Review: Alexis Smith Pink Polka Dot Bra – How Does Your Bra Fit?

Alexis Smith polka dot bra
Alexis Smith polka dot bra
A little while ago now (I know, I’m so behind), I was sent this gorgeous pink polka dot bra to review by Large Cup Lingerie. The bra is designed by Alexis Smith and the collection prides itself on being ‘lightweight’ and having ‘girly glamour’. I definitely agree with this! The problem I tend to have when buying bras is that many of the larger cup styles tend to be a little bit old fashioned, despite the pretty prints they’re decorated with. When I used to wear high street branded ones (that didn’t fit at all!), they were fairly similar in style to this. Fair enough, it doesn’t give as much support as a good old Freya or Panache, but sometimes I just want to wear something a little less cumbersome and more mainstream.
I got this in a size 30G. Generally I tend to wear a 28FF or 30F (although I have just got a couple of 30FFs that fit quite well – it all depends on brand!), but I’d heard that these run a little small in the cup so decided to size up a bit. I’m glad I did, as this cup size fits perfectly. I believe the sizes run from 30DD up to 36E with 30, 32 and 34 going up to a G cup. The band itself is fairly stretchy, meaning that I generally wear it on the middle or tightest hook (depending on how much I eat…nom nom). I could have done with a 28 really so I could have started on the looser hook. I’ve been a bit brave with this post and put up some pictures of me actually wearing the item – I think you can all understand the fact that I’ve made that collage smaller and blurred out irrelevant parts (including gallbladder scarring :(). Unfortunately, Mr Photographer didn’t tell me that I’d managed to miss a hook when hastily doing it up, so apologies for that, but you can tell how stretchy the band is and where it sits on my back when fastened on the middle hook.
The only ‘problem’ I have with this bra, as you can possibly see in the photo, is the stretching I get towards the centre gore. It’s not really an issue as it doesn’t affect the shape, and I’m not really sure why it does that – I think it’s mostly just the material over the moulded cup rather than the cup itself stretching, but as I said, not an issue.
Alexis Smith polka dot bra
Alexis Smith polka dot bra
And I’ve got a little bit more to add to the post today – it’s been a while since I conducted my survey on  how well your bra fits, and I’ve finally got a bit of info to share with anyone who might be interested. I had a huge range of responses, and I don’t want to turn this into some massive study or essay, so I’ll try to keep it short! I got answers from backs ranging in size from 26 up to 48, cups from A to N, some were happy with how they fitted, some weren’t.
A good number of responses let me know that they were ‘educated’ in how their bra should fit since they were sent over to my survey by Georgina who has been trying to educate the world for years. This was definitely a good thing, but means that some of the percentages of answers were swayed in regards to fit, but I did have some very good responses from these people with regards to availability of the sizes they’d discovered they were.
Band sizes: the majority of response I had to the band size question was that it ‘feels fine’ (60%), but surprisingly a huge number of these people also responded that the back would ride up and that they could fit two fingers under it. This shows that a good number of people believe that they feel fine in a bra with a band that is too big – if the back is riding up or you can fit more than two fingers under it, it is unlikely to be fitting fine.
Cup size: Again, nearly 60% (58%) said that their cup size was fine. But 15% of people responded that they felt the breast tissue was spilling out of the cup and a further 15% that there was a gap between the cup and the breast. This shows that some 30% of people are either having difficulty finding the right sized bra (largely due to availability) or do not realise they are wearing the wrong size.
Surprisingly 20% of people who answered my survey have never been measured for a bra. 45% have tried using online calculators (and many have been unhappy with them! In my experience, I’ve tried online calculators and been told I’m everything from a 32DD to a 36A – none of them near my size at all!)
The overwhelming response I had to the survey was that there are not enough bras outside the mainstream sizes available. My responses came from around the world, and I found that in particular, ladies from the US were most dissatisfied with their bras and availability – many of them seem to order online from UK based stores. Here are some of the main issues I received in the open response section (blue highlights are direct quotes from responses):
  • There is not enough availability of smaller back sizes. I had several responses from 26 back ladies who have very rarely found these sizes. I worry about the fact it is hard to find back sizes of 30 or less… I’m a size 10 so there must be hundreds of thousands of women wearing the wrong back size.
  • Larger sizes tend to have wires that come up too high – there are few true plunge styles, making it difficult to wear V neck tops.
  • There is not enough availability of larger band sizes (above 38).
  • Larger band sizes do not tend to have such an availability of smaller cups.
  • When being fitted, many ladies are coerced into buying sizes that they don’t feel fit them right due to the fact that the store does not have anything in that will fit them correctly (I had a lot of responses that this happens particularly in La Senza and Victoria’s Secret).
  • Swimwear rarely seems to go above a G cup.
  • Sizes outside the mainstream (larger or smaller in cup and band) are more expensive. (My concern is the cost. I know I’m in the wrong size.)
  • People want things other than ‘pretty’ or ‘functional’ bras: There needs to be nice sexy lingerie for fuller busts, especially basques/corsets/full bodies
  • There is too much variety in sizing between brands – some people wear up to two band sizes or three cup sizes different depending on brand.
  • There needs to be more availability in non-underwired bras that still offer support.
There were more than 300 responses to this survey, so I obviously can’t summarise everyone’s points, but I think I’ve got about all the major issues I came across. If you have anything else you’d like to add, comment below and let me know! Or anything you want to keep a bit more anonymous can be emailed to me. Thank you so much to everyone who answered, it was very helpful, and let’s hope some companies take this on board! The general overwhelming response was more sizes out of the mainstream (32-38 A-D) and more availability!
By the way, Large Cup Lingerie very kindly sponsored this survey for me as well as providing the Alexis for review.


1 Comment

  1. June 26, 2013 / 6:18 pm

    Great post my dear, what a thorough and well explained review!! Amazing info, thank you so much for sharing! <3

    Liana x
    Dress Code Chic

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