I realize that awhile back, I promised a commenter that I would do a review of the Panache Harmony, and then I forgot—sorry! I know I’ve mentioned the Harmony a lot in this blog, and it’s one of the most widely available bras in sales and on eBay, so it makes sense that I should say a few words about it. It’s also the bra that I’ve worn the most often and know the best. I don’t wear the Harmony anymore but it served a crucial purpose for me for over a year of my life.
I actually bought the Harmony the first time I ever got fitted, but I didn’t wear it much because it really minimized my boobs, plus it tended to start cutting in throughout the day. But remember my late-onset boob-hatred that I mentioned in my last post? As soon as that struck, I went running into the arms of the Harmony. The reason it had cut in wasn’t that it was too small, but because it is designed for wider-set boobs than mine, which are quite close together, so it pulled to the sides over the course of a day. Once I learned how to alter the center gore, I made the Harmony mine.
When I reunited with my best friend after my switch from Freya to the Panache Harmony, she said in surprise “What are you wearing that makes your boobs look so small?” I think most of what I was “wearing” was a terribly hunched-over posture, but the Harmony soothed me enough to keep me in my body for those months when all I wanted to do was escape out of it and run away from my boobs.
This brings me to the primary function of the Harmony. It really helps if you hate feeling huge and just want to look more average. I know a lot of people never want to make their boobs look smaller, but if you do, please try this bra. The construction of it really makes your boobs very compact and in my experience, makes them look smaller than anything else will, and that’s what I would recommend this bra for.
To explain what I mean about the construction, think about the “apex” of a bra, the point furthest away from your chest. When people say that cups have more “depth”, they are saying that the apex is further away, so you will get more projection. In contrast, the Harmony has an apex that is a lot closer to the chest, so your boobs get much less projection than you’d get in, say, a Freya balconette. The tissue is even distributed as close to your body as possible without any constriction (of the type you might get in a compression sports bra—not too healthy for long periods). Because of the distribution and lack of depth, the underwires on the Harmony, as with any bra without much depth, have to be wider so there is somewhere for the tissue to go. Wide underwires aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, but they shouldn’t hurt if you bend them to your shape.
This bra is fairly high under the armpits, which is good if you are trying to deal with tissue migration, but not so super if you are petite and have problems with bras rubbing your armpits.
For my full-on-top boobs, the Harmony is a great fit once I’ve altered the center gore, because it is so low-cut and so open on top. The rose-patterned lace that forms the upper section might even gape on people with boobs that are full on the bottom, so if you often have problems with gaping, this might be a good bra to try in a size down. Personally, I need a 28J in bras that have a larger or tighter upper section, but I can wear a 28HH in the Harmony, just like I can in the Confetti.
I also really like the way it looks. It’s the furthest thing away from a “sad bra for massive boobs” (phrase cribbed from a review of a different bra on Bravissimo’s website). It’s low-cut and relatively pretty. It used to be available in more colors than you can find it in now, but even in the black, white and nude I think it is a really flattering basic.
It doesn’t give as round a shape as similarly-fitting bras like the Sienna, Brooke, Frances, and Confetti, which is why I don’t really wear the Harmony much anymore. The shape isn’t pointy at all, rather the opposite, it’s just kind of… bra-shaped rather than orb-shaped. (Very difficult to explain.) But I still think of it as one of the best bras that exists. It really got me through a tough couple of years and in the future if I’m looking for a work bra or something plain and nude, that’s where I’ll turn.
I’m sorry that I don’t have good pictures of myself in the Harmony—all my Harmony bras are in the States, so when I get back in June, I’ll add photos to this review. In the meantime, here are three photos I snapped in my dirty mirror last year. Despite the horrible quality, I think you can see what I mean about how small it makes my boobs look in comparison to how they look in a lot of other bras—I’m the same size in these photos as I am now.
|This is a 30 band, hence why it's riding up.|
I also want to note that the Harmony balconette I’m reviewing here is different from the Harmony full-cup, which looks like this:
The Harmony full-cup is actually pretty good for a full-cup bra, but it’s very different from the balconette, and I personally wouldn’t recommend it as highly (or at all, but then again I hold a grudge against full-cup bras. I know some people like them).
