CurvyHK

Asian-chested is not an oxymoron

Archive for the category “Reviews”

Lepel Fiore

Let’s get back to bra things!

I haven’t bought anything new for a while because my current drawer, with my staples like CK Romances and Cleo Lucys, have been taking good care of me. But because of some of them falling apart, lots of them getting discolored, and me just also wanting some shiny new playthings, I hopped back onto ebay to see what was going on.

Hey… where’d all the Lucy’s go?????

When did Freya come out with all this stuff???

Who’s this Lepel character and why’s she all over the place?

I clearly have not kept up.

I vaguely remember seeing Lepel during my last stage of bra-buying, but wasn’t it all non-professional photos on mannequins?

This time around, they were professional stock photos, models and all,61mEp8Qc-EL._UX385_ and sold by one of my usual ebay stores (shout-out to the ever-reliable Belle Lingerie!) so I grabbed a nice black padded Fiore balcony.

It’s good.

Really, it’s good.

It’s comfortable and supportive, and simple enough to be a reliable day-to-day bra, while detailed enough to work with slightly fancier occasions.

There’s a small, barely visible stretch of rubber elastic along the top of the cup, but it doesn’t push down aDSC00519t all.

I’m relieved that it’s solid black. I’ve been snipping off the colorful little decorations at the top of the cup of almost all my bras lately, and it’s great that I don’t have to worry about that here.

One caveat is that the straps are a little too far apart, but not unbearably so.

I_226998566_02_20150921

The caveat is so negligible, in fact, that I went and bought two more Fiores (a red-and-black, and a blue, full-cup, both unpadded and just as comfortable). Yeah, it’s a good bra. I usually don’t like full-cup, either, but they feel great.

I should have gone with my normal 28GG, though. I bought all of these in 30G, feeling like I’d gained weight and needed the extra length in the band. Nope.

This is probably why I found it, actually. I went back to search 28GGs, and well, hello again Freya!

I guess the selection for my actual size hasn’t really changed.

 

Happy New Year, and best wishes for all of us!

Review: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidyingtumblr_nh0c3gGpVl1r5wz8zo1_1280

The book by Kondo Marie

Books claim to be enlightening, mind-opening and life-changing all the damn time. In fiction, in histories, in science books, I’ll readily believe that my perspective on something will be different by the end of a read. On a self-help book, on a lifestyle book, I’m more doubtful. Aren’t they just trying to sell themselves? However, this one I’ve read and applied has so far proven influential for at least one big sweep. It’s one of the best turns my lifestyle has taken, and I’m working on making it last.

As the title indicates, the book is about making your living space clean and organized (and how it will greatly and positively impact the rest of your life). Keeping any space organized has never really been my thing. Clothes and hairties and socks and cups and random things everywhere! Slightly better when I have a roommate, but only for courtesy’s sake. Not in my nature to keep thins in visual order, right?

Wrong, according to Kondo Marie. She might be right.

In her book, she goes through her personal journey in discovering her foolproof method of tidying, and then describes gently how to use this KonMari method. It’s not a long read, and the tone is light and unassuming. I lent the book to my neighbor and recent best friend as soon as I finished it.

p22-odonoghue-marie-kondo-a-20141012The method boils down to this essential–as you go through every object you own (there’s a system for this–again, I recommend reading the book!!). Hold it in your hands. If if gives you joy and fulfills you in the now–not once upon a time, and not in some hypothetical future, then keep it.

Anything you don’t specifically choose to keep, say thank you to it for fulfilling your life at one point (especially for sentimental objects that you kept for no other reason) and throw/donate it out. It’s done its job.

What’s left is a living space of only objects and ideas that specifically pertain to your current self–which is a lot less /STUFF/ than before, most likely. At that point, you assign places to things and things to places and let them live in their peaceful homes, homes that they go back to after they do their jobs for the day.

It’s one big event, by the way, not a “spend five minutes each day of your life on decluttering your home”. The throw-things-out party is one, big emotionally-draining project that may span days, perhaps weeks. Mine–just a single-person studio, living initially out of a suitcase, abroad–took nearly two weeks. I was stunned at the sheer amount of clothes I donated.

Here’s an article from the Wall Street Journal about her book:

and an interview:

I haven’t had the chance to watch it, but she had a Google talk as well!

Well worth the read, well worth the change. Give it a try!

