Undie Warehouse Blog
It is a proven fact that many women – in fact the majority of women – are wearing bras in the wrong size. Why? There are a number of reasons – including the fact that no two bras fit alike; breasts are as individual as the women who have them; bra fitting is subjective; breasts grow and change constantly over time; and fashions change.
Signs you need to be refitted for your correct bra size include:
- The bra is uncomfortable, or worse, painful.
This is the biggest red flag that the fit of your bra is all wrong. Straps should not cut in; bands should not chafe, and the bra should feel snug and comfy. In fact – it should feel such that you’re not consciously aware of wearing it.
- It is gappy.
If there is a gap between the bra and your breasts, the bra is too big. Bras should not gape or be wrinkled; the cups should sit flat on the breasts and be a snug fit.
- Underwires cut in.
If your bra is too small, the underwire will cut or dig into the underside or lateral part of the breasts. Wires should sit flat against the skin of the ribcage under the breasts and not be uncomfortable. If not flush against the skin, you may need either a larger band, or larger cups.
- Side spillage.
This is where the quadra boob comes into play. You have two breasts. A poorly fitting bra can give the appearance under clothing of actually having four! Cleavage is a good thing – up to a point. Think of excessive breast flesh spillage as love handles for the boobs – not so good, hey?
- The band rides up.
Unless the straps are much too tight, this is a sign that the band of the bra is too large. It should fit snug on the middle hook, with room to slip two fingers under it. And it should be basically parallel to the ground all the way around the body.
- Health issues can be bra related!
The wrong sized, ill fitting bra can lead to, or at least contribute to, back pain, neck pain, headaches, poor posture, shallow breathing, and indigestion. Like with any clothing, size is simply a number. So what if you need a larger band or cup size than you did when you were twenty one? Or even five years ago? A correctly fitted bra, whatever your size, is flattering and its benefits, both health and aesthetic, cannot be overstated. So get fitted properly today – then enjoy a bra shopping spree!
A bra is, in many ways, an investment. A good quality bra is a wonder of design and engineering, not to mention, in many cases, an object of beauty. And a good quality bra can be expensive – very expensive. As such, your bras deserve to be handled with care – to keep them doing their job and looking their best. Throwing them in with the regular wash is not the best way to look after these essential women’s garments!
- Hand washing is the preferred method of laundering your bras. Soak in lukewarm water with a gentle detergent for up to an hour; gently rub fabric to remove any dirt. Rinse thoroughly in cool water; use towels to gently remove excess water. Never wring them out or stretch them. Never use bleach. Hang to dry.
- NEVER put bras in the clothes dryer! The heat breaks down spandex and shape and elasticity will be lost.
- If you must machine wash your bras, place with like colours in a lingerie bag, with hooks done up, and using a cool or cold delicate cycle with gentle detergent. Reshape moulded cups with your hands.
- It’s important to wash them after every two to three wears in summer; four to six in winter at a pinch. The more you sweat, the more your bras will need to be laundered. Sweat decomposes fibres, rusts wires, and leaves a sour odour which does not wash away. Wash sports bras after each wear (if wearing them for actual exercise!).
- Use an alcohol free laundry detergent.
- Have a selection of bras to rotate – more to wear and less washing to bother with. Don’t wear the same bra more than one day in a row: bras need to be aired out and also to regain their shape.
- Bra storage is important too. Store moulded cup bras in a drawer; never invert on cup into the other. Stack bras one atop the other, cups supporting cups.
- Replace your bras every six to nine months – and no less than once per year. Elastic disintegrates over time and the straps and band will not offer adequate support.
With some TLC, your bras should stand the test of time well.
- When is it time for a bra? If your daughter’s nipples are visible through her t-shirts and tops, it’s time for some extra coverage – a bra, or at the very least, a crop top.
- Make a special day of it. Some girls are excited about this rite of passage; others are apprehensive. Make it a fun experience – have a milkshake and cake, or lunch after the purchase; alternatively, shop for something else fun for her as well, or see a movie together.
