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Have you ever struggled with finding bras that fit and didn’t know where to turn? Welcome to our Best Lingerie Stores series, where we’re chatting with the best local lingerie stores and sharing their bra fitting expertise with you. These lingerie stores have helped hundreds of thousands of women find their favorite bras — and they want to help you look and feel your best too. This week, we chatted with Lauren Palmer of Curvaceous Lingerie in Lansing, Michigan.

All About Curvaceous Lingerie:


Parfait Team: What inspired you to start a business? 

Lauren: Retail is in my blood! My father was a successful retailer, so I grew up seeing everything he did. My first job was as a bridal consultant when I was 16, and it turned out I was pretty good at it! From there I knew I wanted to own some sort of shop. At first it was a ladies dress store, then it morphed over time into other random ideas. Life changed, I moved around a lot then finally settled back where I started. A friend came up with the lingerie store idea, and it clicked.


PT: What about the lingerie industry interested you?  

Lauren: I’ve always loved lingerie! I love the way it makes me feel – confident, uplifted, and sexy.  And as time went on with my retail career in bridal and women’s formalwear the foundations really played a huge part in completing the entire ensemble. I learned to respect the foundational element, but never really thought about following the lingerie path until much later. It was an easy segue way.


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PT: Your store is located in Lansing, Michigan. How did you decide on the location?

Lauren: I grew up just outside of Lansing in a town called Okemos. We initially opened in Okemos as a mini-boutique inside a bridal salon. This worked out really well! I managed the salon and ran my own section, and in turn got to experiment with different brands without all of the immediate overhead. Once separate space opened up in an area called Old Town Lansing, I jumped on it though. Old Town is truly a unique neighborhood – full of food and the arts! We host a lot of festivals like ArtFeast and Oktoberfest, and there’s always something going on. When the business idea was born, I knew immediately Old Town was the place!


PT: Tell us about your store name. What inspired the name Curvaceous Lingerie? 

Lauren: The name Curvaceous literally was pulled off of a lingerie blog in about five minutes.  I knew I wanted an adjective as the name of the shop, so I wrote about five down and just picked one! It’s been a bit of a love/hate thing though – a lot of folks only thought we sold plus sizes in the beginning, then there were many that didn’t believe we sold plus at all! Finally I implemented the tagline “From Small to Plus” and that seems to have done the trick! Ultimately I believe the name will be an advantage, especially when we launch our e-commerce site (forecasted Q1 2018).


PT: What do you enjoy most about your local community?

Lauren: Curvaceous has amazing neighbors, and our customers are truly the heartbeat that keeps everything going. Our business and residential neighbors all support one another! We communicate and collaborate on events, projects, and even advertising. It is truly a blessing to be a part of a system like the one we’ve established in Old Town! Plus you can’t beat our Old Town Commercial Association, which does a great job hustling for all the businesses in the area.

Our customers are our inspiration.  We serve all people within our store, and have a very all-inclusive mentality. The type of people just this alone attracts by word of mouth are so incredibly supportive of us and our messaging.  It feels good to help someone with a bra fitting that has never had help before!


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Bra Fitting at Curvaceous Lingerie:


PT: Why is it important for women to get a professional bra fitting?  

Lauren: My number one response is always this: So they don’t go their entire lives thinking bras are uncomfortable and not made for them. I’ve had sixty year olds cry in our dressing rooms after we’ve fit them and they are comfortable for the first time EVER.  Finding a bra on your own can be tough! But, we wear them every single day! It touches our skin, it distracts us if not in place properly. Why would you not do a fitting?

Bras can affect your health as well. Nobody likes a wire that pokes and digs beneath the arm. Sometimes in extreme cases this can cause lymph damage, scarring, and cysts.  Sounds horrible, right? So take care of the problem and make sure you’re wearing something designed for your body structure, not the general public’s.


PT: What do you wish all women knew about lingerie and professional bra fitting?

Lauren: I really wish more women knew that their bands are supposed to start out firm (as they are support garments!) and that seams can be perfectly appropriate to wear. For some reason in the US we have a cultural mentality against seams showing on a woman’s bra. Is it truly the end of the world if someone knows you have a bra on? Many times these are the only types of bras that work on a woman, so her being open to them makes the fit process much better for everyone.


PT: You’re committed to offering a diverse range of styles and sizes for your customers. What do you look for when selecting new styles?

Lauren: Demand is ever-changing regarding our bra category. When looking for new styles we take customer feedback and requests very seriously, as they can be used as a guideline to purchase new goods. We always have our core basics in stock, but randomly or seasonally we notice a lack of a specific shape or maybe fabric that could be useful to throw into the mix.  Based on what we know we need, we give current brands the opportunity to fill the gap first (keeps things more simple). If they cannot fulfill what’s desired we look to outside brands that live up to our quality standards and normal price ranges. Sometimes samples are requested to ensure we’re making the best purchase for our customers we can.


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PT: What is the largest bra size you carry?

Lauren: Currently the largest size we have in stock is 48HH UK, or 48L US.


PT: We love that you carry bras under $50. What are some of your favorite budget-friendly bras?

Lauren: Two of our absolute favorites are the Carole Wire Bra by Parfait ($49) and the Jeanie Plunge Bra ($40).


PT: What are your current best-selling bras?

Lauren: The Parfait Carole has been our long-standing best seller, and we’re excited for it to arrive back in stock for January 2018. Additional bras that do extremely well for us are basically anything made of a spacer material. The stretch of the fabrication combined with a smooth T-shirt like front is the perfect combination for women who are full or shallow on top, or slightly uneven.


PT: How many bras does a woman actually need in her lingerie wardrobe?

Lauren: Minimum three! One to wear, one to rest, one to wash. The more you rotate, the longer they last!


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PT: Some of us are shy about buying colored bras. What advice would you give to a woman who loves color, but isn’t sure how to incorporate it into her wardrobe?

Lauren: If you’re on the fence about color, the easiest way to incorporate it into your wardrobe is look for solids in slightly off-basic colors. Popular choices tend to be navy, grey, or a pink tone. Sometimes navy just feels a bit more fresh than black, right? After getting used to these colors you’ll begin to realize that if you treat navy or grey like you’d wear a black bra (under dark clothing!) you can basically get away with anything.


PT: What can you tell our readers about the bra fitting experience at Curvaceous Lingerie?

Lauren: Bra fittings on average take about 20 minutes or so. We love to keep things efficient for our customers! We always start with a ribcage measurement then eyeball the cup size. Everything is done from the back, so there is never any awkwardness or feelings of discomfort for the customer. Part of the process we love is educating people about why exactly what they’re wearing does or does not fit correctly. Knowledge is power!


PT: Do we need an appointment for a bra fitting?

Lauren: No, you do not need an appointment at Curvaceous for a fitting unless we are having a special event and it is specifically requested. Come on in anytime and we are happy to help!


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Shop at Curvaceous Lingerie

Store Address: Old Town Lansing, 513 E. Grand River Ave, Lansing, MI 48906

Phone Number: (517) 881-8466

Website: Curvaceous Lingerie

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To find a lingerie specialty store near you, visit our store locator here.


Feature image provided by Lauren
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Published by

Katie Donnelly

Katie Donnelly is a full-time freelance writer, content manager, and founder of Katie Rose Creative. An experienced bra fitter, Katie has helped hundreds of people shop for lingerie. Her favorite bra is the Sandrine Plunge Longline Bra.

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