In my house, once I take my bra off, that’s it, it’s not going back on. Meaning = I’m in for the evening. I used to have a lot more bra troubles than I do now, since I’ve started wearing cotton bras, bralettes, and prefer soft styles without underwire. Luckily, I can do that, since I’m a 34B, and do whenever possible, but I also understand that a good foundation is incredibly important; some support and a little padding go a long way towards making or breaking a look. So I do wear a “regular” bra sometimes.
I will admit that in winter months, in college, I would frequently go bra-less. I also smoked a lot of pot and wore Birkenstocks – the ugly clog ones- LOL, so take that however you’d like. Now, I only go bra-less at home, and get pretty freaked out when I see women “out” without a bra (yes, you can ALWAYS TELL). I don’t even like fashion-y sans-bra looks, especially when the women are waif-ish and border on underage-looking.
Anyway, all this is to say that damn, I wish I could have taken my strapless bra off today! What is it about strapless bras?? I’m wearing my Oak dress which tends to fall off the shoulder ALL THE TIME, so I always wear a strapless bra with it (I disagree with visible bra straps), and I was pretty uncomfortable most of the time I was out. The top part of the bra is the most uncomfortable, it feels like my lungs are being squeezed so much I can hardly catch my breath. Maybe I’m exaggerating a teeny bit. But still. UNCOMFORTABLE.
I only have very cheap bras, one from Free People, and one by Xhileration at Target, and I am wearing size large in each one. But they STILL cut into my lungs and make me want to scream. If only I could…
Anyone have any suggestions for comfortable strapless bras?? Thanks in advance!
And now for something completely different.
In case you hadn’t noticed, I’m taking it a little easy this week. I was actually not even going to work/post at all, but you see how that has gone; I just can’t stay away.
But you see, I have been flailing rather spectacularly lately. All the buying? All the new stuff? Yes, I have an “event” coming up that I am overly concerned about having all the “right” things for, but I am also trying to take some control over the only part of my life that FEELS like it’s WITHIN my control right now, my wardrobe.
Of course, my life is not actually out of control right now. It’s just different, with my step-son here, and scary (starting a new “business”) and overwhelming, and sad (missing my parents and sister). And all very hard to manage.
But dammit, I can manage my wardrobe. And I have. I am quite pleased with it actually. There is nothing I want to get rid of, and nothing I want. (well, except a big comfy sweater for fall)
If you haven’t observed by now, I move in waves. And I have to go slightly beyond my comfort zone to find where my comfort zone actually IS, then come back to it. I have done that with buying/acquiring new stuff lately. And now I am at the point of saturation.
I also have to deal with one thing before I move on to the next. Granted, the “one thing” I had to deal with, really didn’t need to be dealt with in the first place (my wardrobe), but it was a way of coping, a way of getting ready to deal with the other, harder stuff. And this week, I told myself it was time to stop futzing around and get to it. This is the week I can mess around, get things in order, enjoy myself, do whatever, and come Monday, it’s time to get down to business.
Interestingly enough, it’s working. I feel renewed and ready to start “fresh” with a sense of purpose. I’m setting goals, and creating a schedule for myself that includes working in other locations besides my home office a few days a week.
But I couldn’t have gotten there without going through the other stuff first. The flailing, it turns out, is important.
Grechen – I wanted to ask a question about the everlane backpacks you posted about a few days ago….but wan’t sure whether to ask here or on that other post. anyway, I’ve decided to get one of the new ones. the water-resistant cotton sold me, and i also looked at the canvas straps (white) on my old one and they are disgusting. so….sold. anyway, i want the modern snap backpack as i love the styling on that one but cannot decide between the gray (which i am worried is too light a grey for my lifestyle – kids, messes, etc.), and the moss or navy. How on earth does one decide on the color? i have this problem all the time – grey, navy, olive…? which one? i wear all three colors. Does it matter in the least? Do you have any useful wisdom for this sort of color connundrum? thank you!
