I’ve bought this bra a while ago and I really wanted to love it, but I was kind of on the fence about reviewing it because it’s not a good fit on me. Perhaps though this can help some folks decide if this underrated beauty is worth trying on!
I bought it on discount on Amazon because I had tried the 30E in store and it was clearly too small, but I thought maybe 30F would work because of the upper stretch panel. Looking back, I think I should’ve tried 30FF. I’ll do that at some point, for the sake of bra science, although I know the shape of this bra is definitely not for me.
This bra was released for the first time in SS2015 and has been coming with new colours every season since, but no new colour has been announced for SS2017, so we have to assume it may have been discontinued. Its shape and cut is based off Panache Floris, but with a twist, as Olivia features a stretchy top panel that is ideal to accommodate upper fullness and taller roots, whereas Panache Floris, while good for full on top, tends to cut into taller roots. The Raspberry colourway was released in SS2016, but from having seen the Cobalt in person and the Deep Jade in reviews, both of those also look like very gorgeous colourways.
So, onto the review!
Appearance & Construction
I loooooooove the colour of this bra, especially with all the sheen on the lace design and subtle dot pattern on the cups. The bra is pink all over, so well, you gotta love pink to love this bra.
The gore of this bra is pleasantly narrow with a discreet mini bow at the top, but it’s very tall, which proves problematic for my shape. The cups are double-layered but everything is firmly sewn in place and evenly cut. The vertical seam of the cups continue down over the underwire channels and the partial band, which is not something I enjoy a lot, but it looks okay.
Here you can see that solid zigzag seam, the beautiful floral pattern of the lace and the pink painted rings and sliders of the straps. The straps themselves are made out of a slightly plushy but decently resistant material, with a thin scallop edging that I really like.
The inside of the bra is made with a really soft material that feels good on the skin. My only problem is the underwire channels, which are made from the typical plush material most lower end full-range lingerie brands use. It’s not a bad choice of material, but since I deal -as you’ll see lower- with a floating gore, it proves a bit irritating for my skin.
As mentioned earlier, the lower two parts of the cups are lined, but the upper tier isn’t, otherwise it wouldn’t be able to stretch enough. It’s very soft overall but the elastics still have a good grip. The underwires are quite narrow at 5.25″/13.3cm, and I think this is about as wide as I can comfortably go. They are also way softer than the Panache Envy wires, closer to what you’d expect from a Freya bra.
Here you can see the international size conversion. Panache doesn’t acknowledge that EU/AU/FR sizes don’t have DD cups and that most US brands go D/DD/DDD/G in cup progression.
Here’s a side-by-side comparison of the band width in the Lulu Tout Lucille I recently reviewed here and the Panache Olivia. Panache Olivia runs a bit stretchier than true to size, but not by much, at 30.3″/77cm, while Lulu Tout Lucille is smaller than true to size at about 29.1″/74cm. The band however definitely feels softer and gentler than that of Panache Envy, which I could only bear for about 5 minutes before I couldn’t handle the pain anymore.
Fit & Shape
At first glance, it doesn’t look like that bad of a fit on me. The underwires are clearly sitting on breast tissue and the gore does not tack, while the cups look a bit short. But, it’s far from being the worst fit in the universe and miles away from the ill-fitting 32D I used to wear.
My main problem with this bra is cup depth. It allowed me to realize I really do need the deepest of the deepest bras in my size range. The cup depth is at 24.5cm/9.65″, which, admittedly, is deep for a 30F bra. However, the depth of the Lulu Tout bra, at 26.5cm/10.45″, is clearly a lot more adequate for me. As a result, the underwires of Panache Olivia keep wanting to slide down on me.
From the side, it clearly looks to me like this bra has lower coverage than my breasts want it to have. Despite my very FoT shape, this bra still doesn’t seem to have enough space at the bottom, because it’s too small overall for me.
The band however is quite a good fit. It’s not too snug, not too tight, and has a decent amount of stretch while still providing a good grip.
But, alas, as I said, this bra is not for me. The gore comes up way too high and doesn’t tack very firmly because, on contrary to most Panache bras, the wires of this bra are really soft. As a result, as I move about throughout the day, the underwires don’t stay put and rub on my skin, causing slight irritation.
Moreover, while it may have looked like the cups fit well when I took pictures with the camera further away from me, you can see here that they are too small and not deep enough by the bump in my breast tissue where it meets the cups, and the slight in-cup quadding effect. The underwire width however looks great here, so I suspect that sizing up will make them too wide for my liking. Only trying this on in 30FF will tell me where I stand with this bra, though.
Here are the measurements:
Overall I would say this bra is a good fit for FoT breasts with tall roots, but it doesn’t play nice with centre-fullness and close-set breasts and is not projected enough for me.
Appearance: 5/5 – Construction: 4.5/5 – Fit: 3/5
How do you like the look of this bra? How was your experience with it if you have tried it? Tell me in a comment below. ❤
Thank you for reading!
P. S.: I went to a bra store today and got to try the new Cleo Marcie colourway (Navy) & the new Hettie colourway as well (Blue/Teal) in both 30F and 30FF. The 30FF in Panache/Cleo seems overall too wide and too big for me, while the 30F is too small because it doesn’t have enough projection and the cups are not tall enough. Sadly, I think this will be the end of my adventure with Cleo/Panache, except maybe for the Jasmine, if I can find it in store at some point.