fatshionista: breasts

fatshionista: breasts is a discussion that just keeps giving and giving. Members are putting forward their own experiences as bra-less and bra-lovers, of varying cup sizes. For every experience touted for the comfort of a bra, there is one citing that it is not so. As the saying goes; when it comes to bras, no matter what non-standard cup size you are, your mileage may vary.

As I write this one of the latest comments has made a salient point about two different movements within the fatshionista community. The first is the ‘screw societal values, I can wear whatever I want’, and the second is ‘expand societal values to include us’. The first definitely seems more traditionally feminist – bras are not necessary, even for big women, and no one should be judged for chosing not to wear one.

As the whole discussion comes from comparing bras to spanx, it is easy to understand why this has become a question for fatshionistas on a regular basis. It’s another form of body policing. And this stand point validates the ‘screw societal values’ standpoint on bras. Fatshionista is all about rethinking your ideas of beauty, so this stand point will probably come more naturally to a lot of people who are already far along in their FA/feminist journey.

My observation or impression of these dialogues is that the ‘bra-less’ or ‘natural boob brigade’ will often feel they are starting out on the moral and logical high ground. Which often doesn’t endear them to the more ‘included in mainstream beauty’ inclined folk.

I don’t think there is any real answer. Am I, with my 36J/K boobs, reinforcing patriarchal & matriarchal ideas of beauty by wearing a bra? Probably, but honestly it is my choice and my choice alone. I’d be horrified if someone told me to wear a push up/minimiser bra because of the size of my breasts, but one that simply supports and holds? No, that is a practical and hygenic consideration.

Finally when giving fashion advice – there are many different types of bra out there. It may be that a particular cut or style of bra simply isn’t going to work for a particular outfit. Sometimes advice about undergarments is given in error, I’m sure, and maybe one day fashion will swing around to let all breasts hang free. If I was wearing one of my less well fitting bras, and posted an outfit in a Fatshion community, I wouldn’t be surprised if someone commented on it.

But then, I am obviously having bra priviledge in that I am able to get bras that fit well and comfortably. I’d better add that to the white/cisgendered part.


~ by Pewter on June 3, 2009.

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