Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Shock Absorber Sports Bra Top Review


In case you’ve wondered why posts have been a bit thinner on the ground lately, it’s because I’ve just moved from the UK back to the US. I’m home for two weeks, in which time I have to go through all the boxes of my old clothes and papers from high school to sort everything and get rid of everything I don’t need anymore. I’ve also been seeing old friends and generally going a million miles an hour. But I’m hoping that after this week, posts should pick up the pace and I’ll hopefully get back to posting around twice a week. So thank you for your patience.

As promised in my last post, here is my review of the sports bra I found that works really well for me. You may remember that I found the Panache Sports bra didn’t work for me in a 30H because I needed a 28 band to match my underbust measurement. But I had heard that Shock Absorbers run really tight, so I decided to try a 30H again. These bras are commonly available on eBay and usually at very low prices and in loads of colors. Just make sure you know which you’re getting--I am still a bit confused as to which Shock Absorber is which. There are sometimes references to "Level 4" or "Max Support". The one I have usually seems to be referred to as the "Max Support" bra, but in many of the eBay listings it was also referred to as the Sports Bra Top, and looks like this in photos:



I like the term Sports Bra Top to refer to this version because it looks more like a top than the other version, which looks more like a bra. That one has more formed cups, and looks like this:



When I got my Shock Absorber I immediately knew it was going to be a success. The support was really top-notch. This bra relies on compression (basically smashing your boobs to your body) rather than encapsulation (holding your boobs tightly in a boob-shaped structure) and I’ve found I really prefer compression, so I’m happy with the Shock Absorber compared to the Panache encapsulation bra.

Here is the bra on its own:



You can see that I have some side-boob where I spill out from the bra. But, because the Shock Absorber spots top is wire-free, I had always planned to wear it with a balconette bra. I just really prefer an underwear to separate my boobs so they aren’t touching in the middle. Here it is with a Panache Harmony Balconette underneath.



With the balconette underneath, the Shock Absorber is stellar and amazing! I have absolutely no motion whatsoever when I run. It is the same level of amazing support that I get in the Title Nine Frog Bra I used to wear. I could definitely run in this Shock Absorber and feel very comfortable. I wore it for an intense horseback riding lesson this morning and the support was perfect and I didn't have any bouncing at all--quite a feat when you're cantering!

The Shock Absorber is much tighter in the band than the Panache. The 30 fit me perfectly. I needed a 28 in the Panache, but I definitely wouldn’t have been able to fasten a 28 in the Shock Absorber. Even with the 30, it is pretty hard to do up. It fastens with two sets of two hooks in back with a circle in between, like this:


 I found the easiest way to do it up is to first fasten the bottom hooks, then push the straps closer to my neck and do up the top set of hooks. And, importantly, it is really easy to take off. I don’t mind struggling to do up a sports bra, but I HATE struggling to take it off when I’m all sweaty after exercise, which is why I wanted to upgrade from the Frog Bra, which has to go off over your head. Undoing the hooks after exercise is super easy and a big relief compared to wrestling something off over my head.

I would highly recommend the Shock Absorber sports top, especially with a wired bra underneath. The support is better than anything else I’ve tried on, and best of all, it is available at great prices on eBay. For me, having something that works and is accessible at low prices is really the push I need to exercise more. So if you’re hoping for a similar push, give this bra a shot!

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Panache Sports Bra (30H) Review


Having been won over by all the hype about the new Panache Sports Bra, I really wanted to try it for myself. Panache bras often work best for me, and I had really high hopes for this one. It ended up failing on me, but only because of sizing.

For the past few years, I’ve been wearing an ungainly combination of two underwire bras (one too small, covered with one that is too big) with another too-small non-wired compression bra on top when I run or exercise. As annoying as it is to wear three bras, the results are stellar—I get absolutely no boob motion at all. This is thanks to the legendary compression of the “Frog bra” from Title Nine. I think for women with smaller boobs, the Frog bra might be the ultimate end of the search for a great sports bra. It’s not being made any more, but if you check out the product page youcan see how beloved it was! And for those with medium-sized boobs (D-G) the Frog bra would still work great with an underwired bra underneath. But I was hoping to break free from the necessity of wearing multiple bras to exercise, so I thought the Panache might be the best option because it’s underwired but doesn’t have the pointy shape of the underwired Freya Active.

