Your Input Wanted! Fashionable Clothes For Women with BC

Hi all,
Having had bilateral mx I’ve encountered problems with finding fashionable clothes. Particular issues for me have included hiding scarring, having the option of not wearing a bra and breast forms without making it glaringly obvious that I’m boobless, and swim wear.
Other problems I know include lymphoedema, asymmetry of breasts after WLE, or single mx, and skin damage.
I have a young friend studying at the London College of Fashion who I’ve persuaded to work on this problem, and we’re looking for input from people with bc regarding problems encountered with clothing, and suggestions as to what you would like to wear.
Libby my friend is keen to link with big retailers, and has also contacted bcc about this.
Would anyone here like to be involved?
I haven’t thought about men, but if you do have any clothing-related problems please say and we can think about that too.
Thanks girls and maybe guys!
Bubble Trouble x

Hi, I would be happy to help with this. I have had a single mx - no recon as yet. Please pm me if you wish.
Lesley

Hi Bubble

I would like to be involved with this, I’m a young 52 had a WLE, now have mild lymphoedema and hot flushes. My biggest issues are bra’s (36DD) V necklines that don’t show said humungus bra’s and nice tops generally that hide the top/most of my pressure sleeve but are not clingy so I don’t overheat too much!

Looking forward to seeing what your friend comes up with, I am sure there is a market for nice clothes that can accommodate our needs and many younger women who must find buying nice clothes a nightmare.

DaisyGirl xx

I think bras are the main issue here … why do they always look so ugly? Why cant we have sexy underwear … ?? I’m more than happy to have any input … just message me. I am 51 with an MX.

Hi Bubble,
I’m not really a fashion girl, but just to note that pretty post-surgery bras would be a good thing - some are better than others it has to be said, but most as very “functional”. I’ve had mx and immeidate LD recon so have a big (8") scar on my back which is not hidden by the bra-strap despite best efforts and claims of my surgeon; low back/backless things aren’t my ‘thing’ but obviously swimsuits show the scar which extends from spine to underarm.

Whilst I’m not really the right kind of girl for your friend’s project, I think it’s a really importsnt and valauble piece of work and wish them well.

I’d be quite happy to get involved too. One of the major problems I’ve encountered is getting suitable clothing and bras for those of us who are very small. Purpose made things all seem to start at a UK 10 and I’ve found it nigh on impossible to get bras that fit.

PM me if needed!

Nymeria x

I’m happy to get involved.
Single Mx, unable to have recon for at least 2 years, generously endowed on one side and half my current clothing is no bliddy good now as the necklines are too low.

Hi Bubble, what a great idea. I’m 46 and have had WLE and SNB on 16th Aug, and realised that all of my clothes had to go over my head, so would have loved tops made from cooling material that buttoned up the front. Went searching for more clothes and the only thing I could find were work shirts or hoodies!!! I am 36G and size 10 bottom half, so I tend to stay away from anything fitted as I look ridiculous! Would love to see somebody design some fashionable tops, not just hoodies, that look good.

Bumping up, I’ll think about this and respond over the weekend. Thanks, Elinda x

Hi

Happy to be involved. Aged 64 with a bilateral MX and no recon. I can’t be bothered to wear a prothesis and struggle to find clothes with enough fabric that hangs to disguise my new flat shape. Pm me if I can be of any help

Andie

It’s the necklines that are the biggest problem for me ( single mastectomy and no recon) but being an overweight blob post chemo doesn’t help. I was an overweight blob from steroids before BC and had just exercised my way down a stone and a half when that mammogram showed a problem. This lot is proving very hard to shift.
Currently looking for a wedding guest outfit and confidence is quite low. I have only shopped online so far or where I can pick something up without trying it on in the shop. Dread someone saying “Oh, if you’ve got it, flaunt it” because I haven’t got half of it anymore.
And of course everyone says “You look so well” and “Isn’t your hair nice and curly”.
PM me if your friend wants a blob to experiment on. But we have lots of gorgeous younger ladies who would probably showcase her effots better and they are truly worth it.

My biggest problem is I’m very tall and struggle with clothes anyway, now with single mx (delayed recon) I think I’m going to struggle to find mx bras / swimwear to fit (I haven’t tried any on even after 5 months and still not got around to getting my prosthesis) bra straps are never long enough and swimsuits will inevitably cut me in half, so to speak, tankinis/bikinis will be my only real option (apart from not swimming). I’m sure I will have same issues over the next few months with clothing issues re: neckline / shape etc as I know most of my wardrobe will need replacing / adapting also.