Bras are the devil. I wear the soft “Coobie” style bras as much as possible. Sometimes even to work. I don’t care. I buy cheap ones from Amazon, 4 for $15, and just toss them when the elastic craps out. They are surprisingly supportive, I think, especially for my 34Ds, and you can just throw them in the washer. They look like simple minimalistic camisoles (no fancy trim or lace) so if they show under a tank or tee, it doesn’t scream MY BRA IS SHOWING. Love, love, love.
As for strapless bras, really, you’re just finding the least offensive option because they all suck. I have this one: http://www.amazon.com/Lilyette-Womens-Tailored-Minimizer-939/dp/B0010VXCJO As far as strapless bras go, it’s actually okay. Not that I would CHOOSE to wear it if there was an alternative. If I have something that slips off the shoulder or has low armholes or whatever, really, I just do my soft bras. There comes a point where a girl has to choose not to GAF, ya know!?
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Grechen Reiter says
um. no useful wisdom. i generally default to black accessories because then i KNOW i won’t have to “worry” about what else i’m wearing, but in this case, i was concerned about the black rubbing off…
i love the moss color, but i would never wear it with my olive military jacket, so that’s out. and navy, i just NEVEr wear. i liked the gray too, but it wasn’t available in the large. so, choice made 🙂 left with reverse denim, which i really like, and it’s “different” enough, i think to not clash with anything LOL
i think you just have to decide what color you like the most and go with that one. everything else will fall into place. unless you’re like me, and have to over-analyze EVERY SINGLE THING.
This seems like the right time to confess that I don’t care if my bra straps are showing.
Okay, let me clarify…I don’t mean wearing a racer back top with a wide strap bra. But, if my straps peak out of a sleeveless cut top, I’m fine if my bra is decent. This takes some intentionality…has to be thought out with color and fabric…I am a big fan of a lovely bra with pretty straps. And, I’d rather have my small boobs look decent from head-on and I can’t seem to accomplish that with a strapless bra. The most comfortable one I have is a bandeau, but then I get a weird boob plateau look. I have *heard* that the strapless bras with a corset-like base are easiest to wear. I’m hoping someone has a success story to share.
Have you tried the core bra from emerson fry? i have LIVEDin it this summer (and i actually have a D cup and like you, never leave the house braless). It’s great because its the kind of bra that can show because it’s cute and it sorta looks like wearing a swimsuit under your clothes – except its actually comfy. I even sleep in it sometimes.
I bought the wacoal strapless for a bar mitzvah at Nordstrom and it is unbelievably comfortable. No easy feat for my bra size. Not sure it comes in your size. Best advice is to go to (or call) Nordstrom and have them guide you. That’s what I did and it worked out beautifully. If not, it’s easy to return. This is definitely one of those times when you get what you pay for! Good luck ????
Well, you could do what I do and decide that you are no longer buying clothes that require a strapless bra. it works great for me, as it also narrows the field slightly in terms of what I can buy. 😉 I kept a couple of dresses that I absolutely love that either require a strapless bra or for me to wear a cardigan over them to hide bra straps, but that’s it. For when it’s extremely hot outside (90 degrees +) I have a couple of flowy cotton spaghetti strap dresses that I will wear with brightly-colored bras, and just allow the straps to show. When it’s that hot, I can’t give a rat’s ass if my bra straps are showing so I just try to make it cute.
I made the decision to give up (mostly) on strapless bras because I am small-chested (A cup) so nearly all strapless bars have that silicone strip to help them stay up. Well, that silicone strip makes me break out in hives. It is so NOT worth it. I have found ONE strapless bra without the sticky silicone strip, and if I remember correctly, it is not too uncomfortable. It is by Fine Lines, so I would check out that brand.
