Friday, February 26, 2016

Review: Natori Plus True Decadence (in which I refuse to give up)

So, even after really disappointing - and bizarrely shaped - first encounters with 3 different styles of Natori's new Plus line, the replacement for N by Natori, I tried again. Because this brand has been my go-to for comfort, even though not a perfect match for my shape, I didn't want to give up on the new version without a fight. Let's see how that worked out for me. 

I wore the now-discontinued Luxe to work today, and the True Decadence arrived from amazon when I got home. So I was able to compare them side by side, or boob by boob, as it were. Both bras are in a 40H (US/Euro), and my standard sister-size in N by Natori.

I reviewed the beloved Luxe, in the burgundy & silver colorway. And here is the one I wore today, a soft shell pink that functions as a neutral. Note the subtle lace on the front straps, and the fact that you cannot even see the padded support crescent lining the bottom of each cup:

And here is the new Natori Plus True Decadence, which theoretically, should be quite similar: mesh/lace cup, same support crescent and single vertical seam, but looks like this:

Actually, it doesn't look that good. The pic above was taken in front of a window, in natural 2 p.m. Alaska light. 

This next one is taken with a light turned on, and this one shows the actual color of the bra pretty accurately. Unfortunately.

Beauty:  Hard to know where to begin, but let's start here.

The color is really reminiscent of, well, Pepto Bismol. It's actually brighter than this in person. The straps and the outer portions of the underband, as well as the main band, are much darker than the cups and embroidery - almost in a fluorescent hi-lighter effect. 

But the worst (lack of) design element is the bright white support sling that, no longer a crescent, now continues up the entire outside of the cup. In blaring, glaring white cotton. that looks pretty much like this, and is visible under a light-colored shirt. Why on earth would Natori not dye it to match the cup, the way they did in the N by Natori styles?! It looks even worse in full-on side views, much like you are wearing a huge Ace bandage around half your boobs. Or a gym sock lodged in there. Which doesn't say 'decadence' to me, personally:

Fit: That pic segues nicely into.....

Support Sling.  The huge support sling has almost no curve built into the bottom, and while this does provide more uplift, it does so by giving the boob literally nowhere to go in the bottom of the cup. It looks like 'orange-in-a-glass' but it's not as....

Wires.  Are a pretty perfect width for me, and are following the natural edge of my boob pretty closely. Unfortunately, they are taller than previously, which is not helpful on my higher set boobs; even if I snipped out the huge white slings, which would let me settle into the bottom of the cup, the wires would then be borderline too tall for me.

Cup.  The same 'elf shoe' shape is still present, though less noticeable in one band size down. I can fill it, because I'm naturally full on top, but because the cups are so shallow, especially near the gore, and the bottom cup has no depth, I can't really imagine the type of shape that would be happy in this cup. It won't tack at all, but floats a good inch. There is just no place for inner fullness to go.

Sizing.   I own the Luxe in both 38H and 40H. There's not a huge difference between the two. The band is just slightly larger, and I gain a cup size - a UK cup size, say from an FF to a G. However, in the Decadence, the scaling is much more dramatic and just....clunky. The change from a 40H to a 42H (the first size I tried) was just enormous. The height of the cups increased dramatically = though not the depth - and the cup size bumped up a lot more, say, a Euro cup size as opposed to the smaller steps with the UK double letter sizes. 

Comfort. Along with the nosedive in beauty, this is my biggest disappointment. The Decadence is a lot less comfortable than my older N by Natoris. Why? 

   Fabric. It is decidedly less soft; a tougher mesh, both in band and cups.

   Straps. Thinner and scratchier. No attention to comfort or detail at all.

   Sling.  By it's very design, it's going to crumple up and fold under the weight and shape of boobs bigger than a C-cup. The older crescent version did this too. But it blended into the cup and it wasn't visible from the outside. And it only ran along the bottom of the cup, and shaped itself to the boob. The new version is so vast and climbs clear up to the top of the cup, that while it does give a lot of lift, it doesn't shape to the boobs at all, but forces the wires down the ribs, making them sit too low.

When Do I Wear It? Remains to be seen whether I'll opt to return it to amazon (at $26 on sale, and a $6 return fee, it could go either way), or do some Franken-bra hacks and try removing the slings.
Size:  40H

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