- If your daughter is very ambivalent, allow her to start by wearing a crop top. Smaller breast sizes don’t need a bra, and a crop top provides basic support and modesty.
- Get professionally fitted for the first bra. Up to 80% of us wear the wrong size – most commonly a cup too small and a band too large. Cups are not universal either – a B-cup for a 32 inch band is very different in size than a B-cup for a 36 inch band. So get fitted by a professional.
- Contrary to common belief, a girl or woman need not be naked from the waist up to be measured for a bra – have your girl wear a crop top for the fitting. Explain to her that the bra fitter is a professional and does this all day every day. The wrong bra size can be uncomfortable.
- Keep it simple. Lace, embellishments, padding, etc are all very nice – but there is time for that later on. A basic bra will be more wearable and less obvious – and many girls don’t feel confident initially with others knowing they are wearing a bra.
- Many brands have “first bra” lines which are specifically made for young girls starting out. They are comfortable, soft, and easy to wear. Sports bras can also be a good option as first bras, as they tend to be more comfortable. Underwire bras are not necessary for smaller breast sizes, and should be avoided until later.
- Assure your daughter that while it may feel strange initially, wearing a bra is something she will get used to quickly and soon it will be second nature.
- Make sure you start with at least two bras – one to wash and one to wear. How often should a bra be washed? This is a controversial question – but basically, it depends on how much one sweats. Sweat not only smells, it can decompose fibres and rust under wires. Weekly is a good guide – based on wearing the bra three to four times.
When the time comes for a young girl to get her first bra, is can be exciting, scary, or something in between for her. It can also be a tricky time for mothers (or fathers!). Whether your daughter is excited and can’t wait to wear a bra, or she is hesitant and doesn’t want any part of it, it’s important to make it a fun experience and a happy rite of passage. If a girl’s friends are wearing bras, chances are she won’t be able to wait to have one as well. If not – and if your girl is an early developer – she may not be keen at all, due to embarrassment and not wishing to “be different”.. Many mothers can be ambivalent about this time as well – their baby girl is growing up and this time in her life proves there is no turning back.
Long gone are the days where a girl needs to go straight into an actual bra. There are many bandeau-style crop tops, or bra-style crop tops which are a great stepping-stone between childhood and needing to wear an actual bra for support and shape. These crop tops are comfortable, they don’t require any significant breast growth, and they are fabulous for modesty as a girl moves from childhood into the tween years.
How do you know your daughter needs an actual bra? Some girls need to wear a bra from age nine; others don’t require one until as late as fourteen. The main reason for buying that first bra is comfort. Budding, developing breasts can be tender or even painful. Some of this discomfort can be alleviated by wearing a well fitted, quality bra. It will also minimise movement and nipple exposure through clothing – both causes for embarrassment. When breast tissue starts developing, a soft cup bra is ideal. It’s important to purchase two so that one can be worn as one is washed. Avoid under wires at this stage – not only are they unnecessary, they can be uncomfortable, and it is actually healthier for the breasts to experience proper circulation and lymphatic drainage – tight under wires can impede this. There is no need for a bra to be worn for sleeping – at any age or breast size (except after surgery – but that’s another story).
A bra should be professionally fitted for the first time – to ensure sizing is correct and so that you know what size to buy. There needs to be a snug fit but with room to grow. Avoid push ups at this stage as well – plenty of time for that later! A bra will initially feel strange – but should never be uncomfortable. A girl who is used to wearing a crop top will probably find the transition easier. Stay tuned for more first-bra shopping ideas and tips next time...
A jockstrap is a man’s undergarment, which from the front looks like briefs, but has no backing. It offers the best of both worlds between the freedoms of going commando, but offering protection to the guy’s genitalia. This undergarment consists of an elastic waistband and a support pouch which holds the genitalia. There are two elastic straps fixed to the base of the pouch and the waistband in back at the hips. The pouch may have an inbuilt pocket which can hold a cup which is impact resistant and offers protection to the genitalia (from cricket balls or baseballs, for example).
