Are we SERIOUSLY supposed to be on board with True & Co.’s MILF campaign?

I wasn’t going to write about this.  I was going to wait for the campaign to blow up in their faces as a piece of extremely, EXTREMELY poor judgment hiding behind the shield of “there’s no such thing as bad publicity.”  And then True & Co. wrote their own blog response, and then I replied, respectfully and courteously, on Facebook, from the Sweet Nothings page, and then six hours later they deleted my comment.

And then I got really, really pissed off.

For those of you who aren’t familiar, True & Co. is an online lingerie retailer that promises to offer shoppers a hassle-free, algorithm-based bra fitting experience.  You tell them what size you’re wearing and what brand, you answer a series of fit questions, and then they supply several style and size suggestions based on your responses.  You pick a few, they throw a few others in your box for you to try as well, and you get a great in-home fitting room experience.  It sounds good, except it doesn’t work.

For starters, while they carry several full-bust brands, they don’t stock anything over an F-cup.  So when I took the quiz, I told them I was wearing my regular band size + an F cup, and described all the fit issues I’d have if I were indeed wearing that size.  True & Co’s suggestions?  F-cups.  Now look, I have no problem with a retailer’s not stocking my size.  No store can be all things to all women, so if they’d told me “It seems like you’ll find a good fit in a size [__].  We aren’t able to stock that size currently, but please continue to check back with us as we expand!” I’d have been totally satisfied.  Instead, rather than genuinely answer a fitting question, they tried to sell me bras they stocked, which would never have fit, which makes them no better at fitting than Victoria’s Secret.

With each successive blog post from True & Co., I became more and more uneasy.  The fact of the matter is that bra fitting is hugely, hugely subjective.  There is no way, NO WAY, an “algorithm” can POSSIBLY work for all women.  We are all shaped and built so differently, and our lifestyles and comfort levels and wants and needs are all so different, the best an online retailer can do is provide clear, accurate information about how to find a good fit and what it looks like.  True & Co doesn’t do that.  For more, be sure to read The Lingerie Lesbian’s recent excellent post, in which she shares multiple women’s experiences with the “fit service.”

Sigh.  I see what you did there.

Sigh. I see what you did there.

SO THEN, in the lead-up to Mother’s Day, rather than improve the quality of their online fit advice (sample: “If your underwire pains you, try a bralette!”  UM, NO*), they launch their MILF campaign, complete with pictures of young, hip mothers and their tiny, adorable children.

MILF, for those of you who still in blessed ignorance of the term, stands for Mom I’d Like to Fuck.  I know.  So cute, right?  Just, pardon me, fucking precious.  HI-larious, amirite bro?  So True & Co takes this delightful gift to the contemporary American vernacular and says, “You know what would be DARLING?  Is if we made a pun!  For Mother’s Day!  Yeah!  Let’s take an obscene, sexist, objectifying term and make it cute!  And let’s put pictures of bloggers and their tiny children in the campaign, because that’s not creepy at all!  And let’s invite women to submit pictures of their own mothers for our MILF wall!  A MILF wall?  Awesome!”

Surely, SURELY, there was someone at True & Co. whose soul quietly whispered, “Um, maybe not the best idea we’ve ever had?”

Oedipal, pedophilic creepiness aside, this campaign sucks.  It panders, it operates on the principal that sex sells, and it’s designed to startle (and I suspect work people like me into a sputtering rage, so mission accomplished?).  Jezebel has notes.  So does the Daily Mail.  They quote the lovely Denocte from Kurvendiskussionen, who left this comment on Facebook: “Nothing funny about this MILF joke. It’s sexist and makes a connection between bras and sex – bras are not all about sex. Plus, what’s even worse, it provides a connection between bra fitting and sexual stuff – ick! Bra fitting is NOTHING sexual, it’s about finding proper bra fit for your body.”

True & Co promised a response, and Wednesday night they posted this to their blog:

MILF – the term brings to mind pervy frat boys but who says they should own an acronym? MILF (Moms I’d Love to Fit)is about the best people in the world taking 5 minutes out of their busy day to treat themselves to a proper bra fitting and get a new bra. Who hasn’t known a mom who puts everyone else first and who has forgotten about taking care of herself?

We were inspired after hearing our customers tell us that the first time they had thought of themselves in a long time was when they took True&Co.’s online fit quiz. They then treated themselves to a home try-on box of great lingerie that fit their new post-baby bodies.

We meant the pun and we meant it in good fun. We think there’s nothing objectifying about a woman owning her sexuality. We’d be proud to be considered a MILF (Mom I’d Love to Fit).

