May 2017 Month in Review (The Month of Bras)

May was a disaster, but if I subtract out the bras, it's normal to good. I think the problem is that I basically acted like I have a separate budget for bras unrelated to my normal personal budget, only I don't. There's no, like, extra bra money. But I need bras!

Why I Need Bras
My bra size keeps changing. This is my third size change since I found "my true bra size," which is making me think that there's no such thing as my true bra size - it's always going to fluctuate. I had been blithely wearing ill-fitting bras for some time now, but it reached a tipping point in the last couple of months because the cups were so ill-sized on me that it was making the band uncomfortably tight. I'd come home from work and have angry red lines on my chest from bands that used to fit. This actually impacts my life because I didn't want to wear my bras and I'm not comfortable going out without a bra, so I was actually tempted to spend more time at home (going home right away from work and then taking off my bra and not leaving, for example). Just because of my bra-related discomfort!

As soon as I started noticing it, I realized that all my bras were unacceptable. My everyday bras were all the same model and size and had been bought at the same time (in fall 2015), so this wasn't surprising, but it was also true of my sport bras and my only swim top, which I could no longer even fit into.

WIth gradual problems, I have a tendency to deal with problems up to a certain point then suddenly need them fixed RIGHT NOW. Had I noticed it sooner, I could have taken my time with this bra search, but by the time I got started, it really felt like I needed bras yesterday. So I went a little nuts.

Instead of re-ordering from my usual Polish company, I decided to start from scratch and see if there were any new UK bras on ordinary e-retail sites to try. That was my second mistake. I went on a loooong, wild goose chase and ended up back with Poland anyway. But, I did end up ordering slightly different sizes than I otherwise would have, so I guess I learned something… I hope! (I just made the Poland order and won't receive them for more than a month.)

The State of the Bras
Here's the damage after one full month of bra shopping.

  • Ordered, not yet received: $316 (4 bras, 2 swim tops; this is from June money, to be fair)
  • Current bradrobe, but the jury is out on all of them: $389 (7 everyday bras, 2 sport bras; I will almost certainly sell at least 4 of these "everyday" bras and maybe one of the sport when I find better ones to replace them with)
  • Bras I bought, wore briefly, then listed for sale within the same month: $146 (3 everyday bras, 1 sport bra; I already sold one of these for $30 so the net spend is $116 and may be less if I sell the others)
  • Bras I returned: I'm not going to list the purchase price since I was able to recover the sale price on these (or I have every expectation that I will.) But I should let you know that this accounts for 19 bras, for which 11 ($407) have yet to be repaid. Of the 18, 1 was sport bra, 6 were swim tops, and the rest were everyday bras.
  • Bras I already had before this bra blitz, and kept, and plan to keep: Zero. Zero bras. But I sold 4 of them for $15 each, so I made $60 here.

Total spend this bra blitz (net spend in every category except returns): $761
Total bra spend in May (net spend in every category except returns & June orders): $445

Other Stuff (Not Bras)

  • Work Clothes - $93
    I picked up a cheap sweater at Goodwill for $5.50, a work dress for $53, and a pair of Brooks Brothers pants from eBay for $34… but I still might return these, if I can. The fit isn't perfect but I was anxious to grab some more work pants, as they are also disintegrating at an alarming rate, but one thing at a time.
  • Hiking stuff - $158
    Prior to a vacation which involved some hiking (and could potentially have involved swimming but I didn't have a swim top), I bought a pair of hiking boots and 3 pairs of wool crew socks. I also got some boot waterproofing spray. (In a previous month, I talked about buying a pair of boots which were too small and trying to stretch them. This didn't work, so I sold the boots for $60. So you can arguably subtract that from this total.)
  • Travel Toiletry Organizer - $28
    This was totally unnecessary because I have like two others, but I love this kind of stuff.
  • Hand lens - $25
    This is botany supplies for my plant class.
  • Running clothes - $26
    A pair of running shorts. This was a remarkably non-dramatic purchase, mainly because it's an exact copy of a pair I'd gotten in a previous month.

Total May spend (non-bras): $330
Total May spend (with bras): $775 


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