Being Active (Panache Sports Review)

I keep saying to myself, to my friends, and to my family: Korea has changed me! Korea is changing me!

Who is this person I’ve become, and what kind of life is this that I’m living now?

And it’s not at all bad. I’m LOVING the drastically different direction that my life has taken.

I’m much more social than I’ve ever been. I’m more direct. I’m trying to become more knowledgeable about beauty and fashion, working on my appearance and prettying up for work and hanging out.

320_1390884069336

No, that’s not me. I do have this lip product though and have enough of an opinion about it to review it later.

Another thing is that I’ve become much more active.

I don’t want to say that I was necessarily inactive before. I spend a lot of time sitting around but through my life, I’ve usually been involved in some kind of sport a few hours a week.

Right now, though, I’m practicing martial arts every weeknight, and I play a somewhat rough game of Ultimate Frisbee (which I’ve fallen completely and utterly in love with) every weekend.

It’s not much considering many people do the equivalent of my weekly exertions on a daily basis, but it’s a lot more, and a lot more consistent, than what I’ve done before. And I love it! I don’t put every ounce of strength into it because I do need to keep an able body with workable muscles and joints for work but I go at these things hard enough to feel it really good. And does it feel good! Plus, I’ve met, and I keep meeting, really great people.

But, you know. Bras.

The normal underwired ones (say, Cleo Lucy, CK Romance, CK Emily) actually work totally fine. I do regularly use these for exercise. However, when I foresee a tougher workout, and for Ultimate Frisbee when I’m sprinting and leaping and crashing into people, I definitely prefer my sports bra.

I prefer it so much that I have several of the same one.

And that same one would be… the Panache Sport!

Yes, it’s a bra review. It’s been a while, hasn’t it?

I really like the Panache Sport (clearly) but one thing I didn’t know when I first tried it is that it seems to run large in the cups. The 28GG that I started out with was pretty uncomfortable. Once I sized down to 28G, though, we were best friends!

It’s quite pricey, and I don’t imagine that people are super comfortable with selling/buying used sports bras, but I definitely recommend it! I’ve bought mine from a few sources: ebay, zulily, and largecuplingerie.

0008133_panache-sports-bra-raspberry

It’s very durable and very comfortable. The material is sturdy and the cups are thick. The bra tacks all around each breast, so you have encapsulation preventing bounce rather than compression (+10 for comfort). In order to provide the encapsulation, though, the bra comes up rather high, so if your workout top is a normal tank or tee, there’s a good chance it’ll show. For martial arts, I usually have a higher-neck tee over the bra and then my uniform. But, since it comes in fun colors (I actually don’t have a black one… if I decide I need another, I guess I’m going for black!) showing really doesn’t matter in any other situation.

As for washing–I do wash it after every wear. Since I wear it for more hardcore sessions, it’s usually soaked in sweat (it and my first top), so there’s no way I’d put it back on later. Same method as other bras, though. Handwash, soak and scrub the wires especially, press water out, let out to dry.

There is a J-hook to connect the straps in the back but I’ve been happy with the standard formation.

da074359-7428-473a-b3fe-792fa3dd5bbf

I went hiking and outdoor climbing yesterday (for the first time, and I had an absolute blast!!) and decided to try the J-hook but I had to undo it and go back to standard straps before I even left the house. Even with the straps lengthened all the way, it was simply much too tight for me.

54

Breast Reduction

Many months ago, a reader contacted me through email. She’s a fantastic woman and we’ve talked about a variety of things, but one thing that I wanted to bring to more peoples’ attention (with her permission) was her successful breast reduction! So, first of all, congratulations to fettucine_alfredo to taking that amazing step! I told her that it was braver than anything I’ve ever done but the woman is not taking her due credit so please back me up here!

She didn’t stop at the surgery, though. She decided to create a resource for others making the same decision (especially for large busts on a small frame, as there’s not much information for that surgery on that body type now) and wrote a review about her experience. Read it here:

http://www.realself.com/review/san-francisco-ca-breast-reduction-my-breast-intentions-complete-boob-titles   (It’s NSFW, btw; you probably don’t want to click on that in the library)

The review covers a bit of her personal history, her decision process, a little bit about insurance, and then the surgery itself and updates of her condition at various points afterwards.

If you are considering the surgery, have a friend or family member thinking about it, are curious about the process, or if you’re even just looking for something good to read, I highly recommend it.

