Although I want to make space for bralettes on this blog, I am also currently on a quest to find a perfectly fitting underwire bra, as there are life situation which require those bras and, well, I can wear them for a couple of hours on my good days, so why not. Freya Popart Plunge Balcony (SS2016) is my first stop. I actually bought this bra about 2 months ago and am reviewing it now so I can have some perspective on my initial thoughts. I also got the matching short brief.
My first impression when trying on the bra was a huge wow at the colours. My mum also liked it a lot, and I even got her the padded half-cup version (which is more appropriate to her shape) which is still on its way here at the moment. I get that colour splashes on underwear are not everybody’s favourite thing, but I personally like some pop in my underwear. I mean, look at this!
Isn’t this ‘mix’ colourway truly amazing? The charm and bow colours are also extremely appropriate and everything in the design does scream “Pop Art” to my amateur art enthusiast self. I like that the bows and charms on the knicker and bra are matching and placed in the same spot.
The lace of the bottom of the band and the top of the knicker elastic is the same, and so are the lace on the top of the cups and the back of the knicker.
It’s a nice, soft and stretchy lace, hence why the top of the cup is gathered with an elastic band, to keep it from becoming too open on top.
As always with Freya the construction is very neat and nothing feels flimsy in the least. Unlike older bra models that I had from them, this bra has straps made out of a firm and slick material (most likely a polyester or polyester blend) that does not get pilling (while my older bras from them did). Even if the cups’ design covers the straps all the way to the back, the straps are fully adjustable, and they allow a good deal of length.
Here’s what it looks like on the inside:
The little gap between the seam and the edging that you see in the next-to-last photo above is the only construction “flaw” I could observe, apart from the slightly off-centre bow on the knickers. The laces and fabrics used tick all the right boxes to me, including the elastics of the knicker, which are soft and forgiving. Everything is very soft and solid.
What I like about this bra is how much of a safe bet it is for anyone who is familiar with Freya’s unlined bras.
Like most of their other bras, this bra is mostly full-on-bottom to even friendly for an average to high root height, on the wider side for this size at 14.7cm/5.75″ wide, very very projected for this size too at 26cm/10.25″, and slightly stretchier in the band than true to size, around 78.75cm/31″. As such, while it is not a truly bad fit for my shape, some aspects are still far from perfect.
- First thing is, although you can’t see it very well on the photos, it is much too wide for my roots, my ideal cup width being around 12.7cm/5″.
- Second thing is, I’m full-on-top, and while this bra does fit thanks to the aforementioned stretchy lace on the top of the cups, it still does cut into my breast tissue quite a bit, and it gets worse closer to the gore, where the bra isn’t very good at accommodating my centre-full self.
- Finally, while it may be other people’s cup of tea, I find the straps to be too wide-set for my frame, and I don’t consider that I have exceptionally narrow shoulders for my body shape and size.
I would say that the band is a correct size for me. I measure at 73.6cm/29″ snugly under the bust, and while it did hurt while I broke it in, it is now very comfy and I can attach it on the middle hook, while it still being firm enough on the loosest one to stay put throughout the day.
The only actual bother for me and my fibromyalgia has got to be the underwire width. While I have no doubt it would be comfortable on someone who is closer to the width this bra expects or for someone who does not deal with chronic pain, it does hurt me. Bending the underwires to follow the shape of my ribcage has alleviated how uncomfortable it is, but I still find myself needing to take it off after more or less 5 hours of wear, otherwise my ribs start to hurt a lot.
Things that do work particularly well for me in this bra though apart from the band width are the relatively low gore of 2.5″ height, which works for my close-set breasts, the softness of the underwires, and the depth of the cups. Here are the full measurements of the bra:
Overall I would say that this bra is on the larger side of 30F (my true size is between F and FF), so some people may want to size down in this bra, especially if they are not very projected, as this bra runs both wide and deep for a 30F. It’s mostly FoB but it can work for some FoT people, though I would not recommend it to people who, like me, have roots on the taller side or a bunch of centre-fullness. Like a lot of other Freya bras, it stretches about 1″ beyond true to size in the band. The gore is at a typical height for Freya Plunge Balconies, so it works great for close-set breasts, but it’s not amazing for centre-fullness. The wrinkling you observe near the gore under the cups on me is due to the fact that my roots are a bit splayed, but it’s not a fitting issue per see, at least it doesn’t really bother me.
Thanks for taking a look!