Monday, August 8, 2016

Review: Breast Nest, a bra alternative...kind of

Nutshell review: I really thought I'd like this more than I actually did. 

This is the original version, and I actually purchased the bra-only version from their etsy shop. They are also on amazon (cami style only), and their own website as well.
 
Beauty and Fit are pretty much irrelevant here. Especially beauty. Because...OK, look, it's hideous. With really ugly shaped seams that will make your boobs look like a pair of deflated footballs that Charlie Brown got stuck with.

But that's fine, I suppose, because the purpose of this garment is comfort. With a capital 'C'. It is not intended to give any lift whatsoever, and it really succeeds at that goal. What it is intended to do is keep your boobs off your chest wall so that you are comfy rather than sticky/floppy, i.e., a braless feel. And it does that very well, too. For a while.

So, let's just break it down into what's Wonderful and what's Not So Much.

Wonderful 

Fabric.  Deliciously soft modal. It is the gold standard for sensitive skin. Very buttery soft texture.

Cups.  Lots of capacity. The sizing states it accommodates up to a US H cup, but I'm an I and there was plenty of room. So it really could happily suit a UK H cup, perhaps even an HH. 

Comfort. No compression. Your boobs are encased, but not molded or shaped at all. It did feel like I was letting the girls go free range. For a few hours. More on that below.


Straps.  Not really straps so much as wide panels, much like a sleeveless blouse. Under a shirt it just looks like you're wearing a tank top.

Quality.  Very high. The seams are flat and smooth, and it is clearly very well made. It is worth the $60. 

Aesthetic.  It's really not too awful from the front. Dips down fairly low.

Sleep.  This would be perhaps your only wireless option for actual separation and complete elimination of boob sweat while you sleep. This keeps the boobs almost completely separated.

Customer Service.  The owner/creator is very pleasant and responds almost instantly to questions. She created the product as a solution for herself and so does get the big boob issues.

Not So Much

Elastic.  Unfortunately, this is not the smooth, flat stretch of a seamless knit-in band. After 3 hours I became more and more aware of the elastic and seams. The under-band is around 1/2" elastic, covered in the soft modal. But you're still aware of the feeling of an elastic band encircling your ribs. 

A bigger problem for me is the elastic edging of the armholes. It's very tiny elastic, and covered in fabric, but it just does not have enough stretch to make it really comfy. I was always aware of it and constantly found myself wishing it had just a bit more stretch and give. 

Seams.  Although they are flat and well done, I could feel them. Particularly the seams on the sides, and the area where they joined to the elastic underband. It was a real contrast to the feeling of a smooth knit-fabric band such as a Bali Devotion. I grew more and more aware of the seams and after 3 hours I found myself constantly pulling the sides away and trying to arrange the seams in a way that was less irritating. There is also a sewn-in tag that lays in the back of the neck that cannot be removed.

Coverage.  Unfortunately, the perfect low V-neck shape in the front is not repeated in the back. I kid you not, it goes right up to your neck. Literally. It shows above every normal neckline knit shirt I have. It's basically a mock-turtleneck in the back. I'm not sure of the purpose of this, since the product info states it is not supposed to provide lift. So having a nice scoop back really wouldn't add any pressure to the shoulders. I did not enjoy having that much fabric spread across my back and up to the base of my neck. 

Breathability.  Modal isn't the most breathable of fabrics. For me, its incredible softness makes up for that lack, and also, I live in a climate that rarely breaks 60F.

Ugh Factor.  The above pics don't really look too bad. And I do recommend that if the deflated football seam shape is a look you want to minimize: go with the black. It hides that from most angles. 

               Except this one:
Yikes. That is actually worse than the natural unsupported shape of my boobs.

The seams are unusually shaped: they are below the boob, almost at the bottom, just above the band. They dip in steeply so the fabric is completely under the boob, giving you that boob-in-a-bag shape.

I do think the comfort part could have been done while keeping a rounder supported shape that would reduce bounce further and add to the support without sacrificing any comfort.


When Do I Wear It?

Not as much as I'd hoped. The elastic issues and the ultra high back neck coverage, together with the side seams (the boob seams are non-irritating) all reduce the comfort below what it could be. I find myself reaching for my Bali's instead. Even with their less comfy straps, they are more comfy. And as a bonus, I can leave the house in them. I haven't yet tried turning the Breast Nest inside out, which will probably alleviate the tag issue and perhaps, to a lesser degree, the side seams, but won't do anything for the tightish elastic in the armholes. 

I do think those with less sensitive skin, and perhaps shorter stature (armholes), may find this a wonderful sleep and lounge option.

SizeLarge. This fit well and is meant for a 34-38" underband measurement and up to a US H cup. The company is really responsive and very helpful with sizing

3 comments:

  1. Thank you for posting a review of this. I've always wondered about this product. I'm not quite ready to give it a go but it may, at some point. The high back neck is a deterrent...

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  2. This is the most comprehensive, useful review of the Breast Nest I've ever read. It sounds a lot less comfy than I would've expected. Thanks!

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    1. Glad it was helpful. I try & cover everything I wish I'd known before buying a particular bra myself.

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