To tube or not to tube?

That is the question. For most people wearing a tube top is inexcusable but I don’t want to automatically rule out all tube tops. It doesn’t seem fair. Maybe somewhere out there a young designer is reinventing the tube top as we speak and we will all be wearing tube tops to work in the next 10 years. I don’t want to have to eat my words when that likely event takes place.

I had a favorite leopard print tube top in college and I loved it. I wore it with rhinestones and jeans and red lipstick. I was so cute!  I also surprised some friends (who mistakenly believed I was shy) by breaking it out for a trip to Las Vegas a few years later-it felt appropriate in that setting. I remember that tube top fondly and I kinda’ wish I still had it.*sigh*. I gave it away after I had gained too much weight to pretend it was decently covering my torso. The lovely band of elastic leopard print was rolling up and rolling down and doing nothing for my bust. I miss it still.

I no longer own a tube top and if I did people would probably stop reading this blog or listening to my advice. So why am I writing about it? Because last weekend I witnessed something truly horrible. I was with a group of friends in a small river town celebrating and supporting the volunteer fire department by buying beer, eating ribs and listening to blues music. There, I realized the pitfalls of a new kind of tube top/strapless shirt thing. You have seen or perhaps own many of these items and they are not inherently bad-you just need to be aware of your own body and the laws of gravity.

BE ULTRA CAREFUL IF YOU CHOOSE TO WEAR A TUBE TOP or a strapless sundress that uses elastic only to hold itself (and you) “up”.  Last weekend a small, busty young lady in her mid-20’s was wearing a tube-top thing. You have probably seen a million of these same shirts out there. They have a wide band of elastic or multiple thin bands of elastic at the bust to hold the top up. Sometimes they flair out like a mini-dress. If your childhood was like mine (1980’s) you probably had a bunch of sundresses like this but with straps. They worked then because we didn’t have chests at 5, 6, 7 and 8 years of age. This young lady however had an ample chest that could have used some support. Here is what happened to her:

tube top

See? The elastic actually pushed her breasts further down her torso making them way lower than they needed to be and well, just look! She had nice tan shoulders and arms from being in the sun all day and she had every right to show it off but geez! She should have turned to the side before going out on the town. Goodness knows that I have made thousands of my own mistakes over the years – many of which I will never publish here, they are just that embarrassing – but she could have done a few things to make things work out better if not perfectly and here they are:

  1. Make sure the elastic bands remain where they needed to be – covering the actual bust.
  2. Wear a strapless bra.
  3. Wear a strapless top with some sort of bra built in.

In general I don’t like built-in-bras or tanks with support because they tend to lump you into a uni-boob situation or squish you down flat. Even some of the best strapless bras can leave you hangin’ a little lower than you would wish or giving you a strange silhouette.

So what ultimate lesson do we learn from her mistake? Look in the mirror and turn to the side before you leave the house in any outfit!


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