Posts tagged news
Posts tagged news
I think of lingerie as outerwear as occupying four main categories, at least from what I see (and what’s accessible to most women).
You have what I call the basics of lingerie as outerwear, which are items like lace trimmed camisoles. They’re versatile and functional and they look great on a variety of body types under a cardigan or blazer. Gold Hawk, Farr West, HoneyCooler Handmade and Natori all make beautiful, lacy camisoles.
A level up from that, so to speak, you have items like harnesses and bras with strappy details. Harnesses work great layered over tops and dresses, while bras with strappy details look great peeking out from under those same items. My go-to brands for this look include Marlies Dekkers, Playful Promises, Karolina Laskowska, Luxe Zaza and Hopeless Lingerie.
Next, there are pieces like bustiers, longline bras, crop tops and corsets. Many of these pieces work just as well on their own as they do layered with something else. Fortnight and NOE Undergarments design beautiful longlines you don’t have to be afraid to show off, while Angela Friedman and Dottie’s Delights make some beautiful lace corsets that can double as outerwear.
Finally, you can always layer a lace-trimmed slip under a dress or skirt. Some women will even wear a sheer dress with a slip underneath, but if that’s too adventurous, I think a subtle peek of lace is just as good.
While I completely agree that every woman deserves gorgeous lingerie, I disagree with the idea that Victoria’s Secret is the perfect company to handle every woman’s needs. As I’ve mentioned before, no one company can be expected to make every single kind of bra, and I respect Victoria’s Secret’s honesty in admitting that they are not the company best suited for this hard-to-fit market.
The honest truth is that not only is Victoria’s Secret ill-equipped to handle mastectomy bras, most lingerie boutiques and brands are in the exact same position, which is why mastectomy bras are a specialized area of the lingerie industry. The shape of the breast, the firmness, the tissue, the density…everything behaves differently once a woman has a mastectomy. And that’s not even getting into concerns from scar tissue, swelling, fluid retention, and reconstruction. Put simply, you can’t just throw together a mastectomy bra and hope for the best. It does require a lot of specialized research, testing, and trial and error. And of course, selling mastectomy bras also requires fitters with specialized expertise.
It’s easy to accuse Victoria’s Secret of not caring about women who’ve had mastectomies (an attitude which I think reflects, among other things, an unfamiliarity with bra design), but Victoria’s Secret was stuck in a Catch-22 here. Refuse to do mastectomy bras and have everyone accuse them of hating female breast cancer survivors, or do a line of mastectomy bras and deal with the inevitable criticisms surrounding fit (and, likely, the accusation that they should have never gone into the mastectomy bra market in the first place).
In addition, the fit issues that Victoria’s Secret already has would no doubt be magnified with the special circumstances of fitting women who’ve had mastectomies, and if there is any area of bras and bra fitting where women truly deserve a knowledgeable, sensitive, passionate expert, it is in mastectomy bras. And Victoria’s Secret can’t offer that. A company shouldn’t be punished for admitting they can’t do it all. In fact, they should be commended.
The bumper crop of plus size, full bust, small bust, mastectomy, and nursing bra brands that have popped up lately are a direct result of behemoths like VS choosing to avoid those markets, and the lingerie industry is better for it. Unlike what some other fashion blogs choose to believe, this isn’t an easy issue and Victoria’s Secret was in the right. So instead of encouraging this company to completely upend their business model, why not support those companies which are already making beautiful mastectomy bras?
If you live in France, Belgium, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Spain, Germany, The Netherlands, or the UK…
You can pre-order Dita von Teese’s ‘Von Follies’ range here.