Why Are Bras So Expensive?

Photo: AJ Batac

Cora Harrington, bra expert behind The Lingerie Addict, has seen both sides of the issue blossom as a consumer and consultant to brands. As a black woman operating as a blogger in the lingerie industry, she has a particular investment in the success of the one brand that is producing bras for her skin color. “Fast fashion always offers a discount and it makes people think sales are the norm. There’s a secrecy in the American market: you should get whatever you want, this should be on sale, the customer is always right. That’s not the case in lingerie. Let’s stop this trend of penalizing minority businesses because they don’t have access to the same resources as majority-owned corporations. If your budget can only stretch to Target, petition Target to carry bras in a range of hues. Ask Wal-Mart to carry some brown bras. Hit up the H&M Facebook page, and start tweeting at Forever21. But while we’re being honest, let’s talk about what’s feasible for a new brand, and acknowledge the business reality that cheap bras are something only a few global conglomerates can actually afford. Independent design is a different world, and the story is so much more complex than it’s given due.”

— Beauty writer (and lover of lingerie) Arabelle Sicardi writes at Racked about the small, independent designers and boutiques struggling to provide quality underthings in the face of climbing costs and customer entitlement.

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