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Booby Trapped:
8 Things Well-Endowed Girls
Know All Too Well

 

First, a confession: I don’t think my breasts are all that big.

Relative to my height, maybe—people seem surprised that full C cups exist on someone barely five feet, so they’ve been remarked on for as long as I can remember. I’ve brushed off all the innuendo, heard all the jokes. Been there, done that, and I’d get the T-shirt if it didn’t give me the dreaded uniboob.

So when a recent survey declared Filipino women’s breast size as the smallest in the world, it was a Eureka moment for me. Never mind that I’m surrounded by better-endowed women—my actual titas and my tita friends from college—this explained why my breasts got so much attention from everyone else.

I felt like I belonged to the one percent, but for gross cup sizes instead of gross incomes.

All this to say: When my friends at 8list asked me to write about big boob problems and how to deal, I just laughed and thought, surely there aren’t just eight? Coming to terms with your breasts is a lifelong process—this holds true, regardless of cup size—so you deal with your, well, “girls” differently at different points in your life.

 

8. The Tween Years

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In hindsight, this will be the last time you will be ever an A-cup, but it’s a little awkward—ok, a lot awkward, mortifying even—to be the only one in a training bra when everyone else wears a sando. And there’s nothing quite like the cruelty of schoolchildren, but take heart. Getting your breasts early means you don’t ever worry about not getting them. You develop other aspects of your personality, your hobbies and interests, so you don’t get defined by your cup size. Just keep going and someday you’ll be confident enough to bear (or bare) your girls with pride.

 

7. The Curse of the Commuter

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Your cups certainly runneth over when you’re a commuter, especially if you’re wearing a front-clasping bra or anything with buttons. Potholes and bad drivers are your enemy: any jerky movement will cause clasps and buttons to pop and, hello, free show. (The same thing happens when you run to catch the bus or squeeze yourself into a crowded train). You can’t solve bad transport on your own, but you certainly can do something about bad support: Ditch the front-clasp and wear something sturdier if you’re not commuting via Grab or Uber. As for buttons: You can go a size up and have your stuff tailored, but for a quick fix, stick double-sided tape on the problem area.

One advantage, though, is that you can use your cleavage to hide emergency commuting money. Some travel gear companies sell clip-on bra wallets, but sliding a bill under your bra is much easier. (You can also drop your keys in but I wouldn’t recommend it.)

 

6. Boobs on a Budget

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No matter what size you wear, bras are expensive. Busty women have it worse because the inexpensive options—local department store brands, Asian imports (the cheap, colorful ones you find in tiangges) and direct-marketing labels—don’t have anything higher than a B. So, it’s off to specialty stores and foreign department stores, which, thankfully, are now in greater supply so there’s a wider range of styles and colors available. That said, not all cup sizes are created equal, so even though you know your size, you need to fit bras every time you change styles or brands. There’s really no way around it but to find out which brands work (for your breasts and your budget) and hoard them during sale season. It helps if you have a support group like I do: My friends and I alert each other when we discover new labels or whenever our favorite store is on sale.

 

5. Sporty Support

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Speaking of support, our sports bra situation is pretty dire: In addition to fit, it also needs to minimize bounce. Compression-type bras in generic sizing are a pain to get in and out of, if they even fit at all. You might be better off looking for sporty tanks with built-in bras, but this will definitely take some trial and error. Encapsulation bras, which have two separate cups like regular bras, are the better, more expensive (sigh) option. These are sized like regular bras, so it takes less guesswork.

Regardless of which option you take, remember that the fit should be snug but should not hamper movement, and that it should be made of moisture wicking fabric to prevent that other terrible, horrible, no good, very bad problem: underboob sweat. (Slap on regular deodorant, or maybe argan oil (but check with your derma if you get a rash).

 

4. Popping the Question

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Not that question, but the one that busty women have been asked at least once in their life, “Are they real?” (Drunken leer optional). Here’s the thing: You’re not obligated to answer that, nor talk to anyone who makes you uncomfortable, even if s/he is some sort of acquaintance. Remember all that confidence you built up during your awkward tween years? Now’s the time to use it. Throw back a witty retort, prepare to defend yourself, ask for back up, or just walk away. It’s your choice and it’s all good.

 

3. The “Sexy” Costumer

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If you’re the sort who likes dressing up in costume, having large breasts makes any costume “sexy” by default. Making your own costumes and wearing them at conventions (or cons) is even more problematic: Your photo may be taken without your consent or your personal space may be invaded, and you may be blamed for bringing attention to yourself. Be firm about your boundaries and report offending parties to con organizers. (If you need a refresher for proper con etiquette, this is a good primer).

Star Wars fans have it good, I must say, in terms of drawing attention away from bodies and directing it back to the fandom. Jedi robes, Imperial officer uniforms and trooper armor are all unisex, but you’ll need to make sure you get the proportions right if you want your costumes certified film-ready.

 

2. Staying Professional

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For those of us with office jobs, keeping the girls in check is a must. As mentioned earlier, tailoring seems to be the best solution, but not everyone has the time or resources for this. Proportion, as always, is key.

A-line skirts will balance out top-heavy frames, but if you want to work a wiggle dress like Joan Holloway, that’s great too—As the name suggests, however, you don’t so much walk as wiggle while wearing this style. Separates are easier to manage, since bust size and hip size might not belong to the same size category. V-necked and scoop-necked stretch quarter-sleeved tops are your friend, as are thin sweaters. These are good, serious-looking alternatives to crisp button-downs, because buttons are the worst.

And remember: size is just a number. Don’t freak out too much if you go up a size or two depending on the brand. What matters is that your clothes fit and are comfortable.

 

1. Baby Mama Blues

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So, you’ve come to terms with your body, cultivated a fantastic bra selection, and learned to dress to your strengths. And then you find out you’re pregnant. What do you do? One of my friends from the bargain bra brigade is expecting (yeay!), and she’s been entertaining us with her observations of her rapidly changing body. She doesn’t want to buy new bras anytime soon, so instead she stocked up on bra extenders. This works when your band size is growing but your cup size remains the same. Halfway through her pregnancy, she’s up two band extenders—yes, you can stack them!—and still wearing her favorite bras.

 

Speak up, well-endowed women, got any other tips and secrets? Tell us below!

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