I also want to mention that the Panache Melody is supposedly “based on” the Harmony but actually isn’t really similar at all other than the fact that it, too, gives a fairly minimized shape. The fit is pretty different, though. Check out my review for more information.
Wow, thanks for such a thorough review! I generally shy away from Panache as their wires tend to be too wide for me (the Tango Plunge II works okay), but I've never tried the Harmony, so you never know. Sounds like a good recommendation for girls who want higher wires to reverse tissue migration, too.ReplyDelete
Very true! I think of it as a great "starter bra".Delete
The Harmony is my everyday bra. I do better in the full-cup version (but almost always need a full cup for my shape). Definitely agree about this bra's strengths: wide wires for those of us with lots of breast tissue on the sides and on the top, and it gives me a nice rounded shape.ReplyDelete
It's not glamorous but it's not ugly either--it's flattering, it's comfortable, and it's EXTREMELY well-made (been machine washing and line-drying my four Harmonies for over a year now and they're still in great shape).
:D I'm the commenter who requested this review. Thank you so much! My breasts are quite wide, so I'm thankful that I've found Panache. I'm hoping to see more bras in a 28HH/28J pop up on ebay since I'm on a budget. I really want the Frances and Brooke. ;) Again, thanks for writing such a great blog. I love how thorough your reviews are.ReplyDelete
You're welcome, and thank you!Delete
By the way Ashelyn, there are nude and black Harmonies in 28HH/28J and a bunch of different sizes on sale on eBay atm for 8 british pounds! The shipping is a reasonable price too. =) Just thought I'd let you guys know about the deal.Delete
I'm thinking of getting one in nude. I just sent back a Confetti and a Harmony both in a 28J because they were one size too big. I've been looking for other nude bras in a 28HH and am not having much luck.Delete
If you need help finding it (I had to modify the advanced search) just search for the name "NEW Panache Harmony Balconnette 4031. Nude 28HH" in ebay and it should show you the exact listing. =) I'm thinking of getting one black and one nude from them since it's half price.Delete
Sweet! Thank you :D lol I was about to buy one for $18 usdDelete
Even though I find it somewhat less comfortable than other bras, the Harmony balconette has been one of my stapple over the past few years, and I've been wondering about the full cup version for those days when I want the extra support. How does it compare in terms of shape and uplift?ReplyDelete
I tried the full-cup version on when I was a 30GG in most Freya bras, and it fit me well. I would definitely say the shape is more uplifted and rounded than your average full-cup. If I was going to choose a full-cup style, this is the one I'd probably look for.Delete
I have an extremely silly question about getting a Harmony. Say I needed a 38E but can find the color that I want for a cheap price at size 28HH, and since technically they are the same cup size would it be possible to just get that and add a long extender? Or are the lower back banded bras constructed a little different in the cup to fit a smaller framed person even though the cup should be the same volume as a 38E?ReplyDelete
Sorry I meant 28H* :)Delete
Haha one more thing I'm so sorry for splitting everything up and asking so much, but I got the Sienna in a 38E and it seemed to be about a cup size too small like you mentioned in your review. Would you say the Harmony fits more true to size and I wouldn't need to size up to a 38F? Thanks so much.Delete
First of all, yes, the Harmony is more true to size than the Sienna.Delete
As to the "sister sizing" experiment you suggest... I think it is fine to get one band size down and use an extender, maybe even two band sizes down POSSIBLY, but going down five would probably mean that the construction of the bra would be a bit off-kilter. I think the cups might be okay (in theory, they would be too narrow and deep, but I think in actuality manufacturers don't change the shape of the cup sizes that much which is why it's so hard to find narrow underwires in higher cup sizes). HOWEVER, I think the position of the straps on the band might be less than ideal. Also, the hooks might end up under your arms and rub against you painfully! I'm not really sure how it would work out, to be honest--if it's REALLY cheap and you REALLY want the bra, I guess you could try it, but I think with that big of a difference it is going to be hard to make it work.
