The Curvy Kate Star in a Bra USA top 30 finalists are online and waiting for your votes. I did not make the top 30, but that’s okay because I have a vacation planned during the week of the top ten photo shoot in New York City. If I had made the top 30, and the top 10, I would’ve had to choose between my one real trip this year or a potentially once-in-a-lifetime opportunity with Curvy Kate. So I’m kind of relieved! Plus I can always enter again next year (assuming this becomes an annual competition in the U.S.).

There are so many great photos and stories, I had a really hard time picking my favorites. If only you could vote for four, or five…but no, you only get three votes. Of course my first vote had to go to Brittany Jencks, of the website Thin & Curvy. It’s one of my favorite big bust blogs.

So that left me with only two votes. I had to set myself some rules to help narrow it down, since all the contestants are beautiful and confident. Some of the ladies have really beautiful photos but a very short personal statement, while some have a great personal statement, but the photos didn’t grab me as much. So rule #1 was that the personal statement must say something actually personal, not just “I want to be Curvy Kate’s model.”

Rule #2 was that the model must be wearing a size that looks correct. No obvious ill-fitting bras allowed. I could see quad-boob and bands riding up the back in some of the photos. I have no doubt that Curvy Kate would fit these women correctly, but if I’m voting for someone to represent the big bust market in the U.S., then it’s important to me that the winner have a really good understanding of size, especially her own.

My third and final rule was that I wanted to place at least one vote for a woman of color. The U.S. is such a wonderfully diverse country, so I want the top 10 finalists to reflect that.

My last two votes eventually went to Krista Cousins and Bonnie Blackmon. Krista’s big smile really captured my attention. She’s also from Brooklyn, and I just couldn’t resist a fellow New Yorker. At only 29, Bonnie is the oldest contestant, and says she still feels sexy even after two kids. I love that! And I’d love to see Curvy Kate use a wider range of ages among their models. Women don’t turn into pumpkins at the age of 30, you know! (Or a pair of pumpkins, as the case may be…)

Who did you vote for, and what was your criteria?