Lingerie “Rules” I Routinely Break
On the wonderful world wide web there exist a large number of ideas pertaining to how people should create their lingerie wardrobe, and how their garments should fit. Some of these ideas apply to me, but a good number of them do not, and I have an inkling that many of you out there probably feel the same. Sometimes these ideas contradict each other, some seem arbitrary, and some make perfect sense but may not apply to you anyway. I promise this post won’t be about how rules are bad. I like rules, guide-lines, check lists– I’m a freak for organization. But as much as I appreciate guide-lines, I welcome them to be critiqued, challenged and poked fun at. No one’s advice will apply to everyone, which is why it’s important to get to know your own preferences when it comes to your undies.
The driving force for this list dates back to when I first got fitted. I bought a strapless bra right away because I considered it a “staple.” Don’t ask me why, because I don’t wear anything that requires a strapless bra. I probably would have been much happier with another everyday bra instead. You absorb notions about what you should should be purchasing, and they can be difficult to shake until you consciously address them. And so, here are some notions that I’ve had to shake, or just flat out don’t apply to me.
- You should have a few black, beige and white basic bras.
Black, beige and white contour bras are not something you’re going to find in my drawer (unless they’re really, really special). Blue, green, blush and patterns ahoy!
- You should own a strapless, racerback, T-shirt bra, plunge, balconette, fancy bra…
I’m quite content without all that stuff, except that I consider all of my lingerie fancy. Hehe.
- You shouldn’t be able to fit your entire fist under your band.
I admit that I once subscribed to this. But truthfully, I can pretty easily fit my fist under many of my bra bands, and those are my comfiest bras.
- Lift them higher! Make ’em round!
I like when my bras don’t lift too dramatically, and I like when they don’t add too much size. This is why unlined and wireless bras will always be my first choice, while lined/padded will always be a niche (though certainly welcome on occasion).
- Matching sets?
Why are matching panties often itchy? Rarely worth it in my experience (though when they are worth it, you kind of feel like a star. I love my Fortnight and Ewa Michalak undies). I’m usually happiest in my Aerie boybriefs.
- Wash your lingerie after every wear or two.
Erm… this one might not be for the better. I try, truly, but I’m guilty none-the-less.
- Get a professional fitting every six months.
I had my first fitting in who knows how long a couple weeks ago. It was actually great! But when you’ve learned to self-fit pretty effectively, this rule seems to lose its relevancy. This is especially true when you have preferences that don’t agree with the standard for what a good fit is.
- Your wardrobe should be practical.
My wardrobe is actually pretty practical and suits my daily life really well. This one is here because I used to lack any understanding of desiring something that you couldn’t frequently use. When my friend would tell me “hey, I want this pretty thing I’ll only wear on occasion,” I’d inwardly scoff and wonder why. But why should I do that? If the enjoyment she’d get from it is equal to or exceeds that of a more practical item, what’s the issue? Some people prioritize how lingerie makes them feel, or what fantasy it allows them to fulfill rather than its everyday usefulness. I have many binders full of Pokemon cards that I haven’t looked at in months, but am in no way ready to give those up. Who am I to judge? Maybe I’ll have a look at those tonight…
What “rules” do you routinely break? I’m curious!
You should have a few black, beige and white basic bras.
Honestly, with my size and my budget, I feel like this isn’t really a choice for me. One of my everyday bras is black, yes. The others are gray, purple, and a magenta-like thing. I have looked for beige bras in what I need and can’t find suitable ones (though, admittedly, I could get a white one). Also, given that what I wear gray or black tanks under most of my sleeveless shirts (I’m in Arizona, so sleeveless shirts are a must for me), black and gray are actually far more practical “basic” colors for me than are beige or white.
You should own a strapless, racerback, T-shirt bra, plunge, balconette, fancy bra…
I cannot remember the last time I wore — or wanted to wear — a strapless top. Therefore, for me, a strapless bra is generally unnecessary. (If I needed one for a special occasion, I’d wait and purchase one at the size I was for the occasion, rather than keeping one on hand at all times.)
