15 Stages of Wearing a Strapless Bra

The very existence of a strapless bra is deeply ironic. The idea behind this little piece of lingerie is invisibility, convenience, and glistening clavicles. The strapless bra was designed to be hidden, allowing you to wear your most daring outfits without anything — straps or nips — peeking out. But the reality? Strapless bras are gluttons for attention. Wear one and you'll spend the entire night fidgeting, tugging, and drawing all the wrong eyes to the area.

Here's my horror story: Once I was talking to a friend and her boyfriend at a street fair, when out of nowhere, my strapless bra plunged down my ribcage and settled happily around my waist. It happened so quickly that there was no way to save it, so I spent the rest of the conversation pressing a stack of books to my chest in order to disguise the fact that things were no longer as they seemed 20 seconds prior.

We're over a decade into the 21st century, and the strapless bra is still a fairly untouched invention. Even though it may have a bit of helpful stickiness around the strap, or underwire designed to keep the whole contraption upright, the way a strapless bra works is still pretty simple: It hugs you tight and prays that it'll beat out gravity. Can someone design a better one, please? In the meantime, there's always a 50 percent chance that your strapless bra will abandon you halfway through the night. Here's why.

1. It's Friday! You waltz into your closet and pull out your loveliest, frothiest, most daring gown.

2. Shoot. You forgot that it's strapless, low-cut, cutout, backless, and generally held together with safety pins. You're going to need a specific type of bra.

3. For a minute, you think about going braless. But the dress just doesn't work that way.

4. Once you strap yourself into the thing, you're astonished. It's not so bad! In fact, it fits really well, stays upright, and emphasizes your curves. Why did you hate this thing so much? You head out the door, clavicle glistening. You feel so…free.

5. Halfway through the appetizer course (oh yeah, I forgot to mention you're at a really fancy black-tie affair to save the dolphins), you feel the first sign of slippage.

6. As conversation heats up and you begin gesticulating wildly, the bra slips even further. You smile and wave, but your heart is breaking.

7. When the conversation turns serious, you pretend that your tears of rage are for the dolphins, but really, they're for you.

8. You reach for a fortifying sip of wine and now you're pretty sure the accursed bra is somewhere around your third rib.

9. Clutching your purse to your chest, you excuse yourself to the bathroom and do some major repairs.

10. You return to the table only to find out that everyone has abandoned the main course and is now spontaneously dancing. This is the problem with having quirky friends.

11. The next three hours are a blur of slip and adjust, slip and adjust. Your friends keep insisting that you "throw your hands up in the air" and you tremble in horror.

12. You can't help feeling like the bra is…WINNING.

13. At home, you reach your breaking point.

14. You throw the sweaty thing into the laundry hamper and vow never to wear it again.

15. From the laundry, your bra watches you, knowing you'll change your mind. Knowing that the next time you have a black tie affair, you'll be back, begging for more. Deep within the hamper, it chuckles softly to itself.

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