The Panache Sports bra is available on many sites (Amazon, Figleaves, Nordstrom, Bare Necessities, HerRoom, etc) but is pretty expensive and doesn’t seem likely to go on sale anytime soon. So I waited around for when Figleaves had a promotion code and used that to get 20% off. For anyone on a budget, I would recommend keeping an eye out for a similar voucher code to make the price a LITTLE more reasonable.

I certainly wasn’t disappointed with the appearance or shape. I got the bra in a 30H (the largest cup size available) and the shape was really amazing. I would have no problem wearing this bra out in public, even to do things other than exercising, since my boobs looked so rounded in it. Since I am usually very embarrassed by the thought of people seeing me exercise, having a bra that gives a good shape is a really big help to get me out there.


The bra itself is also really cute—it doesn’t look at all like a boulder-holder and the construction isn’t visible from the front, but covered with fabric so it looks more like a sports top than the D+ engineering marvel that it is.


Unfortunately, despite how good it looked, the bra didn’t deliver. I didn’t get any more support than I do in a normal bra and there was loads of bounce going on even just jumping up and down in my bathroom.

The bra includes clips on the backs of the straps to connect them into a racerback shape. When I clipped them together, it did help eliminate a little more bounce, but there was still far too much motion for me to be able to run in the bra. I also found it was extremely difficult to clip and un-clip the racerback attachment. One of the things I look for in a sports bra is ease of removal—when I’ve just arrived home all sweaty after a run, the last thing I want to do is wrestle with my bra to get myself out of it. So the racerback clips just didn’t do it for me.  


Now, I don’t want to give the impression that this bra doesn’t work. You might remember that although my underbust measures 28”around, I choose to wear a 30 band rather than a 28 for greater comfort andequal support. Unfortunately, the Panache Sports Bra doesn’t allow for me to size up in this way. When I pulled the band tighter behind me and then jumped, the bounce was completely gone. So if this bra came in a 28HH, it would be amazing and ideal! Unfortunately the cups don’t go up that high, but for those who do fit in the size range, I think this bra could do the job. Just keep in mind that if your underbust measures 28”, you’ll NEED a 28 band in this bra to get the proper support and encapsulation to stop the bounce. I hope to see Panache expand the size range of this bra because it has so much potential, and is not really a bra that you can wear in a “sister size”--it is perfect only in a band size that matches your underbust measurement. You don't need to size down, as it doesn't run big--you just need to wear the exact right size. 

My next post will talk about the success I had with a different sports bra! 

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Bra Band Project Now Online!


You might remember a few months ago when I asked readers who wear a 30 band or below to submit photos to raise awareness of the need for these sizes. I teamed up with three other bloggers--Braless in Brasil, Boosaurus, StackDD, and By Baby's Rules to put together the Bra Brand Project. Since then, other bloggers have taken up the cause and we had a great response. Many thanks to all the readers who submitted their photos!


The photo album is now live on Flickr--check it out! 

When you are looking at the photos, you will notice that you can sort the photos by band size (separated into categories of 30 bands, 28 bands, and 26 bands and smaller. My favorite part about looking at the photos is the huge variety of body types and ages that need these smaller band sizes. Hopefully, the photos can help raise awareness that a huge number of women need small band sizes--even if they don't know it!

We decided to focus on D cups and up for this first wave of the Bra Band Project, since that is our area of expertise as bloggers. But for smaller cup sizes, fear not--32aa Bra is taking up the project for that size range.

For more information, here is the description page for the Bra Band Project on Flickr. 

If you didn't send us a photo and still want to, submissions are still open! Check out my original post for information on how to help with the project and to submit. 


Friday, 11 May 2012

Cleo "Molly" and "Sally" Reviews


I’m not the world’s hugest fan of plunge bras. I don’t have extremely close-set boobs (those who do often find they need plunge bras, because a higher gore can’t sit on their chest without sitting on breast tissue) but I do tend to get a lot of cleavage even in styles that are meant to be modest. So plunge bras can leave me feeling a bit exposed—I hardly ever wear my Freya Deco.

But I do love polka dots! So I became interested in the Cleo Molly when I started wearing 30 bands and noticed that it went up to H cup.


I found this bra on Figleaves in the outlet section for a good price so I decided to try it in 30H. I was taking a bit of a risk because I couldn’t find any reviews online other than one review on Bratabase where the reviewer said it was a horrible fit on her bottom-heavy boobs but would be better on top-heavy boobs. That’s me, so I went for it.

I have to say I was really pleasantly surprised by the fit of the Molly. The center gore sits against my chest and the cups are perfect for me. They are very open on top, so it did end up being good for my shape—it gave good support from the bottom and didn’t cover me where I don’t want coverage.


