Bra Shopping – The Perfect 6 Step How-To Guide

I recently needed a change. I was feeling blah and stale. When I looked in the mirror, my middle-aged face, clothes, and body all looked tired. I smoothed my hands over my face. I ran my fingers through my hair. I looked at my self straight on and sideways. Then I saw it. The “girls” could use a lift. They were looking rather blobby and rounded. I think the terminology is “uni-boob”.   I decided that I would begin a mini-makeover from the inside out. That is, clothing-wise, with my undergarments–my bra.

I come from a long like of conservative, modest, and frugal women. My mom has never seen a new bra that can compete with the dingy, ancient one that’s held together with safety pins. Arghhhh.

Now, I have recently been intrigued by some interesting new styles and brands of bras out there on Pinterest and on Facebook ads.  But how do you buy a bra without trying it on first? (I have also never been able to buy a swimsuit–that I actually wore–without first trying it on in a store.) After analyzing strategy from the experts (my fellow Sidetracked Sisters) here are my 6 tips for a successful hunt!

bra shopping 1

First, prepare yourself for battle. Perhaps you are the sort that buffers at times like this with a little red wine. I prefer suffering in the company of people who will laugh at my misery. So, knowing that my sister and mom are always game for a shopping adventure, helping someone spend money, and always up for a game of “Let’s Laugh AT Lisa NOT With Her”, we met at Kohl’s at the appointed hour.

Second, evaluate the enemy. Pace up and down the isles of silky and supportive underthings. Laugh and point at “old lady styles”. Reminisce about the days when you wore an “Almost A” or “Barely B”. Do they still make that perfect Warner that snapped in the front and fit JUST SO?

Third, find the brand, style, and size that you currently wear. Try it on and confirm that it fits appropriately.  If not, ask your human “supporters” for suggestions. Play around at this stage. (It is really the most important part!).  You want to start with known territory before you go off exploring unknown terrane. I am assuming here that the bra you are currently wearing was, at one time, relatively comfortable and close to a good fit in both band width and cup size. If your weight has changed significantly or your body has moved to Peru and back since your last bra was purchased, this is the time to reassess your starting point.

Next, it is time to expand the boundaries. Get other styles and other brands, all the same size–but only black. This is very important. Bodies change. But it is hard to compare a reserved, nude Olga with an adventurous, red Bali. Just take my word for it on this one. All the same color. It doesn’t have to be black, it could be white, I suppose.  I just don’t like white because mine never stays looking “bright” for long–living out in the country with lots of iron in the water does the nasty on white ANYTHING!

Then comes the trying on part. Let’s “lock and load”! It’s time to snap on and slither into brassier after brassier. After adjustments, each candidate needs to be given a thumbs up or thumbs down. You will create two piles. Please be kind to the associates who work in the department store and have your people rehang the nays. They are just sitting there anyway and do they really need to watch you take on and off? I think not.

At the end, covered in an avalanche of discarded black fabric, the final choices need to be once again tried on and judged. The winner–after a marathon of harrowing, trying-on–will be found.

I went through this EXACT process. You would assume that this would be the end with shopping bags to carry home. Well, it was…for me. Unfortunately, mom also went through this whole process and returned the bras and panties that she purchased. They weren’t as comfortable as those that were held together with safety pins!

Logo Lisa

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4 thoughts on “Bra Shopping – The Perfect 6 Step How-To Guide

  1. This was fun to read. 😄 I’m glad you met with success, Lisa, but did Sandy really go through that whole process again and still return the selected items?? That’s like entering the Mrs. America competition and then saying “no thank you” to the crown!

    • Yes! This is 100% true! I have occasionally tried to figure mom out, but she is a real mystery and very independent (stubborn)!

  2. Hey, buying underwear is like buying a mattress. No one sees it, but it needs to be comfortable. Thus, just keep the old, safety pins and all.

    • Yeah, and that comfortable mattress on your chest doesn’t exactly help your girls look their best!

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