Bendon Lingerie – A Bra

Dear Sir/Madam,

Please exercise better quality control on your line of bras.

The bra I purchased from Myer in Australia is one of the most comfortable (and expensive) that I have ever worn.

In saying this, I would like to make you aware of two problems that I have had with it:

1. About 2 months after purchasing the bra, the underwire wore through the middle ends, and started poking me most uncomfortably. I was disappointed as I had paid a good bit of money for it, and had only experienced this problem with cheaper bras. I ended up sewing the ends, and the bra was fine again for some time – until –

2. Yesterday when I was bending down to tie my shoe, the underwire on the right actually snapped in half! I have never had this happen on a bra, so thought that I should let you know about it.

As the your brand of bra, as I mentioned previously, is one of the most comfortable that I have ever worn, I am at odds with myself as to whether I should invest money in a new one.

Yours et cetera,

J.Cuthbert

Reply from Bendon:

Hi XXXXXX (NB: Yes, they did the over friendly thing and referred to me by my first name)

Thankyou for your feedback. It is always valuable to hear any customer feed. It is very disappointing to hear this has happened to you because it is very uncommon. Please read the information below that I have provided you with which may help you better understand why this may be occurring with your purchases. If you would like to send your bras in, I could have them assessed by our Quality Control team to see if they are deemed as faulty so that you could get a replacement.

It is not common to have under wires break or pop through their channels unless they have been under pressure at some time. This pressure is more often than not, attributed to one of two causes.
The first is that the bra is a bit tight around the body and the wire is being pulled out of shape and strained. If the bra is under any strain then the wire will usually pop through the channels on either side and/or the centre front or will break in the middle at the bottom of the cup – this is because the wire is being pulled out at each end trying to compensate for the shortage of fabric in the back wing and the middle of the wire is the stress point , so this is where it will break . This will usually happen while the bra is being worn and probably when you are bending down and coming back up when the chest is expanding at the time far more than normal .
A good way to check if the bra is a little tight, is by looking at the fabric on the back wing of the bra, where the eyes are sewn. This piece when new, is rectangular shape and absolutely flat/straight across the top and flat/straight across the bottom.
If the bra is a bit too tight then the fabric that the eyes are attached to, will start to stretch and will splay out at one end under strain and the rectangle will no longer be straight across- it will start to develop a bit of a curve in the middle it.

Often you will also see signs that the eyes are pulling out more than the first set, which don’t normally get much use. If your bras are showing these signs then I would recommend you have a fitting when purchasing this style again, just to make sure that you are getting the best fit available. If the cup fits you perfectly – i.e. no gaps or bulges, then the cup size is correct you just need to adjust the body size, which is the area in the back wing.

The rule is, if you want the same cup size but more fabric around the body then you go up a body size and down a cup size – sounds confusing I know, but I’ll give you an example. Say you are currently a 12D and that cup fits you perfectly – i.e. no gaps or bulges. To get a little more room around the body but keep exactly the same cup, you would try on a 14C – this uses the same 12D cup but has a few centimetres more in the back wing. Alternatively if you need to go down a body size then you need to go up a cup size – i.e. a 12D then goes to a 10DD (same 12D cup but less fabric in the back wing).
So the rule is if you go up a body size, you come down a cup size, and if you come down a body size you go up a cup size.
This can depend on the particular bra and how much stretch there is in the fabric, so just because you are a 12D in one bra, does not necessarily mean that you will be this size in every bra – different cup shapes will suit different people better than others, and not every cup shape will suit everyone. This is why it really is so very important to ALWAYS have a professional fitting for every new style and when purchasing the same style again always have the fit rechecked after 6 months or so – just to make sure that your body has not undergone any changes and that you are getting the best fit available.

After 6 months or so the back wing does start to stretch a little because of normal wear and tear and this is normal, but by wearing the right size and replacing when these signs start to occur, your clothes will look better and your bras will last much longer because they are not having to work so hard.

However, if the eye fabric is still perfectly straight then fit is probably not the cause of the problem.
The second reason and probably the most common, is that the bra may have been under stress at some point during the laundering cycle. It’s fine to machine wash these styles, providing that you do the hooks up and place it inside a lingerie bag and only wash with a few similar weight garments on a delicates cycle. If the wash cycle is too harsh or there are heavier weight garments being washed at the same time, then these can push and pull your lingerie during the agitation or spinning out cycles.
A common mistake is to add other larger or heavier items. If your bras (even inside a lingerie bag) get caught up with these other items, the underwire gets pushed one way and then the other and may either bend and break, or weaken and break while being worn .