The band feels pretty average to me for a 30. (The bratabase reviewer felt that it was loose.) It is comparable to my other Panache and Cleo bras in the same size. It only has two hooks though, and has a slight angle that makes it sit as though it was riding up rather than horizontal or low, so these factors lessen the stability of the band.

As for the shape—well, from a direct side-on view the shape is quite strange.


But then, from a half-profile, it looks pretty normal.


I think the odd shape in the side-on view comes from the fact that it’s a foam bra but also a seamed one made in three sections. So the foam makes a slight corner at the seams and it ends up looking very “bra-shaped” as opposed to “boob-shaped”. Fortunately, I found that this disappears under tight, stretchy clothes (especially if you wear two layers, as I always do)—the stretchy fabric sort of evens out the shape all over and it ends up being a pretty good shape.

I don’t have a huge amount of experience with plunge bras—this is my only one—so I’m not sure how much support they typically give. But I can say I definitely would not wear the Molly to go on a brisk walk. It is fine for a day of going to class, sitting at a desk, grocery shopping, going to a party, etc. It just isn’t very good at supporting the boobs from all angles because, hey, it’s really only supporting them from the bottom. So although it gives great lift, it doesn’t give perfect support and there is that weird feeling of bouncing inside your bra if you try to walk fast or climb a mountain or engage in energetic dancing (the non-fully-adjustable straps also don’t help with this). I’m guessing this is pretty normal for a plunge bra, though.

Encouraged by my success with the Molly, I decided to try another Cleo plunge bra that looked like it had similar construction, the Sally.


I had always found the Cleo Sally to be fascinating—I liked the colors and there are not that many plunges that go up to H cup, but the only reviews it had gotten were terrible, and there were not many reviews. I finally accepted the fact that I was going to wonder about it forever unless I tried it (sometimes you just have to accept that this is true). I found it for sale on eBay from a company that has an eBay store. It is also available on Brastop and Bravissimo at sale prices.

I got the Sally in a 30H, the same size I fit perfectly in the Molly. As you can see, it was a dismal failure:




The Sally was simply smaller than the Molly, at least a cup size smaller. The center gore actually did still sit on my chest, but the cups were hardly covering my boobs and forcing them down and smashing them. I think it has more to do with size than shape, although the shape is somewhat different. The Sally has a lower center gore and lacks the extra band under the cups in front. It is also less friendly to full-on-top boobs--the upper section seemed a bit tighter than I would have wanted relative to the rest of the bra, even in a bigger size. I think this bra would be a better fit on someone with an even shape that doesn't have a big difference in fullness between the top and the bottom, or for someone with full-on-bottom boobs if they sized up. I also think it would probably work better on wider-set boobs. 

I did find the bra attractive, though. Here are a few closer-up shots:



A lot of the negative reviews I had read basically just said “meh” or that people found the bra looked and felt cheap and tacky. I didn’t really find this to be true, it was comparable quality to many other bras I have tried and I think it’s quite cute. I just would have needed a 30HH or 30J in this bra, neither of which exists. I knew there wasn’t going to be any way to salvage a bra that was this small on me, so I simply returned it.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Fantasie "Ibiza" Bikini Review


I recently decided to invest in a new bikini because my old one is a bit small in the cup. The one I've had for two years is a Fantasie Seattle in 30GG.

Fantasie Seattle
It basically looks the same on me as it looks on the model—not extremely supportive, but essentially functional with a very casual, somewhat low shape. It’s not padded, but I think some padding might have enhanced the structure of this bra.

In case you’re considering buying the Fantasie Seattle but are terrified by the thought of sunbathing with a big metal clip sitting on your shoulder, don’t worry—the buckle detail is some kind of metal that doesn’t absorb heat. (Maybe I was na├»ve to worry about this, but just thought I’d mention it.)

When I started the search for a new bikini, I was looking for a few things—something that was fun and not just solid black, something where I could also get the bottoms at a pretty low price, and something with normal straps positioned where they would be on a bra. I can’t really wear halter necks because I don’t like having weight on my neck.

In my swimsuit search, I wasn’t too worried about finding something extremely supportive, because I don’t even really swim, I mostly just lie out in the sun (with sunscreen, of course!). Having a tight/firm band therefore wasn’t as important as usual to me, so I decided to look at 32 bands as well. Swimsuits have so much Lycra in them that the bands can sometimes feel tighter anyway, so I figured it would be fine, especially if I went in knowing I might need to take it in.

