A short while back, I ended up in John Lewis lingerie department with my mother. She'd just bought a new dress and wanted a strapless bra to wear with it as it had cut out sections right where one's straps would usually sit. So, we had a look about and ended up looking at these new Wonderbra 'Ultimate Strapless' numbers that I had been most curious about for quite a while. Strapless bras are usually a total no-go for naturally larger busted women such as myself. Personally, I've always felt they were quite a redundant concept for anything above a D-cup, and that's at a push. There are, of course, a few women out there who are blessed with impossibly perky yet still large boobs so obviously this assumption doesn't go for all larger busted ladies. Myself, however, it very much applies to. Unless it's practically some sort of scaffolding like structure, if it doesn't have straps to support the weight of these puppies, it may as well not be there at all.
So, this Wonderbra immediately caught my attention the first time I saw it because, frankly, it looks more like a piece of armour than a bra. It was hung upside down as its shape is rigid and not best suited to the usual hangers used for strapless bras. It looked like some sort of moulded bosom protection device. Actually, that description isn't too far off the mark. So, what sets it apart from other strapless bras? Well. The first thing I noticed about it was the fact that it is akin to a longline bra in that it reaches further down the torso than your average underwired bra. This, coupled with the silicone coating on the inside of the strap and at the front, is the foundation of the support and lift usually catered for by straps. Very good. What else?
Well, they've done away with the standard semi-circular underwires and gone for a very innovative support system that leaves you wondering how and why nobody had though to do it before. How many times have you ladies stood in front of the mirror, held your boobs in your hands and wondered why the hell they can't just stay that way without said manual assistance? Obviously the designers at Wonderbra have, because they've switched the usual wire for a hand shaped structure that remains invisible inside the bra but does the job of holding your boobs just where you want them. Awesome :D So, in theory, it's a wonder of modern tit-science. How does it hold up (if you'll pardon the pun) in practice?
First thing I noticed when I tried it on is that, once again, I am a completely different size to that I measure as. I am in a 34E in this particular bra. That is not to say it's a problem. It's just interesting to see. It took trying on about 3 different sizes to find the best fit as, unlike most other bras, there are a couple of extra factors to consider with this piece of equipment. First of all, given the way the support works, it HAS to fit properly around the back. I learned, whilst fitting for this, that I have been 'doing it wrong' when trying on bras previously. I am in the habit of using the middle set of the standard 3 sets of hook eyes at the back when trying. Now, it's not exactly rocket science but if you're anything like me, these things are easily overlooked. What I should have been doing is trying it on using the loosest setting as, that way, when it starts to give a bit after wear, I still have two notches with which to tighten it. Duh! So. Trying this bra on using this principle, myself and the lady helping me decided that a 34 was the way forward. That gave me sufficient lift and support without being uncomfortably tight. It was tight though. It has to be. Go as tight as you can without it being uncomfortable, that seems to be key. Right, so, we've got the back size sussed.
Now onto the cups. What do you need to consider when fitting the cups right? The usual really. Spillage and gaping. This bra has shelf potential. You know that thing you get if your boobs aren't the perkiest things in the world and you push them up too far and you get the crease near your armpit and the shelf effect on top? That. Not attractive.
So, you need to make sure it's a snug fit without spillage. It's quite easy with this bra actually. The cups are shaped in such a way that they envelope most of your boob without being a full cup, in such a way that they are kept nicely contained. The shape of the bra itself is just right as well. Given that you are essentially just filling a pre-determined shape, that's definitely an important thing to have gotten right. So. A 34E did the job for me. You'll definitely want to try this on before you make a decision.
Wait a second before you run off to check it out. It's not without its flaws. It is, of course, entirely dependent on anatomy but, for reference, I'll give you my version of events and you can make your own minds up. My boobs are big and fairly heavy. I am also not exactly skin & bone. Though I wouldn't say I have an abundance of fat, I do have to be careful with tight fitting garments to avoid lumps and bumps appearing due to elastic constriction etc. Bra straps are a bit of a nightmare, all told, and this one presents a problem all its own. As the job of supporting the weight of its contents falls solely on the lower portion of the bra, it pushes down which can cause a bit of an issue with bumps at the back, as you can just about see at my side in this pic to the left. Fine of you're wearing loose fitting garments over it, which I usually do, but not so great if you're after a sleeker silhouette. Again. Try it on and see.
If there's one thing I am seriously impressed by, though, it has to be the shape it gives underneath clothes. I never thought I'd see the day that I could achieve such a nice, 'up there' shape without a single strap in sight! The pic below, though awful quality, ought to help illustrate my point. Nice one Wonderbra. Thanks for that :D
OH YEAH, ALSO! I am well aware it's not black... We bought one each, one black, one nude but my Ma decided to make off with the black one so I was left with this very out of character item for the purpose of these photos. I'm working on a covert swap, don't worry ;D