True&Co. was created to change the bra industry. The bra and the terrible bra fitting room experience has remained the same since the modern bra was invented in 1930s. And let’s not even talk about panties. We celebrate empowerment – embrace your individual body type and love what’s underneath, whether you’re a mom, a daughter, a sister, anyone.

Apart from the fact that there are some major factual errors (bras and fitting room experiences have changed HUGELY since the 1930s, don’t even get me started, do your research, etc.), the whole post . . . doesn’t make sense?  Sometimes bra fitting isn’t about owning your sexuality; it’s about, you know, finding a bra that fits.  I stewed for a while, and then posted something along the lines of this (it never occurred to me to get a screengrab, so this is how I remember it):

I’m sorry, I still don’t really understand why using this term is a good idea.  It’s a sexist and objectifying term that many women feel strongly negative about, no matter how often you say “no, we’re reclaiming it!”  Lots of women feel objectified, judged, and vulnerable when they hear this word used, so why on earth would you introduce it into a bra fitting conversation, where lots of women already feel vulnerable?  Furthermore, why on earth would you put it in an ad campaign featuring children, ick?  Bras aren’t about sex, and bra fittings certainly aren’t about sex, and using this term implies that there is a sexually objectifying relationship between not only a mother and child, but also a woman and her fitter.  It’s really inappropriate, and it’s wrong, and I and many others don’t see it as “good fun.”

That’s right, y’all.  Those right there are the words that were too much for True & Co.  It seems, ironically, they just couldn’t handle the truth (& co.).  And thus they deleted that mighty, crushing Facebook comment from a tiny lingerie blogger, because THAT always shuts down a discussion, yes indeedy.

I know that a lot of good can be done by “reclaiming” negatively charged words.  Some people find it liberating and empowering.  Hell, pole dancing has negative, objectifying, degrading connotations for many people, and for me it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done for myself.  But I pole dance in a private sphere, not in a club in front of strangers, and therefore it’s a safe experience for me.  Bra fitting and making sexy, silly puns also happen in a private sphere.  When silly puns enter the public sphere and crash and burn so spectacularly, it would behoove their authors to consider that the problem isn’t the audience: it’s them.  Saying “oh, but you just don’t get it!” or “you just need to own your sexuality!” doesn’t cut it.

Your audience is offended and unimpressed, True & Co.  If you’re really trying to help women and make bra fitting an easier, stress-free experience, then issue an apology and pull the ads.  Grace, character, and competence win my loyalty much faster than base pandering.

*Hoookay, if your underwire pains you I have a few suggestions: always start by checking your band size.  It should fasten firmly on the loosest set of hooks, and it should lie smoothly across your back parallel with your underbust.  It shouldn’t be so loose that it rides up your back throughout the day.  Once you’ve got your band size fixed, you might want to try a larger cup size to help the wires open up a little.  A too-small cup can mean the wires are both too narrow and too short, so there won’t be room for all of your breast to sit in the cup.  The wires on the sides of the bra should encircle the breast tissue and lie directly against your ribs, not on top of any breast tissue.  If the wires are stabbing you in the armpit, you may need to try a brand or a style that’s cut a little lower.  If the center gore is digging into your sternum, try a bra with a lower center front, or even experiment with bending the wires gently until they fit your shape better.  Boom.  Let’s see an algorithm address all those possibilities.

57 Comments on Are we SERIOUSLY supposed to be on board with True & Co.’s MILF campaign?

  1. Laura Brasinha
    May 3, 2013 at 7:24 am (5 years ago)

    I was talking about this with my brother, whom has no boobs and so knows very little about bras, and even he was like “that doesn’t sound like a good idea”.

    How the hell are these guys still making money?!

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 7:25 am (5 years ago)

      I mean, if they wanted controversy, they got it. I feel like enraging your potential client base isn’t maybe the BEST way to actually, you know, get their money, but they didn’t ask me. Your brother seems like a sensible fellow :)

      Reply
  2. Katie
    May 3, 2013 at 8:49 am (5 years ago)

    You go girl!! This sounds like a heinous idea for a bra fitting company. I personally don’t take offense to the term MILF but I think it’s BEYOND tacky to use it in advertising. (Then again, I have 16 more weeks before I become a mom so who knows how I’ll feel then… Pretty sure I’m ok w my hubs calling me a MILF but that’s it.)

