Holiday Bras for Full Busts: A Gift Guide

Holiday Bras for Full Busts

While you can find lots of gift guides dedicated to the bejeweled bras of the world, but I personally believe that the best holiday lingerie are sets that can be worn on multiple occasions. All of these sets are festive, holiday appropriate and work under everything from a formal dress to a t-shirt. After all, what’s the fun of holiday lingerie that you tuck in a drawer after wearing it once?

1. Sharon Bra by Kris Line
For the first time, Brastop is stocking large cup Kris Line sets in colors on a regular enough basis that I can include them in guides like this! Luckily, both sets available right now are nice and festive. I love the silver color of this set combined with the basic t-shirt bra shape.

2. The Princess Bra in Scarlet/Chili by Curvy Kate
The colors of this bra are perfect for the holidays without being too literal. The clashing chili and scarlet colors are lovely together and the bra is a useful shape that goes under everything.

3. The Jasmine Bra in Wine by Panache (Exclusive to Bravissimo)
This colorway of the Jasmine Bra is only available through Bravissimo, which is sort of a shame if you’re a US buyer. That said, the bra is a hit with everyone and this colorway is wonderfully seasonal, so it may be worth the international shipping as a holiday treat.

4. Satine Nouveau Basque by Bravissimo
Everyone’s quick to credit Curvy Kate and Parfait by Affinitas when it comes to bringing back sexy basques and babydolls, but lots of people forget that Bravissimo has been making basques in a huge range of cup sizes for several seasons now. This is the latest and is based on the fantastic Satine shape. The color is sexy yet useful and it will fit perfectly in the bedroom or under your favorite party dress. The Satine is one of the lowest plunges I’ve tried, so this would be a great option underneath truly low cut dresses.

5. Toni Bra by Kris Line
This set reminds me of sugarplums and holiday sweets, but is wearable no matter the season. As a bonus, this full cup design by Kris Line gives incredible lift and great shape under clothing. At roughly $50 per set, these bras look and feel far more expensive than they are.

6. Deco Honey Bra by Freya
While I have many feelings about how Freya keeps churning out Decos at an alarming rate, I think this green holiday Deco release is right on target. Lots of women need seamless plunge bras to go under party dresses but hate beige. This is perfect for someone who is a tried and true Deco-holic or for someone who wants to try something in between festive lingerie and pretty shapewear.

Full Busted Bra Review: The Bravissimo Mai Blossom Bra and Darling Heart Bra

Image via Bravissimo

After having such good luck with the Satine bras from Bravissimo, I thought I’d try some of their non-plunge offerings as well I was mostly motivated by the new Darling Heart set, but was ecstatic to see that the Mai Blossom set in orange had been put on sale in my size as well. I’ve never met a bright orange bra that I was able to resist!

Image via Bravissimo

I had heard that Bravissimo brand bras tend to run smaller in the cup, so I picked up both in a 32JJ instead of my usual 32J. I also grabbed both matching thongs in a size large, since I thought that both bras were unique enough that finding matching underwear might be difficult.

Bravissimo produces sheer bras in the lower cup sizes and the same bras with extra lining in larger cup sizes. This can make it hard to tell what your HH+ cup bra will look like, but thankfully they’ve started putting up photos of the bras with the extra lining on Facebook. I tried to grab pictures of the bras, but none of my came out as accurately in terms of color as the ones from Bravissimo did. Here’s the Darling Heart with the extra lining:

Image via Bravissimo

I don’t mind the extra lining, but I’ve heard some people complain that it looks weird with the sheer matching underwear. Depending on how devoted you are to completely matching sets, this may or may not be an issue.

Both bras were on the tighter side of a 32 band, but still perfectly wearable. If you’ve tried the Satine, these bands are markedly tighter (as much as a whole size tighter). Both bras were a great fit in the cups and were extremely supportive, but also seemed like very different bras. The Mai Blossom has a thick and very stiff section in the cups with a ribbon decoration at the top. It’s a stiffer bra and the ribbon would cut in easily in the wrong size. I suspect this may be one of the reasons that people size up in this style – an open top design would make the whole thing much more forgiving. The Darling Heart is a more standard feel and fit, and will work for a larger percentage of women. I also suspect that due to the fabric, the Darling Heart will stretch a bit more in the cups with wear.

Both bras are incredibly supportive and really boost your breasts up nicely – they almost rival Ewa Michalak for lift on me. They’re also both gorgeous and unique, which is a rarity in the full bust and plus size markets. I’m seriously impressed by the work of the Bravissimo designers and can’t wait to see what the late spring collection has to offer.


