Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Bras That Must Be Seen: Longlines

Based on an older style of lingerie and corsetry, modern longline bras do not have the extensive boning as older styles. Some do have stiffer fabrics, but there is such a variety that a bra exists out there for everyone! Longline bras are not be confused with basques/bustiers, which extend further down the torso.

It shouldn't be a secret, but Freya longlines are my favorite. They range from a stiffer band (Piper longline) to flexible (Flourish longline), so if you range from 30 to 38 band (C to G cup for most sizes), then you should give this season's Fifi a shot!

Available at Bras & Honey

If you don't need a lot of support, then Honeydew has a nice variety of longline bras. This bralette is barely a longline (the band extends just a bit below the cups) so if you're looking for something that is not restrictive (and has a GORGEOUS back), then check out this bra! Nordstrom carries a variety of colors.

Available at Nordstrom

If you like to keep your budget in mind (and who doesn't) AND you want an underwire, then this bra may be for you. It only comes in Small, Medium or Large, so it's only a step above the Honeydew Bralette in terms of flexibility. It's still incredibly cute, though!

Available at HerRoom

For those of you know me, then you know this is of course my favorite longline. The fabric is shiny, slick and there are cute button and lace details. This bra is available in US sizing. Parfait may no longer make it (it arrived in 2013) but there was a light pink and bright purple option available.

Available at Break Out Bras

Want to check out other longlines? Nordstrom has a good variety.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Bras for a Cause

Plenty of companies do community outreach or give to a specific cause! Some companies donate overall profit to some whereas others feature specific items that give back! Below are a few examples of what the lingerie industry is doing to help and empower others.

Curvy Kate, in conjunction with the CoppaFeel organization, created a lingerie set specifically with the Coppafeel logo design. Each bra you buy gets money donated to the CoppaFeel cause. What is CoppaFeel? CoppaFeel was created by Kristin Hallenga who was twice misdiagnosed with breast cancer who seeks to encourage women between the ages of 18 to 30 to self-check themselves for breast cancer.
Photo from the Curvy Kate Blog
I'm a big supporter of Coppafeel, considering a friend was also diagnosed recently with breast cancer and she is under 30. She is now recovering from her chemotherapy, thankfully.

Here is a review of the Coppafeel bra. I also purchased this bra and had a similar experience.
Their new bras also come with little CoppaFeel tags to encourage women to get their breasts checked and to check their own!

For more about this topic, please visit the Curvy Kate page.

Where to buy the bra: Brastop

You probably haven't heard of Naja lingerie, but you will drool over their sumptuous fabrics and beautiful designs. In fact, don't be surprised if you see more of founder Catalina Girald in the news because she has been making the rounds promoting her brand. Perhaps Naja's greatest feature, though, is that Naja helps single mothers learn how to sew so they can become successfully employed. These women learn skills and can then help themselves, their children, and their communities!
The bras and underwear in this line are literally pieces of art! The inside of the cups also feature insanely detailed fabrics. When you wear this underwear, know that you're promoting a brand that empowers women.

Soma's Giving is Beautiful Campaign/Donating a Bra
This section isn't necessarily about a brand but about what you can do to help someone else! Soma Lingerie accepts donations once a year (it was in January in 2015) to donate to victims of domestic violence. Please consider donating new or gently used bras to a local women's or homeless shelter. Don't forget that a lot of these centers have a lot of young girls, too, so give any sizes you may have.

Not sure where to find a women's shelter? Please search here and call your location center about donations.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Unusual Bra Accessories: Etsy Edition

Bras tend to have standard accessories such as bra hooks, clear straps, etc. But enough of that! You see that every day! Today's post is about UNUSUAL bra accessories I have found on Etsy.

Photo from the Rixie Clip website.
Possibly the MOST useful accessory you can have for a bra is a Rixie Clip! The Rixie Clip "can BOTH EXTEND AND TIGHTEN your bra bands, putting YOU in control of how your bra fits!" Invented by Rick and Dixie (thus Rixie), this fabulous tool is most useful when your bra has stretched too far for you to use effectively but you can't afford to replace it (or you just love it too much)! It comes in a few different color options and with differing amounts of eyes/hooks.

You can find out more or order from their website HERE!

Photo from LoveLornLingerie's Etsy page.
For $38 plus shipping, you can add a great harness that would sit under the bust but look FUN above a low cut shirt. There are a number of other options available on LoveLornLingerie's Etsy.  J.S. Ding, the store owner, knows her stuff and even custom makes the band to your underbust!