I ended up choosing the Fantasie Ibiza because I found it at a very low price on Leia Lingerie (you can also now buy it at Brastop).

Fantasie Ibiza
It was also one of the very few swimsuits I found that I liked. I didn’t want anything with a small pattern or an upper section that was a different color from the bottom sections, which limited my options a lot. The only other bikini I found that I really liked was the Panache Veronica:

Panache Veronica
But that was a lot more expensive than the Ibiza, and in any case I was worried the bow in front would be annoying if I tried to throw a dress on over my bikini. (I do like the fact, though, that the Panache Veronica has a covering over the underwire so it doesn’t look “bra-like” at all.) So, I ordered the Ibiza. It wasn’t available on Brastop at the time, so I got in it the sizes Leia Lingerie had left—32H for the top (equivalent of 30HH, the larger of the two cup sizes I normally wear) and small for the tie-side briefs.

Here it is:


I was really pleased with how the Ibiza worked out for me. The band wasn’t as loose as I was expecting, so I may not even bother to take it in. Of course, the problem with most swimsuits is that you can’t go to the tighter hooks when it loosens up, because they have a single clasp fastening. So, when it’s stretched a bit I probably will need to take it in. I think it runs fairly true to size for a 32, maybe a bit firm.

The cup size was good too. From my two experiences, Fantasie swimsuits seem to have stretchy cups. So unlike a bra where the size needs to be really spot-on, I think most people will find they have a bit more wiggle-room in cup sizing, at least for this kind of design. That said, the stretchiness of the cups also means that the cups don’t offer quite as much lift on their own. Shortening the straps, I was able to get enough lift to satisfy me, but once again like with the Seattle, I found myself thinking that a layer of thin padding might not have gone amiss.

I also found the seams were really thick and stuck out a bit from the side, which you can sort of see here.


The seams are also a little itchy. I’m really, really hoping this is something that will go away with wear—I’ve never yet worn my Ibiza to the beach so I don’t know how it will perform in action, but I will update once I know.

The sizing of the bottoms was pretty good. I wasn’t sure if I should go for a small or a medium—I typically wear a medium in American underwear like Victoria’s Secret or Aerie but I’ve found that I fit into a small in some Freya thongs. The thing is though, that a lot of underwear made to come with bras sits a lot higher than the low-slung styles I’m used to wearing, which sit straight across the widest part of my hips. So even if I would prefer a medium for the fit, I often need a small in “nicer” brands (though let’s be honest here, nothing is better than Victoria’s Secret for panties) just to stop it going up much higher than I want. Obviously people have different preferences and this isn’t an issue for everyone. But I was worried the Ibiza bottoms would come up too high if I got the medium, so I went for the small. That ended up being the right choice. I have relatively wide and solid hips for my size  (and by solid, I mean that I don’t carry any fat there—it’s all bone, so it’s my frame) but I have a very small butt, so I didn’t ultimately need the medium which more closely matches my measurements.

I did find the briefs came up pretty high, but fortunately for all of us, they offer a compromise—because the ties on the sides can be ruched down tighter, you can basically push the bottoms down lower if you like, or wear them higher if that’s what you prefer. It’s a smart design and I am happy with it.

Just a note about the color: I had somehow always thought the Ibiza was navy blue with purple polka dots from online photos. Well, in real life it is actually black with pink polka dots. Still cute, I’m just not sure how I made that mistake, so I wanted to mention it.

Overall I’m very, very pleased with my new bikini. I think I will feel really cute and comfortable in it when (if??) warm weather ever arrives. I would recommend this one. If you want to see another great review of this bikini, check out the review on Fuller Figure Fuller Bust

Thursday, 3 May 2012

What Does Curvy Kate Have to Offer? (Brand Overview)


After a great response to my posts describing different styles of bras offered by Panache/Cleo and Freya, I’m now moving on to the third titan of full-bust brands: Curvy Kate!

Are you as excited as them?!?
If you’ve been reading my blog since the early days (in which case I’m blushing!), you may have seen my initial reviews after I did a massive order of most of the Curvy Kate styles. Since I was just starting out, those reviews were a little less thorough than the kind I like to do now. I’ve since updated most of them, and I also hope that this overview will fill in any gaps that remain.