    Anyway keep fighting the good fight! I’ve learned a lot from reading your blog and posts … So you’ll just have to keep taking these crazies’ clients away 1 by 1.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 9:27 am (5 years ago)

      Thanks Katie! Yeah, at the end of the day, it IS tacky, isn’t it? We are all classy dames here, so no thank you, True & Co.

      Reply
  3. Tanya
    May 3, 2013 at 9:22 am (5 years ago)

    I’m a MILF, but don’t want to be called one in an ad campaign for bras that (are supposed to) fit! Besides, aren’t their bras just like some of the Parfait lines except only to 30F? I had signed up for their emails at one point and then deleted since I’m finding myself more in 28G/30FF territory these days.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 9:26 am (5 years ago)

      They do have a really nice range of bras, from mid-price to higher end, a mix of styles and designs, etc. But yes, they only stock up to F cups, which cuts off a huge humber of women. There’s nothing wrong with stocking a limited size range, but there’s something VERY wrong with trying to cram everyone into it.

      Reply
  4. thelingerielesbian
    May 3, 2013 at 10:05 am (5 years ago)

    The thing that they so clearly cannot understand is that there is a material difference between being a mother who is also a sexual being and have sexual agency AND being a mother who others want to have sex with. There is nothing about ‘MILF’ which suggests sexual agency– it is all about objectification. Honestly, if they have gone with something like ‘sexy mom’ it would have been dumb, but at least not as wrongheaded as this terrible campaign. Uggh.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 10:09 am (5 years ago)

      YES. Thank you. Beautifully said.

      Reply
    • Sarah
      May 4, 2013 at 6:57 am (5 years ago)

      This is beautifully put.

      Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 12:24 pm (5 years ago)

      Yay! Thank you for the gif. I am currently way into gifs. Related: your recap posts make me want to go to there.

      Reply
  5. Estelle
    May 3, 2013 at 2:39 pm (5 years ago)

    I’ll admit I’m a little perplexed by this campaign! Surely there were better, less-controversial things to centre their marketing on? Although if it’s coverage they wanted (which I suspect it is), it’s coverage they got from all the bloggers writing about why the campaign is wrong. I hadn’t heard of True & Co three days ago, now I’ve read three blog posts about it ;)

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 2:43 pm (5 years ago)

      I agree: they certainly got coverage, but it’s a shame they’re not participating in the dialogue. I would have thought building a relationship with potential new customers, not alienating current customers, and creating good-word-of-mouth opportunities might have been a priority, but what do I know… :)

      Reply
  6. Another Mary
    May 3, 2013 at 3:04 pm (5 years ago)

    “If your underwire pains you, try a bralette!”

    Ha! Hahaha…oh, wait, that was actual advice.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 3:11 pm (5 years ago)

      heee. I heart you, Mary.

      Reply
    • Stacy
      May 4, 2013 at 7:54 am (5 years ago)

      That made me laugh too… My boobs in a bralette… bahahahahaha.

      Reply
  7. kvhd
    May 3, 2013 at 3:18 pm (5 years ago)

    I know i already commented once, but you posted it again on fb from your personal page so here I am again… and I was thinking. Who is the “I” in MILF?? It’s a term that is presumably being said first-person by a skeevy dude. I’d rather be known as a MWLF – a Mom Who Likes to…. because honestly, who doesn’t?

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 3:22 pm (5 years ago)

      I know, right? That’s the issue: MILF is all about someone doing something TO a woman. MWLF would be kind of a fun badge of honor ;)

      Reply
    • ko
      May 3, 2013 at 4:34 pm (5 years ago)

      Many asexuals do not like to.

      Reply
  8. XL Hourglass
    May 3, 2013 at 3:25 pm (5 years ago)

    When I tested the True and Co fit-thingy (yup, was also suggested more F-cups), I appearantly signed up for their newsletter too – seeing MILF in the subject line made me throw them right in the junk folder!

    I fully agree, it’s a disgusting term, and not something to mix with bra fitting.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 3:30 pm (5 years ago)

      Yeah, any email with “MILF” in it would be an automatic delete from me. If I would reject it from an OkCupid suitor, you better believe I’m gonna reject it from a bra company.

      Reply
  9. Another Mary
    May 3, 2013 at 3:42 pm (5 years ago)

    Okay, so I couldn’t resist taking the quiz–I figured I’d be a good candidate, as someone who knows a bit about bra fitting but still has a total of no bras that fit correctly. The first time around, I was stymied when they asked for the size of my favorite, best-fitting bra. My favorite bra is a 32G (though I’m going to need to move up to a 30H when I can afford new bras)…and their options only go up to an F. So I started over, using a bra that was my “favorite” several years ago (a 34DD) and describing the (numerous and varied!) fit problems I had while wearing that bra. SHOCKINGLY ENOUGH, the bras recommended to me were all 34DD and 34E.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 3:48 pm (5 years ago)

      Thank you for doing that FOR SCIENCE! I keep hoping someone will receive a good size suggestion, and those hopes are continually dashed.