I would, true, benefit from a racerback. But no one makes one that will fit me. So.
I do have several T-shirt bras and one plunge (that I wish to gods were plungier) because those are practical for my everyday wardrobe. Not that I have anything against balconettes, but since I own so many T-shirt bras, this sort of renders the balconettes unnecessary.
“Fancy” bras? All my bras are fancy once my boobs are in ’em. 😉
Can you find anyone who makes a matching set where both the bra and panty will fit me?
Wash your lingerie after every wear or two.
I’ve heard every wear or two as well as every two to three wears. I do get the latter in, most of the time. Sometimes four wears — but that is really at the outside (and when I cannot remember, “Is this wear three or wear four?”)
Get a professional fitting every six months.
If I consider myself to have professional knowledge of my own boobs and bra fit, I do this. If it means going to a local boutique that probably does not have my size in stock and will probably mis-fit me in order to fit their stock… I’ll pass, thanks.
And one additional rule:
You shouldn’t wear a sports bra as an everyday bra.
My everyday bras are pretty much all Panache Sports. Given that they’re properly fitting (more or less) and encapsulation rather than compression (which is the big issue with wearing sports bras as long term wear), I think I’m pretty good with this.
Never understood *why* we should all have nude, or basic t-shirt bras. Is it a strange form of asceticism, or simply a bullshit ‘practicality’ thing? Because how is a beige bra any more ‘practical’ than my lacy Ewa Michalaks, all offering the same amounts of support (though this was never a support issue)? Furthermore, its not like a beige bra strap poking through a top is any more or less offensive than a coloured one. Women wear bras. Women are *gasp* sometimes legitimately happy with how they look and what they want to wear. It seems on this point that ‘real women’ shouldn’t be remotely ‘sexual’ (as if that is what lingerie *must* be about), despite living in such an over-sexualized society.
Also, the and the fist thing? totally guilty!
Oh, one last thing. Windie, I know you like Fortnight bras, but would you be able to recommend any more brand that might do something wireless to cater to a 28G?
Hey Princess! 🙂 I know that Freya has their wireless deco, and I think Panache has a soft cup bra called Sophie that may come in a 28. There’s also Royce, they often have softcup bras on ebay. Other than that I actually can’t think of any! Wireless bras in 28 bands seem difficult to come by.
One lingerie rule I break all the time when I’m not at work is “don’t let your bra straps show.” Ain’t nobody got sleeves for that, I happily wear tanks and camisoles with strap in full view and even cup peeking out the armpit if the shirt’s loose.
And this isn’t related to the post at all, but I have a question about Ewa Michalak sizing and figured a comment is the place to ask? I usually try to get 28FF (27” ribcage, 37” leaning bust) and I know in your recent SM reviews that sizing up to 30F was the way to go because of the very snug bands. But you also have some older reviews of EM half-cups that were in 28 bands; would you say that EM half-cups tend to fit looser than the SM style and ordering 28FF (60FF) is the way to go in that style, or do you recommend getting 30(60) in all EM styles? I tend to have problems with my super-heavy boobs pushing down underwires, so I go for snug bands instead of sizing up for “no padding”-related comfort, but I don’t want to crush my ribcage!
Hey there! Go you! Glad you don’t worry about your straps showing 🙂 I work in a cold building so I never have to think about that, but I can’t guarantee that if I did have to I’d be as confident!
Regarding Ewa Michalak, I used to consider myself more of a 26 bander, so wearing 28s from Ewa Michalak was actually a size up (and some of those 28 bands were suuuper tight anyway, a bit tighter than I would have liked). With a 27 inch rib cage I would definitely opt for a 65 band. They typically stretch to around 27.5 or 28 inches at the max, so provided the band runs true to size it should be nice and firm! Some styles do run looser than others though. The halfcup reviewed in a 28 did have a stretchier band than other styles but it wasn’t super loose, and there are a couple styles have have a history of running firm and loose. In general though, I’ve found EM’s recent styles to run on the firm side.