Monday, November 2, 2015

The Power of Bras

No one believes more in the power of bras than I do, the way they transform my figure or my mood. But there are a few things they can't and won't do for my breasts.

Here are the top five biggest bra myths -- and reasons why you should feel free to ignore them:

Bra Myth #1: Bra wear causes breast cancer. This myth has resurfaced recently, thanks to the authors of Dressed to Kill, a book published in 2005 and claiming such a link. They believe The American Cancer Society and Susan G. Komen for the Cure are conspiring to suppress the truth about the real cause of breast cancer. But every reputable cancer charity and research organization disputes their theory. There are certain lifestyle changes you can make to help lower your risk of breast cancer, but tossing out your bra isn't one of them.

Bra Myth #2: Wearing a bra stops breasts from sagging. I've heard this one repeated by bra fitters and even some bra manufacturers. But there's no science behind the claim that wearing a bra makes your breasts perkier or prevents sagging. Besides, isn't "sag" subjective? Breasts can rest in a gazillion different places on women's chests; some high, low, off to the side, in the middle and with fullness changing by the week and as you age. Your skin's elasticity and firmness are genetically determined. What's known is that it breaks down with rapid weight gain or loss, through smoking or as you get older. But a bra only prevents normal boob droop while you're wearing one.

Bra Myth #3: Wearing bras makes breasts sag. This bra myth took off when the media picked up on a student radio interview with a French college professor conducting research on the subject. There was no peer-reviewed, published study backing up the professor's claim. None. Nada. Zip. However, there are a couple of small studies showing some improved lift in larger-busted ladies after they ditched their bras. Bottom line is that, like Myth #2, your perky may be another person's saggy. If going without a bra makes you feel more uplifted, don't wear one.

Bra Myth #4: Eight out of 10 women wear the wrong size bra. OK, this may be less a myth than just a "mantra," but it does get a whole lot of press. This statistic, and ones citing even higher percentages, are often used as a hook to sell bras. But they aren't based on any broad, peer-reviewed, published studies. It is a convenient way to remind women that boobs can change and it might be time to buy new bras and/or get fitted.

But does it matter? Of course, 8 or 9 or 10 out of 10 women are wearing the "wrong size" bra. Most of us wear the wrong size at least once a month, thanks to our hormones. The not-so-shocking truth is that no two bras fit the exact same way. There are too many different styles, fabrics and methods of construction. When you add the wide range of sizes and types of boob placement to that equation (see Myth #2), it's no wonder we all struggle with finding a well-fitting bra. So ignore this rallying cry. Get fitted when you need new bras. Wear what feels and fits you best. And remember, band and cup numbers don't define you.

Bra Myth #5: Bras are terrible, awful contraptions, that must have been invented by a man. I see too many stories bemoaning the horrors of wearing bras and how women wish they didn't have to wear them. They claim we can't wait to take them off or go without them on weekends. I don't think these generalizations are true (and according to Jane Farrell-Beck, author of Uplift: The Bra in America, over 50% of all bra patents are held by women).

It may be hard for me to find a pair of jeans that flatter my butt and shorter body -- especially fashionable skinny jeans -- but I don't curse the entire jean industry because I'm struggling to find the right pair. Nope, I just keep trying on different styles until I find the perfect fit. And after I've made my purchase, I can't wait to wear them out; over and over again. I'm only disappointed when they start to look faded and ragged, and I have to go out and shop for more. Kind of like my best bras.

What's your view? Do you agree with this list of bra myths? Got any of your own?

This article first posted on The Breast Life.

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MORE: Women Bra Fitting Tips Fashion Breast Cancer Bras French Bra Study Bra Wear Bra Fitting Breast Ptosis How Keep Breasts From Sagging

A list of things I wish women's magazines would publish

You don’t need to get your clothes tailored. No one needs to get their clothes tailored.

No one gives a damn if you have a signature cocktail at your party. Literally no one. Buy seven more bottles of wine and don’t worry about it.

It’s totally fine to buy most of your wardrobe from Forever 21 and when people ask about it, just say you bought it at Zara.

An article about elastic waists. My body doesn’t want to wear denim. I know bootcut jeans are in this fall, but I want to be swaddled like a little burrito into some leggings.

Forget about burpies. I know, I know, we need more activity not less. Get out on the dance floor. Walk back and forth in front of your ex’s house. Squat over public toilets. Those all count.

A story about a celebrity that doesn’t have a stunning millionaire woman telling us how to love ourselves. I know Cameron Diaz wants me to embrace my body – she wrote a book about that for heaven’s sake! – but she also married a man from Good Charlotte who now has a skull tattoo. I don’t really feel like she’s the authority on self-love.

Everyone has to shave their toe hairs. You’re lying if you don’t have to.

Speaking of, I wish women’s magazines would do a nice tutorial of how to shave. I feel like I never really got the hang of it.

In the career section: I want to hear from, like, a tollbooth operator. Why is it just journalists, CEOs and occasionally a congresswoman? I want to hear about what it’s like to be a waitress or a board game designer. I’m never, after all, going to get a job where I wear a pantsuit.

