Monday, February 24, 2014

On boobs and life. - Mostly a rant, but definitely some good advice.

So, as most of my friends know, I've spent the last 6 years working for Victoria's Secret. First, as "The Pink Girl" in 2009, after I filled out three applications and found the charm worked on the third try, just as holiday hiring was kicking in. I moved on to Sales Associate when I moved for school while only getting minimum growth as an associate and Pink girl on my long weekends or holidays off from hitting the books. When I moved back home, I was able to take a blessed advantage of already having a previous manager in the place where I would be living, and I grew quickly, there, in the Bra Specialist position.

I know what a lot of you are thinking right now. It's either "Omg. This girl looks at boobs for a living," "Omg, she must get an awesome discount!" or "There's actually such thing as a Bra Specialist position... Is that REALLY a necessary thing?"

My answer is YES to all of those things. *Sigh*I do(but it's not for some weird fetish or preference reason like some of you might want to automatically assume); of course I do get a really convenient discount(much like most retail stores); there is such thing; and yes, it IS necessary.

Let me begin by explaining what this position means in my store. The biggest thing, of course, is to discover the customer's needs and inspire her to buy relevant product in relation to her needs. The mission of the store is going to have to be kept to the training manuals, of course, since I am not authorized to share, but I will stand behind it and state that it is a wonderful one. In relation to myself, this position means that I am officially certified to accurately assess and fit women to their correct bra size in order to give them the confidence and comfort they desire and require when they leave my zone.

As a human with a Servant's Heart, this means that I leave my house every morning with the hope and belief that I will get to impact at LEAST one person, if not every client I see, each day. It means that I get to spend time with her to confide valuable information on a more intimate subject in her life where she would otherwise not usually give a genuinely serious thought to on a daily basis. Notice I say "get to" and not "have to," implying that I truly do view this job as a joy in my life. I have the privilege to give a woman confidence by simply discovering which of our bras(Or perhaps other products) fits her body and her lifestyle best.

At the end of the day, I really don't care about the numbers on the screen that tell me whether or not we made last years sales goals(however, it is important for me to care about those numbers on an important level). At the end of the day, my goal is to have given each and every one of my customers someone to come back to for any questions they may have. My goal is to have impacted my customers lives in a positive, sincere, and genuine way - no matter how I felt during the day. She is the most important person for the 2-10(Or sometimes 90) minutes I get to spend with her. I supply unconditional sisterly love, care, and attention, and if I haven't, then I have not done my job as a human being.

And of course, we all have those days. Some more often than not, but we shan't delve into that, this time. What I do want to address, however, is a few of the issues I come across in my job that I find it imperative to pass along to my fellow human beings.

Issue #1: The reason I believe everyone in the world should work in both retail and food service at least ONCE in their lives.

The mess is probably THE most frustrating part about my job. Sorrynotsorry, but if you have time to take it off the hanger to try it on, you have time to put it right back on the hanger where you found it. Sure, you may leave that item in the fitting room, and I will happily put it back for you, because you don't know the difference between some of the shapes or specific styles(That's what I'm HERE for... I have endless knowlege about these things. That, you may leave up to me), nor where you actually got the item from. But gawsh dangit, put it back on the hanger. I have more important things to do than pick up your pile of 3,000 unhung swimsuits from the floor once you're done with them.

Tell me something - Do you REALLY want to try on something that's been on the floor of a fitting room where peoples bare feet or shoes have walked all over - where once they had traipsed through dog doo-doo, or perhaps gotten stuck to gum goo? Is it really that appealing to try on messy things? Remember the good old days when all you had to worry about was your mother saying "If you get it out, put it back!" She was trying to teach you something, and many people seem to have forgotten that, along with the common sense they left in the hallway before they came in and started picking up neatly folded things and then just laying them down in a lump because they didn't like it as much as they thought before moving on to do the next pain in the butt lift and leave it move?

Clean up after yourself. We are Retail employees, trained and set in specific goals to aid you in inspiring you to find a product. We're not your mothers or your nannies. Don't make me turn this store around.

Issue #2: What you THINK is your size, probably isn't - 70% of the time. It's statistically suggested to be proven.

