TCW - Life, Style & Wellness

A Date with the Bra Whisperer

It's a funny thing, a woman's attitude toward her bra. Every day we don one, and wear it for 16 hours. It touches our skin. It supports us through our morning commute, our long day at the office, our dinner button-front blouses and flimsy tee shirts alike. And how do we treat it in return? Often with equal parts disdain, irritation and neglect. We complain that straps fall down or dig into our shoulders, underwires cut into our breast tissue, bands create back fat, support just isn't supportive enough. The bra becomes our frenemy.

Susan Nethero, founder of Intimacy lingerie boutique, is out to change all that.

Dubbed the "Bra Whisperer" by the inimatible Carson Kressley of How to Look Good Naked (and coming soon to the Oprah Winfrey Network), Susan believes that the proper fitting is the key to transforming one's attitude toward her bra--and in turn, her body.


Susan Nethero, the "Bra Whisperer"

I had the pleasure (no, really!) of experiencing a fitting from the Bra Whisperer herself at an exclusive event hosted by Step Up Women's Network last week called "Change Your Bra, Change Your Life!"...and by the many wide grins and astonished exclamations of "Wow! I was totally wearing the wrong size!" I heard from the women in attendance, many lives were changed that night.

Susan has developed what she calls a "holistic" method of fitting that does not involve a measuring tape. Instead, the bras themselves are used as measuring tools. I'm not sure losing the tape results in a more accurate fitting (although I did end up in a smaller band size than I have at fittings elsewhere), but it does feel less judgemental somehow. In appointments that last 30 minutes on average, the expert at Intimacy fits the client in multiple styles and a few different sizes to both determine the ideal size and demonstrate the many varied silhouettes that are possible just by switching from a demi to a plunge. "See how your breasts are more centered with this one?" Susan asked me. "When I showed Oprah a similar style, she was amazed how much taller and slimmer she felt."

The Bra Whisperer didn't have to convince me how important a properly fitting bra is to create a foundation for one's clothes (and with over 90 sizes in cups from A to K, Intimacy has a bra for everyone). But she did school me on the causes of women's most common complaints about their bras (fact: many back fat ails can be cured by wearing the bra band much lower on the back), and wowed me by one complimentary service Intimacy provides: free alterations! I had no idea it was even possible to alter a bra. Intimacy commonly takes an inch or two out of bands to ensure a perfect fit.

"Ninety percent of the support of a bra should come from the band. By making sure your band fits snugly, we are lengthening the life of your bra," Susan said. "A bra is an investment, and we want you to get as much wear out it as possible." I heard her loud and clear.



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