Saturday, 13 July 2013

Guest Post: Enell Sports Bra Review

You might remember my mom's guest post in which she shared her experiences with various sports bras. She mentioned in that post that she had recently ordered an Enell sports bra, and many readers requested a full review. Ask and you shall receive! Here's her review of the Enell.

I wore my new Enell Sport bra for several trail and road runs. I forgot I was wearing a bra. More accurately, I forgot all about bras and chests. I just ran.

            The Enell—which, I reported before, suffers the unfair moniker of “Last Resort Bra” in the Title Nine Sports catalog—passes two acid tests. First, it holds my breasts close to the body so that they don’t bounce all over the place. (They still bounce. Breasts always will bounce a little. Anyone who says otherwise I challenge to a duel.)

             Second, the Enell does not chafe, even after several miles of sweaty running.

            Whenever I put on this bra, I laugh that I have gone backwards in time to the corset. That’s a joke that only a modern woman could make; in fact, it resembles a corset in length and front-hooks only. I realize that I know nothing of how my ancestors must have suffered. Corsets obviously were terribly constricting, and this bra is anything but that.

            But make no mistake: the Enell holds yo in for high-impact sports. It isn’t the sort of bra you’d wear all day at your desk, although you might be able to get away with it for half a day before you realized you were wearing a top with 12 hooks and eyes. Getting dressed into the Enell takes longer than hooking up any other bra I could mention. But it’s worth it. 

            I wear a 32E or sometimes 34DD these days. In an Enell sport bra, I choose size 1. The sizes go from 00 to 8, which means that this bra takes seriously its mission to help real women with real chests to real sports. I’d ignore the corresponding commercial bra sizes in the chart and stick to the bust and rib cage measurements as your guide. Oddly, the size chart never goes above a DDD in the cup size, which irritates me.

            Because of this size-chart vagueness, I worry that this bra is not sized for those with small rib cages and large breasts. Or that the size chart is misleading. So I suggest trying on a few for size.

            Remember, because it’s a sports bra, it is designed to give a bit. You are going to breathe hard when you run or jump for the volleyball net. The “give” cleverly remains in the back with wide criss-crossing elastics hidden beneath the fabric. The front of the bra has no elastic but does have seams, so the breasts are resting comfortably in those cages as I like to call them, without bouncing either out the bottom or up the front.

            A final word: I’ve lost weight since I bought my Enell—about 9 pounds. I don’t think I’ve gone down a size in my bras, but when I looked at these photos of me now, in the Enell, I see some extra fabric there. But it doesn't affect its support. There’s room in the bra to grow a bit without losing out on its wonderful, unobtrusive ability to reign me in for a good run.