The word “Jock” is not only a Scottish nickname for “John”; from 1650 to 1850, it was a slang term used in Great Britain for the penis. The jockstrap was born in the 1870s, and was called the Bike Jockey Strap; it was sold to bicycle riders to offer comfort, support and protection while riding on rocky, unpaved or cobblestone roads. In the early twentieth century, an electric powered jockstrap was claimed to be a cure for insomnia, erectile dysfunction, and kidney disorders. Even today, jockstraps are worn under medical instruction following injury or surgery.
Until the 1980s, it was worn by almost all boys undertaking PE and sport in high school. Today, jockstraps are worn for sport and also as fashion underwear.
When wearing a jockstrap, it’s imperative to get it right – worn incorrectly, it can cause discomfort and even injury. Follow these steps:
- Make sure it fits correctly – purchase the correct waist size. The size of the pouch differs between brands – so experiment with a few until you’re happy.
- It is critical that the waistband fits properly – especially if a cup is to be inserted into the pouch. If the waistband is too loose, the entire garment can shift and no support or protection whatsoever will be afforded. The waistband should be snug but not restrictive.
- Choose the design for its purpose – some straps are designed for sport, others for everyday wear. There are even some sport-specific designs.
- Experiment a little – see what feels best for you. Some guys choose to wear underwear over their jockstrap; others are comfortable as is.
- If all else fails and you feel a jockstrap just isn’t for you, try compression shorts instead – some guys find them more comfortable than a traditional strap.
Not only for sporting activity and protection, there are numerous brands and styles of jockstrap available for fashion wear. So give it a try – they can look and feel great. An added advantage is that a jockstrap typically keeps a guy’s testicles cooler than does a pair of briefs or trunks...
Sports bras are critical to your comfort, health and well being when exercising vigorously or playing sports. But just as important as wearing a sports bra when undertaking physical activity is that you wear the right one.
Follow these tips to ensure you choose the sports bra that is right for you and your needs:
- Get a bra professionally fitted. Statistically, seventy five percent of women wear a bra that is the wrong size for them. Whether by accident or intentional size denial, so many of us have it all wrong. Would you wear a shoe in the wrong size? No. So why wear the wrong sized bra? Considering the cost of this essential wardrobe staple, why not at least find out what size you should actually be wearing?
- Try your bra on before committing. Tiny quirks in design can make a big difference – so you may well wind up with a drawer full of bras in slightly different sizes. And they all fit properly. Additionally, some bra designs are better suited to particular body (and breast) shapes than others. So always try first. If you purchase online – make sure there is a return policy, that you try on just after a shower (when you are clean and deodorant/perfume free), and don’t remove tags until you are sure.
- When shopping for a sports bra, consider your impact level. What kind of sport will you be doing? Low Impact activity includes walking, yoga, or road cycling. Medium Impact activity includes hiking, skiing, and skating. High Impact sports include running, aerobics, and mountain biking. There is a bra suited to each impact level.
- The point of a sports bra is to minimise breast movement. The ligaments that support the breasts do not bounce back when stretched – sports bras protect the breast anatomy. This is done in a number of ways:
Compression Bras – compress the breasts against the chest wall in order to restrict movement. Best for A and B cup sizes. Encapsulation Bras – support the breasts individually and separately with individual cups, without the use of compression. Best for D and DD cups and larger. Compression/Encapsulation Bras – combine both the above mentioned methods for support and comfort, and are ideal for C and D cup sizes.
The perfectly fitting sports bra will achieve the following:
- Fit tighter than a regular bra but not uncomfortably tight
- Will not chafe at the seams, straps or armholes
- Straps are wide and do not dig in
- The band at the ribcage should remain in place when arms are raised above the head
- There will be no wrinkles or puckers in the cups
- It will stand up to the test: jump in place. Does it feel supportive?
How do you know when it’s time to retire that old sports bra?
- It fits more loosely than before
- Vertical movement has increased
- Fabric has begun pilling
- The care instructions have become invisible.
Most sports bras have a lifespan of 6-12 months.
A bra exists first and foremost to offer comfort and support to a woman’s breasts. It follows that when a woman undertakes rigorous activity, such as exercise, her breasts will experience more movement (and ever uncomfortable bounce), so as such will require a higher level of support. Enter the Sports bra.
