I'm going to talk about Victoria's Secret today. I bet most of you shop at VS. Around 70% of women in the U.S. shop there. Did you know they generated about $6.6 billion dollars last year? Before I worked as a bra fitter at Nordstrom I used to shop there for all of my bras while I was in college and high school because that's where you go for bras, right? I'm here to tell you that Victoria's Secret is actually one of the worst places to go to buy your bras. In this post I'm going to give you the four reasons why you should never buy a bra from them again.
Victoria's Secret is known for their sexy bras and lingerie. I mean, they have a very alluring mission, marketing and advertising to make women feel sexy and feminine, and for men to buy their stuff for their girlfriends and wives.
I have no problem with feeling sexy and attractive, but I have a problem feeling sexy when I feel like I'm falling out of my bra, my underwires are digging into my breasts, and I feel uncomfortable all the time. How is that sexy?
If you flip through a VS catalog it becomes very apparent that their models don't even wear their bras right. VS makes it clear that they care more about feeling sexy then getting a properly fitting bra. I'm a firm believer to feel sexy or attractive wearing a proper fitting bra is one of the first steps.
Let me share some of the examples of ill fitting bras I found on their site.
1. The breasts are completely coming out of the bra at the top of the cup.
2. The underwire is laying on top of her breast tissue.
3. The middle part of the bra or the "gore" isn't lying flat in between her breasts, so therefore there's a gap between the bra and her skin.
1. If you have that much cleavage, there's something really wrong with the fit of your bra. Yeah, I understand there's such a thing as a push up bra, but when the bra completely pushes you out of the bra, that defies the point of wearing a bra. A bra is suppose to provide support and coverage. A correct fitting bra shouldn't have any cleavage like this.
2. The underwire is sitting right on top of her breasts. When this happens it make the bra really uncomfortable and you end up having to adjust it all of the time and this causes the bra to chafed against the skin.
3. See the middle lace part with the bow or the "gore"? That should be sitting right in between her breasts, but it's not so there's a gap between her bra and skin.
1. This sports bra is way too small for this model. Her breasts are coming out of it at the top.
2. The bra doesn't cover her side breast enough.
1. This racer back bra has trouble written all over it. See how the middle of the band is riding up the back? This means the band is too big. See the coral line? That is how low your band should fit. The more snug your band, the more support you're going to get. You want the front of the bra to the back of the bra to create a straight line. If you see the back curving up, then that means it's not snug enough.
Here are some beautiful examples of how bras should fit.
You can tell from all of these bras that the middle part "gore" is lying flat against the middle, the cups are covering the breasts, and these bras actually fit the models! These bras look 100% more comfortable than the VS ones.
So here are some of the reasons why I would avoid buying my bras from Victoria's Secret.
1. They don't carry a wide range of sizes. They carry band sizes from 30-40 and cup sizes from a AA-DDD depending on the band size. This might sound a lot, but it's not. Did you know that cup sizes go up to a KK? That means there's 9 cup sizes missing, You're probably thinking, who are these women who wear a J or KK? It's very common for women to have larger cup sizes like this. I know VS don't cater to those type of women, but I think it's important to point out that they carry a very narrow selection of sizes.
Because VS doesn't carry a wide range of sizes, they try to fit you into one of their bras, even if it's not the correct bra size. This has happened to me personally and to many people I've helped with their bras. They kept on trying to get me to buy the sister size of 32C which is 34B, even though the band size was big on me. From my experience they don't have their focus on trying to help women find correct fitting bras, they're a large company trying to sell sexy bras. 2. Their bra fitters aren't certified and a lot of times don't know what they're doing. I recently traveled to my closest VS and got fitted. To sum it up the bra fitter measured me over my clothing which isn't an accurate way of measuring because clothing adds about two inches. After measuring me she put me in a 34 band size. After trying on some bras, she told me I was a 34A. I'm not a 34A. I'm a 32C and there's two cup size difference between these two sizes. Maybe the girl who fitted me was new, I understand, I once was new working in the lingerie department and it's hard work, but I wasn't impressed with their knowledge about bras and how they should fit.When I worked at Nordstrom it took me nine months to get certified where I could fit mastectomy, nursing, and specialty bras. To be certified I had to take a written test and bra fit over 100 women and every year take classes to educate myself on new bra technology, techniques, and new product. All I'm saying that it's a lot more intensive than just showing up at work throwing a measuring tape around your neck and helping women finding bras. You have to remember which bras and brands certain breast shapes and there's hundred of bras and a handful of different breast shapes.
Fit is the most important thing when it comes to bras, even more than what it looks like. A well fitting bra will change your life, literally. You wear your bra everyday, it's one of the most important things you wear.
3. I don't find the quality of their bras to be that great. They're cheaply made and I know for a fact they don't last that long. I remember buying a bra from them and a month later felt like it was stretched out already. The problem I have with VS is most women think that VS is the ultimate place to buy their bras and I'm here to demystify that myth that you can get a lot better quality bras that fit, that are pretty, feminine, sexy, and come in a wide range of sizes for the same price. There's a plethora of bras I find to be much better quality than Victoria's Secret like: Betsey Johnson, b.tempt'd by Wacoal, Calvin Klein, Chantelle, Curvy Kate, DKNY, Elle Macpherson, Elomi, Fantasie, Freya, Josie, La Perla, Le Mystere, Natori, Panache, and Wacoal are to name a few I really like.
4. This last reason is more of a personal reason. I don't like how VS objectives women and teenage girls in an overtly sexual way. I don't want to spend my money somewhere where they sell sex to teenagers. Read this really great article from Beauty Redefined about it, it's really interesting.
Conclusion: I don't like to be a Debbie Downer or negative, so I hope you don't get that feeling from reading this post. I don't hate VS, I more dislike them. I'm not trying to make women feel bad for shopping there, or who have smaller busts that like push up bras. I'm also not against feeling attractive and pretty in your bra. I think the prettier the bra the better!
Bras serve a purpose and function, to lift, separate, support, and shape breasts. They're not just something to look at (I know some men might disagree with me on this). My intention is to simply educate you on what to avoid when it comes to bra shopping and give you a perspective from someone who has worked in the lingerie industry for several years.
Here are some other bra posts you might be interested in!