      Reply
    • Estelle
      May 3, 2013 at 3:50 pm (5 years ago)

      I just tried it, got curious, and it actually gave me my real bra size. The one I wear most often anyway. I guess an algorithm can’t work for everyone though – you need to be fitted by an actual person with actual eyes!

      Reply
      • Sweets
        May 3, 2013 at 4:01 pm (5 years ago)

        Oh good, I’m glad it worked for you! I can’t lie that it is a really cool idea, and I wish more companies were better about shipping/returns. True & Co really seems to get that you have to actually try things on, so it’s nice they send you bras you pick and a few of their own suggestions and encourage you to send back whatever doesn’t work. It’s just a shame that the algorithm is so wildly hit-or-miss.

        Reply
      • milftastic
        July 3, 2015 at 6:27 pm (3 years ago)

        I am currently sending back my second set of bras. First set, too small, second set too big. The algorithms did not work for me. I think bras are something you just have to buy in person.

        Reply
  10. Chelsea
    May 3, 2013 at 5:51 pm (5 years ago)

    This Really Kind Of Irritates Me, Not Their Campaign, But What You’re Saying About It. It’s supposed To Be Funny, Not asking For A Bunch Of women Right Bullshit. It’s Rather Annoying When I See Other Women Do This, Seriously Can None Of You Take A Joke Just Once And Not Pull The Poor Me Card. I Didn’t Know Who They Were Until Now And It sounds Great So Just Take The Stick Out Of Your Ass And Hating On Great Company.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 6:20 pm (5 years ago)

      Hi Chelsea, I’m sorry that you feel that women’s feelings, treating customers with dignity and respect, and women’s rights all fall under the category of bullshit. I’m afraid that I disagree with you, so instead of trying to change your mind, let me suggest that there is a vast difference between “hating” and respectful criticism. As I’ve stated previously in these comments, True & Co provide an interesting service, a good range of products, and an appealing sales pitch. It works for some women, but there are huge contingents of women who might otherwise be customers, yet are currently alienated, either by improper fit suggestions or by insulting campaigns like this one. If True & Co would be willing to respond to these concerns and address them, they would indeed prove themselves to be a great company, and might win themselves more customers, thus helping themselves in the long run.

      Reply
      • Chelsea
        May 3, 2013 at 7:53 pm (5 years ago)

        I Get That But There Is No Campaign Every Person Will Agree With But That’s Life, No Reason To Complain About It Because A Few People That Don’t Like It Won’t Change It. The Only Reason I Dislike This Is Because It’s Written In A Way That Screams Feminism When We All Know That’s Not What They Were Trying To Do

        Reply
        • Sweets
          May 3, 2013 at 8:54 pm (5 years ago)

          I’m intrigued that you equate my desire for basic courtesy and good manners with feminism, and then act like it’s a bad thing.

          Reply
        • avi2kat
          May 4, 2013 at 12:21 pm (5 years ago)

          Wow. What is with the capitalizing every single word? I do find your reasoning very indicative of society as a whole: “don’t complain because what could we possibly do to change it.” Nothing will ever change unless people speak up against it. Black slavery wouldn’t have changed if everyone had decided that “because a few people don’t like it that won’t change it.” A few people didn’t like it and they spread the message and more people didn’t like it and that changed it. Same with voting rights for women. Change happens small. With change there must be a change of ideas, thus the way that women are thought about must change. What you call feminism is just a change in the zeitgeist. Marketing campaigns like True & Co’s are all about making money when it comes down to it. Capitalism. However, bloggers are telling True & Co that they shouldn’t be making money by promoting the objectification and negative labeling of women.

          Reply
      • Sarah
        May 4, 2013 at 6:58 am (5 years ago)

        STANDING OVATION RIGHT HERE.

        Reply
  11. Lita
    May 3, 2013 at 9:12 pm (5 years ago)

    I’m gonna be honest – it’s not the best term to use, but I didn’t think it was *that* bad… Then I was like, wait – is this for a mother’s day sale/promotion? Are you supposed to feel encouraged to buy bras for your mom with an ad proclaiming…

    ….