Movies to watch without your boyfriend.

No more easy hairstyle ideas. Look, we are all trying to figure out how to not look like our hair is just a pile of garbage that got caught in a salad spinner. But vague four-step directions that apparently lead to a messy fishtail braid are not the answer. Everyone’s hair is way too different anyway.


I wish women’s magazines would get a new set of body types. It’s usually boyish, apple, pear or curvy – none of which fit me. And why fruit? Let’s get some real body types out there, like I Want to Hide My Arms or Help Me Disguise My Flat Ass or I Don’t Want to Suck In All Day, What Should I Wear?

Ways to blow your own mind in bed.

Speaking of bodies, I’m frankly tired of women’s magazines asking super hot people about their favorite feature. If you aren’t going to answer “my brain” you at least ought to subvert things a little with “my cellulite” or “my stretch marks”. Come on! Men’s magazines aren’t asking men about their favorite body part (though to be fair, it would always be his dick).

Recently, Oprah’s magazine suggested that crop tops are only for those people with a flat stomach. Which is complete bullshit on a lot of levels, but I would just love to see a magazine go balls-out and publish photos of women wearing whatever the hell they want.

Articles that don’t consult men on what is sexy. At all.

One issue – one single issue – of a magazine that doesn’t include the advice that indulging in a little dark chocolate is OK. I’d adore an article that just said: “Go for it girl, eat the whole pan of lasagne. We aren’t even concerned if you earned it or not! You don’t ‘earn’ calories. You’re a grown adult! Live your truth and buy two pretzels from the mall.”

Don’t text him. Just that. Just that line. We all need it sometimes.

Who fucking cares what boys think about rompers? Wear one on your first date. Wear one on every date until you die. Make your wedding dress a romper. Get him to wear rompers! Who cares what boys think about clothes!


An article about how to let boys down. It seems like this doesn’t come up in magazines, as if no woman would ever want to let go of a potential dating partner. But, um, we do sometimes.

Just some good, well-written stories about womanhood. Not excerpts from romance novels, but the real stuff – the hard, real life, “miscarriage while my best friend is having twins” kind of stuff. The “I was a cleaning lady for 12 years” stories.

For that matter, book suggestions that aren’t beach reads. Also, stop calling everything that has to do with women a beach read.

A recipe where I have actually heard of every ingredient.

A whole article tellings us what women find sexy. Not “how to attract anyone”, just how to divine pleasure from sex that isn’t just “put a pillow under your butt while he has sex with you in missionary for the fourth time this week.”

By the way – no more sex moves articles. Seriously, there’s just four of them anyway. There’s missionary when you’re boring. Girl on top when you’re trying to enjoy sex. Doggy-style when you don’t want to face your mistakes. And variations of the above for when you’re trying to be A Fun Person.

A day of meal plans, but it’s just popcorn the whole day. With different flavors.

A letter from the editor that includes nothing about meeting a celebrity and a busy schedule that’s mostly just going to functions and getting hair and makeup done while emailing.

A letter from the editor that seems heartfelt or necessary.

Even a funny letter from the editor would work.

Also, we don’t care about your “signature”. We know you didn’t sign every single magazine.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Cup size vs Reality

Cup size does not relate to self worth! 
We are here to guide you through the fitting process, which can be involved and complicated.  Especially
since c
up sizes can differ from style to style and no two companies are alike. It is very possible to buy
3 bras and have 3 different sizes. 

Having learned the principals of style, structure and variations in bra design, we can put you in
the right cup size for you.  We promise!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Bust bounce

I not sure where I found this, but the information is mostly straight on. Tissue containment is the key for comfort and support. Most inexpensive sport bras flatten breast tissue. Mashing the tissue into a uni-boob. Without cup size separation the uni-boob moves up and down freely in your bra. Layering only squashes the tissue more. Though it may not move, mashing and squashing is probably not that healthy for your tissues.
The theory then would be to divide and conquer to minimize the bounce for healthy breasts.
If your sports fit does not look like the one below it's time to find a better way.

How to Weigh Your Breasts: 7 Steps (with Pictures) - wikiHow

Have you wondered how much your breasts weighed? If so you may have discovered that it's harder to weigh things that are attached to the rest of your body. These steps aren't perfect, but should give a useable estimate.


  1. 1
    Fill a bowl to the brim with warm water.
  2. 2
    Weigh empty baking tray and record the weight (or set the scale to zero when weighing the empty tray).
  3. 3
    Place full bowl in the tray.
  4. 4
    Fully submerge one breast in the bowl of water. Allow the displaced water to overflow into the tray below.
  5. 5
    Compute the weight of the displaced water by taking the difference between the weights of the full tray and the empty tray.
  6. 6
    Breast tissue is less dense than water. Multiply the weight of the water by 0.9 to compensate for this. This is the weight of your breast.
  7. 7
    Most women are not completely symmetrical. Repeat all steps with the other breast.

    Click here for direct link.

