A few years ago, Trusst Lingerie began with a dream of ditching underwires in favor of using new 3D printing technology to offer support and shaping for a fuller bust. Shortly before their successful Kickstarter campaign, the company approached me about providing a review of their prototype as well as offering any feedback on ways it could be improved. It remains my second most controversial review right behind that dreadful Eshakti dress (Yeah, I said it and still stand by it). Many people here and around the web asked why Trusst felt the need to reinvent the wheel. Why throw out all of the progress made by existing manufacturers? After all, bras have steadily improved in the last ten years because of increased interaction between brands and consumers as well as through technological innovations which improve quality without drastically increasing price. Why not use the insights and failures of your competitors to take standard bras one step closer toward consumers’ ideal? As someone with an engineering and math background, this is a classic strategy which often yields consistent success, especially in computer programming. However, there are other times where tenacious risk-takers create something totally unique or even solve problems previously thought unsolvable through unconventional methods. Of course, sometimes those same innovators failed too, so it’s a bit of a toss up.
Trusst derives its name from “truss,” an architectural term for structures usually consisting of beams or rafters, which support a heavy object like a bridge or roof. The idea behind their bras is to use a shelf-like truss instead of an underwire to gently lift the tissue up, alleviating stress from the shoulders, back, and neck. Because of the solidity of the shelf, Trusst currently only offers molded cup designs which masterfully conceal the interior structure. In fact, I had to scrunch the cup to showcase where the truss ended in the photos.
For sizing, Laura actually visited me at the store, and ultimately, I found the Suzanne in size US 36J (UK 36GG) to be my favorite combination. Right now, I am between a US 34K (UK H) and US 36J (UK 36GG), leaning more toward the 34 band, and I would say Suzanne runs firm in the band but overall true to size. If you are between sizes or prefer a slightly looser fit, definitely size up.
During both shooting the video and hammering out the written review, I have struggled to be concise in analyzing the fit. In most reviews, I use comparisons to other products or rely on basic information most people have regarding how a bra is made in order to dive into the pertinent elements of who the bra will fit and why. With Trusst, the entire concept is totally new. The technology seems to borrow elements from both underwire and traditional non-wire bras, and as such has fit elements from both. For example, the gore of Suzanne does not fully tack since it lacks significant center structure in favor of soft flexibility. As I mentioned in my Samanta reviews, not all manufacturers strongly emphasize tacking in the way UK and US brands do, and with Trusst, the lack of a hard wire pressing against the sternum is not necessarily a bad thing even if it makes tacking impossible. With most wireless bras, unless you are smaller busted, the centers do not tack either nor do they offer any separation. With Suzanne, despite not having a full tack, my breasts do stay separated and contained inside the cup, even with a wider center gore. It’s almost magical as I feel like science says my boobs should be all mooshed in the center, but they seem pretty contained and comfortable. Personally, I would love to see the gore overlap in one style, especially for close set types like myself. It may not come closer to tacking, but it would diminish the mild east-west profile I am receiving.
The cups themselves are molded and rounded with nice projection. Shallower breast shapes may end up sizing down for a better fit, and softer tissue types may not achieve the same separation. In all honesty, I’d love to attend one of the Trusst fit events to see how it works on a larger scale. With normal bras, I have six years of experience helping to identify what will work and for whom, but here, it’s at once so different from and yet so reminiscent of standard bras that it’s hard to gauge.
On the sides of the cup, the shelf structure also tapers before the top, making it comfortable and less stabby to wear while also anchoring, supporting, and smoothing the sides. The wings are fairly wide offering nice containment for my fluffier shape (i.e., it’s covering my back fat nicely). Lightly padded, partially-adjustable straps feature an optional J-hook in the back, and I must admit the bra is super comfy. Between the truss interior and the molded cup, the bra does feel heavier, and I wonder how cool it will be on hot days (although some people say it actually conceals sweat marks better than normal bras). The comfort itself is fabulous though. I usually experience rubbing or chafing from sides as high as Suzanne’s, but the fabric is soft with more give, allowing it to cover tissue without cutting in when I move my arms. Most of the breast weight is taken off my shoulders and back, and what little remains for the straps is cushioned by the padding.
Originally, I envisioned this bra as an option for picky wireless customers (I love y’all, but there’s a lot of unrealistic expectations for this market) who crave more support and shape without the underwire. After trying the final product, I realize this is not a bra for that market. The Trusst support system does press against the rib cage on the front and partially on the side, and the common complaints I hear regarding wires, such as pain in the ribs, digging into the stomach when seated, and pressure on the side, are not going to be alleviated. Instead, the Suzanne may work for people who tolerate wires but struggle with comfort, especially those with heavy dense tissue which needs a lot of support.
Despite my review struggles, there was one comparison that immediately came to mind with this bra. Trusst Suzanne reminds me of the beloved Panache sports bra. The cushioning along the ribs, the heavy molded cup, the partially adjustable padded straps, and the j-hook feature are all classic Panache sports bra elements. It amuses me because I have seen countless companies successfully and unsuccessfully try to rip off what Panache created, and ironically, Trusst has achieved something with similar features going a totally different route. I want to note I am not saying this as a negative. People freakin’ love that bra. We have a whole segment of customers who only wear the Panache sports bra, and all of them describe their breasts in the same way: heavy and dense. They like the way the Panache sport comfortably supports them, and I think you see similar features here. Not to mention, because it’s a sports bra, the Panache is very full coverage, always looks sporty (obviously), and does have a seamed profile under clothes. Trusst has a sweetheart shaped neckline, making it more discreet under clothes, a smoother profile under tee shirts, and has a sophisticated, bra-like aesthetic. The black fabric is sleek and soft, and the lace on the gray background is nice. For me, this is a basic black bra with a twist.
The price point on the bra is $88 which definitely treads into the luxury bridge market. I am sure the use of 3D printing technology adds a higher cost than traditional wires, and the fabrics utilized here are also top notch. The interior of the cup is lined in a fabric that feels like a worn-in tee shirt, and everything from the powermesh wings to the padded straps to the sleek exterior cup fabric is in keeping with many of the $70+ bras I see. There’s also something that occurred to me after I shot the video with regard to quality and price. I feel pretty confident you are not going to be able to get this inner truss system out of the bra without resorting to scissors. I may have abused the bra I was given trying to shift it around, and that stuff is in tight. What does this mean? No popped or snapped underwires! If you take care of this bra, you’re really only looking at needing to retire the bra when the band is stretched out. And while I can’t say this for certain, I feel the interior system anchors to the ribs and doesn’t need to be pulled as tightly as a wire, thus adding to the bra’s longevity.
In closing, I have to commend Trusst for taking the hot mess of a prototype and turning it into a polished product for the marketplace. Is this bra for everyone? Absolutely not, but no bra is. I also think it’s worth noting that Trusst is actively listening to their clients and working with them to continue improving the designs. For a Kickstarter campaign with humble beginnings, the brand truly utilized the donations and has only gotten better. But, I’m curious. What do you think? Would you kick the underwires to the curb and try something like this?