Review: Basic Five Toes by Tabbisocks

These fit women’s 6-10 according to SockDreams, so I do fall out of the range by half a shoe size (again! but then, when do I not?). There is indeed some extra material sticking out of the heel but it’s negligible.

(Not my feet)

They’re very comfortable, although not as much so as the Injinji especially in terms of material. They are lower-coverage, though, so these actually pass as no-show in more shoe designs. The toe compartments seem to fit a little better than Injinji, size-wise.

Image from SockDreams

The sticker says US 5-10, but because of the extra material I’m inclined to believe Sock Dreams’ judgment. There’s also materials information on there as well.

basic-five-toes-beige-os

Here’s another point for SockDreams: When I first looked at these socks, they were out of stock. However, right there on the page was a box offering email notification if/when that sock came back, whether in a specific size/color or just in general. No registration necessary, just the email to which the notification needed to be sent. Sure enough, I got an email as soon as it came back in stock! This is definitely a great way to help customers and to encourage well-deserved loyalty.

How to Sell a Bra on Bratabase

There are a bunch of very good places to buy bras (go to Resources to see some of my recommendations); some are official retailers, like Amazon and A Sophisticated Pair, and others are more consumer-sourced, such as Ebay and Bratabase. What about selling your bras? Maybe your recent purchase doesn’t fit, or you have some bras that you’re simply not going to use but are still in great condition and could serve someone else well.

I’ve recently completed a smooth transaction through Bratabase and wanted to outline the process for anyone else who wants to post a listing on this site.

1. Have/create a Bratabase account.

In order to add to the database and contact members of the site, you must have a Bratabase account. (Simply browsing the site and its listings is not restricted to account holders.) So if you want to make a listing to sell your bra, message a member about buying her bra, or write a review, you’ll have to register with the site first.

2. Add the bra you’d like to sell.

By “add[ing] a bra” to your profile, you’re informing the site that this bra is, or once was, in your possession. The site already has a wealth of information about common and uncommon bra brands and their lines, so you’ll very likely be able to select your bra out of pre-existing categories.

3. Add detailed information about the bra.

If you plan to sell the bra through a Bratabase listing, you must have at least one picture and you must take measurements of the bra itself. You’ll want to take pictures of the item you’re selling anyway, so that shouldn’t be anything too new or shocking. Bratabase filters uploaded pictures, so it may take a small while before they appear.

As for measurements, you simply need to take a tape measure (or a piece of string and a ruler) and describe each of the dimensions that the site asks for. There are very straightforward diagrams for each dimension they want measurements for, so don’t worry about things like where on the wing they want you to measure; they’ll show you.

4. Create a listing.

Once the site sees that your bra has both pictures and measurements, a button “List this bra” will appear on the page about the bra. (To reach that page, if you’ve left, go to “My Bras” on the top bar, and then click on the bra you’re selling from the list of bras you’ve added.) Click on that “List this bra” button to go to the listing page.

The information that you need to provide is simple. What condition is the bra in? How much are you charging? You can also add any other comments or information. Take a look at current listings for ideas on how much to charge or what kind of language you can use in your listing.

After you publish your listing, you can go back to edit any of this information at any time.

Note: Once upon a time, Bratabase covered shipping costs for bra sales. This is no longer the case. They do, however, currently cover shipping costs for exchanges and giveaways (transactions that do not involve the transfer of currency).

5. Wait for prospective buyers to contact you.

People who are interested in your listing will be able to message you about it. You may have to be patient; some listings sit for months. I was lucky and received two inquiries the day I listed.

6. Make arrangements and/or negotiations with your buyer.

Answer any questions they may have about the bra or about buying from you. Arrange payment details (you can either give them your Paypal address to send money to, or take their Paypal address to send an invoice). They’ll be able to provide their shipping address through Paypal, but just to be safe, I also asked my final buyer to message it to me.

7. Close the listing and ship out your bra.

Go back to your listing and close it so that other people know that it’s no longer up for sale. (You probably want to do this step after you receive the payment.)

Package your bra in a box or envelope. You can use any shipping service or company that’s convenient for you, but I highly recommend either using a service that includes tracking or buying a tracking number. On Paypal, you’ll be able to mark your transaction as shipped and put the tracking number right on the Paypal site. I also messaged my buyer the tracking number and estimated date of delivery.

