Strapgate

I haven’t been posting for a real long while. Sorry, I’ve been really busy doing other things. This particular post was kind of caused by a recent affair on the English fanpage of Ewa Michalak. For those of you without Facebook this is what happened: one of Ewa Michalak’s clients posted a link to her blog where she describes an alteration to the straps. Edit: it wasn’t FussyBusty, it was somebody from Ewa’s team – they keep up with all the bloggers.

I can only imagine the face of Ewa when she saw it – and mind you, I have very rich imagination, but it was probably the WTF kind. Well, for a start she kept calm (as all of these recent memes advice) and asked if this problem was common. It turned out, that yes indeed, a lot of her foreign customers remade her bras in the very same way.  Hmmm, here’s a funny thing strikes me and not only me, all the English speaking Polish clients of her – why don’t we  have the same kind of problems? The girls posted links to their photographs in the said bras, Ewa looked at them and here I think she was close to banging her head on the nearest flat surface. Her response was in line with her regular straight forward attitude. Sure, she was not diplomatic at all and no PR specialist would advise her to do this, but she told you the truth. Ladies, Ewa’s  system of measuring for bras is not the same as the British one. After you measure your UB – even in inches, get your I-phone or whatever other smart device into your hand, turn on the calculating app (if you can’t calculate into cm into your head) and basically what you get – your tight measurement in cm (exhale, place the tape horizontally and squeeze without breaking your ribs)  is your band size in Ewa Michalak bras. I agree that the cup that you get out the size calculator on Ewa’s website may not be the right one – this parameter is influenced not only by the measurement of your boobs but also by their shape and texture.

Ewa Michalak’s sizing system is supposed to let you choose your band size based on your real UB measurement in cm. The other thing is – her bra styles are halfcups and plunges, so these are styles that do not cover the entire breast – some tissue will be always exposed. One more thing, they are not supposed to fit the same way the British brands do – those in your sizes often have wires that end up almost on your back – much behind your breast tissue. This is the reason I stopped buying Panache and also Freya – in GG in smaller bands the back part of the band gets really really short. Bravissimo in 32GG is unfortunately the same. The wires of Ewa Michalak’s bras are supposed to encircle your breast and to end just where the breast tissue ends. Not further into your armpit.

I don’t really believe there are so many of you that genuinely need 50, 55 or 60 bands from Ewa, but instead of talking more I’m just gonna show you what bra sizes are worn by Polish customers of Ewa. Sizes and measurements. Almost all these data were taken from Balkonetka, a few other entries came from both Lobbies. I don’t give the name of a given model on purpose – to keep the anonymity of the user. What is shown are: – UB measurement -where I could get it: two measurements – tight one and the one without squeezing the tape. Breast measurement (standing, without bending down, unless both measurements were provided), Ewa’s fitting size; and the user’s assessment of the bra and fit with comments (much abbreviated by me).

UB in cm Boobs in cm EM size rating remarks
1 68 86 65D 5* Wires slightly too narrow
2 66 85 70C 4* The band still holds even though the bra is old
3 64 92 65E 5* The band slightly looser but still holds well
4 71 89 70C 5* My favourite bra now
5 76 101 80F 4* Very comfortable
6 75 101 75E 5* An ok bra
7 67 93 65FF 5* ok
8 78 102 75FF 5* Very comfortable
9 78 115 85HH 4* Very tight band
10 74 102 70H 5* Very tight band, have to use an extender
11 71 101 70G 5* Sensational fit and lift
12 72 115 75HH 5* The band could be tighter
13 71 92 70FF 5* Great fit
14 62 86 60F 5* A bit too small for the bigger boob
15 64 92 60F 5* Moderately tight band
16 68 95 70FF 4* Just beautiful fit
17 60 85 60E 5* Very pleasant on the loosest hook
18 74 102 75G 5* Beautiful and comfortable
18 66 92 65F 4* Very nice effect
19 67 97 65H 5* The band seems loose but holds very well
20 83-87 No date 85G The lift is ok though the wires could be wider
21 68 95 70E75DD
22 71-73 92-93 75C Very tight band (red panther)
23 77 110 75H 4* After many washings it doesn’t give such a lift anymore
24 87-94 116-128 85GG 5* I like the effect.
25 79 94 80DD 4*
26 90 115 90E 5* For me – the best (very wide ribcage but no fat tissue)
27 66 91 65FF 5* Beautiful
28 73 96 75F 5* The band is on the tight side
29 64 92 60F 5* The band is moderately tight
30 71 92 70FF 4* The band is tight (IMO)
31 66 90 65F 5* My new love
31 67 97 65H 5* The band seems on the loose side but holds well
32 93 135 95J 5* Fantastic fit and lift – I can run
33 72 116 70JJ 5* Comfortable and pleasantly tight – I mean the band
34 72 102 70FF 5* Just wonderful
35 59 90 65G 5* A band’s a bit on the loose side, but it’s a second hand
36 76 111 75H 5*
37 76 101 80E 5* I love it
38 59 90 60GG 5* I love the profile
39 61 85 60F 5* Tight band, great fit
40 69 93 70FF 5* Great fit
41 78 108 80F 5* Great fit, comfortable bra
43 73-77 90-94 75E
44 69-72 84-86 70C
45 65-72 83-84 70A
46 69-76 86-96 70E
47 75-82 113-116 75J