Luckily for me, Curvy Kate is quite a new brand! So unlike the dim and misty past of Panache and Freya, the whole history of Curvy Kate is within my grasp and I should be able to cover all the styles they’ve done. I will also talk about Brastop’s Flirtelle range because those bras are made by the same people and cut to the same shapes so they essentially function as part of the same brand, just available more cheaply.

One really outstanding feature of Curvy Kate is that they find all their models through contests entered by, and voted on, by their actual customers. So it is MUCH easier to see what Curvy Kate bras will look like on a variety of sizes, including the bigger sizes, in contrast to many other brands that only use models on the smaller end of the size range. Curvy Kate's UK Star In A Bra winner for this year was just revealed today--the beautiful Sophie Morgan! 

Sophie Morgan, Star In A Bra winner 2012!

Finding Your Size
The most important thing to understand about Curvy Kate is how the sizing works. Although some people find they can wear the same size in Curvy Kate that they would wear in other brands, plenty of others find they need to go up one or two cup sizes from what they would wear in other brands—this is especially likely if your boobs are tall/high or full on top. Personally, although I can usually get away with a 30H in Panache/Cleo/Freya, I can NEVER wear that in Curvy Kate. I will always need at least a 30HH, sometimes a 30J.

A common complaint with Curvy Kate’s unpadded balconettes is a somewhat triangular/square shape, that looks like this:

Too-small Curvy Kate shape.

This shape means your Curvy Kate is TOO SMALL! Don’t despair and give up, thinking this is just the shape Curvy Kate gives—it’s not! You’ll get a much nicer look in the right size. Try going up one or two sizes, and shorten the straps to take out any slack in the cup. For a lot of people, this is enough to make Curvy Kate bras successful for them. For some people, it might be that you cannot shorten the straps enough to get the right lift in the big-enough cup size, and this unfortunately means that you will either have to alter the straps, or simply move on to a different brand (or just stick to Curvy Kate's padded styles).

Also, all of Curvy Kate’s unpadded balconette bras are cut with the same shape, so you can wear the same size in all of them—SORT OF. The different fabric and laces used do make a noticeable difference between the fit of some of the styles, and I’ve tried to specify that here. Knowing your size in one Curvy Kate balconette is an excellent starting point, but you still might need to tweak the size a bit when you try other styles.

The sizing of the padded bras is different, and I will talk about that when I describe the individual styles.

Portia
The Portia is one of the styles that’s been with Curvy Kate since the beginning. Way back when, it used to come in colors…




…but for the past few seasons they’ve just had it in continuity colors of black/pink and white/pink, plus an exclusive magenta color for Simply Be.


                                                   


The Portia is a good basic and seems to run pretty much in the middle of Curvy Kate sizes. The ribbon across the top is not tight in the newer runs; in fact, it is looser than the fabric surrounding it.

Criss Cross
This is an older style that Curvy Kate don’t make anymore. From my experience trying it once, it seems to run about average in sizing.  However, I do know there are some differences between the colors; the purplish-pink one seems to run a little smaller, for instance, though not enough to need a different cup size unless you are already between sizes.







Since this bra is discontinued, it’s one of the few that you can get at cheap prices in black and white.

Angel
The Angel runs a little tighter than other Curvy Kate styles. It has the same all-over diagonal stitching as the Portia, but on the Angel the lace at the top edge (though not the actual ribbon) is tighter, which gives the cup a smaller fit overall. I personally find that I would ideally wear one cup size up in the Angel (30J) compared to the size I wear in the Portia/Emily/Ella (30HH).






The back on the Angel runs tighter as well, as the criss-crossed ribbon adds some stability to it.

Princess
The Princess is the hardest fit of all the Curvy Kate unpadded bras. Like the Angel, it also runs a bit tighter than other Curvy Kate styles, but it is also the only one that does not have fully adjustable straps; the floral lace covers the front half of the strap. Remember when I said that you will need to go up in the cup size and shorten the straps more to get the right lift and shape in Curvy Kate? That’s much less possible in the Princess because the straps just do not adjust enough. It's too bad that it's a trickier fit, because it's so cute!






Check here for the barrage of alterations I performed to make my Princess somewhat serviceable. The fact is that it’s just not as easy to fit into as other Curvy Kates.

Emily/Ella/Romance
The Emily is, in my opinion, probably the best Curvy Kate bra. The top section is more stretchy and so it is an easier fit than the other styles that have stiff lace or ribbon there. 





So if you find the Angel or Princess squash you no matter how high you go in cup size, the Emily is a better bet. With my full-on-top boobs, I definitely find I get the best shape in the Emily.

