Illustration: Pip Johnston
Illustration: Pip Johnston

SHOPPING

Can one bra shape work for all women?

Combining style with comfort and excellent fit, Triumph’s new Amourette Charm promises to tick all the bra-related boxes. The Pool team gave it a go

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Kat Farmer

Bra size: 34B
Biggest bra bugbear: Bras that gape at the front

When shopping for a bra, I look for something comfortable and practical, while still being attractive. I usually go for a plain T-shirt bra, which gives support while not looking like I could carry the groceries home in it – they're just not the prettiest.

My biggest bra issue is that they often have excess room in the cups. Being blessed with two fried eggs (I’m a 34B), bras often fit well everywhere, but gape at the front. Then there's the back-fat issue. Enough said.

My initial thought about the Amourette Charm was that it’s very pretty and light, but with a good amount of support. A special mention goes to the pretty lace straps and cups. The fit was extraordinary – it was perfect and genuinely one of the most comfortable bras I have ever worn. I want it in every colour.

The cut is so flattering that it looks amazing both on the body and in your underwear drawer. And, unusually for most lace bras, the fabric is so soft and "flat" you can't see any detail under clothes, so it appears invisible. Goodbye, old plain T-shirt bras – everyday lace does exist!

Lauren Bravo

Bra size: 36E
Biggest bra bugbear: Anything that digs or pinches and styles that don't work under clothes

I’ll be honest, my main priority in a bra is the way it will look under my clothes. I’m a total fusspot about the shape working with different cuts, fits and necklines, and if I change outfits four or five times in the morning (it happens), then I’ll often change bra as many times, too. Comfort is crucial, though – anything that digs or pinches gets banished to the back of drawer for bad behaviour. As a larger cup size (36E), I’m always on the hunt for pretty yet sturdy options, but some of my most beloved bras are the least sexy – such as minimisers, which tone down my boobs when I want the focus to be on my outfit, not my assets.

The elegant Amourette Charm really took me out of my comfort zone – although only metaphorically, as it was an easy, comfy joy to wear. The plunge shape is one I would usually pass over (I’m more of a balcony gal), but I really liked the way it smoothly separates, rather than squishing together, hoisting everything into place and giving my chest an almost retro "bullet bra" look. Having shied away from cleavage for years, I even found myself reaching for wrap dresses and deep-V tops, happy to let a little lace peek out. The high-cut cups did show a little too much in some necklines, so it’ll work better for shirt-and-jumper season, but I’m pretty sure it’ll be remaining firmly at the front of the drawer.

Frankie Graddon

Bra size: 34DD
Biggest bra bugbear: When support and comfort equals unsexy

I was introduced to Triumph bras last year and haven’t looked back. I’ve got the Amourette Spotlight bralette (a fab soft bra option even for big boobs), the Triaction Hybrid Light sports bra (so good I went for a run) and the Amourette 300 underwired, which has been my everyday bra for a solid 12 months. So I was thrilled to try the new Amourette Charm and wasn’t disappointed.

I tried both the underwired and the padded underwired style in black and – my favourite – Bohemian Rose, a russet colour that make a nice change from pink. Both styles give full-cup coverage and excellent support without feeling matronly. The padded style gives a 50s pin-up silhouette, while the non-padded style has a more natural shape.

It scores highly on the comfort factor ( after a long day in the office, I wasn’t gagging to take it off as soon as I got home) and, lookswise, it’s sophisticated and sexy without being over the top. Plus, hitting around the £40, it’s a really good price.

Kuba Shand-BAptiste 

Bra size: 38F
Biggest bra bugbear: 
Finding a bra that fits and looks good

As someone with a wider back and bigger breasts than most high-street shops tend to cater for (I’m usually a 36H), finding a bra that fits and looks good is a rarity. So I keep the same three bras in rotation (which, after one too many wears, tends to result in being stabbed in the chest by underwiring. It's the worst). Also, strapless bras – strapless bras hate me.

The Amourette Charm goes up to an F cup, and when I was fitted I was given a 38F which I was told is my sister bra size and felt really comfortable. If I happen to be lucky enough to find something in my size, stylishness tends to be the first thing to go out of the window, but I really like the lace on the Charm and the overall shape is quite flattering.

I am the queen of attempting to secretly adjust my ill-fitting bras, but I haven't had to touch this once since putting it on. It's honestly one of the most comfortable bras I've ever owned. It's definitely not suited for low-cut tops (unless you want it on show), but if you're after a nice, perky, natural shape under your clothes, it's perfect.

I can usually tell if I'm happy with a bra purchase if I keep trying to find excuses to look at myself in it, which is literally what I did this weekend. It passed several "Do my boobs look good in this?" tests with flying colours.

Lucy Dunn

Bra size: 32DD
Biggest bra bugbear: Buying the wrong size

I’ve been fitted for bras on several occasions and, to be honest, didn’t take much notice because I have always thought that sizes varied so much from place to place, so invariably always ended up going back to my usual 36B – the size that I’ve been, like, forever. With this fitting, however, I had an epiphany. I was told that I was a DD, but this time I was given a proper reason why. Apparently cup size is not always about the size of your boobs – it is also about the circumference. I need a DD as I have small but wide-set boobs, but need a smaller strap size to “hoick” it all into place. Instead of pooh-poohing that I wasn't that big a cup, it all made sense.

Of course, the proof was in the wearing. The Amourette Charm is comfortable and supportive, and looked good even under a sloppy white T-shirt. I didn’t notice the tighter back strap, but I did notice more defined (and flattering) cleavage. As a result, I am going to make sure to get proper fittings in the future and also that I don't resort to 36B ever again. Not that I am likely to, because I actually went home and chucked out all my old bras.

Click here for the one bra fits all shapes edit

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Illustration: Pip Johnston
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