A sports bra is especially designed and manufactured to limit movement of the breasts by holding them more firmly against the body and by offering a much higher level of support. Straps are generally wider and better designed tom prevent slipping from the shoulders; wires and other hardware are minimised or eliminated for comfort considerations; a more sturdy material is used for construction; and fabric and engineering are employed to reduce perspiration, chafing, and irritation. Seams are minimised, breasts are comfortably compressed against the body (but not squashed!), and the band is wide for comfort and support.
The Sports Bras we are familiar with today have been a long time coming:
- The first commercially produced sporting bra was the “Free Swing Tennis Bra”, produced in 1975 by Glamourise Foundations. It was more supportive than a regular bra, yet still nowhere near adequate for its stated purpose. The straps were thin, it allowed for “free movement”, and really was suited only to women with very small cup sizes – hence very limited breast bounce.
- In 1977, US jogger Lisa Lindahl developed a sports bra based on a list of what a “jockstrap for women” would require. These factors included straps that would stay put and reduction in breast bounce. The prototype was none other than an actual jockstrap! It became the “jog bra”.
- Large breasted women were not catered to at all in the sports bra arena until as recently as the 1990’s – for some reason, large breasted women were believed to not participate in sports. This seems even more ridiculous when considering that sporting activity was expected of girls in high school and into adulthood.
One must wonder how our mothers or grandmothers undertook vigorous exercise without a proper sports bra – even without the comfortable everyday bras we all wear today! Today we are fortunate to have seamless sports bras in athletic designs which not only look appealing and sporty, but are comfortable and protect the wearer from physical pain and even damage. We’ve come a long way, baby!
Summer has, for a long time, been all about bare, tanned legs. Just a couple decades ago, the only people we would see donning pantyhose in summer – especially flesh tones – were grandmothers and middle aged women who would best be described as “frumpy”. Stockings were deemed to be old fashioned and anything but sexy. But times have changed - a lot. Sheer pantyhose are very much in style, their resurgence as a fashion staple over the last few years is almost unprecedented. And we may well have one person to thank: Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge.
The Duchess, who is undoubtedly Great Britain’s foremost style ambassador of today, is rarely seen bare legged. She favours, even in the height of summer, sheer, almost invisible pantyhose – it’s not always obvious she’s wearing them, but be assured, they are there.
This writer was a teen in the late 1980s and early 1990s. My mother made me wear pantyhose (“LADIES don’t go out with bare legs”) – at a time when they were anything but fashionable. The idea of wearing flesh coloured hose into my twenties and beyond made me cringe. But now, in early middle age, even I am converted to the benefits of a sheer and stylish pair of hose. Put simply, sheer pantyhose are classy and elegant. They are grown up – but not old fashioned. Having the option to wear them, means the choice to do so can be appealing. Wearing pantyhose with a dress or skirt looks “put together”. Whether a matte or sheen finish, a pair of subtle hose makes legs look much better too – hiding such abominations as bruises, shaving nicks, minor varicose veins (which even twenty year olds can have) and disguising a lily-white or dry complexion. There is no need for a smelly, messy fake tan when the right sheer hosiery is chosen. While there’s always a place for bare legs on casual days, leg wear gives a polished finish to a smarter look. There are some hard and fast summer hosiery rules. Make sure:
- Leave white stockings for bridal wear. White stockings just aren’t sexy – or particularly flattering.
- Go for sheer nudes, to look as natural as possible. You want observers to look twice before knowing whether you’re wearing hose or not.
- Don’t go for too dark a nude shade. It will just have the effect of a tandoori tan. Natural natural natural is the effect you want to achieve.
- Black is for winter – embrace the new season and leave the dark colours and opaques for cold weather.
- NEVER wear toed hosiery with open toe shoes! This just screams great auntie in her orthopaedic sandals! If you’re going to wear sandals, and you want to wear pantyhose, go for toeless hose.
So why not follow in the footsteps of Royalty and try some classy summer sheer or ultra sheer pantyhose for dressy occasions this summer. Your legs will love them and so will you!
