Wanted: Support
July 23, 2005 3:30 PM   Subscribe

Do you have a bra that you just love? Tell me about it.

I've been wearing some of the same bras for years and I broke the strap on two in the last 2 weeks, so I'm in the market for new underwear. A lovely sales clerk at Victoria's Secret measured me as a "38 Big C Small D." Requirements: comfortable!, no extra padding (as I seem to have plenty of my own), no lace, soft cups, and under $30. I have no real preference with regards to underwire. Links to examples would be much appreciated.
posted by chiababe to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (19 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I like this one from Lane Bryant. (The smallest most of their bras come is 38C, some styles you can get 36.) Perhaps because they are a plus-size store, I find their C-cup bras are good for that "a bit more than a C but not quite a D" size.
posted by ferociouskitty at 3:50 PM on July 23, 2005

I second the Lane Bryant suggestion. Their plain, jersey-knit bras are full coverage, comfortable, and well-made. They are on the edge of affordable for me, but I get them anyhow, as they are the best. I am a 38D nearing a DD, so I appreciate the more feminine styling on their bras-- they do them in pretty prints, colors and nice (not pukey) beiges. I rather hate industrial 18-hour jobbies. Impossible to feel sexy in.
posted by oflinkey at 4:03 PM on July 23, 2005

I know you said under $30, but this bra changed my life. I was right around your size when I bought the first one. It holds the girls up and makes them look wonderfully perky. It's got full coverage and is lined so there are no surprises. The other thing is that it's not designed for full figure girls, so if you're just "blessed", as my grandma would say, you can look sexy but not matronly. It's the only bra I wear now. (I mean the only type of bra- I have several!)

My recommendation for buying them is to go to a Victoria's Secret, try it on to decide what size you want and then look on Ebay for them. The other option is VS's clearance section, if you don't mind funky colors.
posted by wallaby at 4:21 PM on July 23, 2005

I finally found a great bra that looked good and was comfortable. It doesn't fit your requirements, but I mention it because when I could no longer find it in stores, I found it here and bought five.

In case delmoi's comment stays: the guys I seem to run into get freaked by front clasps. They know what to do with the other kind.
posted by CunningLinguist at 4:23 PM on July 23, 2005

I'm smaller than you, boobwise - 36B up to 38C w/ breastfeeding - but I am sold on Blue Canoestretch bras, especially the yoga and Jane models. They're organic cotton, come in great colors, are all built on the model of a sports bra, and are the most comfortable things I've ever worn. Traditional bras seem like instruments of torture now.

These bras aren't to everyone's taste - I've had a friend complain they give her a uniboob - but they're my favorite
posted by bibliowench at 4:23 PM on July 23, 2005

I'm probably a similar size to you and I have been extremely happy with the Bali Downtime.

Extremely comfortable, even with the underwire. It has comfort and casual styling, but "lifts and separates" and contains the entire breast well.

Important bra tip I learned from watching Oprah that has changed my life: when you try on a bra, try it on with the hooks on the last row. That way you can still cinch it in more if it stretches out during the day.
posted by stefnet at 4:44 PM on July 23, 2005

Disclaimer: I am male

But I did work as a temporary data entered at Bali/Hanes mailing out coupons and reimbursements. I was amazed by how many coupons were sent in with a note about what lengths women went to to get the Bali bras.
posted by cyphill at 5:04 PM on July 23, 2005

........and how they all loved them above all other bras (I miss only being able to preview)
posted by cyphill at 5:04 PM on July 23, 2005

I've been really happy with this one from Lands End. The cups are two layers of microfiber so there's support, puts 'em in a perky place and not smashed down, and it's comfortable. They've held up to well unlike some bras I've had.
posted by lobakgo at 6:00 PM on July 23, 2005

Ok, I have to second wallaby's VC recommendation. This bra also changed my life!!! It is the most comfortable bra I have ever owned. I should note that I am also a large C/small D (as measured by a VC clerk) and have had quite a bit of difficulty finding something comfortable. After getting this I bought one for my mom and now she swears by it as well. I truly will never buy another bra.
posted by ebeeb at 6:30 PM on July 23, 2005

I'm the same size as you -- This Lilyette minimizer has served me well. I tend to feel floppy in regular bras yet too constricted in most other minimizers. And despite claims, it doesn't do much in the minimizing department.
posted by kmel at 7:05 PM on July 23, 2005

Before I had kids I loved Calvin Klein bras; I was a bit smaller than you then, not much though - they fit me perfectly. And so comfortable! I hated bras and preferred to go without, but once I gained a cup on the Pill, I had to wear one, and these were my absolute favorites. No other brand worked so well for me.

