The Great Bra Hunt: A Few Immediate Returns

Please see my introductory post for why I’m on a Great Bra Hunt. And feel free to skip past this post if real bra talk and related topics aren’t your thing!

I realized that if I continued to post once per week on this project, it would be months before I finished. I had posts scheduled through mid-March already, with more bras soon to be added. But as I said before, I expected 90% of the bras I ordered to be returned immediately. There have been quite a few where that is the case so far, so I decided to combine several of those into a single post here.

Glamorise (Part 1)
As mentioned in the intro post, Glamorise makes the very best sports bras, so I decided to try their regular bras as well. Honestly, I suspected this wouldn’t work out, for two reasons. First, I think I’ve tried them in the past with no luck, but couldn’t remember specifically. Second, they’re cheap. Of all the bras I’ve paid for over the last few months, this was by far the cheapest, coming on sale around $25. With bras, you tend to get what you pay for. The bra I chose was the Full Figure Wirefree Minimizer Support Bra. I ordered in it 40G, which is the size of my sports bras from the same brand. Glamorise has a lot of different wire-free options on their site, but I had an Amazon gift card to use up and decided to go that route, especially as I was pretty certain I would need to return it.

(stock photo)

There will not be a picture of this bra. Not only was the sizing WAY off, but the top half of the bra was sheer, cutting a diagonal right across the mid-breast to only partially hide the nipple. No lining on half the bra. The design made no sense. Even worse, it was the scratchiest, most-unpleasant fabric I’ve ever exposed my skin to. It literally felt like I was putting on worn burlap. I didn’t even bother to pull the straps fully on after hooking the band, it was so uncomfortable.

Verdict: This went into an immediate returns pile. Save your money for something better. Zero stars.

Note: I plan to try a more expensive Glamorise bra from their website directly for a second trial.

Harper Wilde
Next up on the trial list is the Harper Wilde Bliss bralette ($45). You know how when you start searching for something, and a million ads start to pop up everywhere? That’s how I found this bra. Honestly, I was surprised that they had my size as they seemed to be a company catering to smaller women, but I thought, okay, why not? I’ll try it.

I admit to being worried about this bra the moment I pulled it out of the bag. The fabric was different in different sections – the band different from the cups different from the straps – and the cup section was the same old balloon-like fabric of the original Knix bras. Even with an inner layer, I suspected they wouldn’t give a lot of personal privacy.

Furthermore, the bra was uncomfortable as soon as I put it on. The support seemed to rely on a sideways press, making a uniboob situation that caused bulging in the middle. Plus, the sides went very high up into my armpit, rubbing uncomfortably in the two minutes I had it on. Notably, the fabric was more comfortable than I originally expected, but I didn’t like the fit (plus it seemed to be too small, even though it was sized correctly).

Verdict: One star because at least the fabric was okay. Returned (for partial refund, sadly).

Soma (Part 1)
Last March, a friend suggested Soma as a possible bra brand that I might want to try. When I started this hunt, I checked to see if Soma had wireless bras, and they did. I was very hesitant about trying the brand (not sure why? maybe because their website kinda looks like a 90s hosiery catalog?), but I picked out the Embraceable Full Coverage wireless bra ($45). I expected the photos to be misleading – this seemed to be yet another probable uniboob situation, with an “unlined” description that probably equated to “shows lots of nipple.”

Fabric was much softer than expected, and the immediate fit was very comfortable. Sizing was spot-on. While there was no lining, the fabric was thicker than expected for partial privacy, and the uniboob situation was similar to the Torrid wireless bra that I previously reviewed (trended toward uniboob but not as bad as expected). It didn’t smash me together for support, at least.

So this bra passed the initial fit test, and I wore it for a couple inactive hours with the tags on. It didn’t take long before I noticed chafing from the band under my breasts just like with other bras (wired and wireless). The band began to wrinkle up, and I worried that longer wear would cause it to accordion and scratch major rashes into my skin the way my TomboyX bras did. I quickly understood that I would not be able to wear the bra a full day, much less multiple days. On removing it, I found that the entire band on the front half of my body left redness and wrinkled skin, just the beginnings of what would eventually become rashes, even though it fit perfectly and wasn’t in the least bit tight. The photo below is half an hour after removing the bra. I didn’t think to take a photo of the redness immediately after, but this is what remained thirty minutes later. As you can see, that’s not a tenable longterm bra solution!

Verdict: Though the fabric was comfortable and the bra generally fit well, I can’t handle the chafing under my breasts. Returned. Calling this one two stars because the fabric was so nice. It would probably work well for someone with skin not as sensitive as mine.

Note: I’ve received lots of endorsements for Soma now, and plan to visit their stores at some point to see if there is a better option for me in their bras. Also note: this is the only bra company that has given me trouble with returns, and I have yet to receive a refund from them.

I mentioned in my intro post that I’ve previously used Knix bras. Back then, they were a fairly new company, and had a limited size range. I barely fit into their bras, and while I had no pain wearing them, I disliked their tendency toward uniboob and the lack of a lining. When I began this search, I discovered that the company has expanded both their sizes and their styles. Since I knew I’d previously felt okay about my Knix bras, I bought one of their LuxeLift Pullover Bras ($50). Based on their size chart, my normal 42G corresponded to the range inside their XXXL+ size, so that’s what I got.

I already knew that with Knix, the bras begin tighter and loosen over the first 30 days, due to the kind of material (which can best be described as feeling very balloon-like). So I was prepared for the fit to be tight, especially going on the first time. Unfortunately, the expanded range of sizes actually fits worse than the previous range Knix had. The band was perfect, the shoulder straps were too far apart and loose, and the cups were not nearly large enough, causing major bulging in the middle (I included a side photo to show just how much bulging!). So the bra was simultaneously too big, too small, and just right.

Verdict: On the plus side, Knix does now have a wider range of sizes (for larger bands, at least), more color choices, and inserted liner cups that hide the nipples. I’m glad to see the way they’ve changed. Unfortunately, for larger-cup breasts like mine, the company still doesn’t have bras that fit well. One star because the quality is good but the sizing isn’t. Return requested, and refund given, but the company asked me to give the bra to a friend or donate it to a shelter instead of returning it to them directly, which I thought was a very lovely and thoughtful gesture. I really do hope Knix works for my body one day because I really love their customer service.

Note: I gave this Knix bra to a friend who, according to their size chart, should fit into an XXXL rather than the XXXL+. However, the XXXL+ fits her perfectly, and she guesses that if she’d tried the size indicated on the size chart, it would fit her the way this one fit me. So clearly the indicated cup size in the Knix line runs small.

About Amanda

Agender empty-nester filling my time with cats, books, fitness, and photography. She/they.
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