    I’m going to take a long shower.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 3, 2013 at 9:17 pm (5 years ago)

      Hahahaha, this made me laugh. Yeah, my understanding is that they’re actually encouraging you to submit photos of your mother if you think she’s a MILF, for an online photo wall. “Hey Mom, guess what I just did with that picture of you . . .” Yep, THAT would go well. :) I don’t have a problem with saying “hey Mom, you should totally see if a bra fitting would make you feel pretty and sexy, and if so I’d love to buy you a new set for Mother’s Day!” But somehow screeching “my mom’s a MILF!” is… not the same.

      Reply
      • Lita
        May 4, 2013 at 1:24 am (5 years ago)

        Completely agree! Getting her pretty bras is one thing, but MILF is a little too vulgar… And the photo thing is just bizarre.

        Reply
  12. Stacy
    May 4, 2013 at 8:02 am (5 years ago)

    I’m guessing they’re aiming at MILF being a compliment? Look, you’re hot!

    My husband calls me a MILF and waggles his eyebrows at me, and it’s wholly in the most lecherous way possible. Not precisely how I’d want to think about my mom…. Because you’re right, it’s very objectifying.

    I’m another one who had issues with True & Co when they came out. I wear around a 34GG, they don’t come in my size. I wrote them a very long comment when they first started up about it after getting a terrible size recommendations but clearly nothing has ever come of the feedback I’m sure they’re getting. They do nothing to help women understand how a bra should fit despite the promises and claims.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 4, 2013 at 10:28 am (5 years ago)

      See, just the way you said “in the most lecherous way possible”– that’s kind of adorable and sweet. My girlfriends have called themselves MILFs before, and their partners have, but it’s in the context of an intimate relationship between two loving people. True & Co’s campaign is a whole other can of worms.

      Reply
      • Stacy
        May 5, 2013 at 5:42 pm (5 years ago)

        Right. In the context of a relationship, it’s totally different.

        That said, I read the campaign to my husband and his mouth hung open in a sort of WTF expression. Then he said ‘EW!’ Clearly not how he wants to think of his mom either, haha!

        Reply
  13. Lisa
    May 16, 2013 at 11:30 pm (5 years ago)

    Although only time will tell, I will be very surprised if the campaign continues and is successful. I have run this idea, MILF before 9 girls in my family and the results were the same, a puzzled look followed by the “why” question. Why would any reputable company want to base a mainstream campaign on such a dubious, street language term that involves the “f” word? Huh? Forget their product which may be good, bad or indifferent. It may not be inappropriate for everyone but methinks it will simply not get off the ground. Just my opinion.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      May 17, 2013 at 10:03 am (5 years ago)

      I agree with you– I’ve heard a lot of women just say “ugh, why?” You were smart to poll your family :) It’s annoying and dumb and I hope it goes away.

      Reply
      • Lisa
        May 17, 2013 at 12:23 pm (5 years ago)

        While we are in a very competitive business environment, this does smack of desperation. Thanks for taking the time to respond. :)

        Reply
  14. SLG
    August 25, 2013 at 11:20 pm (5 years ago)

    Ok, so I never do this, because I rarely spend time on the internet, and I think it’s pointless to disagree with people who have a very strong idea about something, but I have decided to make an exception.
    All I wanted to do was come online real quick, try this “True & Co” company because I need a new bra and don’t have access to actual stores. I thought I’d look at a few reviews to make sure it was legit, and I stumbled across this.

    I’m sorry “Sweet Nothings” girl, but you need to pick your battles. It’s a little internet campaign. It is not running rampant and showing up on everyone’s computers. It’s not like the founders sat down and said “I really want to piss off some ladies so they’ll complain about it on the internet”. They thought it would be good for their business. Clearly you believe in some type of feministic idealism, however, honestly sweetie, you have bigger fish to fry. Try writing a blog educating people about the number of countries in the world that do not have laws against rape. Or launch a campaign to change the currently accepted gender wage gap in America. In other words- find a way to make a real difference. This is not it. Complaining on the internet will get you nowhere. However, actually acting on your ideas can.
    For example, take my friend. She is currently in Malawi, where she has started a community center to help local families keep their children, instead of having to bring them to orphanages due to monetary circumstances (and before you say “well some of us don’t have the money to do that”- no one does, that’s why government and private grants were invented, which she relied on fully). She’s teaching adult education courses, obtaining more grants to give money to locals who want to start a business, open a farm, etc. That way the children can stay with their families, have food and money to go to school, and grow up in their community and culture (instead of having to go to an orphanage and risk the possibility that they could be adopted by Americans, who think that a poorly thought through advertisement counts as a serious problem that needs to be addressed).