I’m happy to be involved too.

Dear everyone,
wow that response on its own justifies the project I think. Thank you all for your replies, that’s exactly the kind of information we need.
I would like to point out that my idea of ‘fashionable clothes’ means clothes for all women, of whatever shape, size and age, who would like to look good and feel confident about themselves. I wasn’t meaning only the younger women among us. I myself am 50, tall and formerly athletic-looking, but now a stone or 3 overweight and breastless after the trials of the last year. I like nice clothes, and also functional clothes that don’t make me feel like a flat-chested blob.
Libby is interested in how clothes make women feel, and doesn’t do fashion just because it’s fashionable. She’s written a book to raise money for BCC already (at the ripe old age of 16!) called ‘Love Pink’.
This is her blog if you’re interested to know something about her.
lovepinklibbypage.blogspot.com/
So we’re interested in all of your views, and all of your clothing needs and desires. We’d really like to try to address some of the issues around clothing for women like us - there are lots of us after all!
Thanks again for your time, I’ll be in touch very soon
BT x

Libby, we need you, and I am not just talking about those of us who are mono boobed, you will appeal to women of all shapes ages and sizes.
Great blog, wishing you every success.
And thanks to Bubble Trouble for letting us know about you

Super blog - thanks for the link.

Clothes that make us feel confident sounds good - I’m just a boringly practical kind of a girl when it comes to clothes, but even so good colours and good cut makes a difference to how I feel. Maybe I’m in after all?! :slight_smile:

Hi

Im happy to be involved. Im 51 , had WLE on both sides so have quite a “odd” shape. I hate the heavily padded bras and find the wirde bras so uncomfortable. I find myself wearing cropped tops …comfy but not flattering. Also quite conscious of my scars when wearing tops , swimsuits etc.
Great idea!

sue x

Ladies, don’t get rid of any low cut tops … just wear a camisole or vest underneath … works a treat. Or buy one of those bras with a lacey insert so it shows under your top. And I have just had clothes altered and pockets put in for the prosthesis at a specialist mastectomy shop.

Clothes that make us feel good about ourselves and also make us look good!

I’ve had a double mx and now also have mild lymphodema. These are my thoughts:

  1. With the loss of so much tissue on the chest wall, I have a bit of a caved in look at the top of my chest (even with prostheses) so anything that is cut wide or low is absolutely useless for me. So many tops and dresses are cut like this now.

  2. I’d love something to balance out my shape which is now wider from the waist down and thin around the bust (I used to be 38 FF). As my tummy isn’t flat if I’m not careful that looks the curviest part of me! So something to accentuate and draw the eye to top half of the body without emphasising it’s thinness there - a big ask!

  3. With regards to lymphodema, this summer I wanted to have some nice long sleeve cotton shirts - not something dull but really unusual/pretty/stylish. I tan incredibly quickly so if I have one arm in a compression sleeve and one arm in the sun I’m going to look very odd very fast.
    Trying to find anything that had a full length sleeve was very difficult almost impossible this year. Finding something nice was even harder.
    I got one from a shop called East last year which is white cotton and is so pretty and I’ve had lots of people say how much they like it - more of that kind of thing please!

  4. As above, the same in the winter. I want cardigans, jumpers etc that are stylish but with a full length sleeve. The other issue is that often the sleeves are quite tight and it’s impossible to wear it with the compression sleeve as well (clothes tend to cling to the compression sleeve).

  5. Also very light cardigans for days or places where it is warmer. I did get a lovely one from M&S this summer which is white and floaty. Often these more summery types of cardigan have three quarter length sleeves.

Elinda x

My main problem at the moment is my lymphodema and lack of mobility in my shoulder/arm following a LD immediate recon. I have to buy sleevless tops and dresses as I struggle to get clothes with sleeves off if they don’t have a back zip or front buttons. (my days as a strip tease artist are well and trully over ha, ha) As I wear a compression sleeve every day I usually wear a cardi, coupled with hot flushes I tend to always be too warm. So tops/dresses with deeper armholes and looser sleeves would be a help to me.

I’m 37 and had MX this year… last year over the summer I lived in strapless bras and thin strap tops… not anymore. So I would love to find more bras with clear straps or none!..
Tops well just having them cut so that my bra doesnt show would be great… i didnt display it b4 BC and dont want to now! But without being ageist I find that tops that cover it all are the type my mum wears, shes 64 but dreasses about 100!
So please help us…we are normal after all!