Thursday, 8 November 2007

Dressing for Breast

I find the programmes that Trinny and Susannah do quite fascinating at times.

Last night they looked at breasts. They discovered that 90% of British women are wearing the wrong bra.

Apathy is one of the major causes of this epidemic of boob abuse. As Susannah said, some women would rather measure up a washing machine than their own breasts. We all need to take action and ensure that we are looking after our busts correctly. It shouldn't be embarrassing to allow a trained fitter to apply a tape measure. We have to learn to be proud of our bosoms!

So T&S went on the warpath. They accosted ladies in the street, took them off to their pink pod and demanded that they remove their tops so that the duo could examine their underwear. It was quite vile at times. Lumps of flesh poking out from the sides, bottoms and tops of undergarments that had not a hope of being considered fitted. They must have felt so uncomfortable with their boobs in some sort of limbo that required the wearing of baggy tshirts to conceal their shapeless blobbiness. And yet some of these females had actually been properly measured up and had still come away with the wrong sized bra.

What T&S discovered was that on visiting three different stores, they each got three different measurements and when they tried to do it themselves, they still weren't quite sure what/where they were supposed to be measuring.

My own experience is that I was professionally measured as a 36B and wore that size for years until after my kids were born, when I was measured in-store again and still told I was a 36B. Some time later, I started to become aware of pains from some lumps under my arm at certain times of the month. I was referred to a specialist, who did all the necessary examinations and eliminated the tumour fear before pronouncing that I had a hormonal malady which would be considerably eased, if not completely cured, by taking evening primrose or starflower oil , which are rich sources of Gamma Linolenic Acid. This is a herbal remedy that is widely reported to help with menstual problems and inflammations - and he was right. Within a couple of months, the discomfort was under control and I could drop the dose and only needed to take a small amount in the second half of every month.

However, as I got dressed to leave, he did advise me that I should also go and get myself properly fitted for my bra as it wasn't supporting me correctly and was exacerbating the problem. He suggested I visit the ladies in a department store in the next town.

As instructed, I duly pitched up there the following weekend where some ancient dragon took me into her lair and laughed at my suggestion that I was a 36B. 'You're tiny across your back,' she hooted. 'Cant possibly be a 36, more like a 32. And you have big breasts, much bigger than a B cup.' She proceeded to bring in several bras and helped me into the one she preferred before instructing me to jump up and down. For the first time ever, I knew I was going to be able to start doing gym skipping because I would no longer give myself a black eye. It was a revelation. The sales assistant pronounced that in certain styles I was a 34C, but mostly a 32D.

This was another thing that T&S discovered. Even if you can get yourself sized correctly, there is such a huge variation in the cuts of the actual bras themselves that you can still end up with bits falling out from under or just waggling about loosely. For me, balcony bras are a particular problem - they fit at the sides but not at the front - except when I was pregnant and for some weeks after the termination, when I had the most wonderful pair of full bouncing whoppers that behaved quite differently from my normal boobage. Needless to say, Ruf adored them and made full use, whilst they were in situ :)

The funniest part of the programme was seeing Trinny, an obvious 32A with very little boobies, being fitted with a silicon prosthetic chest that incorporated a nice pair of 32Ds so that she could spend the day learning what it was like to try to move about/exercise/run for a bus/dress with an average size pair of bazookas. Her husband thought they were vile and she seemed very glad to get back to her regular charlies, which were nowhere near as inhibiting.

At the end, T&S's team of trained assistants from the major manufacturers had managed to fit over 870 women into properly sized bras in one day and the final shot had all of them ripping off their tshirts to reveal their new underwear, whilst throwing the discarded rejects into the air.

But it is a serious matter because having our tits in the right place affects what clothes we can wear/feel comfortable in. Large ladies whose bosoms had previously hung around their waists like overlarge pitta bread, were fitted into bras that held them up where they were supposed to be. This allowed them, for the first time in years, to wear pretty clothes that showed off their little waists and revealed hour glass figures rather than being shapeless lumps. Small women were shown how to make the most of what they've got with the aid of 'chicken fillets' and push up bras so that they could wear plunging necklines and feel proud of their busts.

On researching further, I discover that T&S have a website with a survey so you can ascertain your actual shape and learn to dress accordingly.

Average tits
Slim waist
OK tummy
Big thighs
Chunky calves

Broad shoulders
Big boobs
No waist
Narrow hips
Long legs

Big tits
Small waist
Short waist
Big hips
Generous thighs

Broad shoulders
Small boobs
No waist
Slim hips
Long, slim legs

Big boobs
Short waist
Big hips
Big bottom
Big thighs
Slim lower legs

Average tits
Tummy bigger than tits
Quite flat bum
OK legs

Small shoulders
Small tits
Small waist
Short waist
Big thighs
Big bottom

Big tits
Gently curving longer waist
Hips equal tits
Slim thighs and legs

Broad shoulders
No waist
Average tummy
Flat bum
Chunky thighs
Chunky calves

Big tits
Slight waist
Slim hips
Long legs

Shoulder width same as hip width
Slight waist
Longer legs

Small tits
Long waist
Flat tummy

I've always thought I was an hour glass but I was wrong. I am, in fact, a vase... although there is a strong case for a lollipop.