Grechen Reiter says
i wanted to order it the second it came out and then it sold out!! now that you’ve said you love it, i’m definitely getting it 🙂
what size did you get? i would definitely let that show, it doesn’t look like a “bra” which i suppose is my main problem…
Grechen Reiter says
ha! thank you for clarifying LOL
i should say that i really don’t mind it that much on others, it just makes ME uncomfortable to have MY bra strap showing. especially if it looks like a bra strap.
I second the Coobie! I discovered it while pregnant and have been wearing them for 3 years now.
Marie Jo Avero convertible – I love for this one to show!
NuBra is perfect for special occasion.
My three recommendations.
I adore that emerson fry bra!!!
Oh, I’m glad you mentioned this. I was thinking earlier of the one by Helmut Lang and then forgot to mention it in my post. The EF one looks great!
As someone who wears a DD, I envy you all these soft and strapless options. I wear a minimizer with underwire everyday so that my chest is not the most noticeable thing about me (and so my clothes fit properly). Soft bras are only for around the house and bed, and nothing is sized S-M-L. I avoid all clothes that would require a strapless bra though I would be curious to hear of a good strapless bra for DD and up. The nubra comes in that size but has mostly bad reviews from bustier women.
I think you should get a small. Even as a 34D thats what I ended up with – again, not amazing support, but perfect for summer. They are experimenting with a new kind of elastic as well thats much tighter and more supportive (they sent me one to try actually and I needed a medium – they let me keep it so now i have two – love EF!) but I think you’d want a small in the original. You can always call and ask.
Grechen Reiter says
ha! well, i mostly try not to buy anything that requires “special” undergarments anymore, but suddenly this oak dress is falling off my shoulders more than it did when i first got it, so i switched to strapless. i wouldn’t mind showing straps if they don’t look like “bra straps” if that makes sense. or even “nude” straps, i hate seeing “nude” straps showing…
i don’t seem to have a problem with the silicone, although i know that many women do.
Also standing on the “oh well the straps are showing.” If it’s hot enough in Northern California that I can’t wear a tee with sleeves, then I figure my bra straps won’t cause a stir because everyone will be too focused on the weather;). Also, I can’t bear discomfort so have never even tried a strapless bra on. Ooops.
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I have the Helmut Lang one and I love it! I don’t wear it to work but I do wear it on weekends and after work.
Grechen Reiter says
i love that one too…so unique.
No such animal 😉 I ended up having cups sewn into my wedding dress so I didn’t have to deal with this issue! (of course, I was younger and the girls were perkier then 😉 I’ve had department store strapless bras over the years and for a couple of hours at an event (like my sister’s wedding when I was MOH a few years back) they’re tolerable. But when you’re larger than a D cup (and I’m DDD right now) and over 40, they don’t stay up without engineering. And I have tried longline bras and various underwires & silicone strips and they’re uncomfortable and/or just don’t position the girls properly. So I too have given up on strapless outfits unless absolutely required…. (but do check Chantelle brand at Nordstrom and see if they work for you – they get a “not bad” from me 😉 Le Mystere & Elle MacPherson don’t work for me, personally.
I do the same exact thing….by the end of the day, the band underneath my deflated, 45 year old, 32G/34F (after two kids) bust is uncomfortable, especially in the summer. I am still searching for a bra that fits well.
I am getting closer but still haven’t found the perfect bra. I prefer to be home and braless.
Grechen Reiter says
yes, i agree with you. at home & bra-less right now 😉
although i do have a couple bras that are quite comfortable, the simpler ones, they still come off when i get home.
Bras, whether strapless or not, are most definitely not my forte! I’m a weird size: 38B, as with my shoes: 10.5. So I feel like some anomaly in the fashion world. So, my solution is to rebel…no bra burning or pot smoking (anymore, anyway;-) ) but as soon as I return home, “the girls” are free!!!
Dagny is adorable and you deserve some time to mull things over when you’re feeling icky. And thank you for being permission-giving. I’m flailing, too. We have to just keep getting right back on the bike, so to speak, and try again. We’ll get it eventually. Or maybe not, but we’ll keep going.