None of the numerous Polish customers of Ewa complain about straps cutting into the armpits. What we may complain about are: too short straps, too long straps, straps that adjust only half way, or the fact that the little circle between the front and back part of the strap just gets directly on a shoulder (grrrr, uncomfortable), the straps may roll or stretch or be of not satisfactory quality in our opinion, ect. But never have I heard on Balkonetka or on any of the Lobbies that EM straps cut into the armpits as described by Fussy Busty.

Written by a person who wears EM 75G for 74-77 cm UB and 102 cm around the boobs.

13 responses to “Strapgate

  1. Just to clarify, I didn’t link my post on Ewa’s page, she did.

  2. In light of this whole thing, I think you’ve missed the point of the reason so many of us are upset and why this became so huge.

    And at risk of being rude, what was the point of this post that hadn’t been covered so rudely by others? (Not saying you were rude, and no means to be offensive, either)

  3. I agree with izzylawliet, I don’t see any point in this post.
    How is the experience of some women relevant to the fit issues of others?
    I think that most women outside of Poland who buy from EM do so because there are no better options for them in their own countries, so it shouldn’t be surprising if a lot of them are hard to fit.
    Still, EM isn’t the only brand who could benefit from centering their straps and grading her cups in small band/big cup sizes

  4. What I find interesting reading through the comments is that many of the ladies in the larger cup sizes actually mention the band is somewhat loose (see comments: 12, 19, 23, 31 above). As someone who wears a K/KK cup I can tell you I need a tighter band to get more support. According to EM’s calculator I should wear a 75 band using my breaking the tape measurement (although if I go down a cm I get 70) but I feel more comfortable in 70 bands. That being said I’ve found a lot of variation in her bands! For instance, I found the band tighter on the 70KK S bra vs. the 70K one in the same style.

    The cup size on her calculator is way, way off for me. Even if I were to wear a 70K with an extender (so effectively a 75JJ) I start getting quadraboob. Yet the calculator recommends 75GG for me (and that’s rounding up my bust measurement)! Most calculators tend to be 1-2 cup sizes too small for me but hers runs 4-5 cup sizes too small.

    FWIW, I’ve never had the strap problem. I have broad shoulders and prepregnancy I needed a 60-65 band depending on the bra (since some ran a lot tighter or looser in the band). But I can imagine that women with narrower shoulders might have an issue that I don’t have. I do think some types of bras just might not work for some ladies. As good as Panache is when it comes to a wide size range I just have never gotten along with their bras well no matter if I size up or down. They just aren’t built for my shape and that could be the issue here with the Ewa Michalak bras too.

    I also feel that there is some miscommunication when it comes to how tight ones measures. On my blog when I talk about my underbust measurement I measure comfortably tight- not super tight. But everything I have heard about Polish measuring techniques is that you need to measure super tight. There can be a huge difference between those measurements depending on how squishy your body type is!!

  5. Izzy and Juliet: I see it relevant – cause we’re not that different as you think. And remember, quite a lot of us have the chance of trying on EM cause there are a few shops all over Poland that carry them in stock, we don’t order on line only. Apart from that Ewa actually visits various places bringing her stock (well,part of it) with her.
    If you had the same opportunities as we sometimes do maybe you;d see the difference.s
    Braless: those comments you mention, only one of them actually says the band could be tighter (and from what I remember, the girl still kept it, she just fastens it on the tightest hook and it’s ok), two others say that it is a bit loose but still holds well. And one more says what happens to the bra with time and usage… Inevitable.
    Most of my bras from EM are 75G – sure, some are looser some are tighter – also inevitable, show me a British brand that is consistent here. It’s just impossible. But even those EMs that are on the loose side still support my boobs really well even if they tend to ride up a bit after a few hours. But when I actually tried to shorten a bit the band in one of looser 75G it gets impossible, it’s just too tight then, almost like a vise. It’s much better then to wear it on the tightest hook.
    While I can see why girls with higher BMI, more squeeshy on the torso and with larger boobs may prefer a bit tighter bands even in EM (unfortunately Balkonetka doesn’t have many examples with bands over 80 and larger cups to show you how the sizing and measurements go together), I just don’t see why those slim ones with no fat at all and with really moderately sized boobs try to go down 5 or even 10 cm.
    You remember Pampi, this model of Effuniak with dreadlocks? She wears 60G(G) or 65G from Ewa and she has 59cm UB. If she wanted to get fitted your way, she would end up in 55H or even a 50HH (or J) and the effect would be far from she desired. her Balkonetka profile: http://balkonetka.pl/katalog/user/Pampi
    I hope Pampi won’t mind me giving the link to her Balkonetka profile, she’s kind of a public figure now…