8. Follow up on your transaction.

Just to be a nice person, stay updated on the package getting to its intended destination, but, technically, your transaction is now over. Congratulations!

Review: Injinji Lightweight RUN Toe Socks

I’m very easily drawn to very high-tech sounding things, so sports-oriented clothing and socks get my attention extremely quickly. They keep my attention if they’re high quality, and that attention turns to loyalty if they treat me well 🙂 The socks that I first went for in my quest for toe-protecting toe socks were Injinji‘s “Performance 2.0 RUN” socks. They come in different weights (thicknesses) and heights, and I got lightweight (the thinnest) at a no-show length.

The Injinji socks are made in four sizes: S, M, L and XL. I got my socks in S, and the packaging they come in states that they fit women’s sizes 6-8.5. Now, I bought this knowing that my shoe size fell outside of the range (I have inconveniently 5.5-sized feet), but seeing as how the company doesn’t actually manufacture an XS, and it’s not that far out anyway, any issues I personally have that result from sizing are absolutely minimal and do not detract from how happy these socks make me.

From Injinji’s facebook page. I think those are my exact colors! Also a very thought-provoking catchphrase 🙂

Despite being lightweight, the first thing I noticed was the high quality of the fabric. It just feels so good! It’s sturdy and solid, but also really soft and cuddly (as much as you like to cuddle socks). They’re incredibly comfortable too: I’m not sure how they make this really strange feeling work but the socks feel really secure and somewhat invincible but still really light and airy. It’s definitely a sock to wick away sweat and heat. My toes actually got a little chilly! I guess they’re used to squeezing together for warmth.

Some extra information about the design of the sock from the packaging:

There’s a band of specially compressing material around the top edge to keep the sock in place. Have to admit that I don’t really wear high enough socks to have them fall very often.

The material provides maximum ventilation. Yup.

Reinforced heel and toes. This is very good because I wear my socks so hard they often get holes in those very places. As well as along the balls of my feet. I probably should take better care of my socks.

The area around the arch is also specially designed to provide a bit of support. I’m guessing this is by compression? It’s not a huge amount of support (it’s a sock) but it does feel pretty good. It might be psychological after having read about its existence.

There’s also a fun little tab in the back to prevent blisters that form from rubbing the top edge of your shoes. Now that I think about it… huh. I guess I do get blisters there sometimes. Nice!

Other reviewers who have written about injinji’s new line are actually runners, so they have a more professional, athletic perspective on how these socks do or don’t work well for their actual intended consumers (spoiler: they do) but I’m just a person with feet who walks a lot, and I like them. I’ll definitely take particular care of them (meaning I’ll match them first when I’m folding my clean laundry) and pull them out for more active days.

What about those minimal fit issues I mentioned earlier? The toes are actually a pretty okay length; a few are a bit long by one or two millimeters. Eh. The heel does stick out and ride a bit up if I’m pulled all the way to the front of the sock. Also, eh.

Appearance-wise? I think they look better than all my ratty socks (because they’re new!). But honestly, the outfitted toes don’t look bad at all! And they feel so very comfortable that I don’t think I’d mind even if they did look bad. Which they don’t.

My feet! In socks!

Check it out guys, I’ve finally uploaded a picture of a personal body part on my blog! I guess the extra material doesn’t look bad at all. It feels like much more than it looks but going down a hypothetical size might be too much.

I’ve had these socks for less than two weeks and already I’ve worn them, washed them, worn them again, shown them off, and intrigued my mom with them. In fact, she showed these socks to her friend while I was out watching Star Trek. Not sure if weird.

Socks Are Also Quite Intimate, No?

It’s not quite that I’ve been wearing “badly-fitting socks”, but I do really like socks, and I have several pairs that are actually very meaningful to me (like the Halloween bat socks that I bought freshman year of college to treat myself and still cheers me up every time I put them on, the tabi socks I’ll talk about below, the “no-show” thin liner socks that actually still show but were free because I bought some shoes that were on clearance [which is really one of the weirder policies I’ve encountered: “hey, thanks for paying us much less for your items, let me give you free stuff as well”, the super tech-y Adidas athletic socks that I bought the day my friend was trying to convince me to buy shoes…). And besides sentimental value, there are some really unique socks that are very much worth thinking and writing about. So, yup. Socks now.

