Sunday, April 26, 2015

La Isla vs Moving Comfort: Bra Review and Comparison

As a well-endowed woman and runner, it is often hard to find bras that hold up well to running and working out. Once I find a brand that works, I tend to just stick to it until I can find something tried and true as an alternative.

Prior to finding a single bra that worked for speed work, long distances and working out, I had to double up on bras just to minimize the bouncing. And anyone who has ever done this can tell you how utterly annoying it is. Strapping on two bras, and then having to peel them both off after a sweaty run, is just frustrating and time-consuming.

In the case of being a 34DD bra size, the Moving Comfort Fiona style bra has been a savior. The wide shoulder straps with adjustable velcro, and comfortable wire-free band around the torso, is a saving grace. I love just about everything about Moving Comfort. Well, everything except the price. The Fiona bra from Moving Comfort retails around $46 per bra. On a few rare occasions I am able to find them on sale, but 34DD sizes run out quick! I snooze, I lose. And now that I am a SAHM with limited income, the means to continue running, and making sure I have appropriate gear is even more important.

So, when someone mentioned to me about a brand called La Isla being a carbon copy at a way lesser price, I had to give it a try. I purchased the La Isla Women's High Impact Wire Free sports bra for about $19, since it seems like the closest thing to the Fiona. When it arrived two days later (thanks to Amazon Prime), I put them side by side for a photo comparison:



Top is the brand new La Isla, and bottom is the well-worn Moving Comfort Fiona.

As you can see, it looks pretty darn similar. The only real difference (besides the fact that one is new and one is in dire need of retirement) is that the inside lining is white in the Moving Comfort brand, and completely monotone in the La Isla. Both have inch-long velcro tabs that are adjustable. Both offer three hooks and loops on the back. Both are lined with the same meshy moisture wicking material inside. The differences between the two are slight. The collar area in the front is slightly wider in the Moving Comfort, and the La Isla shoulder straps are about 1/4" wider. The Moving Comfort band around the torso seems to be a smidgen thicker. And the La Isla care tags inside is long (3") where as the Moving Comfort is sort of the normal 1" square tags that most clothing have. (I'd probably snip it off.) In terms of fit, they both fit the same, (taking into account that the La Isla bra feels the same as when the Moving Comfort was new). 

So fit is one thing. How well did it work for a run and a high intensity workout? Being that this arrived on a cross training day, I tested it out with this awesome HIIT workout, which put the bra to work immediately with dreaded burpees. And I did notice a little movement, but not enough to distract me from the workout.
Gave it a rinse, and let it air dry, and two days later took it out for an 8 mile run (in preparation for the Brooklyn Half coming up). And I gotta say I did not notice my boobs, which is awesome! The boobs were secure, and the run was fantastic. And at $19, I am completely satisfied with the La Isla bra, and totally psyched that I'm not shelling out more money than I have to. (By the way, if this review helped you, please feel free to use the above links to purchase the bras reviewed. Did I mention that I am a SAHM with very limited income?) 

I also purchased a racer back style bra from La Isla, and will test that out as well in a future run, but for now, I am pretty excited that this new one fits so I can rotate out the old Moving Comfort. I'm pretty sure this will be the bra for my PR chase in a few weeks!

*Update: The racer back style sucked. The girls don't sit right in the cups/shelf area, and there is just way too much bounce going on. Also, it looks like La Isla stopped making the exact version of the MC, but links are updated with what seems to be the most recent version. Let me know what you think!

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