Why I Started Behave
March 21 2020 – Athena Kasvikis
25 million forgotten women
Today in 2020, over 25 million women in the US have a bra cup size DD or higher and are wearing the wrong size bra, I know because I was one of them. Like me, my millions of female friends in the US are straight sized (meaning standard 0–14 sizing) in all areas BUT breasts. Personally, as a 32G in bras I am misunderstood across the board and that’s not a size that most (read basically none) retailers carry. A G cup is not a size that most women in the US have even heard of (what, bras go above a DD?!) and conjures up images of Dolly Parton.
Yet, the most common breast size in the US is a 34–36DD, and that’s AVERAGE. It should be totally understandable that breast-size goes all the way up the alphabet and yet US brands put us on a 4 part spectrum of A, B, C, and D. For those of us who are willing to dig into boutique bra brands, we are able to find US brands that are starting to carry larger cup sizes, albeit 20 or so years later than their European counterparts. But, these brands are usually plus-sized brands, catering to a different part of the spectrum and focusing on making the entire bra larger, rather than developing and innovating new technology to fit the curves and contours of 25 million women.
100's of Years of Bras, very little innovation
After years of fitting into uncomfortable options and ordering countless bras from Europe, I was fed up and literally had to start Behave in late 2017, after struggling for years to find a super comfortable bra made specifically for women like me: Curvy In-Betweeners. Who is a Curvy In-Betweener? Cramming themselves into ill-fitting US brassieres that stop at a DD in the cup, because the band fits and really, 1 out of 2 things to fit isn’t bad (and they don’t know any better). They go through life not knowing, or being educated in any way, that there is a huge group of women that live in between Regular and Plus-Sized bras. These ladies sized between a 30–38 band and a DD-I cup are the most needy when it comes to truly supportive bras: They carry several pounds of breast tissue on a regular-sized frame (and sometimes even petite frame) and need the most support out of any consumer. And yet, us Curvy In-Betweeners are generally ignored by major brands. As a CPG Brand manager for big brands that you see on the shelves of every corner drugstore, I realized I was looking at a large under-served segment in the US market and was uniquely positioned to be both the voice and the inspiration for a new bra technology.
So I started with what I wanted and what Curvy In-Betweeners need most: an everything bra. One that would provide all of the vertical lift of my underwires (without wires), but would also keep my breasts stable and reduce their jiggle. A bra that would separate my breasts when I was laying on the couch so I could avoid the development of chest wrinkles that come from boob smash as you lay on your side. A bra that was engineered to support vertically and horizontally the largest breasts. And a bra that was gorgeous, one I would be proud to wear in front of a love interest, v. the matronly and boring ones I normally own. This all required new technology to be created, math to be done and outside the box ideas from lingerie experts, architects and real-life consumers. After 2 years of development, we created the Wireless Lounge Bralette.
Female First Foundations
Building Behave and developing our first product has been a labor of love, but also one that was so important to get right and not rush. Not just because our Lounge bra is such a great product, but also because our company is a testament to the passion we have for our consumers, and ultimately ourselves. Curvy In-Betweeners are an actual consumer group that deserves to be paid attention to and engaged. We are a growing population of women that are tired of being told they are weirdly shaped, out of proportion, or that they don’t exist. The proof of our existence is paramount because with that proof comes solutions. Solutions tailored for the most under-served consumer in all of intimate apparel.
As the founder of Behave and n = 1 consumer for our bra, I’ve realized that this issue goes deeper than a missing product in the market. It’s much bigger than that — women don’t feel empowered to take up space and many women with natural DD and up boobs feel shame about their size.
We are here to help women take back their boobs; they’re not for ogling and they’re not something inherently sexual, rather they are part of our bodies and we should feel confident about how they look. Function and beauty should be on equal footing and we will not compromise when it comes to creating something she wants to wear and loves how it looks too.
How you can help
If you’ve made this far into my first Titty Talk post, I hope that means you are sold on the Curvy In-Betweener market segment and also Behave’s mission to empower women to embrace their bodies to be their own personal Perfect 10. As a pre-seed start-up, we are going live with our first product in March of this year and need all the support (pun intended) that we can get. This looks like following us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, reading and sharing this post, and of course ordering our bra when pre-sales go live. If you’re not a boob owner and feel awkward about sharing a bra brand with bra wearers in your life, rest assured that any woman who has had bra fit issues (it’s everyone btw) will love to hear about our work to bring innovation to bras.
And to all the Curvy-In Betweeners reading this: We made this for you and we are you. Let us help you get those boobies to Behave so you can set the world on fire.