Go take their survey

Next week, they're looking at the problems that men face with regard to choosing their clothes and will be showing ways to deal with big necks, big bellies, etc. Get yourself over there big boy!

Trinny and Susannah Undress - Wednesday ITV1 8pm


Vi vi vi vooom!!!!!!!! said...

yep, I reckon I'm a vase. None of the others really match. I'm def not a lollipop! (but I reckon I'm a bigger vase than you!)

George said...

Very damn interesting. I am certain they are no better fitted in Canada than the UK. You're right about one thing ,,, there are many larger boobed women who would look so much better in a fitted bra ... they would probably look slimmer as well. Now, if only they would burn the track pants and sweats

Anonymous said...

Oh great, I'm an anomaly. Apparently my body defies definition.

I always buy bras in proper underwear shops, where they size you up correctly as soon as you walk in, and then pull out dozens of pretty frothy things, and you can spend hours trying it all on (I love buying underwear).

Marcelle Manhattan said...

Sweet! I wish we had that show in America! And I'm impressed that you went from a 36 to a 32. I was a 32C as a teenager, but I've put on weight around my torso, so now I'm a 34, and sort of halfway between a B and a C.

having my cake said...

Vi, the big point they were making was that it's not the size, it's the shape that designates how you dress.

george, yup! Ban trackies and big tshirts!

z, I agree. The women concerned were all measured in the big department stores. If you go to the smaller specialist shops, they seem to know what they're doing and have a much better selection of sexier garments.

marcelle - the whole thing was that I hadnt lost any weight. My back and boobs were pretty much the same size both before and after my pregnancies - maybe a little lower :) But the method of measuring was more accurate in the end.

Gypsy said...

I loathe shopping for underwear, it is always such a depressing experience and makes me want to go on a diet with all that flesh exposed.

Gorilla Bananas said...

"Eat less, exercise more" would be good advice for the big bellies. What did women do in the days before bras existed, I wonder?

having my cake said...

Gypsy, it depends what the underwear is for. If it's for sensible day to day or sportwear, I tend to agree but frothy confections are wonderful to try on.

GB - Corsets?

Anonymous Boxer said...

"frothy confections"

I'm so ashamed........

*leaving to buy new underwear......

Flowering Jasmine said...

T&S seem to annoy a lot of people but how can you fail to smile when you see the difference they make to people? Yes, it might just be about the way people look and dress but if you feel good about the way you look then its a start to improving things on the inside.

Menopauseprincess said...

Hi Cake,

This is my first time at your site, came here from Anonymous Boxer. I had no idea there were so many different categories one could fall into to when it came to boob/body shape. You learn something new everyday! I always thought I was an hourglass, but it may be more cello!

BenefitScroungingScum said...

I thought I had an hourglass figure, but according to that I'm a vase too. In all honesty T&S annoy the hell out of me, in that shout at the TV car crash tv can't stop laughing way they have...which is actually what happened in my house while this programme was on. The bare breasts kept Ziggy silent! heehee. BG x

having my cake said...

AB, Every woman should own at least one piece of frothy confectionery - it's in the Ten Commandments!

Jasmine, They absolutely make me cringe sometimes when they are totally ruthless but sometimes people need to be shocked into taking action and get out of their rut.

Menopause Princess, Hello and Welcome. I was amazed too. Ruf and I have been perusing the shapes this afternoon trying to ascertain which one I truly fit into... and they we tried to do the same for him. Doesnt work out for blokes :)

BG, Yup, carcrash tv! Ziggy was not alone - some of the breasts on display silenced me also...

Anonymous said...

very scary stuff, x

Anonymous said...

sorry honey, your been tagged over at mine, x

Pixie said...

I adore T&S think they do a fantastic job making women feel better about themselves. Just wish that they could magic some sexy underwear for women who've had mastectomys who used to adore matching frothy sets and now , well..... defies description.

having my cake said...

Wayne, you'd have hated it... all that female flesh :)
I shall try to get to the tag.

Oh, Pixie, Im so sorry x Id never really thought about it from that aspect and I dont think it was mentioned in the programme. It seems somehow crass to start suggesting that you use chicken fillets to balance things out - which is what Trinny was advocating for the smaller bosomed ladies. However, seeing the lifelike silicon prosthetic that she wore for the day, I wonder if there is something similar available to you for the frothy confection occasion?

Cyrano Q said...

I loathe Trinny and Susannah, and I think it's a sad indictment on people that they seem to enjoy being bossed about by posh, dim, faux-lesbians. Gok Wan is far better at what they do, you get the impression that he really adores women, and wants them to feel good about themselves as they are, without recourse to bullying, surgery or superficiality.

As with all these things, it all comes down to how you see yourself. Get that right, and everyone else will follow.