The Romance that came out recently is very similar to the Emily, with that same little bit of give in it. I’m really excited by the Romance and I think it is a really promising style. 




If you’ve seen the behind-the-scenes photos of Curvy Kate’s Star In A Bra competition, you may have noticed how truly amazing the Romance looks in a K-cup! (Not all of Curvy Kate’s bras look as beautiful in the highest sizes.)

The Ella is discontinued but also shares the feature of being more stretchy in the top section, though not quite as much as the Emily. 




If you can’t find the Ella on Brastop, the Flirtelle Dahlia style is the exact same bra as the Curvy Kate Ella, but in continuity colors.




Lottie
This is another newer style, one whose popularity has surprised me a bit. I personally don’t think it is as flattering as the other styles; the huge sheer section doesn’t look nearly as nice in the highest cup sizes as it does in the smaller cup sizes.





The people I know who have tried the Lottie (I haven’t, since I don’t really like how it looks) have mixed reactions. Some love it, some find it gives an east-west look.

The fabric on the bottom sections of the Lottie is thick and firm, similar to the fabric on the bottom sections of the Flirtelle Sublime.

Tease Me/Thrill Me/Fleurty
These bras are constructed to give a really round shape. The size ranges are not as inclusive as the unpadded bras, but it’s still a great deal better than the miniscule size ranges other brands offer in padded bras. These bras are not marketed for everyday use (they're meant to be 'bedroom' bras), but lots of people (including myself) use them as T-shirt bras. I'm still hoping for a day when all the bra companies realize that the Thrill Me and Tease Me are exactly what many of us want for everyday use--colorful, cute, padded bras that give a round shape and don't cost and arm and a leg. 




Check out my posts here and here for my reviews of Showgirl bras.

Although those with full-on-top boobs are more likely to need to size up in the balconettes I talked about earlier, those with boobs that are fuller on the bottom are more likely to need to size up in these Showgirl half-cup styles because there is so much lift from the bottom. In general, the older colors of Thrill Me and Tease Me ran bigger than the more recent colors. This article "Thrill Me, Tease Me, Explain Me" on the Bratabase blog is useful for explaining these size differences.

The Fleurty is a new style, and so far the verdict I’ve heard is that it fits similarly to the Thrill Me and Tease Me, but maybe just a hair smaller—so if you’re close to busting out of your Thrill Me/Tease Me, you may want to get the next size up in Fleurty if it’s available.



The upcoming Entice style also is based on this same seam pattern.



Elegance/Tempt Me/Wild
The Elegance padded plunge bra was added to Curvy Kate’s continuity lines a few seasons back and I reviewed it here. Despite my failure to get a good fit in it, I remain fascinated by the Elegance. There is something about it that makes me want to buy it over and over. I think in a lot of ways, the Elegance represents the way in which Curvy Kate is truly superior to other brands at pushing the market and giving women who wear higher cup sizes the things that we really need and want. I guess I was surprised that the Elegance wasn't very hyped up and I haven't seen as many reviews of it as I would have expected, though there are a couple out there--Invest In Your Chest mentions it here, and A Sophisticated Pair did a detailed review.


The Showgirl Tempt Me and the upcoming Wild bra also have a similar shape.

Tempt Me

Tempt Me

Wild
The sizing for these plunge bras is challenging and weird. It seems like just about everyone, with any shape, needs to go up at least one cup size, maybe two or even three to fit in the Elegance or Tempt Me.

These plunges are also very wide-set and therefore better suited to people whose boobs have a bit more space between them. I personally found the Elegance dragged my boobs apart because it was just too wide-set for me. If I try again, I’ll try in a 30J (the biggest available size) and try to take in the center gore.

Daily Boost
This is a new style and unfortunately I haven’t tried it yet. It is different from the other padded bras in that the shape is based exactly on the shape of the unpadded bras so the seams follow a balconette shape.



I sort of fear this bra, personally—I worry that the padding would exacerbate the problems I’ve experienced in the tighter styles like Angel and Princess. If I do try it, I may size up in the cup to a 30J. You can see other bloggers’ reviews at Invest In Your Chest and Brood's Big Bras Blog.

Smoothie
This style won’t be available until July, but I wanted to mention it here because it is a totally new style. It’s not seamed like Curvy Kate’s other padded bras, but molded like the Freya Deco. 


I really like the animal print and I have a suspicion that this bra will sell fast if it is any good. I’ll definitely be getting one—I plan to try it in both 30HH and 30J and I will do a full review at that time.