have to. church clothes. :D nursing bras were probably my first really grown-up bras.

great topic! :D

Michele said...

I get it, Anne! Oh, to go braless in public! So freeing, so wonderful. And yet, I think I may scare small children if I did so. SIgh...