YBLTV Review: ThirdLove Bra & Lingerie
There are things that specifically women get use to dealing with over the years that are often frustrating and not in our best interests – our periods and bra shopping, for example. Even though over half the population is female, we’re sold the concept that bras are not for us to feel comfortable – they’re for us to feel sexy and desirable, to help boost our feminine assets for the opposite gender. Since the rise of specialty stores, women have been forced into ill-fitting bra sizes in order for the sale of cuter, higher marked bras to grow. Personally, it wasn’t until I was in college that I found out that I had been wearing the wrong cup AND band size for nearly 4 years – it was frustrating, especially when I was told that the only bra bands in my size were matronly styles that no woman – no matter her age – would want to wear. It was a frustrating situation and discussing it with my friends, I was not alone. Some had been put into sizes too big, or had difficulty with one breast being smaller than the other.
Bra shopping in person is a pain. Unless you have the manufacturer’s dream measurements, you’re often out of luck, and with heavy women, we’re often sent to stores that expect that a larger band automatically equal a larger cup size – terms like “sister size” get thrown around and all you know is that nothing feels comfortable or supportive. This leaves many women dreading the bra purchasing process.
Enter ThirdLove – I’m sure you’ve seen it plastered all over Instagram and Facebook. Their social media hashtag is “#breakthemold.” They do this through apps and online assistance in bra purchasing, but go beyond the average experience. With all the hype regarding the company, I thought I would take a look for myself.
The Measurement Process
To begin, you log onto ThirdLove and begin their Fit Finder quiz – this helps the company to ascertain the band and cup size best suited for your needs. One of the biggest selling points about ThirdLove is that they sell in half sizes – a place a surprising number of women fall into; I really liked that this was possible, because it answers those women who have asymmetrical breast shapes and sizes and cannot evenly fill normal cup sizes.
You are first asked what the current band and cup size you are wearing – for this purpose, I used my own measurements (40C). It follows up by asking what your current brand of bra is; my personal brand varies, but I did notice that the selection was comprised of chain specialty lingerie stores, such as Victoria’s Secret. It does also allow you to select an “I Don’t Know” option, which I did. The quiz then proceeds to ask you how old your current bra is, and then enters the big question of “fit issues” – issues that you deal with wearing your current everyday bra. Issues such as cup fit, band fit, and how you hook your bra (it took me until college to realize that you didn’t have to put it on the tightest hook, so this could be new information for many women). Strap fit is next, asking the Goldilocks question of too tight, too loose, or just right. Finally, ThirdLove asks what your current breast shape most resembles – it gives you a list of images that you can best compare your own chest to in order to determine the best bra design for you – in addition to your height and underwear size. After entering your email address to save your bra size, I was told that 40C was the right band/cup combination for my size and was recommended the 24/7 Classic T-Shirt Bra – what appears to be their most basic style. I decided to give it a try and ordered a single bra at $68USD. This entire quiz takes about 60 seconds, which I honestly prefer over having a stranger groping me into a smaller cup size.
My bra arrived in a cardboard box that made sure you knew all of ThirdLove’s social media handles – and I didn’t necessarily find anything wrong with that. With a brand that has made its mark on social media, it’s no surprise they’d want you to share with your followers. Opening the box, I found my bra nicely wrapped and some more social media inserts included. Eagerly, I tried on the bra; I can’t say I didn’t want it to fit – I had spent $68 on the thing – but there was some disbelief that this bra could answer my problems. As a huge MeUndies fan, I have a rigid train of thought – bras are for going out in public and being an adult while soft bralettes are what you lounge are the house in. Bras are painful and underwire digs and if you’re in your twenties, it’s probably made of an uncomfortable fabric. I also have the embarrassing problem of fat spilling over the sides of my bands because they are too narrow and often not a true 40 band. I just didn’t believe that an online company with a 60-second quiz could fit me better than a human.
I was 100% wrong.
There’s honestly nothing I can compare this bra to – it’s got the feel of memory foam without the weight; it has the underwire support without digging in; and it has specialty straps that help to prevent slipping. It’s honestly the most comfortable, “traditional” bra that I own to date. In fact, I threw out several of my old bras in exchange for ThirdLove because between my bralettes and this bra, I really didn’t need the issue of discomfort in my life.
ThirdLove is available in a much larger range of sizes (A-G), which includes half sizes as well and utilizes both ultra-thin memory foam and micro-jersey fabric for softness. The hooks are padded (which I greatly appreciated), which prevents scratching or digging with discomfort. The underwire is flexible and nylon-coated, which appears to be what prevents digging. What I enjoyed most about the fit is that the bands are wider than your normal bra, which helps heavier women with the side fat caused by digging bands. This seems to be a brand designed around providing women an alternative shopping experience where the primary focus is on comfort and shape, not on prints and lace. Additionally, ThirdLove offers a 30-day trial to try the bra and see if you like it – if you do, you’re charged and you keep the bra. If you don’t, return it within thirty days and your card will not be charged for the bra. In addition, returned bras are donated to ThirdLove’s Bras for All program, which donates bras to women in need.
One of my major concerns with the ThirdLove 24/7 T-Shirt Bra is the cost. A single bra is $68 – that’s about five times more than if I were to buy a basic demi-cup bra from Target, about two and a half times what a Playtex bra would cost me, and is still about $15 more than even Victoria’s Secret. For a company that seems to market itself as the accessible answer to bra shopping, the price for their most basic bra is pretty steep and may not be accessible in large orders. HOWEVER, if I was to tally up all of the bras that I’ve had to throw away in the past year to damage or wear and tear (I had one bra so poorly made that half of the underwire from a single cup had poked out), I would probably be paying the same amount for the ThirdLove that seems to be higher quality than anything else I’ve tried in the past two years.
ThirdLove is an expensive bra that is thriving on the social media network – understand that and you’ll appreciate the product itself. I make speak from a place of privilege, but I value the craftsmanship of a product and longevity of the item over what is cheap at the time. I also appreciate that the design has prioritized the twin ideals of effective design and comfort without sacrificing shape. Out of 100 tests regarding a traditional underwire bra, I would probably recommend ThirdLove over any other brand I’ve tried simply because it makes me feel my most natural best without the fancy bells and whistles other companies offer up.
You can find ThirdLove on the social media sites below:
Writer’s Note: This was an uncompensated review – all products mentioned in this review were purchased at the reviewer’s expense. She was not compensated financially or through a free unit for review purposes. Her referral link is here.