Today I am concluding unofficial “Curvy Couture Week” on the blog with a review of the Sensation Strapless. For more information on the brand, be sure to read through my reviews of the Lace Shine T-Shirt Bra and the Luxe Wireless Bra too. Confession time: I do not own nor have I ever owned a strapless bra. When I had the inclination to wear something strapless, my boobage was smaller, firmer, and naturally perkier, so I just skipped wearing a bra at all. Now that I am approaching 30 this year, I am not a fan of anything strapless, and so the desire to own a convertible bra never surfaced. However, my customers requested more strapless bra options, especially for the 38+ band size range.
In full disclosure, I think one of the best strapless bras on the market is the Wacoal Red Carpet Strapless, and early reviews/trials of the Curvy Kate Luxe have been exceptionally positive too. However, both bras only lightly cover plus-sizes, leaving many women settling for the serviceable but not exceptional Elomi Smoothing Strapless bra, and I came into the review hoping Curvy Couture would provide a worthy alternative.
Sizing & Fit: As with my other forays in to Curvy Couture, I opted for a not-quite-sister-size of UK 34G (Curvy Couture Size 34H) to my usual UK 30HH. With Lace Shine, the 34 was equivalent to a true 34 while the Luxe was more of a firm 32, but in both, the cup size was about a size small. The Sensation Strapless is also a cup size small but extremely tight in the band. For the photos, I am wearing the bra on the loosest set of hooks, and the stretched band only measures 31″. Having worked in the lingerie industry for several years now, I am willing to acknowledge the possibility of a one-off with sizing, and if you have tried the bra already, I’d love to hear a second opinion. For now, I am going to tentatively say the strapless bra runs about two sizes small in the band but true-to-size in the cup.
Since I am not the target Curvy Couture customer, I expected shape-related fit problems with all of the bras, and with the strapless bra, the design is too wide and shallow for me. The center gore soft tacks, and the shallow center cup pushes breast tissue toward the side. My breasts are very close set with little side tissue, and even in companies who make my size, I often have issues with wires and shallowness. Curvy Couture is surprisingly better than most, and I feel like the issues I have will be minimized for 36+ bands. Even with the classic east-west problem, the shape itself is rounded and flattering under tops.
Materials & Design: One of the reasons for the success of the Wacoal Red Carpet Strapless is the borderline excessive use of silicone gel at the top of the cup and wings in addition to multiple side stays both of which add to the security of the design. The Sensation Strapless utilizes the same technique with a lower coverage, sweetheart neckline particularly appropriate for today’s tricky formal wear. People with silicone allergies beware! Normally, “utilitarian” is the name of the game for strapless bras, but Sensation features a smooth, flat lace on the plush molded cup for thoughtful touch. Bridal customers needing practicality will appreciate how functionality blends with prettiness to create a . . . wait for it . . . sensational design!
Did I mention there are lots of ways to wear it? Most strapless bras have only four area to reattach straps (one per cup and one per wing) with some options going as high as eight (two per cup and two per wing). Sensation falls into the latter camp and can be worn seven different ways for maximum versatility under tops and dresses. On the cups, one area to reattach the straps is at the traditional spot toward the outer edge of the cup but the other is near the center. The bra also comes complete with a pair of solid color straps and a pair of clear straps.
The important litmus test for a strapless bra isn’t whether it is smooth or pretty or has lots of ways to customize it however. It’s whether the bra will stay put when you move. As a result, I may or may not have purposefully been jumping up and down in my bra in front of the mirror looking for it to move or for boobage to bounce its way out of the cup. Nothing happened whatsoever. I bent over and shimmied. I wiggled. In fact, I did everything humanly possible to make that bra move, and it did not. I’m not going to lie. It was a fight to get that beast into place because of all the gel, but once the bra is on, it is friggin’ ON!
Final Thoughts: Overall, I am really impressed with the bra. I think ladies who are closer set should skip this one, but ladies with average to wider roots could certainly benefit from the bra. I also think the shape and fit is superior to Elomi’s version and also lower coverage too.