Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Reviews: Various Freya Bras At Debenhams

Here are my thoughts on the various Freya bras I tried on during my last visit to Debenhams. Most of these bras are also available for sale elsewhere online, at Bravissimo, etc etc. Since there are very few 28 bands, maybe none, displayed in Debenhams stores (they have lots online though) I was mostly trying on these bras merely for the novelty of it, so I didn't expect any of them to fit in the band, just the cup. I hope my thoughts will be useful anyway, to those of you who can fit into these bras' size ranges.


I’ll start with the best of the Freya bras I tried on. I really like the look of this one, and it is even nicer in person, with the tiny spots and orchid embroidery working well together (who knew?). Freya loves pattern mixing in their bras, and while I think it sometimes looks like a lot of crazy, it comes off well in this bra.

Unfortunately, the size range for this bra is very small (30-38 D-GG), so I did the best I could by trying on a 32GG. The cup fit well, although the band was obviously huge on me, so I think I would fit well in a 28HH if they made one. The shape was really nice and rounded and the center gore was low—although in my experience, this probably wouldn’t have been preserved in the hypothetical 28HH, and so it might not have looked so nice.
If you do fit in the Trudie’s size range though, it seems like a lovely bra to try out.

This is a longer-running style and Freya only makes it in continuity colors now (black, white, and nude). I used to own a red Rio in 30GG and remember it being a good fit, although the straps were shiny and slid off my shoulders every five minutes, so I nearly never wore it. The shape it gave was unusual and not like any other Freya bras I’ve tried—rounded, but also more narrow and “upfront”.

In Debenhams, I tried on a black Rio in 30H. It “fit” me but I was unpleasantly surprised by how it looked on me. It was just ugly! The weird mesh material looked kind of like crocodile skin in black. (I had found it looked sort of “sporty” in the red, although my boyfriend was repulsed by the appearance of the fabric.) 

Also, what is with the weird metal “decoration” in the center of the cups? Sure, bows are a bit common and dull, but I’m not sure this is the right way to branch out. It’s like the bra was decorated with office supplies.

The shape was also really terrible from the side. 

I think I could have improved it by shortening the straps a lot and going up a cup size or two, but I was so turned off by the whole concept of this bra that I didn’t really care. I do think that it would look better in different colors and/or smaller cup sizes but this isn't one I'd recommend to a friend.

I like this bra in theory because the pattern covers all three sections of the cup—I find this is often more flattering than a sheer upper section in larger cup sizes. As you can see, it looked pretty nice from the front in a 30GG:

The shape was bad from the side, though. You can see how it cuts in slightly at the top but then has too much fabric at the apex, giving it a pointed shape. Partly it’s because the cup is too small, but this happens to me a lot due to my full-on-top shape so I’d avoid this bra if you share that shape. Even if they made this bra in a 28HH, I don’t think it would work for me.

However, one thing I loved about this bra was that the pattern continued all the way around the back band. It seems like a lot of bras' patterns end on the cup or a little ways onto the band to be replaced with a solid color, and I think continuing the pattern looks more purposeful and consistent.

The Freya Zara is from a past season, but I believe it’s the same bra as the newer Tara bra. (Zara, Tara, thank goodness the names aren’t too similar… Good lord, why don’t they just call them the same name??) …Anyway, I actually thought this one was really cute.

Sorry it's so blurry :(

The center gore was low, although once again I rather doubt that this would be the case in the size I really need.

Unfortunately, the cup was way too small for me in the size I tried. Not a surprise, really, as I knew I was trying on the wrong size, but it was so small that I can’t give any solid advice on the shape or whether it runs true to size. It looks like it has potential to give a nice shape in the right size, though.

I didn’t take a photo of this one as it was such a bad fit, so this is just a stock photo.

The weirdest aspect of this bra was that it looked completely sheer on the hanger, but when I put it on, it was completely opaque--it looks opaque on the model too. I think that has to do with the pattern and the double mesh layer. Anyway, for better or for worse, it’s not sheer at all.
Even though I tried on the Eloise in a 30H, which might have fit me, I had no luck with it. The top section of the cup was extremely tight and squashed me and cut in. It reminded me of an exaggerated version of the way the Freya Arabella fits. This one isn’t a good bra for full-on-top boobs.

Obviously I didn’t have any tremendous successes with these bras, but some of them (the Trudie and the Zara) were nice. I also like the fact that Freya has changed up the look of their straps, so they are a little less utilitarian-looking but still thick enough to be comfortable. Freya isn’t hopeless as a brand, but I do want to note that none of the bras I tried on are available anywhere in my actual size. Shame, they were starting to grow on me!


  1. Can I ask what size you tried the Zara in? I actually own it (in a 28GG) and I like the fit pretty well; the only caveats are that the band is a little stretchy for me (as are most Freyas, though the Zara didn't seem as bad as many), and the shape is a little pointier than I like. The center gore is low like that on me.

  2. Christine, I THINK I tried the Zara in a 32G but I'm not totally sure I'm remembering that right. Judging by how small it looks on me, it might possibly be a 30G. I wish I could remember. It's good to hear that it looks good in small band/big cup though! This seems like one of Freya's winners.

  3. The Ingrid is cute, but of course not available in my size.

  4. Though I don't like its looks, I really enjoy wearing the Rio. Mine is "nude" in color, which helps reduce the odd look. I wear a 28G in most Freya bras, and the Rio fits me beautifully in this size, giving a wonderfully rounded shape. It's also really comfortable. Unfortunately, the straps slip easily and I've anchored them to "correct" this.

    One of the things I really liked about the (now cancelled) Rio is that it didn't look feminine. That odd center metal decoration and the metal attachments for the straps on the cup add to this, IMO. Some large cup women want non-flowery, non-bow-covered bras, a non-feminine look, for whatever reason. It was great to have a functional bra that fit this. Unfortunately, it's been cancelled. I hope Freya will offer a good replacement in a not-bow/flower, not-so-feminine variety.

    1. You're right about the lack of flowers and bows being a big relief--I actually often find myself looking for something without flowers and bows and almost everything has them! I'm not a fan of the texture on the Rio, but it definitely does serve that purpose well.

      I also find in my red, 30GG Rio that I get the best shape I ever got in Freya. I would love to know how you fixed the straps so they don't slide, it would really improve the wearability!

  5. The first time I tried a D cup, it was Freya Rio, and the fit was terrible. It was just as pointy as yours from the side, or even more so. There seemed to be empty space in the middle of the cup but the "four boobs"-effect was terrible.

    Then I thought that there are no bras matching to my size, since the D cup (I think it was 32D) was not right. Somehow I thought the D cup was too big because of the empty space(!!). And only now I realise that my actual size is about 30E..!

    Thank You so much for the blog, I´ve learned a lot from it!