    Anyway, I know this post is pointless (more than likely all you will do is write a new post about people who hate blogs) but I feel a tiny bit better now, so at least there’s that.
    So, stop complaining about silly things sweetie. Life is short. Have fun and make a difference in the world.

    Hugs and Kisses- SLG

    Reply
  15. soundcolorlife
    September 4, 2013 at 11:24 pm (5 years ago)

    Wow… I was researching this company, as I’m working on a business plan and tried out their system…and found this article. Extremely useful info (never saw their ads or heard of em til I started researching box subscriptions – and I must say it matches my experience exactly. I’m a 28DD or 30D depending on brand, but have until recently only owned 32D’s simply due to availability. I challenged the site’s algorithm several times to rightly ID my correct size…and it failed. I realized that it was because they simply dont CARRY the 2 other sizes, so naturally their algorithm cant suggest them! Hello, ridiculous.
    I question if the founder herself even knows how to fit a bra – there’s much more to it than the few q’s asked in the quiz. With all the smart tech developers out there I’m kind of baffled by the lameness of the quiz, the algorithm, and the site interface too. And what the heck is with the $45 deposit?? Why do they even need that?
    I’d love to talk further with you on this topic for my research. If you’re interested, please email me!
    Many thanks for this blog post and telling it like it is.

    Reply
    • Sweets
      September 5, 2013 at 9:34 pm (5 years ago)

      I’m happy to talk, if you need anything! I’m sweenothingnyc[at]gmail[dot]com. I’ve never ordered from True & Co (obviously), but if you want to hear some more bra fitting type stuff and probably slightly judgey opinions, feel free to shoot me an email! :) Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply
  16. Ruca
    January 23, 2014 at 6:07 am (4 years ago)

    As an (almost) 42 year old mom to an 18-year-old and a 4-year-old whose absolutely mortified nearly-19-year-old GORGEOUS blond bombshell daughter is constantly complaining that she is sick to death of all her crushes, male and female, droning on and on about how hot her “milf” (gag; spew) mother is (and believe me, I’m really NOT), I have to tell you that ‘MILF” is the most god-awful, loathsome term I have ever had applied to me, and I find NOTHING about it remotely “fun.” In fact, I can taste the bitter bile rising in the back of my throat right now as I just think about how my skin crawls whenever my daughter bemoans this to me, and how my heart fills with a bizarre mixture of disgust, horror, sympathy for my daughter, and a tad of horrifying shame attributed to the undeniable little bit of flattery I would prefer to deny, but the one thing I do NOT feel is any desire to “own” the phrase “MILF” or even hear it again as long as I live. Pardon me as I wretch. **BLECH**

    That said, I was about to order from them, but I complained to my husband last night that this company is clearly more interested in selling my bras they stock then they are in actually fitting me in a bra that FITS. I mean, let’s take a look at my sad little bra collection, and examine the problems, shall we? I have perhaps 3 bras from Victoria Secret, all 34DD, and they are approximately 2 years old. Each one fits in the band, but I do have a little “back fat” spill over the edges which is less than flattering. The cups and the straps, on the other hand, are a clear case of a bandaid trying to cover a goiter (I am sorely lacking in analogy skills this close to 3 am… sorry). To be rather frank, EVERYTHING is spilling out. We’re talking Four Boob City here. Then, I have a 2 month old brassiere I bought from Target in a 36DD (do you know how long it takes to search through Tartet’s lingerie section to find a 36DD?? Am I seriously the only woman with boobs in my entire town?!?!?), and this one is, I believe, a Bali. It fit fantastically the first week. OH, JOY! But now? The band on the tightest hooks rides up my back and the straps fall off my shoulders over and over and over. *sigh* I HATE this bra.

    OK… I’m no expert… I’m just the unfortunate owner of a set of difficult ta-tas, but I would guess my real problem is that a 36 is slightly too big, a 34 may be a touch to small but still a better option, and that the 34DD cups are ridiculously small on me while the 36DD cups may be accurate. Perhaps a 34F, right? Not according to True & Co.! No matter how many which ways from Tuesday I have taken this test, I have gotten the following results: 36E or 36F, 34DD, 36D or 36DD, and my favorite: 38D or 38DD. I swear, I have retaken this test so many times in an effort to express to the “algorithm” that my band may be OK or too loose, and the cups are certainly too small, but not once does it suggest a 34F, even when I describe the 36DD as a good to snug fit in the cups and the band as sliding up my back, or the 34DD as barely covering my nipples while fitting comfortably in the band. No… True & Co. is rather convinced my problem is a tight band, not a small cup.