10 simple ways to reduce the risk of breast cancer

breast cancer risk reduction
It’s now about half-way through Breast Cancer Awareness month, and I’ve been seeing pink wherever I go. But no sparkly pin, embellished wine glass, or pink sports jersey is going to make us more aware of the fact that 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. We’re already aware because we’ve all been effected by it, either directly or indirectly through a woman we know and love.
It’s time to focus on prevention, focus on the fact that there are a number of environmental factors and lifestyle choices that significantly increase our risk of developing breast cancer, and that these risk factors can be avoided.
10 simple ways to prevent breast cancer
  1. Go anti-antiperspirants: sweat is natural ladies – own it! Aluminum, the active ingredient is most antiperspirant deodorants, mimics estrogen and can also cause direct damage to DNA. While no direct causal link between breast cancer and aluminum has been clinically demonstrated, breast tissue has been shown to concentrate aluminum, which is troubling given aluminum’s DNA-damaging abilities. Most interestingly, the aluminum is concentrated in the same area where the highest proportion of breast cancers are diagnosed. Hmm… Check out my DIY all-natural detoxifying deodorant which has  an ingredient that actually pulls metals and toxins from the skin, or see #2 for some resources to help you purchase a safer deodorant. 
  2. Detox your beauty and personal care routine: the US has one of the shortest lists of chemicals that have been banned for use in cosmetics – 11 compared to over 1,000 banned by the European Union! Worse yet, the industry’s review council has reviewed only 20% of the ingredients used in personal care products (some “review council,” huh?). Some of these chemicals – including parabens, triclosan, and ethylene oxide, just to name a few – have been linked to hormone disruption and/or irregular breast development, which can increase the risk of breast cancer. Luckily, a number of organizations have stepped in to help protect consumers. Use the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database to help you learn about the ingredients in your beauty products and find safer options. If you’re an iPhone user, check out the awesome new app Think Dirty (every time you use it during the month of October, they will donate a dollar to the Breast Cancer Fund – how cool is that!?).
  3. End your toxic relationship with plastic: this terrible product is just everywhere nowadays! Plasticizers including BPA have been linked to a slew of ailments including hormone-disruption which may increase the risk of breast cancer. Guess what? BPA-free plastic is not necessarily any safer than plastic with BPA! In fact, BPA-free is a load of B(P)S! Literally. Many manufacturers have replaced BPA with its chemical-cousin, BPS, which has the same nasty record. See 10 ways to end your relationship with plastic for ideas and tips. 
  4. Loose those extra pounds once and for all: a number of studies have concluded and the Surgeon General warns that gaining more than 20 pounds between age 18 and midlife can double the risk of developing post-menopausal breast cancer (wowza). Anne McTiernan, a researcher at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, has even stated that a quarter of all breast cancer cases could be prevented by women achieving and maintaining a healthy weight. This is because estrogen is stored in fat, and elevated estrogen levels increases the risk of breast cancer.
  5. Get moving – even if it’s just a stroll: a recent study found that moderate physical activity (walking for an hour a day) reduced breast cancer risk in post-menopausal women by 14%, while vigorous physical activity (running, etc. in addition to walking for an hour) reduced breast cancer risk by 25%. Another recent study found that moderate exercise in pre-menopausal women can benefit the way in which their bodies handle environmental estrogen.
  6. Load up on antioxidants: antioxidants benefit our bodies in so many wonderful ways, the greatest of which is their ability to negate the effects of free-radicals, nasty little buggers that damage cells, opening the door for cancer. Antioxidant-rich foods include berries, apples, pomegranates, beans (small red, kidney, pinto), artichokes, prunes, and cacao. Check out this recipe for anti-aging chocolate, named for the high antioxidant content of its yummy ingredients!
  7. Quit smoking: researchers have found that the rate of new breast cancer diagnosis was 24% higher in smokers than in nonsmokers, and 13% higher in former smokers than in nonsmokers. Enough said. While quitting smoking may not be a “simple” thing to do for many, it is a “simple” way to reduce the risk of breast cancer. If any smokers are reading this, I hope these statistics are the last push you need to finally quit.
  8. Limit alcohol intake: studies have shown that drinking 2+ alcoholic drinks a day can increase your risk of breast cancer by at least 20%. The American Cancer Society recommends that women consume only alcoholic drink or less a day. Alcohol may affect the estrogen levels in the body, which may account for this increased risk.
  9. Limit your soy intake: natural plant-based estrogens in soy may provide healthy benefits in low doses, but may be a risk factor for breast cancer in higher doses. This is an issue since soy is ubiquitous in our modern, highly processed food system. The high prevalence of soy is really just another great reason to cut back on processed foods as much as possible. I play by the precautionary principle and so really flat-out avoid soy (to read more, see Why soy is NOT a health food).
  10. Prioritize purchasing hormone-free, pasture-raised meat and dairy: modern-day large-scale meat and dairy products unfortunately includes the use of growth hormones. These hormones end up in the meat and dairy products conveniently found at a grocery store near you, and eventually make their way into the consumer. This is a major problem since these hormones can mess with our own hormones, which spells Trouble (note the capital “T”). Choose hormone-free, preferably pasture-raised meat and dairy to avoid this risk.
Sources and further reading: 
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