My Ewa Michalak Conversion at Levana Bratique (Preaching to the Full Bust Choir)

Leah and I have very different bra-shopping styles. She’s happy hunting down online bargains and returning what doesn’t fit, while I’m happiest in a brick and mortar dressing room.  My only exception is a bra that is only available online. And my only exception to the exception has been Ewa Michalak.

My full-busted friends’ declarations of love for the brand have failed to move me for years. Purchasing a bra from EM seemed like a long distance relationship too difficult to begin let alone maintain: (1) all those styles with confusing letters; (2) stories of inconsistent sizing; (3) international shipping and returns; and (4) language challenges. I decided not to get involved.

Then at a dinner after Curve last February, I sat next to Judy Masucci, the owner of a lingerie store in Pittsburgh, who happened to mention that she stocks Ewa Michalak. My ears perked up immediately–not because I wanted to purchase an EM bra, but because this signaled that Judy was a member of the busty bra cognoscenti. Last week I drove 6.5 hours to her store to have a pop up shop for my shirts and finally to try EM bras in a brick and mortar dressing room.

In all but two bra styles, I wore a 75G. The two exceptions were the Pantera and the Karmnik Biszkopty. The former tends to run bigger in the cup, so I needed a 75FF. In the latter (a plunge nursing bra that Ewa created as a regular plunge bra just for Judy’s customers), I needed a 75GG to keep from spilling into the center.

How very satisfying it was to watch Judy and her assistant pull all these EM soft cup bras out of one drawer for me to try in a single afternoon.

Ewa drawer in my size unpadded

It was even more satisfying to discover the semi-soft Gladzioch bra. I adore the simplicity of a beige seamed bra, and the stiff base is an added bonus. I’m used to “semi-soft” meaning padding on the bottom, but the Gladzioch base seems to be created from a laminate that keeps it from being bulky. This is countered by the stretchy tulle panels along the top of the cups. I happily purchased this bra. [Read more…]

Off the Rack ~ Sugar Candy Everyday Fuller Bust Seamless Bra

Yesterday, Darlene reviewed the Sugar Candy bra in size Medium. Today, I’m reviewing it in XS and Small. Click here to start with Darlene’s post.

Just like Darlene, I was initially a bit skeptical of the Sugar Candy bra’s claims. But also like her, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I love it!

I’m currently wearing UK 28GG or 30G in most brands, which the Sugar Candy size chart puts at size XS. But I was doubtful that the smallest possible size would really be right for me, so they sent me two sizes to try.


Turns out I was correct, and the XS was significantly too small, with quad-boob, escaping tissue at the armpits, and a very low neckline.

IMG_5220 [Read more…]

Sugar Candy Comfort Bra for Fuller Busts–How Sweet It Is!

“Revolutionary seamless, wire free, fuller bust bra!”

“Literally never been done before!”

As I read these statements in a recent email, my eyes only stopped rolling when I saw the following:

Darlene, I want to clarify that Sugar Candy was not created to replace the typical wire, fuller bust bra which is much needed. Sugar Candy is purely a comfort bra option, that women can wear at home and to bed.

Well, then! I replied with a request for samples, and the company sent me a medium and Leah an XS and S. We used the UK columns and rows in their size chart, and since I’m somewhere in the 34FF/G range right now, it was refreshing that M covered all my options. [Read more…]

Mission Accomplished: I Tried Corin at Bra Spectrum

It’s been six years since I first wrote about Polish brand Corin, and two weeks ago I finally got to try their bras–one of the perks of having a pop up shop for my big bust button-downs in an amazing lingerie store. (At my next pop up shop, I’ll finally get to try Ewa Michalek at the only brick and mortar store on the East Coast that carries them!)

Before I go into detail about the bras, here’s what I like about Bra Spectrum:

  • ALL the styles and sizes are out on the floor. This meant that I could browse to my heart’s content.
  • During each fitting, they make sure to give “scoop & swoop” instructions.
  • Owner Tatyana and store manager Kristin will run back and forth to bring whatever you request. I had created a pile of bra rejects by the time I was through, but Kristin never showed impatience or tuned out of the process, and I watched them cater to everyone the same way.
  • Ultimately they defer to what a customer wants rather than being militant about fit. This explains their giant selection for women who hate underwires, but more on that later!

I was especially excited to have a fitting because I’ve gained 10 pounds and don’t fit my 32F/FF bras anymore. Kristin began by measuring 79 cm beneath my bust and 103 cm around my bust and started with a 36F. A lot of fitters do this with me, so I let the process take its course, and eventually we found that most of the Corin bras that worked on me were around a 34F/FF . . . or a 75H if you want the Polish size. For the record, I’ve just measured myself ahead of writing this post, and I measure 33.5″ beneath my bust and 41.5″ around my bust, so a 34F/FF sounds about right.

Corin Semi-Soft Bras

I tried two semi-soft Corins in 75H, beginning with the Rosa, which I loved until I tried the Jacqueline, which I loved even more.

rosa flat final


jacqueline flat final

Maybe it’s my imagination, but I felt more contained, lifted and slimmed in the Jacqueline.

Corin Semi Soft Profile Collage

Corin Semi Soft Front Collage

Here’s a comparison of the two bra diagrams from the Corin lookbook. Can the angle of the seams down the front of each cup make such a difference?

[Read more…]