Voodoo Hosiery is amongst Australia’s top brands for leg wear. Supplying women Australia-wide with hosiery that is innovative and stylish, Voodoo is renowned for making a big impression: from billboards to advertising campaigns, seductive imagery showcases this highly popular brand which is adorning legs from the workplace to the catwalk. Voodoo Hosiery was born in1972, when it was launched by “hosiery king” Leon Worth. Worth had been involved in the hosiery industry since the 1950s. In 1974, Voodoo introduced the comfort brief to their pantyhose range – much more comfortable for everyday wear than the old stockings and suspenders women had endured for decades. The brand grew exponentially over time. In 1999 their first control top pantyhose range was released, offering a slim and smooth silhouette without the need for additional shape wear to be worn.
The now ubiquitous opaque leg wear was brought to the market in 2001 – quickly followed in 2002 by Voodoo’s first fashion colour and patterned range. Voodoo continues to be a leader in innovative pantyhose. Ladder control technology was adopted in 2009, minimising the ever-annoying laddering which occurs, allowing a woman to continue to look classy even if she snags or gets a hole in her hosiery. 2010 saw Voodoo Glow launched: the ultimate in cover which looks like a sensual, nude leg. The appearance achieved is matte and sun-kissed. Perfect for summer!
The 2011 introduction of the Voodoo boot tight was another landmark design release for the brand: a sewn in ankle sock for warmth and extra comfort when wearing winter boots. The same year also welcomed Voodoo Voluptuous – designed especially to fit and flatter curvy girls. The ultimate in hosiery, Voodoo offers something for everyone: from sexy stay-ups to sensuous sheers; opulent opaques to everyday basics – and Undiewarehouse has it all at your fingertips. Pantyhose, boot tights, fishnets, fashion tights, stay ups, knee hi’s and stockings. Browse our range today!
Undiewarehouse is proud to introduce our newest line available from our online store, Obviously Underwear. Established in March 2007, Obviously seeks to provide premium quality underwear that offers the ultimate in comfort and workmanship, so that its wearer always looks and feels their best. Their philosophy that style should never need to make way for comfort is embodied in every piece they produce; every item has been rigorously designed and engineered from scratch. The underwear manufactured by Obviously has been devised and produced by a design team including design engineers, textile engineers, fashion designers, pattern makers, sewing technicians, and reputable suppliers. Fabrics are selected for their superiority in quality. The Everyman Range is constructed from bamboo rayon, ensuring a non-irritant, silky smooth fabric feel. The Modal Range utilises Lenzing Modal fabric which is so soft it feels like wearing nothing at all. Both of these fabrics are resistant to shrinkage, wrinkling, and fading; dyes are fixed and will not run; and offer health benefits. Better at absorbing moisture than cotton, the underwear is consequently sweat-free. Both materials are UV resistant, and bamboo rayon is antibacterial, antifungal, and hypoallergenic – perfect for anyone with sensitive skin or issues with dermatitis. Non-genetically modified, these are amongst the safest fabrics to wear. They are also environmentally friendly and biodegradable. Obviously Underwear guarantees its wearer:
- Confidence to look his best
- Natural shape definition
- Reduced heat buildup and sweating
- Elimination of swelling, sticking, squashing, chafing, and the need to readjust
- Cooler in summer – better for testicular health
- Will not restrict movement, ride up, fall down, shrink or lose shape
- Will not fade
- Will not irritate skin
The Obviously logo is representative of the brand’s Australian roots, as well as its vision for the future. A stylised “O” embodies a wave breaking across the rising sun – representative of Australian beaches: symbolic of the power and beauty of the fun, energetic, and laid back Australian lifestyle which we all love so much. Currently focused on a range of men’s underwear, Obviously has a vision for the future to expand their range into a wider selection of underwear and other apparel, as well as a line for women. Try Obviously Underwear today: you’ll not find a more comfortable, superior garment line. Here at Undiewarehouse, we have loads of premium brands on offer – and we are very excited to add Obviously to that list.