If you feel that these are not the reasons that the wires have broken and the bras are in otherwise very good condition and under 6 months of age then I am more than happy for you to return them to me and I will put them through our Quality Assurance Dept. to be tested to see what has caused this. We cannot repair a garment for incorrect fit or incorrect laundering, however if the fault is due to faulty materials or workmanship then we are more than happy to repair these for you.

If you think that your washing machine may not be offering a delicate enough cycle, then I would suggest that you consider hand washing them every time. I hand wash all of my bras – it takes me all of 5 minutes to do this and I have never had a wire break since doing them this way. Also by hand washing them you are not over washing them and the colours stay truer for much longer, as they are not all washed out by unnecessary over washing. I save up 4 or 5 over the week and hand wash them all at the same time. I rinse them and then pat them between a towel to get the excess water out and let them dry on the line.

Bendon has a great customer care program and we will replace or repair an item which has failed due to a manufacturing or material fault, but damage caused through incorrect sizing or being damaged during laundering is not deemed to be a product fault.

Bras are the hardest working item in your wardrobe and unfortunately will not last forever. After around 6 months use, the side wing elastic will start to lose its elasticity from wear and tear and the bra will, over time, start to lose the support that it had when it was new. If you are wearing several bras and rotating these each week and being careful with the laundering of them, then you should expect that your bra will give you good service for around 12 months, but this of course depends on many things including the fit and ability of the washing machine to care for the garment gently. Bendon is not responsible for any damage which has occurred during the washing of the garment as we have no control over this process, or the ability of the machine to be gentle enough on the garment and we would advise that you contact your washing machine manufacturer for their advice.

XXXXX, let me know if you would like to send these in. I can’t guarantee you a replacement now, however, if you feel there is a manufacturing fault within the bra than we can give it a try and put it through our Quality Control dept.

Hope this has helped.

Kind Regards,

Danielle

Reply:

Dear Danielle,

Thank you for your prompt reply and helpful information about sizing and such.

I was professionally fitted for the bra after receiving a strong recommendation from a friend, so I don’t think that an ill fit was the
problem.

I have perhaps not been careful enough with the washing of it, so I suppose that this may have been a problem.

Having owned the bra for about 18 months – though having to repair it myself after about 2 months – I cannot send it back into you for quality testing.

The companies recommendation that a bra should be replaced every six months (unless with excellent care), as it is a hard working item of clothing, is somewhat disappointing. When buying a pair of expensive shoes, I certainly expect them to last longer than six months – which they invariably do, even though I do my fair share of walking, making my shoes the hardest working item in my wardrobe!

If a company such as Bendon does not expect that their products will last longer than 6-12 months (12 months with excellent care), I really cannot justify spending that amount of money, and will be better off buying cheaper bras if I am to replace them so often!

I thank you again for your prompt reply,

Yours et cetera,

J. Cuthbert

Another reply from Bendon:
Hi XXXXX

Thankyou once again for your feedback. It is a recommended estimate of 6 months that a bra will last. This depends on many factors including how many bras you have and how often you wear them, how your washing them, the fit of them, etc. It is a fact that after six months the fibres in the materials start to disintegrate from natural causes and this is the same with any clothing you may have. I’m sorry this has happened to you and I will pass on your comments as feedback to the design team.

Kind Regards,

Danielle

Reply:

Hi Danielle,

I hate to be picky about this, but the actual fabric part of my bra – being made of nylon/polyester and such, has lasted the distance. The colour (black) has also stayed intact. This I am pleased about. Since I have been travelling in Europe for the past six months, I have been rotating only two bras – so the fabric has done very well indeed. The elastine content of the bra has also shown no obvious signs of deterioration.

My only two complaints are that the middle canals for the underwire wore through too quickly – in about two months, despite the sizing being correct, and that the right underwire snapped in two while bending to tie my shoe last week.

If anything were to come out of this correspondence with you, it is that I would hope that you will pass on to the design team to review the type of fabric that they are using for the back of the canals.

Yours /&C.

J. Cuthbert

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