It’s official: summer is finally here on the west coast! For months us ladies wait patiently to bust out our warm-weather wardrobe, body-con dresses, low-cut t-shirts, off-the-shoulder tops, backless boho rompers…sounds divine doesn’t it? Not so much when figuring out what bras to wear under those delightful pieces seems more difficult than navigating the Bermuda Triangle. This conundrum is one that so many women face at this time of the year: how to still rock these fashion-forward pieces with the proper undergarments as a normal healthy-sized woman and not a waif-thin model. If you’re larger chested like me, going without any support is not an option, but visible straps or unsupportive miniscule bras that don’t hold the girls up doesn’t sound very appealing either. Now what’s a gal to do??!!
Enter the perfect fitting summer bra, from the experts that have been doing it for over 30years, Diane’s Lingerie. I first began shopping at Diane’s Lingerie about 6 years ago, and it was truly life changing. For so long I was unable to find a proper fitting bra for my small frame and large cup size. The big box stores automatically think that if you have a large cup size you must be 200 pounds, therefore you don’t need a small band size at all. Not the case! Upon my first fitting experience at Diane’s, I learnt that almost 80% of women wear the wrong sized bra (I know, it’s utterly shocking) and even with my extensive knowledge on the subject, I still was off with the fit I had at the time. Thankfully the lovely staff at Diane’s outfitted me with the proper size and the proper shopping know-how. I immediately came home, put all my old bras in the charity bin and I haven’t looked back since.
If I had challenges with finding the right bra, I know that other women definitely have them too. That’s why I was so excited to partner with Diane’s Lingerie to host an intimate event this month that tackled the summer undergarment problem, while also teaching women the tips and tricks to find the perfect fitting t-shirt bra. It was wonderful to have Diane’s Lingerie filled with female media and digital influencers of all different shapes and sizes, all with different sets of concerns that we could tackle and solve in one evening. As Diane’s motto so perfectly states, every body is unique and we fit them ALL.
For those you didn’t get a coveted spot to the Summer Ready event, I want to share with you the knowledge that was the cornerstone to my presentation for our guests. Firstly: how to find the perfect t-shirt bra. In order to find the perfect one, you must first know what “perfect” looks like. A great-fitting t-shirt bra is one with smooth and seamless cups, and that is completely invisible when worn under your t-shirt. For fit, here are the top things to look for:
- The bra band should fit snuggly because it provides the majority of the support. The bra band should sit lower down on the back (parallel or lower than the front of the bra), and it shouldn’t be riding up. Most women are wearing the bra band too loose, which causes it to ride up the back while the front of the bra tips forward. This creates an unbalanced silhouette. It also causes the back to not look smooth under a t-shirt. When the bra band is too loose, it also means you are getting no support from the bra.
- The placement of the wires should include all of the breast tissue.
- The cups should hold all of the breast tissue, no gaps or spillage.
- The center gore should sit flat against the chest.
- The shoulder straps should have the proper tension and stay in place on the shoulders. That means no falling straps when you move your arms.
Highlights from the event’s fashion presentation, with Diane’s Lingerie’s Store Director, Lynda Barr
A flattering fit always comes first when choosing a bra, but if you’ve got the fit down pat, then it’s time to have some fun! Never before in fashion have bras become a fashion piece themselves; no longer completely covered up, bras and bralets are peeping through see-through lace, worn alone under blazers and vests or as a top to high-waisted skirts and wide-leg pants. At the event I wanted to play with this concept and provide some fashion inspiration for our media guests. I styled two fashion forward summer outfits as part of my presentation, which had the bras on full display! First I styled a blue and white gingham-printed Marie Joe bra as a top (that can also pass as swimwear!), worn under a white long sleeveless vest and paired with a printed high-waisted skirt with a fun hemline tassel. The next outfit had a strapless bra peeping through a gorgeous beach coverup (both from Diane’s Lingerie) that can be dressed up with jeans and heels (as seen on our model) or dressed down with shorts or a bathing suit for the pool. When you have a proper-fitting, great quality bra, trust me, you’ll want to show them off!
Posing with Diane’s Lingerie’s President and Owner, Sharon Hayles and our two models who are wearing the fashion looks I styled, all using bras from Diane’s Lingerie.
The last bit of knowledge myself and the staff at Diane’s Lingerie wanted to leave our guests with was what bras make up the perfect bra wardrobe. As women we all have underwear drawers filled with pieces we either never wear or have only worn a handful of times. That’s simply money down the drain! Instead, the staff at Diane’s recommends having the following must-have pieces:
- Seamless bras (for those t-shirts and tight-fitting dresses)
- Sports bra
- Strapless bra
- Multi-way bra (aka a bra with straps that can be manipulated and changed to accommodate different straps or halters)
- Special(Just for you) bra- something lacy and fabulous! And while you’re at it, get the matching bottoms too.
Some last words of advice on your bra wardrobe…even if you know your size through and through, you should still be fitted once a year. Factors like weight change, pregnancy, and hormones can cause breast size to change.
The Summer Ready x Diane’s Event was such a treat to be a part of, and I happy to be able to share the knowledge we provided here on Style by Mana with all of you. For highlights and more tips from the event, be sure to follow @DianesLingerie on social media and look up the hashtag #summerreadyxDianes.
Speaking to Daily Hive’s Lifestyle Editor, Crystal Kwon.
Happy Summer!! xx