Saturday, May 14, 2011

Climate Change and Breast Forms

Hot weather can affect how breast forms feel


I'm not going to get into a discussion about global warming here. When it comes to breast forms, the normal variation from winter to spring and summer can make a big enough difference, without our worrying about whether the world is getting warmer or cooler. Just as the rest of our bodies feel different when the temperature and humidity climb, our chests react to our breast forms very differently.

Right now, I'm experiencing the climate change that spring brings, only in reverse. I just returned to Boston from Miami, where the weather has been summery, which means tropical heat and high humidity. I all but gave up wearing my silicone breast forms during the last few weeks. Not only did I tend to perspire behind the forms, but the humidity caused my bras to feel tighter and more clingy. Now that I'm back in Boston, where it's below 70 degrees and much drier, I'm enjoy wearing my silicone forms again.

When I first learned I needed a mastectomy, I talked to a friend who'd had a bilateral mastectomy eight years earlier. Not only had she decided not to have reconstruction, she chose not to wear silicone breast forms. Instead, she wore a regular Bali bra with Amoena foam leisure forms. She explained to me that the silicone made her feel weighted down and conscious of having something on her chest. With the foam forms, she said, she felt "free".

That conversation took place almost five years ago, so now it's been thirteen years since my friend had her mastectomy. During that time, silicone breast forms have become lighter and manufacturers have developed ways to minimize perspiration behind the forms—microfiber backing, special cooling pads, new materials designed to regulate body temperature, etc. But when it's really hot and humid, silicone can still present a problem.

I've found several leisure forms that have a flattering natural shape and feel comfortable to wear. You can read about them at BreastFree.org in the Breast Forms section, under the heading "Non-Silicone Breast Forms." When the weather became hot in Miami, I thought about my friend and about her decision to feel "free" wearing foam forms. I started wearing my non-silicone forms almost all the time. I found that I felt light and free, not sticky and not worried about whether and when my forms would become uncomfortable. I wore the foam forms in both pocketed and regular bras and felt great dancing at my cousin's wedding in a nice pair of weighted Amoena Leisure Forms with Comfort +.

The Comfort + technology, a recent innovation in some Amoena silicone forms, has been added to their new leisure forms because it's possible to perspire even when wearing ultra-light non-silicone forms. But perspiration is far less of a problem with foam or microbeads than with silicone. At the wedding, which was outdoors, the temps were high, yet I danced the night away and at the end of the party my chest was still cool and dry.

I've heard from many women who consider perspiration behind their forms a problem. For others, it's not an issue. Some women find that the newer silicone forms, like the Silique Comfort Lite, the Amoena Energy, the Anita Tritex, or the TruLife BodiCool, effectively solve the problem. Ironically, prior radiation can provide a benefit. I had radiation on my right side and I never perspire there, no matter how hot it gets. But my left, non-radiated, side is another story.

If you're like me and want to avoid perspiring behind your forms, consider switching to non-silicone during the hot weather. You may find it so freeing and comfortable that you won't want to go back!

4 comments:

  1. Having had a bilateral mastectomy, I've never worn weighted breast forms, only "recreational" forms. I can't help but wonder why anyone would want weighted forms after bilateral..? More natural movement?? - Nancy (using Riley's acct.)

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  2. I found your blog through Nancy's Point, where she lauds those who opt not to get reconstruction. I opted not to, for the positive reasons you list in your website. I appreciate your take on this very personal decision that many have to make. Every time I hear a story about a reconstruction gone bad, I am thankful I did not do it. Jan

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  3. My friend feels like she is flat chested and she wears weighted attachable breast forms and she loves them.

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  4. Thank you for the information. I had a bilateral with no reconstruction. I have been dealing with all the problems you discussed. Thanks so much for the suggestions and links to try.

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