    • As braless in brasil said, the larger your busy, the more support you need. My breasts weigh near 5lbs each. That’s ten lbs that a bra needs to support. My band is such the majority of the story comes from. And you mention that larger women are the ones who could size down. The difference between my loose and near break the tape measurement is only 2-3 inches. I don’t wear my band unbearably tight. I always have an extender in hand just in case. But that’s besides the point. I still need a 60-65 (depending on style) to keep my bust up. And I find this comfortable. So why should I be ridiculed for something I am comfortable in?

      About being narrow shouldered, that’s not the only thing that can cause the straps to be painful. Because of my high set breasts, I have to tighten my straps nearly all the way, and if they were slightly more centered, I wouldn’t have the pain and marks from too wide cups and straps.

      Again, I really don’t think this post was necessary other than to further that our methods that work and preferences are incorrect.

  6. I can say that straps too far is not always about too big cups, and too tight band, it could be about specific breats shape/position. High breasts were already mentioned, but my are neither high nor low, I also have quite broad shoulders, but I still have straps too far problem simply because my breasts literally start in my armpits and there are more fullness to the sides. So I have a little choice here: have wires on my breasts tissue (it’s painful after some time) or look for straps that are placed more to the center than 1 inch from the cup edge (very usual case for halfcup styles).

    I think that Ewa picked one possible scenario and exaggarated it to make her point, but her customer base is quite wide and there are women of different body types (sometimes not typical for Poland), so there are different scenarios leading to the same result and I think it would be wonderful if she listened to her customers to get known about their issues instead of ridiculing them.

  7. I’m neither English/American, nor Polish, but here it goes:
    Ewa Michalak’s bra calculator tells me to go for a 75… which surprise surprise is precisely the size I wear most often in British brands (34). This fits ok on tight models, but tend to ride up. In your pannel, only 3 women wear a J or JJ cup (that might be an HH or J in British sizing) If I were still in that size range, I would probably never have even tried EM’s bras. Most of her foreign customers are in more extreme sizes than the Polish ones and that is why they decided to custom order from abroad.
    I don’t even have the strap problem, but I’m broad shouldered and I can see how that would be different if I were more petite. Also, some of us have breast tissue under the armpits. There is no one size fits all in terms of wire width.
    I do agree with you though that EM’s bra are not meant to provide a lot of support. I see them more as “occasion/party” bras with a great uplift.

    • “In your pannel, only 3 women wear a J or JJ cup (that might be an HH or J in British sizing) ”

      Rather larger. EM’s names her cup size like in British sizing (A,B,C,D,DD,E,F,FF etc), nor european sizing (A,B,C,D,E,F,G etc, without double letters), but, look, women at this tabular wear their real size band. They may need one or two size down in British brands, and larger caps adequately.

  8. You did a great job. Helping readers very well.
    plak bh

  9. Omg!! I totally agree with this blog and when my blog (braissues.blogspot.com) is up I will definitely have a link to this page! My feelings exactly and you’ve reassured me I’m not crazy with that list above (of customer bra satisfaction and meaurements). I am so happy there is someone out there sizing correctly. Busty women who gain weight on their tops do the opposite of women who don’t and are not busty. The former wear their bands too small and cups too high (in size) and the latter their bands too high and their cups too low. It totally messes with the band cup logic of bras and creates bad fits and false industry demands. I’m so happy Ewa has stood firm and I can’t wait to order from her soon! (Gonna wait to lose the fat off my back before custom ordering a 60J or 55 JJ though, Ewa still offers that right?)

    • I think she does…
      There was one more issue there – these ladies who want more coverage should simply molest her for making Full Cups… cause neither Pl, or CHP or even S covers much of the boob tissue and given that her bras offer almost ‘inappropriate and immoral’ lift – I understand some women may feel uncomfortable showing that much…
      Personally when I compare British brands and Ewa Michalak bras, I almost feel as if I was wearing a minimizer in all those Freyas, Panaches etc… Well, you can call it a personal quirk, lol.

  10. Just found your blog…. some great posts…. hope your coming back

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