As Dolly Parton once said, ‘I was the first woman to burn my bra – it took the fire department four days to put it out.’
Even though many gals long ago ditched their bras a recent British study found that the average woman spends $4,000 on these necessary evils in her lifetime. She owns about 16 at any given time and tops up her collection with four purchases each year.
Apparently we all have enough bras to go at least two weeks without doing laundry.
According to a lingerie expert every woman’s ‘bra wardrobe’ should include three essentials – the everyday bra; the sports bra and the strapless bra.
There are bras with nipples on the outside to poke through tee-shirts. Water bras with gold fish swimming around in them and ones that can hold a bowl of rice and come with chop sticks.
If you are feeling extravagant or hanging with Miranda Kerr when she is cleaning out her closet there is the A $1.35 million bra made of 2500 diamonds or the ‘Golden Bra,’ a steal at just US$1.9 Million.
There are even bras for men which are called ‘bros’ or ‘boob holsters.’
Millions of women around the world meanwhile do not own a single bra. Not through choice but simply because they cannot afford one or have no way of buying one.
Since 2005 the amazing UPLIFT PROJECT has sent 750,000 bras wherever women have requested them. They have winged their way to across the world to areas as diverse as the South Pacific, outback Australia, Kashmir and remote Pakistan.
Often the bra received through Uplift will be the only bra that woman owns.
Why do they even need one you may ask? Uplift explains:
“Women appreciate the common dignity of a bra for business or social occasions. Bras control breast swing when women bend to garden or cook at ground level. In humid climates rashes, fungal infections and abscesses occur between the breast and the chest wall. Bras help by allowing air circulation. Nursing mums everywhere leak, and bras allow the dignity of a dry shirt, and the comfort of support. A thrush rash on a mother’s skin may spread to her baby’s mouth, and then back into the breast itself. A mastectomy bra offers privacy about the problem.”
Swimwear is also needed. It keeps you warm while fishing or diving for cash crops. Diapers and new panties are also in great demand.
Mastectomy bras and prostheses are like gold.
So I have been collecting cast-offs from all my girlfriends. Many of them didn’t have a clue how many unworn bras were lurking at the bottom of drawers and the back of closets.
Local thrift stores have been saving their best ones for me. All are in excellent condition, many new. Top designers. Some are gigantic – and that’s great. I read how a Botswana lady – size 50H – recently received a perfect fit from an Australian sister.
I wonder how many bras Dolly Parton owns? Surely enough to outfit the rest of Botswana.