For a review of a different harness, check out The Undercover Lingerista's review from last January.

Photo from GirafairryCreations Etsy page
With nearly 200 positive reviews, this little accessory is a close runner up for a useful Etsy bra accessory. If you want to wear a dress AND use your Fitbit Flex, I can think of no better way than this BraWrap! Mandy Schultz, the owner, also makes a variety of other accessories to attach your Fitbit Flex to, as well!
Lace Harness Cage Bra
I have no idea WHERE I would wear this harness (Burning Man? Halloween?) but I think I want it now! What's great about this harness is that it can be worn over outerwear as well as lingerie, so it's a bit more versatile than the red harness above.  TwilightSiren also carries other harnesses as well.

Photo from MyBraLee Etsy store.
If you've ever had a bra turn into an attempted murderer and try to stab you, this nifty Etsy creation might just be your thing. Simply apply the BraLee where your underwire has escaped and you should be safe from your bra... for now! You can choose from certain colors at the Etsy store.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Curvy Kate Star in a Bra 2015: Worldwide!

After skipping 2014, Curvy Kate, a UK-based lingerie company, is seeking it's next Star in a Bra.
Less than 13 days to enter!!!

  The Star in a Bra contest began as an attempt to find models that fit not only the Curvy Kate brand but also their bras! Starting at a D cup, Curvy Kate had a hard time finding professional models to fit their products. In 2010 they launched the Star in a Bra competition to find a UK-based customer to model their bras. After their initial success, they launched the US-based Star in a Bra contest which I entered in 2012.
2012 US Star in a Bra Contest
   From the onset I was super excited about this contest. In college a roommate took me to get fitted (properly!) and it positively changed how I felt about myself and my body. It was almost like being fitted made me forget a lot of the flaws I thought other people "saw." My confidence soared and I wanted to spread that confidence to others. When my sister introduced me to the Star in a Bra contest I recruited my friend Tiffany (above, looking terrified at what I have dragged her into) and we made a girls weekend of it!

   After making it through prelims, both of us made it to the top 30 choices! After a lot of footwork (radio, newspaper and TV interviews) as well as harassing our Facebook friends until the last minute, we both made it to the top 10! And with that we were flown to New York for our photoshoot!

   After a day exploring New York, we managed to meet the 8 other contestants who ranged from different sizes, colors and backgrounds and all of them were the most gorgeous women I have ever met! Our last day in New York consisted of several hours of prep, photographs, video footage and the occasional sing-along. In other words: BEST DAY EVER!
   In the end, neither Tiffany nor myself won the 2012 Star in a Bra contest. That honor goes to the beautiful Krista (above, second from the right) and her reign has been glorious. She embodies everything a Curvy Kate model should be: true to herself, true to others and destined to inspire others.

2015 Star in a Bra
   This year the competition is open world-wide and to real and augmented breasts! How great is that?! In the end this means that the competition will be fierce and intimidating, but that shouldn't stop you if you're interested in participating!

   So how do you go about entering Star in a Bra? First things first click HERE and sign up! It takes two minutes to fill in your information and maybe another few minutes to think about WHY you are entering this contest. The key to being a Curvy Kate girl is to be true to yourself and express it!

   Included in your entry form is a means to upload five photos: two headshots and three full bodies. Pick good lighting (natural is always best) and if you're having difficulties recruit a friend. EVERYONE SHOULD HAVE A TIFFANY! Your Tiffany will know which of your angles work and they will capture it. OR you could use your phone on a timer. Hit submit and wait for your email (check your junk mail, too, because that was where my acceptance letter was!!!!).
 Things to Consider
   Here is the most important thing about entering this contest: PEOPLE WILL SEE YOU IN YOUR UNDERWEAR. If you have to do the PR run for this, your co-workers may (and most likely will) see you on the internet or on TV (mine were super nice and supportive, which was definitely a blessing).
   You have to have thick skin. People are people and some of them are great and wonderful and some are out there to troll. "You're too fat" to "You're not curvy enough" might be tossed out. "You're ugly" or "You're beautiful." Whatever! As Taylor says, "Haters gonna hate" and you should be you.
   So should you? Definitely!
   Will you fail? Maybe! Below is a photo from my shot last year and I didn't make it. :( There's always this year though...
***All professional photos belong to Curvy Kate!***