Monday, April 20, 2009

Taking the Next Step

I have decided to truly become a Bra Crusader. I am going to train as a bra fitter/consultant and try to make a living out of it!

I will be able to host parties, do personal one-on-one fittings, and consult with spas, gyms, offices, doctors, etc. I will not only preach the joys of a well fit bra, but I will help women to find their true size and purchase a well-made bra.

I know I haven't been posting much, but I am sure that will change once I start working. I will keep this blog as a site for stories and helpful information on my journey as the Bra Crusader.

I should get that copyrighted or something.

Thursday, April 16, 2009


If you have been following my blog (all 3 of you), you may notice that I am a little passionate/obsessed with bras.

You may have also heard, like I have, that the best job is to find a way to make money from something you are passionate about.

I think I have found just that! I found a company that trains and employs bra consultants. So I would be a professional bra fitter. I could do personal house parties, ya know, like Mary Kay or Tupperware. I could also, and this is the big seller for me, work as a consultant with other businesses, like gyms, spas, chiropractors, doctor's offices, etc, anyone that wants to help women find bras! Check them out, The Uplifting Makeover.

So, this company I found is cool, with a wide range of sizes. They use a few different brands and are constantly looking for more options with more sizes. They are laid back and don't push sales the way other consultant jobs do. They care only about helping women.

Now this is something very different from me, and as my mother pointed out, it would push me out of my "comfort zone". As I started feeling serious about it, I started getting nervous.

See, I'm not a people person. But if you get me talking about something I'm passionate about, I can talk forever without any shyness or reservation. I am obviously passionate about properly fitting women into good bras.

So if anyone reads this, give me a vote. Should I give it a shot? It's a minimum investment that can be reimbursed if I work hard. So should I?

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Bra Care

Time for me to get on to the tips part of this blog. I'm currently washing my bras, so why don't I give you some tips on bra care in a nice, orderly list.

- Wear - Don't wear your bra 2 days in a row. This is why we have multiple bras, so we don't have to wear the same one over and over again! Our body oils naturally soak into the bra materials. This is fine for one day, but if you don't give the bras some time to air and dry out, the minerals and such in our bodies will start to break down the elasticity of the bra materials. Basically, our sweat and oils will stretch out the elastic faster. So you rotate - this bra today, that bra tomorrow, then this bra can be worn again the day after that. I even have 2 sports bras so I don't have to wear one 2 days in a row.

- Store - Molded cup bras shouldn't be smooshed if you can avoid it. This means having plenty of drawer space, or hanging them up. In my new house, we have a huge closet and I have less drawer space, so I took a couple hangers with the strappy holders (you know, the notches), and hung 2 bras to a hanger. For my soft-cup bras, I did 3 to a hanger (especially since there's only 3 of them).

-Wash - Pretty much everyone recommends washing your bras by hand. I admit that I cheat on this. I use a large, mesh lingerie bag and put them in my washing machine on the "handwash" cycle. Also, the detergent you use for all your other clothes could be speeding up the decay of your bras. I use a special detergent called Forever New. I believe Dillards started selling a different kind of special bra detergent, that is pretty much the same thing. I just don't remember the name. One bottle of this stuff lasts a long time. The point is, this detergent is even gentler than Woolite, less harsh chemicals, and rinses clean so there is no residue left to wear out the elastic of your bras. Forever New leaves a nice, fresh scent, too.

- Dry - You should never put your bras in the dryer, especially underwires. Think about it, the dryer gets really hot and heats up the metal wires in an underwire bra. When metal gets hot, it's more pliable, bends easily. This is how underwires get all bent out of shape. We have a simple drying rack that I hang my bras on to dry. I let mine sit overnight and they are always dry by morning.

Of course, even with the best care, bras will wear out. Especially our favorite ones that we wear the most. Eventually, they must be replaced. There's also the possibility that you will lose weight (like I am trying to do) and your bras will get too big, or put on weight and they will get too small. If they are too big, or even just stretched out, you might be able to find a seamstress or alterations store that can take them in for you. The best way is to actually remove the little pieces that hold the hooks and eyes, trim off some of the back fabric, and sew those pieces back on.

I have seen women try to do tucks in the sides, but this is tricky to get just right, and can rub against your skin. Of course, some bras just reach the point of no return, and you have to give up and replace them.

The only part of bra care that I haven't figured out yet is travel. How in the world do you pack a molded cup bra without smooshing it? If you know, please share!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

To Bra or Not To Bra...

Check out that link. It's decidedly anti-bra, but does give some good points for not wearing a bra. I like how they disprove the famous myth that bras prevent sagging. Bras give support, but genetics determine the size, shape and sagginess of them.

I personally love my bras, but I have gone out in public without one. I'll usually put on a wife beater (or men's A shirt if you're PC) under whatever shirt I'm wearing. I also use wife beaters for regular layering. When I'm sitting around my house and know I'm not going out again, I love being bra-free. I don't sleep in bras, either, unless I fall asleep during the day.

I know some women feel more comfortable wearing a bra most of the time. Some women by "leisure" or "sleeping" bras to wear at night. These are less supportive than everyday bras, but still offer some support and comfort.

Of course, we know there are women who never wear bras. This is usually paired with "hippies", but is seen in all genres of women. A lot of people refer to a study that was done (referenced in the above link) that seems to conclude that bras cause breast cancer. Ha!

First, the study was done for women who wear bras 24/7. I've never met anyone that wears a bra for 24 hours. Did they just not count showers and sex?

Second, there is no mention at all of a proper fit. The study reports that bras compress the breast area, and this causes much higher breast cancer risk. Another reason I do like the above link is that they point out that a properly fitted bra might not cause this pressure and compression.

So that's it? That's all they got? The same site, different page, told of a British study on breast pain. They took 100 women with breast pain and told them not to wear a bra for 3 months. The pain went away. Upon wearing bras again, the pain returned. Again, absolutely no mention of whether or not the bras were properly fitted. If you read my first post, I experienced breast pain whenever I removed my bra, and general discomfort while wearing it. However, that pain and discomfort went away when I started wearing bras that actually fit me.

So, am I for or against wearing bras? Neither. I am more comfortable wearing a bra in public, but I admit that it is mostly to do with society and how others view me. I know that my larger breasts get pretty sweaty when it's hot, and wearing a bra prevents chafing on my sweaty boobs. I know that wearing a sports bra is the only way I will ever exercise, because bouncing around hurts them. My husband will attest that I hold them in place if I have to run or walk fast when not wearing a bra. But, some women are OK with the bounce factor.

Basically, it's all up to you in the end. If you choose not to wear a bra because bras hurt you, you should try getting fitted before ruling them out completely. If you think bras will prevent your boobs from getting saggy, you are delusional - time and genetics will win.

One final thought in the decision of whether or not to wear a bra: Fashion. If you like fashion, remember that quite a bit of today's fashion is designed around the societal ideal of a perky breast. I have clothes that would never look right on me without a bra. Some wouldn't really fit without a bra holding the girls in a "perkier" place. It's just a thought.

And yes, I'm a fence sitter on many other issues as well.