Thanks so much for the quick reply.. and now that I think about it I agree, the straps and hooks would probably be really awkward for me. I blame my money saving thinking for my ridiculous solutions!ReplyDelete
The problem is I really have no bras that fit me properly right now and can't afford to spend that much. I found some cheap ones on eBay and maybe it would be better to get like a 40DD and take in the band.
I also need a black bra but the closest they have is a 42DD and that would be like a 38F.. but hmm, I hear black materials tend to be more tight so I wonder if the cup would be fine. Ohh the fun I go through trying to find uncommon sizes, on a budget, in Canada!
How much does this bra really minimize? I'm thinking of purchasing it, but I don't want to flatten myself. :PReplyDelete
It won't flatten you, it just has shallower cups that hold your boobs closer to your body, more compact and subtle-looking. If you like a lot of projection and to have your boobs be very noticeable, you may not like it.Delete
To clarify, it's a change in shape, not size.Delete
Oh okay, thanks. :DDelete
I find this bra minimizes if you have it in a smaller cup size. I bought this in an F several years ago and it never fit quite right. Too short in the cup I think. It flattens me more and gives quad-boob pretty badly (like what it's doing to you in the side shot). It seems to run about a full cup size too small. At least the one I bought.ReplyDelete
I love my Panache Harmony balconette bra ( my size is 36 H), but it´s impossible to find it!!! Can you suggest another one, please?ReplyDelete
This is one my favorite Bra which makes me look very sexy and goes well with party outfitsReplyDelete
I have a black Harmony that I wear under dressier clothes where I want to look sexy but subtle. I'm a 34HH and generally can't wear anything with a lower cut neckline unless I also wear a lace trimmed camisole (to conceal the top of my bra and my overly generous cleavage). A dress that might look pretty ordinary on a woman with an average build can look absolutely trashy on me. But the Harmony pushes the upper fullness of my chest toward the sides like no other bra I own, which enables me to wear a lower neckline without a camisole. The lace trim on the top of the cups is also very elegant, so it looks nice even if my bra *does* peep out a little.ReplyDelete
The trade-off for this is comfort. The wires on this bra are SO wide and so much tissue gets squished to the side that I tend to get very uncomfortable within a few hours. I also find that the end of the underwire tends to rub my armpit excessively. So I reserve this bra for "date night"...when I know that I can fling it off as soon as I get home.
I can't wait to try this xP im 17 and i have always been a skinny asian girl but my tummy started becoming "fat" ever since i was 10/11... BECAUSE THAT'S WHEN I FIRST STARTED WEARING A BRA- IN A BAND SIZE WAAY TOO BIG FOR ME!! XDD i remember telling my gran and aunty (i dont live with my mum) countless times that i was pretty sure it wasnt the right size for me. but they just kept replying "it's because youre not used to the way it feels yet" pffft yeah right!!!ReplyDelete
it seemed too small on my chest but rised up- i know now that this is because the band was waay too big and this was a training bra that didnt even have a cupsize so of course it was too small for my chest, which i first noticed hurting and growing when i was only 10 xp and i found it very strange that when my breasts started developing before a lot of my friends, they didnt seem to grow at all for the next 5 yrs! and "coincidentally", my tummy just kept growing bigger and bigger, with my rolls, even though i was and still am quite skinny! i knewww it !! i knew it- and when i was 15, i found out all aboit breast migration and just knew it. yep. now ive been in the process of remigrating for 2 yrs. it wouldve had been done much earlier if i knew that you dont have to go up by only a couple of cup sizes at a time. after much suffering of breathing problems, back, neck arm, heart and everything aches, now im 100% sure of this whole thing. im ready to up by 6 cup sizes to get rid of the rest of these rolls on my tummy haahah XD yuss i can finally wear a tshirt without having to wear a jersey or something over the top! freedom after 6/7 years!! :'D
and im so glad that im not the only one who knows about breast migration and remigration!! thank you, oh internet people hahah
cause ive not even my best friends really believe me. they believe that it exists but they dont think that this is the reason for THEIr "tummy fat" and aches and everything on their also skinny bodies.... tut tut.
you should believe me, friends! i can help you omg..