I have to do a lot of walking and standing where I currently work, and the past weeks I’m been experiencing some pain. Specifically, my last two toes of each foot were rubbing together and trying to out-blister each other.

My mind went straight to a particular pair of socks that I’ve had for a while. A tutor of mine gifted me a pair of Japanese tabi socks for Christmas several years ago, and besides having an adorable pattern, they also have a very functional split between the big toe and the rest of the sock front. The big toe is isolated and pretty well protected against… everything, I guess!

And then I thought, hey, there are probably full toe socks. I should look those up!

I’d been a customer at an online store called Sock Dreams before for arm warmers and leg warmers, and I remembered their quality products, so I made a visit to see if they carried something for me. And they did! And I bought them! And now I’m going to review socks on my bra blog!

I’ll start actual sock reviews with my next post, but first I’d like to review Sock Dreams, the store. (They very nicely emailed me their beautiful logo; click on it to visit them!) Again, it’s an online retailer for socks and similar accessories with a physical store based in Oregon. The actual products I bought last time are long gone (makes sense because this was years and years ago). However, both that experience as well as my recent one were very pleasant. The ordering process is clean and simple. Registration is optional for placing orders, and standard shipping is both fast and free in the US. Payment options include CC and Paypal.

There’s also a superb customer-based aspect of this website/company that I really appreciate. For pretty much every single product on their catalog, there’s a (seemingly personally written) description of known sizing, fit, and material facts. Is it prone to tearing or snagging? Is it stretchy enough to fit feet of a wide range of sizes? Details like this make the store super personable and make me strangely agreeable about forking over as much as ten bucks for a single pair of socks.

Stay tuned for a set of three reviews of Sock Dreams purchases: Injinji Lightweight RUN Toe Socks, Basic Five Toes, and Silk Ballerina Toes. (links will be updated as posts are published)

Mini-review: Cleo Marcie

I actually tried this and sent it back already, so I’m writing this a bit from memory. Basically, it didn’t fit. (But still less that $30 on Amazon!)

From Amazon.com

Since I love the Lucy (so much that I picked up another one somewhere; now I have both the navy and the pink, and it sounds like there are two new colors coming out soon!) and not so much the Marcie, it sounds like I’m a basic full-on-bottom shape. There are ways of distinguishing shape such as, for example, actually looking at the shape of your breast, but I’m shape-challenged and don’t figure those things out easily. This “full-on-tops often prefer Marcie and Lucy is a similar bra for full-on-bottoms” system is a safe one for me.

I had a lot of loose cup material floating around; essentially the top third of the cup was not being filled. It didn’t feel like the kind of fit that could have been improved by going down a cup, though. It was nowhere near as bad a fit as the Meg from once upon a time, though. The Meg was terrible for me, but the Marcie was just a little bad. Bad enough to not want to keep at this point, since I have enough well-fitting bras to do laundry at a reasonable pace, but not more than just a little bad.

Here are some other reviews from Undiegamer, Bras I Hate & Love, Two Cakes on a Plate, Invest in Your Chest, and here is its Bratabase page.

Bloggy update: I’ve made some changes to the About page and plumped up the Resources page. Yay!

Review: zulily

Zulily, like Totsy, is a flash sale site targeted at new families looking to outfit their babies, selves and home. Thanks to reddit lurkingtimes, I was alerted to (another) Affinitas sale and thought I’d try this one out since I like my first two Parfait bras so much.

I ordered the Donna, and, as the site is designed to encourage you to do, wandered into some other sales and bought a few items from another event.

Timeline:

  1. Ordered on Jan 23.
  2. Both events ended Jan 25.
  3. Event 1 (not Affinitas) shipped to zulily on Jan 31.
  4. Event 2 (Affinitas) shipped to zulily on Feb 1.
  5. Event 2 shipped to me on Feb 2.
  6. Event 1 shipped to me on Feb 4.
  7. Event 2 arrived on Feb 5.
  8. Event 1 arrived on Feb 7.

Some brief comments about the Donna:

Again, a 30-band. This is MUCH looser than the Kimberly and the Honey. The Donna might be a true 30. The cups are still molded but not nearly as thick as the Kimberly/Honey bras. The top of the cups don’t seem to come up as high. It’s a good solid-color bra. Yay for finally getting a plain solid black bra! Boo for it being loose in the band! If I don’t get much wear out of it, I may just try to pass it on to someone who actually needs a 30G.

Post Navigation