laundry day bra syndrome

Anyone who has ever worn a bra has probably experiences Laundry Day Bra Syndrome, or LDBS. LDBS happens when all your good bras are in the wash but you can’t / don’t want to go bra-less, so you pull out a old bra that has been relegated to the back of the drawer. You know, one of the bras that still has enough life in it to merit being saved from a ride to the dumpster, but that has enough wrong with it that you’ve removed it from daily rotation. It has become a back-up bra for occasions just like these. You don’t have to rely on these back-up bras very often so the memory of whatever physical horror they may have been causing that brought you to buy replacement bras has faded and been tinged rosy with nostalgia.

‘This was always a good bra’, you say to yourself as you pull it out of the drawer.

You put it on and pull up the straps (unless you’re one of those sorceresses that puts their bra on straps-first, in which case, I am both in awe and slightly afraid of you). You do the swoop-and-scoop maneuver and adjust your boobs in the cups. You look down at your very satisfactory cleavage and wonder why you don’t actually wear this bra more often. The shirt you don seems to sit better across your chest than ever before, and you vow to add this clearly lost gem of a bra back into your regular rotation.

All is happy and right. Tits up, shoulders back, you feel like you and your rediscovered favorite foundation garment can take on the world. You strut through the next couple hours of your day like the patriarchy-smashing goddess you were always meant to be. There’s that one tiny spot where the bra band is starting to ride up just a bit under your left arm, but it’s hardly even noticeable. You toss your hair triumphantly and throw the person bagging your groceries a little wink, just because.

As the day wears on, that tiny spot riding up under your left arm becomes a little larger. While bending down to reach for something, the whole left side of the bra’s band suddenly rolls up like a window shade that has been pulled too hard and sprung violently. It’s ok, though! Small price to pay for such great support, right? You look down to admire your rack again, then reach around and dig the rolled-up band out of your flesh with a smile. The band immediately starts to creep up again. You briefly consider sticking it down with some double-stick tape, then move on with your day.

By mid afternoon things have deteriorated significantly. You are embroiled in a near-constant struggle with the bra. Every time you move your left arm, the band rolls up into your armpit and requires excavation. When you turn to the right, the inside tip of the underwire pokes you in the side of your breast. The wonderful support you were so enamored with this morning has all but completely dissolved as the back of the bra will now not stay put at all. The structural integrity of the straps is questionable at best – one is digging so deeply into your shoulder that it’s compressing a nerve which is in turn causing three of your fingers to go numb, while the other one has loosened to the point of abject pointlessness. You now remember very clearly why this piece-of-shit waste-of-money symbol of oppression had been shoved in the back of your drawer, and that’s exactly where it’s going back to as soon as you can get away with taking it off. Because, after all, it’s still got enough life to merit keeping it a while longer even though it’s got issues. You know, as an emergency bra. You vow to make a tag that says “EMERGENCY ONLY” to affix to the bra as a warning to Future You.

There comes a moment – perhaps in the late afternoon, perhaps in the early evening – when you simply can’t take it anymore. It’s you or the bra, and since you’re the one with brain power and thumbs, you win. That fetid combination of spandex, wire and hate gets shucked off and flung across the room as you let out a whoop of relief.


The bra lays there, rejected, in the corner for a while. But it eventually gets picked up, washed, and put back into the drawer…where it will lurk in wait for the desperation of another laundry day when all the good bras are once again unavailable.

13 thoughts on “laundry day bra syndrome

  1. So this is hilarious, but I have to ask something. How do most girls put on bras? I have recently learned that always being able to zip up your own zipper in the back is not a guarantee for women. That I can is apparently part of my Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome weirdness. Now I wonder: why is putting the bra on straps first something to being slightly in awe of? And how else would you? I’m definitely not worth that level of respect, and kind of wondering if straps-first bra action is another one of those EDS weird quirks I never knew wasn’t how everyone did it. (But, yes, I totally have laundry day bras!)

    Liked by 2 people

    • I put mine on…band first, I guess? I wrap the band / body part around where it’s supposed to go, fasten the hooks, then pull the straps up over my shoulders. I think it’s less a flexibility thing (at least for me, as I have fairly flexible shoulders and elbows) and more just that I’m pretty large chested. If I wanted to go in straps first, I’d have to do a lot of adjusting afterward to get everything in order. It’s less work for me to just swoop and scoop.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. Ha! Amazing! I put my bra on straps first. (Are you in awe, yet?) But, truthfully, I don’t even need to wear a bra. I kinda just do because I’m a full grown & it’s more or less expected… and I don’t want every random stranger I walk by to know exactly what my nipples are up to all the time. I just this month gave up underwire forever (because I don’t even NEED a bra… why in God’s name would I need underwire?!?) Now it’s all bralettes all the time over here. It’s a little miraculous, tbh.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. My favorite part is how after a long day this “piece-of-shit waste-of-money symbol of oppression” is tossed back into the drawer for another day, lol. We’ve all got the one, hideous emergency pair and I’ve definitely got some panties to match!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m a straps first girl. I guess I’m a bit spoiled, because I have so many bras (slight Victoria’s Secret addiction) that I can go roughly 3 weeks before I run out of bras. Now I feel a bit strange because I clearly am not like most women in only having a handful of bras.


  5. Yes, yes, yes. Bra’s are evil, but a necessity for us big-boobed ladies. How I wish they would ctually make a bra that fits well, straps don’t slide off, comes in nice colours and is comfotable. I expect we will have humans on Mars before that ever happens.
    On a side note – I put my bra on straps first, lean forward, jiggle, and then arrange. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply to Rhubarb Swank Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s