Full Busted Bra Review: The Bravissimo Satine, Three Ways

I have a kind of bizarre confession: I pretty much live in plunge bras. I know lots of women consider them special occasion bras, but I’ll cheerfully toss one on underneath a t-shirt and jeans when I go to the grocery. My normal plunge bra of choice comes from Ewa Michalak, but for the first time in ages I decided to give a different brand a shot. For those who shop at Ewa Michalak, you may have noticed them stocking fewer large cup sizes and adding more fees onto each order. While this won’t stop me from ordering from them, it does make me feel better about exploring other options.

This all came to a head when I ordered my new Birdie Dress from Pinup Girl Clothing and realized that I needed a white or a nude bra to go underneath it. My last white bra recently bit the dust (it dramatically died and got turned blue at the same time), so I was way overdue for a replacement. I’ve been jealous of everyone else and their gorgeous Bravissmo bras, so I decided to give their white Satine a try. I may have gone slightly overboard by ordering the Oh So Kimono Bra and the Floral Mink Bra at the same time. These are all the same shape as the Satine, so it was either going to be a pain in the butt return or love.

I’d heard that the cups in the Satine shape run small, but I was brave and ordered the 32J anyway. I then promptly spent the next week being nervous that all of it wouldn’t fit. Shipping took 8 days from the UK (which is practically the shipping equivalent of a Star Trek transporter) and wasn’t expensive at all. Three bras cost around $100 without shipping, with the Oh So Kimono being slightly on sale.

The white Satine was a practical purchase, but it had an appealing elegance. The Oh So Kimono bra is a gorgeous bright blue Asian inspired print and the Floral Mink is classic while feeling a little offbeat due to the colors.

Thankfully, they all fit perfectly. More than that, this may be my new favorite bra of all time. Each bra is a smooth moulded cup that is covered with a soft satin. This gives even the basic Satine a dose of glamour and really makes the pattern in the two others pop. I was especially impressed that all three bras fit the exact same way. I’ve gotten so used to colors of the same bra fitting differently that this was a welcome change. The 32 band is firm but not uncomfortably so and the cups are soft and supportive. These bras also have the lowest gores I’ve ever seen in a plunge bra in this size range, which makes me extremely happy. The only downside is that the straps are incredibly long, so those of us with smaller shoulders will have to really work to keep them tight enough.

The Satine shape bras won’t do the same thing that an Ewa plunge does — if you’re looking for that full on torpedo boob effect, this probably isn’t the bra for you. It’s a more subtle sort of plunge, although it seems odd to describe it that way. If you struggle with underwires that attack your armpits, these bras are great (Ewa Michalak bras are not immune to this problem). Nothing has poked or prodded me since I got them, and I honestly forget that I’m wearing a bra when I have them on.

I’ll happily buy any more versions of this bra that Bravissmo will put out!

Bravissimo Fall 2012 Collection Roundup

Bravissimo isn’t talked about much in the US, but they’re a huge retailer in the UK that specializes in full busted lingerie. Their sister brand, Pepperberry, makes clothing for full busted women. They carry lots of the regular full busted brands, but also offer some great new options through their house brand. Their autumn offerings are particularly strong this year, so I thought I’d spotlight some of my favorites today.

1. Jasmine Bra by Panache
I’m a sucker for girly bird details, so I’m naturally a fan of this bra. However, what really excites me about this bra is the fact that Panache has said that the wires are shorter than previous seasons. If you’ve ever felt that stabbing sensation in your armpits after putting on a Panache bra you’ll know what I’m talking about (see my mixed writeup on the Fern below for more discussion of this issue).

2. Satine Floral Bra by Bravissimo
I’ve heard nothing but rave reviews about the Satine, so I’m excited to see this gorgeous patterned version released. Previously it was only available in black and white. This floral pattern is light and autumnal, without the heavier colors of winter. It will be a great transitional bra as we move into the colder months.

3. Fern Bra by Panache
This new version of the Fern Bra is beautiful, but the fit on it is so tricky I have really mixed feelings about it! The wires are very high and will cut into your armpits if you’re short and the cups tend to gap if you’re not the right shape for it. That said, if you are the right shape and are taller it will be a wonderfully supportive option for you.

4. Piper Bra by Freya
This is one of the new bras from Freya this season, which also comes in a longline version. The floral print on this is more flirty than classic, but if you loved the Nieve last season you’ll probably want to pick this bra up as well.

5. Gingham Posey Bra by Bravissimo
This Bravissimo bra reminds me a lot of the clashing pattern/lace options that Freya has been offering lately, but it’s an attractive and an unusual take on gingham.

Which bra is your favorite? Are you planning to pick up any of the new offerings from Bravissimo?