The Press

Re­think­ing the bra for com­fort

- Lingerie · Underwear · United States of America · New Zealand · Bras

It sur­prises Mar­lene Dent how un­der­wire bras per­sist, given their ten­dency to pinch around the rib cage and hang un­com­fort­ably from the shoul­ders.

The wires of­ten dig into di­aphragms and squeeze sen­si­tive lym­phatic tis­sue while still re­ly­ing on shoul­der straps to pro­vide much of the sup­port.

The strain this puts on the shoul­ders, neck and back can af­fect the wearer’s pos­ture and cir­cu­la­tion, lead­ing to tired­ness and headaches. Nonethe­less, peo­ple keep buy­ing them.

Mar­lene, a pro­fes­sional brafit­ter and the owner of Fit 4 U, says she sus­pects most women sim­ply aren’t aware there are bet­ter op­tions.

For most of her life, Mar­lene was among them, shop­ping from the big brands but never get­ting the sup­port and com­fort she re­ally wanted.

It wasn’t un­til she found the Beauty Bra – known then as the Je­u­nique Bra – that ev­ery­thing changed.

‘‘It had the sup­port I’d al­ways been look­ing for; it was a rev­e­la­tion,’’ she says. ‘‘Now my fo­cus is on shar­ing those ben­e­fits with other women.’’

The Beauty Bra, sold by Mar­lene through Fit 4 U, brought a sub­tle yet im­por­tant shift in bra de­sign by for­go­ing un­der­wires in favour of ‘‘shelves’’ built into the cups and greater around-the-body sup­port.

De­signed in the United States, the bras have been in New Zealand for a lit­tle over 20 years.

To make sure peo­ple get the right size, Mar­lene pro­vides per­son­alised fit­tings in a ded­i­cated room at her home. Peo­ple are wel­come to bring a friend or sup­port per­son to ap­point­ments.

The Beauty Bra comes in two main styles, the ‘‘Clas­sic’’ and the ‘‘Smoothie’’, nei­ther of which is avail­able in de­part­ment stores.

This ul­ti­mately works for the best be­cause a good fit is vi­tal for com­fort and find­ing the right size can be dif­fi­cult in a busy, fast-paced store that lacks ex­pert ad­vice.

‘‘Get­ting it right is re­ally quite spe­cialised,’’ Mar­lene says.

‘‘It’s thought that about 70 per cent of women don’t wear the cor­rect size bra, so a proper fit­ting is highly rec­om­mended, es­pe­cially if you’ve never had one be­fore.’’

The ‘‘Clas­sic’’ bra is avail­able

up to size K, mak­ing it ideal for women with larger busts or wider rib cages.

For women with smaller busts and more slen­der physiques, the Smoothie bra was cre­ated.

The Smoothie bra also has shelf-type sup­port that en­cour­ages the breast tis­sue up and for­ward in the cup, sup­port­ing and di­rect­ing the bust. How­ever, it has a smoother pro­file that works par­tic­u­larly well with lighter cloth­ing.

Mar­lene says the man­u­fac­turer is ‘‘ab­so­lutely fas­tid­i­ous’’ and the qual­ity of both styles is out­stand­ing.

‘‘They might cost a lit­tle more up front, but they could last three times as long as your typ­i­cal bra,’’ she says.

With the right bra, pos­ture of­ten im­proves, clothes be­come more flat­ter­ing and con­fi­dence grows. ‘‘Ev­ery wo­man wants to look and feel good. I can quite hon­estly say I’m proud to be as­so­ci­ated with these bras,’’ Mar­lene says.

For a no-obli­ga­tion ap­point­ment or to find out more, call Mar­lene at Fit 4 U on 03 352 6601.

 ??  ?? Fit 4 U owner Mar­lene Dent says the Beauty Bra gave her the com­fort and sup­port she had al­ways wanted but failed to find in a bra.
Fit 4 U owner Mar­lene Dent says the Beauty Bra gave her the com­fort and sup­port she had al­ways wanted but failed to find in a bra.

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