I recently attended a sneak peek of Elle Macpherson’s new JCPenney intimates line, The Body by Elle Macpherson where I got life lessons in bra shopping. After killing it with her Elle Macpherson Intimates line for the past 25 years, Macpherson is stepping out with this new collection dubbed as an ode to her supermodel nickname as not only the face and creative director, but also as the model for the print campaign. By the way, she is 50. Pause for wine sip.
The new line is priced an average of 70% lower than her her namesake intimates line, and I am pleased to report that it is every bit as gorgeous, and it feels as good as it looks. I volunteered my ta-ta’s for a fitting with an expert, all in the name of research. According to Helen Jennett, JCPenney fit specialist, I, like the majority of women in America, have been wearing the wrong bra my entire adult life. To ensure that this shame does not happen to you, I present to you Jennett’s top five tips for bra shopping. You’re welcome!
1. Look at the tops and dresses in your closet. Do you wear t-shirts? Blouses? Solids? Dark colors? Light colors? Patterns? V-necks? Scoop necks? Each shape of bra is designed for a specific type of shirt. (e.g. Full coverage bra with horizontal seam is best worn with a button down shirt or dress.) Wearing a bra that complements your shirt or dress can instantly take 10 lbs off your figure!
2. Your bra band should be parallel to the ground. Over 80% of the support in a bra comes from the band, so if your band rides up when you move, it will not lift you enough in front. It should feel snug, but doesn’t need to be tight. Since the band is the first part of the bra that stretches out, make sure you fit the bra on the loosest hook. (This way you can tighten it as the band stretches out.)
3. When trying on a bra, make sure the wire goes back far enough so it’s not cutting into breast tissue. Not only can this be uncomfortable, but often this makes the bra feel tight so instead of going up one size in the cup, you go up one band size which minimizes the support you need from the band. If you’ve ever felt like you have some room in the cup, make sure you’ve pulled all the tissue on the side forward. This ensures a perfectly fitting bra and will also loosen up the band.
4. Seams equal support. A bra with seams and multiple panels will offer a minimized and supported look. Also remember prints and dark colored shirts hide seams so this is an easy way to wear that beautiful lace bra that’s been sitting in your drawer.
5. Care properly care for your bra. Even less expensive bras will last a long time if you take care of them. This means washing them after every wear. Yes, every single wear. The reason is that bras are made of synthetic fabric which stretches out from the natural oils in our skin. When you wash your bra after every wear it keeps the band snug. As always, wash with natural detergent like Forever New. Nylon does not hold up well when washed with most detergents.
My personal favorite is the fit bra (in the above stripe) which just so happens to be Elle’s as well. Basically, my girls have supermodel taste.
Shop the collection here.
Do you have any bra buying tips? Please share in the comments below!