    Now, they do have a few 34Fs and I am certainly willing to try on a few of those as well as a few of the 36E and 36DD bras they have suggested, but I don’t like this idea that whatever my true size may be is irrelevant if they don’t stock it fully. I’m sorry, but all I want is a descent over-the-shoulder-boulder-holder to place the girls in and not throw out my back, not have it snap, not have to reach into my sweater to adjust my shoulder straps every 10 minutes, and not have to worry about, period. Is that asking too much??

    I feel ashamed to admit this… but I am still toying with the idea of trying out the free try-on box just because I can forgo the whole sizing system, pick my own sizes, then send them all back on their dime if I absolutely hate these things. If I have to spend one more moment in a Vicky S, I’ll probably get 5150’d for terrorist threats because I’m really over it… I’ve had their “fitters” feel me up just to have one tell me “34D” and another tell me 38DD” in the same afternoon. I hate fitting rooms because I don’t need anyone besides myself, my husband, and my NSA webcam viewing audience (I jest, I jest) seeing my boobs. I mean, hell… I’d love a hot mama bra that makes me look like Bettie Page in her prime (LOL! Not gonna happen), but I don’t need to have a Bettie Page audience watching me try it on, ya dig?

    I have considered trying out the new online fitting process with the Livi Rae crew, but that is an awkward issue of sending off nearly-nudies of myself to a bunch of strangers via email because, you know, that’s TOTALLY not weird at all, right? Hmm… I’m the sort of woman who still asks the husband to turn down the lights before I undress because I don’t want the man I share children with to see me partially unclothed in an unflattering light, so you might imagine how yucky I feel about sending topless photos off to some rather boisterous and loud southern ladies with a TV program about bras and boobs.

    What would you suggest? I love the way you write, so this must mean I can trust your bra fitting advice (haha or maybe it’s the fact that you clearly understand why a bralette isn’t the solution to my problems, or that you get why all sorts of various underwire issues may occur). I am also curious if they ever followed up with you or anyone about this rancid ad campaign, because I would feel a lot better about testing their products if I knew they “owned” that they had made a rather shitty marketing move. No, really. I want them to OWN IT. It’s not like I’ll ever “own” that stupid, asinine MILF word, after all.

    Thanks so much! <3 xox

    Reply
    • Sweets
      January 23, 2014 at 7:49 am (4 years ago)

      Hi Ruca! I’m so sorry to hear you’re having the same trouble with True & Co that I did, and that you haven’t had great fitting experiences at Victoria’s Secret. I do have a couple of suggestions! The first is: do you have a Nordstrom, or a reputable independent boutique near you? I know you said you didn’t feel great about doing an in-store fitting, but trying on bras with someone there to give you advice in person is a really good way to start your fit journey. Nordstrom stores have very good D+ stock, and as long as you’re clear about what’s comfortable for you in terms of another person’s seeing or touching you, it could be a really good experience.

      Secondly, sounds like your instinct to try some fuller cup sizes is spot on. If you haven’t checked out my introductory fitting guide, it could help clarify whatever issues are leading to your discomfort. Based on what you’ve told me, I’d suggest sticking with a 34 band and trying some E, F, FF, G, etc. cups, until you find a cup size that fully contains your breast tissue and allows the wires to sit flat against your sternum and ribs. Once the cup size is right, if the band feels too loose (if you can easily pull it two or more inches away from your body, or you’re hooking it right away on the tightest set of hooks), you might consider trying one band size down and one cup size higher. There are some great retailers out there who offer generous return policies, so if you’re not sure about going to a store, maybe consider ordering a BUNCH of different sizes and having a massive try-on session at home? Nordstrom, again, offers free shipping and returns, but some other great retailers are Bare Necessities, Figleaves, Bravissimo, Breakout Bras, A Sophisticated Pair, and Butterfly Collection.

      Speaking of Butterfly Collection, they offer at-home Skype fitting sessions! Claire is a warm, compassionate, smart, and incredibly, incredibly knowledgeable fitter, and she and her team will be happy to steer you in the right direction.

      I hope this helps!

      Reply
      • Ruca
        January 23, 2014 at 9:07 pm (4 years ago)

        Thank you so much! I will look into your suggestions. I’m a bit disappointed since at least one of the bras I found on the True & Co. site is a very unique racer-back style I was hoping to try, but the closest fit would be a 36DD, which I expect will fit great for almost a whole week before it turns into a necklace from riding up my back so high. I’ll try Norsdstrom first, and bookmark the other suggestions, as well as this blog.

