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Straps that slide off the shoulder, wires that dig into the skin and bands that ride up the back are all signs of an ill-fitting bra. If you have gained or lost more than 10 pounds since you last purchased a bra, it’s time for a professional bra fitting. A proper-fitting bra improves your posture, your overall silhouette and how your clothes fit. A proper-fitting bra can make you look younger and thinner. The best part is, the fitting is free and the results are priceless. 

Soma Intimates is one of the few reputable retailers that trains associates to properly measure women for the best-fitting bras. Kelly Molina is a sales lead at Soma Intimates located at The Collection in Cumming. Molina is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to finding proper-fitting bras for her customers. 

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, but for Molina at Soma, every month is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  

“Fifty percent of our customers are breast cancer survivors,” she said. “They are looking for bras that are comfortable and support them, especially right after surgery.” 

Molina suggests a wireless, cup-less bralette with a wide band, adjustable straps and back hooks. She said the Enbliss bralette comes in a variety of colors. 

“The best part is the removable modesty pads that can be removed and replaced with prosthetic breast forms,” she said.

Basics in the bra drawer

A woman wears different clothes for different occasions. She should also own a variety of bras to make her look and feel her personal best. 

“Every woman should own everyday bras, a strapless bra and a lacy date bra,” Molina said. “A woman should own least five everyday bras and rotate them daily.” 

Molina likes the Vanishing 360 model of bra for the everyday bra. Its smooth edges reduce bulges and lines on the front, side and back. 

“Don’t wear your everyday bra for exercise,” she added. “Use supportive sports bras instead, and wash them after every workout.”

Every woman should own black, white and nude-colored bras. For a fresh take on the traditional nude (beige or caramel) colors for undergarments, Molina suggests the Mochaccino (a grey taupe) works best with darker-toned skin. The Adobe Rose (light pink with grey undertones) is a great nude bra for paler skin. Wear these skin-tone colored bras under white tops. They are less noticeable than a white bra that contrasts with your skin color.

Basic pairings

Molina suggests pairing new bras with the matching Vanishing Edge panties with a high waist. 

“I always suggest them to young moms like myself,” she said. “They provide a little extra support for the tummy. There are no panty lines, no rolled waist and [it] has a stay-put-technology [on the derriere].”

Basic care

Launder bras daily. Because they are worn next to the skin, bras absorbs body oils, perspiration and odor. They should be washed every day. Use a lingerie bag, and wash in cold water with a gentle detergent. Air dry, draped over a chair or shower curtain rod. Do not hang by the straps (it stretches them out) and refrain from using a skirt hanger with clips; it also compromises the band or cups.

Do not invert one bra cup into the other when storing. This is especially true with padded bras. It crushes the cup form and cannot be restored. The best practice is to lay bras open in a drawer and “nest” them on top of one another to save space.

The intimates industry suggests replacing bras every six months. Much like replacing running shoes after 350 miles — the tops of the running shoes may look fine, but the soles are smooth and the support cushion is compromised — bras are the same. The elastic and cups are compromised after six months of wear and laundering.

Basic giving

Be a giver. Gently used bras can be dropped off any time of year at the Soma Intimates Cumming location. Donated items are laundered and given to No One Alone (www.noonealone.org), an organization that serves domestic violence victims in Dawson and Lumpkin counties. 

Final tip

Bras are an investment. Think about it. You pay good money for shoes that you can stand in all day without hurting your feet. You should feel the same way about your foundation wear. A bra lifts and supports your bust all day, every day. Don’t skimp by purchasing them at a discount store. Having proper-fitting bras in your wardrobe is the foundation of looking and feeling your personal best.

As a personal wardrobe consultant and owner of Alpharetta-based Fashion With Flair,  Lori Wynne helps people look their best. Connect with her at fashionwithflair.com.

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