Addition Elle x Ashley Graham Review: The Plus Size Victoria's Secret
These items were purchased by me. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
I wrote about the banned ads by Addition Elle last week, so this week I'm going to go ahead and review some of their lingerie! Addition Elle has released a lingerie collection in conjunction with Ashley Graham each season for awhile now, but I'd never been able to try their lingerie since they didn't go up to my cup size. Thankfully they've now made several options available in G and H cup models, which meant that I could give two sets a try.
A word about sizing: Addition Elle lists DDD sizes, which made me think they were using US sizing and I wouldn't fit into the line. However, once I plugged my measurements into the calculator it put me into one of my two standard UK sizes (a 36H). I'm still not sure what sizing system they're going with, but my experience shows that their calculator is pretty trustworthy.
I purchased both sets available in my size, but they fit fairly differently. While this blue set looked sort of basic to me on the website, I really love it on. It's completely sheer, which is hard to find in plus size lingerie. The color is perfect for spring, the embroidery is pretty and the cut out gore makes the bra work for lots of different breast tissue types. The matching panties hit right at my belly button, which is my preferred height for high waisted panties. I'm 5'4" and short waisted, so if you're taller than me or long waisted then this may be an issue for you. The band on this bra was perfect. This is truly the closest I've felt to wearing a Victoria's Secret set since, well, ever.
One quick note: If you are used to full bust/fuller figure bras with strong side support wings, this bra is going to feel really different. It's exactly what it advertises - fully sheer stretch lace and not much else. I love this, but I know not everyone does.
I don't own a ton of black lingerie or moulded cup bras, but I liked the cut out gore featured with this set and it was on sale for $57.00 including international shipping, so I took the plunge. While it's pretty, the fit was incredibly different from the first set despite the size being the same.
While this set is wearable, it's certainly not the great fit that the first one was. The band on this is much larger - I can wear it on the second set of hooks to start with and would go down to a 34 if it was available. The cups are also smaller, but the fact that they're moulded and not stretch lace probably contributes to this as well. I have firm breast tissue and really close set breasts, which can make moulded/padded cup bras a challenge to start with. That said, I wore this for a whole day to try it and didn't have to do much readjustment and didn't feel like I was falling out of it. I wish the band was smaller and the cups were half a size bigger, but it's still wearable and comfortable. Again, this bra doesn't have the super strong side support that full bust/fuller figure companies build with, so it's going to feel different on than an Elomi or a Panache bra. Once again, the panties are a perfect fit in a 1X (the smallest size Addition Elle makes).
In terms of cost, one of these sets will run you somewhere around $55 to $68, depending on whether you catch them on sale or not. Herein lies my one big issue with this lingerie line: it's marketed as a luxury plus size lingerie line, while it's really a fantastic budget option. There's nothing wrong with that - as I said, this is the closest I've gotten to wearing a Victoria's Secret bra and that's a good thing. However, I think advertising a luxurious or luxury experience with a budget line is silly. It also helps further confuse customers about the real differences between luxury or couture lines and regular lingerie lines, which makes it harder for everyone to market their lingerie.
So what's my verdict? The underwired lace set will get put into my regular rotation, while the padded set will be more of an occasional wear. That said, both are worth purchasing, especially if you can find them on sale. I'd eagerly go back and try more Addition Elle sets in the future, especially if they're of the stretch lace variety.