This is most common in customers who either don't frequent VS often, or in customers with augmentations.

I know a LOT of women who compensate the lack of coverage in their bras with a bigger band. Tell me something, Does Band sound like Cup to you? Let me teach you a little lesson on how you are sized in our lovely store.

Each "Band Size" represents the measurement of inches around your ribcage. 32/34/36/38... If you are a 33, normally, we'll put you down an even band number (32) so you can have a longer life to your bra. If you're at 33 1/2, I'd probably give you a 34, but it depends on your comfort.

Each "Cup Size" is different in each band size. This is especially confusing for Augmented ladies. I can not count on both hands how many times I've heard someone say "But I asked for a full C!" -My dear, you may have asked for Mr. McSteamy to give you full C's, but when it comes to measurements at your local lingerie store, you are measured in Inches. Not in liquid ounces, like Mc. Steamy will measure. On top of that, in relation to your band measurement, you've got some other things to learn.

Each cup is different in each band size. 32D does NOT equal only one cup, OR only one band size down from a 34D. Each time you increase the band of a bra, your cup also gets bigger in relation. So your "Sister size" as we call it, from a 32 D is a 34 C.

Here's an easy way to remember it. Put your size on a Teeter Totter. Remember those things we played on as kids, and we loved flipping other kids off the end? Well, don't do that flipping thing, but if you have to, go ahead and use your arms. Or call it a tilting scale. For example, the number 32 will sit on one side of the scale. Then sit the letter D on the other. Now raise your 32 to the next number. What happens to the D? It goes down if you're doing it correctly. So if you're raising your 32 to a 34, you're decreasing the cup from a D to a C.

Does that make sense? Basically, not all D's are the same size. I can't tell you that 32 D and 38 D are both going to fit the ladies, because 38 D is going to be 3 times bigger than the 32 you have in your hand. Keep in mind, this is just an example, and there ARE exceptions to the rule. Sometimes that also means that another company may size you differently. Which is why you need me and my other bra specialists either at my store or with other companies to help you sort out the secrets to your fit.  Especially in completely different styles(Though the majority of styles should fit relatively similar when it comes to your size). We are here to help you. We won't tell you something you aren't(at least not on purpose). When you're uncomfortable with what we've sized you at (That DD you thought was a full C, for example), most of the time it's because Society has told you that a certain cup size is universal, and you supposedly look the way society expects. "D's are for your average Hooters girl, DD's are your typical augmentation, and DDD's, G's, H's, and so on are for the Dolly Partons of this world." Love, let me remind and encourage you to remember that YOU are YOU. You're not Dolly Parton. You're not a Hooter's girl. You have your own body type, your own shape, and your own comfort. I am sizing you for YOU, in a measurement-based, then individually altered manner. Not for Dolly. I promise, I'm not going to make you look like you just strapped on two big dodge balls to walk around all day in.

Listen to me when I say this, and listen close:

I want you to walk away from me with a fit that you are confident and comfortable in. Regardless of the number and size. Regardless of what company provides your bra. Regardless of the money I'm responsible for in the fitting room. My job is to make YOU happy and comfortable, and I want you to feel like you matter - like you're important.

Also remember that I am not perfect, nor is anyone else, and there are mistakes and missed opportunities. Please please PLEASE don't let one bad experience push you away from a company. Try again if you don't get the attention and love you deserve.

From there, all I ask is that fitting room etiquette is practiced and taught outside the store through your friends and family, and that you give me a smile before you leave. I love smiles. Smiles let me know something went right.

Also, if you let me practice my Spanish with you, you're my new best friend.

I guess this is the end of my rant/infomercial. I guess if you have questions, leave them in the comments below. Leave me your fit issues, and I'll try to answer them, but I can't promise it'll be in a timely manner, because I'm not usually on this blog like I'd like to be. A girl's gotta eat, so this one has to work all the time. But I'll try. :)

Also, I'm a little bit in a hurry. There's an Etsy list with my name on it, and it's filled with nerdy stuff, like Harry Potter bracelets and Polyjuice Potion flasks. Yes. I'm a Potterhead. So sue me(But don't...)