I didn’t intend for this to take the shape of a feminist manifesto, but if that’s how it seems, so be it.
I envy my smaller-breasted peers. Not that I have Dolly Parton-sized knockers, greeting anyone over the top of a scoop-neck who will make eye contact, but I have enough of a handful to “need” to wear a bra everyday out of fear of someone noticing my natural form.
When I was 12, I couldn’t wait to have enough to fill out a triangle bikini. Now, I wear a leotard under my clothes (a la Liz Lemon, but not on laundry day) in lieu of succumbing to the constrictions worn by my foremothers.
My ideal scenario would be that everyone felt comfortable enough to embrace their natural shape, but in a world of boob jobs and push up bras, this seems unlikely. Although I do feel like people are starting to warm to this here plight, rather than accepting that breasts should 1. Be perfectly round mounds that resemble little of what actually lies underneath and 2. Be pushed up to the point where they graze the chin.
The fashion industry has arguably been practising this for years, sending models down the runway bra-less regardless of shape or outside temperature.
But I think an even better start is to focus on the nature of the bras themselves, something brands like Lonely Hearts are doing through testing the limits of conventional undergarment apparel. Whether it’s a delicate lace cup or a peek-a-boo elastic harness, some are redefining how people are parading their chests without a push-up in sight.
I realise that some people don’t get the same aches and pains from wearing a bra – but if you don’t occasionally go sans, I can’t begin to describe how liberating it is.