The sky was grey, my belly was rumbling for dinner, yet the call of Bravissimo was strong. Off I went, camera in hand with an idea of what I wanted to try. The Manchester store is very small and only has a few sizes out, so I grabbed what I like and what other bloggers have raved about and headed up to the fitting rooms, where I was met by a lovely fitter, Laura, who sized me up at a 28H.
She showed me into the fitting room and went off to see what she could find in my size from my selection. First up, the £23 Juna bra by Cleo. I tried a 28GG and a 28H in this, the former being a little small in the cup, the latter a little big. My issues with this bra were that the straps were a little too wide set for me and the lace gaped so much that it seemed as though it was meant for the next cup size up! Laura said I appeared to be between sizes. I was quite disappointed about this because I was looking for a new everyday bra to replace my badly fitting (but well loved) Freya Decos. You can't really tell the difference between the sizes here. In fact, I couldn't tell which size the middle photo was...
Next I tried the Porcelain bra in nude, £26 by Panache. This is a 30G as it's not made in a 28H, and I knew the 28G would be too small. As expected, the band is too big, and the straps are too long, as is the case with a lot of bras I try. The cups were too small for me too.
Laura soon realised I was a total pain in the arse and bought a different everyday bra out for me to try, the Fantasie Smoothing Seamfree in Nude, £29. The one pictured is (I think) a 30GG. Laura suggested I tried this and mentioned 28H, so I'm guessing she chose this as an equivalent size. I stupidly didn't check the label, sorry guys! There is a very similar style here for £23. To be honest, I don't know the difference other than the little bows on the straps. Anyway, as you can see, it's far too big, and I don't think I'd like it even in the correct cup size either. It's not the kind of moulded cup I like as it pushes the breasts too far apart, as opposed to the Freya Deco that pushes them together. I'm sure that given the correct size I might be tempted to give this one a try for those days when I don't want a cleavage.
For comparison, here's what a Freya Deco looks like on me. This is a 30G, which is not ideal as the back is so large, but since Freya haven't released their much coveted 28GG, this will do for now.
Finally for the bras, the stunning Vava by Miss Mandalay in Jade Animal. At £35 it's a little more than I'd be happy to pay, but the beautiful colour and quality really make you feel a million dollars. This bra is true to size in the back but runs about a size small in the cup. I tried a 28H on first as I thought I was a 28GG, but as you can see from the photo below, it was too small and I was bulging out.
Laura then brought out a 28HH (which I must admit scared me a little!) that fitted beautifully, but not as I personally like a bra to fit me. I felt it spread my boobs across my chest, which some women don't mind, but as I said before, I prefer them pushed forward and together. All in all, this bra is beautiful and luxurious, but the shape is just not for me. Here's one last photo of the 28H and 28HH side by side. The 28H looks good from the front, but remember the photo above.
Time for bed, and what better to wear than a nightdress with an in-built bra, right? Wrong! The Moulin Rose nightdress at £45 is quite an extravagant buy for something to sleep in, so I was hoping it would be spot on. Unfortunately not. I tried on a 28GG/H, which was fine, but the overall fit was not flattering at all. This was not helped by the overly long straps and the fact that the three buttons at the back are IMPOSSIBLE to fasten. I struggled to open them with the damn thing right in front of my face! I'm not giving up hope on Bravissimo's nightwear as I've heard many good things, so try it for yourself, you might be surprised!
Bravissimo is well worth a visit, the staff are really helpful and know their stuff, down to the size discrepancies in various shapes and brands. y only issue with the Manchester store is that it's very small and doesn't stock a lot in my size, but Laura said she could order my size in if I wished. I promised Laura I'd mention her as she was wonderful, I just hope she gets to read this!