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Fact Check: Does ThirdLove Offer More Bra Sizes Than Any Other Lingerie Brand?

ThirdLove released 24 new bra sizes this week, and the fashion world is all aflutter with breathless headlines praising the startup for making more bra sizes than any other lingerie brand.

ThirdLove’s very own co-founder, David Spector, even made this dubious claim on Twitter. The only (obvious) problem? It’s completely and totally false (I would say a lie, but I’m trying to be more tactful in 2018).



While ThirdLove’s 70 bra sizes are impressive (especially since these new plus and full bust sizes include multiple shades of nude), ThirdLove is by no means the only bra company “in the world” to offer 70 sizes. And it’s distressing to see a company’s co-founder quite literally make up “facts” wholecloth.

It took me only a few minutes to come up with a handful of companies that have more than or the same number of sizes as ThirdLove. And I’m not a journalist. I just love underwear. I would expect any journalist – but especially one focusing on fashion – to be at least as good as me at fact-checking.

I’ve just finished reading Bad Blood by John Carreyrou, which details the rise and fall of another startup,  Theranos. While bra sizing is by no means a life-and-death matter on the scale of blood testing, I can’t help but think of how quickly the lessons we should have learned from Theranos – a company which lied constantly and had their lies simply repeated as fact by the media – have already been forgotten.

When a company’s cofounders misinform the public, it makes it more difficult to trust that company. ThirdLove’s 70 sizes are an incredible accomplishment, and the quality of the product stands on its own (I’m personally a fan of ThirdLove’s bras). So I just don’t understand why the fiction is necessary.

Last year, our columnist Quinne talked about how startup and tech culture hurts the lingerie industry, and I can’t help but think of what she said here:

I’m not disparaging companies for trying to make money. After all, that’s the point of a business. But to claim you’re doing things no one has ever done before? To claim you’re fixing things that are broken in ways you haven’t tried to understand? And then to claim you’re helping people? That’s not improving the industry for anyone. That’s just taking advantage of people.

The lingerie industry is a world full of secrets. There’s all this confusing jargon and weird ways of doing things, and most lingerie brands, to be perfectly honest, are terrible at marketing.

America loves a disruptor. We love the bright, the new, and the shiny. But we shouldn’t like deception. Or people that trade in misinformation. With all the “fake news” that’s happening in the world today, can we please at least try keep it out of lingerie?


Cora
Cora Harrington

Founder and Editor in Chief of The Lingerie Addict. Author of In Intimate Detail: How to Choose, Wear, and Love Lingerie. I believe lingerie is fashion too, and that everyone who wants it deserves gorgeous lingerie.

4 Comments on this post

  1. Sophie says:

    I first checked out Third Love’s bras about 6 months ago and found that they didn’t carry my size, 32H. At that time I contacted the company and let them know.

    When I saw the recent announcement in the press about the additional sizes, I thought – finally, they will stock my size! But I was shocked to find out that even with the expanded sizes, they still do not carry 32H (at least, I was unable to find it on their website). I can find this size in many brands, including Panache, Freya, Curvy Kate, etc. So I would agree that this company’s boasting is way out of line and inaccurate.

  2. Joan says:

    This blog may not make friends in the industry, but I would like to think that the lingerie and bra companies I buy from are being honest about their products. I wear a bit of an usual bra size and trying to find well constructed, comfortable and attractive bras has been a struggle. I have found many times that companies advertise a huge selection of bra sizes and styles to find out that (once again) that company doesn’t even have a sister size I can try! Truth in advertising should be a must! And owners of and CEOs in an industry should know their product, their competitors and their clients in order to stay relavant. You may think you haven’t made friends with this blog, but I say you have earned respect, trust, loyalty and friends in the people who read your blog! I personally respect your opinion on lingerie companies and have never been stirred wrong by your impressions. I hope TLA becomes a voice that companies strive to impress and get approval from. Your blogs are intelligent, thought out and well researched. I very much enjoy reading the TLA blog and articles you come out with. Keep up the good work!

  3. Maria says:

    Not true. For years Panache and Freya from UK or Ewa Michalak, Dalia, KrisLine from Poland are offering way more sizes of bras.
    But – good start! Go on!

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