        Thanks again! :)

        Reply
      • Ruca
        January 24, 2014 at 6:58 am (4 years ago)

        I’ll definitely be making a trip to Nordstom, per your advice. Found an old, wonky VS bra that never fit no matter what size I was in because it’s molded but not padded, sized at 34DD but the cups were big enough to fit socks in when I really was a 34DD and still too big when I was fitting nicely in a brand new 36DD. It’s fitting perfectly now, for the first time, ever. I measured with a little help from the husband, and I’m a band 35 (fitting best in 34) and then 42 1/4 across the bust. 34H? Yeah.. True & Co definitely cannot help me. There are is a shockingly large selection of 34FFF, 34G, 34GG, and 34H at Nordstrom, and CUTE, too! I can’t recall the last time I had a friggin’ cute bra. Figures, they all run around 90 bucks, but I’m at the “who cares if it fits?” stage of my life.

        Thank you for so much awesome, and you got a new follow out of me. ;) <3

        Reply
  17. Amy
    March 13, 2014 at 1:06 am (4 years ago)

    You are brilliant and you are so right. I was going to check out their site, but decided to first read reviews. I am now conveniently forgetting their name.

    Reply
  18. Munchausen Syndrome
    May 8, 2014 at 12:55 pm (4 years ago)

    Thanks so much for this post! I was on the fence about doing this but not really impressed by this particular ad campaign either (and would have never known had you not written about it) so I think I just might pass on it!

    In any case, really do appreciate your bad ass writing voice and look forward to browsing through your blog! :)

    Reply
  19. Kathy Tobacco
    September 26, 2014 at 11:55 pm (4 years ago)

    I had problems with the test because I couldn’t express exactly what I wanted in a bra. They can understand my fit all day but they don’t know me and they can’t guess what I desire, what clothes I wear, and my lifestyle. Those effect bra choices. I wanted lift without any extra size. I am not particularly busty I just like my silhouette the way it is. Plus I wanted some bras that were for home and lounging. I work at home but I always like to be dressed for out. There was no way to specify those kinds of needs and issues.

    I ordered 4 bras based on the recommendations from the test and 2 out of 4 fit me well. I really didn’t want to be part of the “Free Box” program but I was dismayed out how my bras were just thrown in cheap thin plastic bag- no pretty box, no tissue, no love. With the free box they act like they are doing their customer a big favor which spills over to their regular customers like me. Read the terms and you won’t get the warm fuzzies. The 5 day or else 20 dollar restocking fee is absurd especially since they were slow to send the bras after they had my money. I DID find two good bras but I doubt I will order from them again.

    I missed the MILF controversy. I will say that I might laugh at a random MILF comment but I do expect less familiarity and vulgarity from a bra merchant. I am glad you gave them grief. :)

    Reply
  20. Grace
    March 5, 2015 at 7:50 pm (3 years ago)

    I can see why some people find it clever. Personally, I don’t. But I suppose everyone has their taste.

    I’ve tried their service 3 times, and I’ve found one bra that I liked – and it was $88. I also mistakenly ordered 2 items that were final sale WHILE I was on the Home Try On shopping option. I made a mistake, I told them it was a mistake and I kindly asked them if they could make an exception and give me a refund. They refused, and it took me about 5-6 emails and calls to reach a manager. I even had to follow up twice to an email. She told me she’d give me store credit, but only after $20 restocking fee for each item. Great. For a relatively new company, True and Co did not seem like they were trying to win over people with exceptional service. I’ve been continuously trying the home try on so I can use my $150+ in store credit (SUCH A BUMMER!), but I have yet to find a bra that was both comfortable and attractive. Most of them are unlined – you know, those bras that are literally one piece of extremely thin fabric and are really more for cute factor than literally anything else. I have nipples, people. I’m sorry, but this woman is not a DD with such tiny nipples that I can get off with wearing a completely unlined bra in public.

    Sigh. Waste of money & time.

    Reply

2Pingbacks & Trackbacks on Are we SERIOUSLY supposed to be on board with True & Co.’s MILF campaign?

  1. […] would be, there simply is no single method, no one system, no perfect “algorithm” (who can’t let it go?  Is it me?) that will spit out the perfect bra size for each and every woman.  It would be swell […]

  2. […] first birthday last year, because I was so busy watching Captain America in my jammies and writing a cranky post about True & Co. This year, as we turn 2, I wanted to get started a day early so I could take the time to thank […]

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