Thursday, 13 August 2009

BTW - How To Have A Cuppa

Though it’s something we deal with every day of our lives, I confess the bra and other garments for the nether regions still cough up some mysteries for me – and if you were honest, I dare say I do not stand completely alone. So we hunted down Phan Pik Yie (PY for short), the obliging brand manager at Vizon Pte Ltd, for Passionata lingerie (from France no less), and grilled her on Stuff We Really Wanted To Know. We share her pearls of wisdom.

SF: Most advice on getting the right bra size talks about avoiding overflowing cups. But how about those of us who go through life with cups half empty?
Ladies who are unable to fill up even the smallest cups or if they are in between cup sizes can turn to silicone pad inserts (aka the chicken fillets) which can be inserted at the bottom of the cups to fill in the gaps. Or fabric foam inserts which may be more comfortable than silicon inserts, or at least lighter.

SF: If there’s hardly anything to push up, what can bras do that Nature and Willpower cannot?
Deep V or Deep Plunging bras have the same effect too. These bras have built-in padding and the center gap between the cups are very close to each other. The way the bra is constructed is to push from the sides, and voila! A nice cleavage.

SF: How about a checklist of points to look out for in the fitting room?
Many of us assume we wear the same bra size for every brand. But the cutting and sizing differ with each brand, and our bodies change all the time. It is best to get fitted every time we go lingerie shopping. Try the piece on and ensure the size is right. Here’s what you should look out for:

Correct band size. Use the middle hook for new bras. That’s ‘cos the band and the elastic will stretch out slightly with regular wash and wear.
No overspilling or muffin tops; watch out for cups which are too small or a style that’s suitable for your body shape.
No excess flesh spilling out of the back band. If there is, the band size is not right.
Straps mustn’t ‘eat’ into the flesh. Ensure straps are adjusted to comfortably fit a finger under it when worn.
The centre of the bra shouldn’t cut into the flesh. If it does, cup size is wrong.

SF: Lacy things are great, but how do you wear those under fitting evening dresses? Or is boring cotton our only salvation?
I’m afraid lacy lingerie will not be able to provide the smooth finishing effect like a seamless lingerie". But nowadays, they are not only available in boring cotton. Brands like Chantelle have come up with a line called Ultra Invisible – smooth finishing with soft satin materials. Satin will give it a more luxe look and feels better than cotton. It’s sexy and functional for our evening dresses. Sadly though, you’ll have to leave the Super Sexy Lace Lingerie for other outfits or other purposes.

SF: Aside from cavorting in the bedroom, do ‘baby dolls’ and ‘slips’ have a practical purpose?
Babydolls can be worn like an inner piece under a blazer so you don’t have to wear a bra + an inner blouse. Slips can be worn under an outfit to make the body more streamline or under sheer dresses.

SF: Should g-strings floss?
Good g-strings should not floss and give a sore butt. Ensure that the crotch lengths are not too short or not too long. If it's too short, it will definitely give you a sore butt. If it's too long, the string behind will be moving constantly and cause discomfort as well.

SF: Boy shorts ride up when you walk and catch you in the crotch – is it a matter of wrong size?
Yes, it's most prob too big a size.

SF: What are the top underwear no-nos?
Oh, I like this one:
· Visible panty lines (aka VPL). Ladies, there are plenty of seamless underwear around!
· Wearing a dark coloured pair of underwear under light coloured pants or skirt
· Wearing high-cut underwear with low cut pants or jeans
· Showing the T-back string when wearing low cut jeans
· Badly fitted underwear causing spillover of the tummy and love handles. Panties are supposed to have some form of ‘tummy control’.

SF: Based on your experience, what sort of underwear do most women in their 30s and 40s like to buy? Why?
For panties, they usually go for boyshorts, shorties or regular briefs. This is because these panties provide some form of tummy control. Young girls usually go for g-strings. Seamless and light-coloured panties are popular across the board. For bras, a high percentage of them will purchase T-Shirt bras in basic colours (nude, black or white). Very basic styles for easy everyday wear. Most important to them is they must be comfortable and functional.

The 3 must haves from the Passionata Range:

#1 Sexy, Fashion Bra - White Nights range
(Push Up Bra + Shorty)

#2 Contemporary, Modern Bra - Passio Original Bra
(this is a favourite among consumers world wide and Singapore)

#3 Daily Essential, Comfort - Nude Sensitive T-Shirt Bra or Strapless Bra (The ultimate invisible bra)

Sizes range from 32 to 36, A-D Cups and XS to L. Available at Takashimaya, Tangs Orchard, Metro Paragon and BHG Bugis.

- Ee Waun


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