And travel does something else: clarifies which bras are truly comfortable vs. which are comfy enough for a day at work, or part of a weekend. And I'm a little surprised at what actually landed in my (very small) suitcase this trip.
This is my Sheltie's face while he watches me pack. He is not fooled by my trying to act casual and space out the process. And he is not pleased. Even though he knows full well that Mr. ComfyCurvy is going to bribe him with way too many treats in my absence.
For the Actual Travel
From arriving at the airport through the shuttle ride to my destination: 9 hours
I have two, no, three issues:
- Swelling & Size Fluctuation
- Underwire is Out: Because TSA & Sitting So Long
- I'm going from 40F to 85F temps
Because I've put on 20 lbs, deep bands tend to roll more and I just want the least constriction possible, which means wearing the least amount of band possible. And that's definitely this bralette.
Other big pluses: it will cause no issues at airport screening time, it is cotton and very breathable, and the high neckline gives me lots of options for wearing a lower cut blouse and light layers, as I go from one extreme climate to another.
The only drawback is that, as cotton, it won't wash & dry quickly. So this is not a good option if you need to wash it in a hotel bathroom sink & have it dry by morning. Since I will have a washer - & 85F desert sun - that is a non-issue this trip.
For the destinationThe heat is the main consideration. I am fully acclimated to the northern climes. Specifically to this 'temperate' part of Alaska, where I have spent the last 12 years in a cool rainforest climate. The highs range from 30-40F in winter to 55-68F in summer. Before that, I lived in WA, and prior to that, the UK. So, yeah...I don't do well in the heat. Even though I grew up in Rocky Mountain high desert country, that was long ago and far away, and now I wilt and am miserable if I have to be in the direct sun.
I am that person slathered in SPF 50 with sunglasses and hat practically stapled onto me. But I'm fine sitting in the shade with a book and a margarita. I'm not a total killjoy. I spend lots of time here, on rare sunny days. In that spot of shade.
My top choice for the heat: Rosme Mona
Over the last few months, I've realized that the Mona is now my most comfy bra. The overall lightness of the frame and the open stretchy-lace upper cup is a great match for the heat and the size fluctuations I'll experience from travel and temp changes. There is lots of airflow with this fabric, plus the low wires will avoid chafing, especially in sleeveless tops where there is less fabric to protect the skin. The non-mesh band will make for especially happy times. Some might opt for mesh for its supposed cooling properties, but I find those are far outweighed by its skin abrasion properties. A lightweight microfiber or nylon band is far more comfy to me.
2nd Choice: Empreinte Grace (Low Neck style)
For Houseguest Socializing in my Jim-Jams
Again, I am surprised not to opt for the awesome Bali Comfort Revolution Wirefree Bra (really a bralette with hooks), but I'm going with the ultra lightweight Comfort Revolution Bralette (seriously, they need more creative names to distinguis what are very different styles):
The fabric is very thin and light, and quite breathable, whereas the other style is much thicker and therefore more supportive - but that's not what I'm going for here. Because the fabric is super thin and stretchy, I wear this in a Large, rather than an XXL. In larger sizes, the straps get oddly long and there is zero support. By dropping two sizes, I'm basically getting a comfy 'boob sling' effect, rather than a bralette. Just some soft containment that is perfect for underneath jammies when you are hanging out with other people. In this case, one's elderly relatives. There are no hooks, so I just step into it like a bathing suit. This is the only bralette I would ever contemplate sleeping in, flipped inside out, of course.
I'm curious to hear if anyone has favorite travel bras you swear by - or, travel horror stories of profound bra regret. Those would also be good.