I've been in nursing bras since so mine were older styles - these new ones look pretty similar to mine though. One was kind of a cross between the seamless stretch underwire and the sheen underwire - quite stretchy, smooth, and unlined - mine had the thinner straps and the cup was a bit lower without elastic at the top. The other was almost exactly like this lace curves contour. It had a bit of lace but it's just trim at the top of the cups (I hate lace and this was my most favorite bra ever), the cups are thin foam and it's underwire - very nice lift without adding bulk or creating chest rockets. This modern rib light foam bra is another style I like, I had a white one like that.

CK tends to be in the just-over-$30 range but I would get mine on sale or at the outlets. They carry 38C and D. In fact, that's pretty close to my size now. I should get some more, I'm damn sick of these boring nursing bras.
posted by Melinika at 7:33 PM on July 23, 2005

Seconding what wallaby said. I decided to buy some seriously nice bras that actuall fit. I went to a local lingerie store for an expert fitting and discovered I'd been buying the wrong size for years. I bought one of these Wacoal bras for $58! Gulp! Then I went on e-Bay and bought a few more for half that price.
posted by Joleta at 8:13 PM on July 23, 2005

Thirding wallaby and ebeeb on the Body by Victoria full coverage bra. I'm pregnant now and wear a size that Victoria's Secret does not carry in ANY bra (*weeps*), and all my VC bras are patiently waiting for me in a Rubbermaid container. That bra is very, very comfortable. Only a few dollars more, you won't regret it!
posted by peep at 8:15 PM on July 23, 2005

I fourth Body by Victoria's Secret. I'm a 38D and was able to pick up about six of them during their Semi-Annual Sale a few weeks ago. Price I paid? $15 a pop. Good support, good coverage.
posted by 6:1 at 10:00 PM on July 23, 2005

I like the bras from Decent Exposures. No scratchy lacey junk, no poky things, comfortable, made to order.
posted by QIbHom at 11:17 AM on July 24, 2005

I am a D cup as well, and the only bras I've ever found that are both affordable and sexy are from La Senza. It's a Canadian company; I discovered them while in Vancouver, and the exchange rate made them unbeatable buys. I bought 3 of these bras last May and they are all still in wonderful shape. This bra also looks good for larger sizes.

As the pics show, they are wonderful: none of those big thick grandma shoulder straps, and at least in the classic style, the back strap is just a nice two-row eyelet instead of the three or even four rows most bigger US sizes usually have. All the support comes from underneath, and from the way the (seamless! laceless!) cup is designed. So, instead of horribly pointy or lumpy shapes, there's a completely smooth roundness with a beautiful cleavage to boot. And instead of that awful poking, sharp feeling from the underwire, it's very soft, so that the livid marks I once permanently had from badly designed support are completely gone.

Best of all, I don't feel hemmed in; the bra truly does move with my body. It's the first bra I've ever had at this cup size that made me feel comfortable, supported, and attractive all at once. The staff was extremely nice in the store, but obviously you can order online as well. If you try them, I hope you love them as much as I have. Best of luck!
posted by melissa may at 1:02 PM on July 24, 2005 [1 favorite]

Oh, La Senza looks great- thanks for the tip, melissa may.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:17 PM on July 24, 2005 [1 favorite]

I'm a 36 C/D, and loveGap Body's t-shirt bra. It's seamless and supportive but still sexy enough to make me feel like a hottie. They're pricey, but if you shop the sales (they're 2/$44 now, and I buy 4-6 during their stock-up offers), they're more affordable. They seem to last longer than my other bras, especially if I don't send them through the dryer.

I'm experimenting with Vassarette bras from Target, which I picked up for $10. So far I'm very happy--they support even better than the Gap bras, there are more choices, and they're adorable.
posted by hamster at 8:16 PM on July 24, 2005

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