Last summer, I tried the Freya Summer Haze Unlined Plunge, and it still reigns as my most hated bra of all time. In fact, it's the bra that made me suspicious of all Freya fashion styles, as it just had the most horrible shaping possible in an unlined bra. Based on other reviews, I'm not the only one who felt this way. Thus, I had absolutely no expectation that the Summer Haze Padded Half Cup would fit. The only reason I chose to try this style is that it appears to be the same cut as the Patsy Padded Half Cup, which I've wanted ... to try for a long time, but can't get my hands on easily. I figured that if the Summer Haze HC cut works for me, I should be safe to blindly order Patsy. Surprisingly, Summer Haze HC has turned out to be one of my favorite bras that I've tried recently!
Just like how Freya has several different versions of Unlined Plunge fits but doesn't label them as different fits, I've discovered that there's several versions of the Padded Half Cup as well. The first I tried, Rhea, is a shallow, short, and very open 3HC that gave me a minimized look. Fearne and Fancies are a 4 piece cup with a 3 piece bottom and horizontal upper, and is much more closed off. Summer Haze and Patsy have what I typically think of as a 3HC, which is a rounded cup shape with 2 vertical seams, no upper panel, and a slightly closed off top.
This cut actually works the best for me, as the shape eliminates gapping at the top, which I experience with tall, open cups since I am not particularly FOT, while giving a very nice rounded shape similar to what one would get from a molded foam T-shirt bra. The wires are a nice and even curve instead of the wonky J curve or Nike swoosh shape that many Freyas have. The cups are very similar to Fantasie Sofia or Fauve Aurelia in shape, but are more closed off and rounded at the top. The angle of the cup is also cut at a slight plunge angle, which allows it to sit closer to the inner part of the breast where I am quite empty. The Fantasie and Fauve half cups are mostly constructed with straight cups. Despite the slightly closed top, this can certainly accommodate tall roots or more upper fullness, as there is plenty of room in the upper cup on me, and it works well when I tried it on with inserts. The only criticism about the fit is that the cups are a bit tall for my frame, leading to some gapping when I move, though I don't get this issue in similar bras that are cut with lower cups.
The wires on me are perfect on this bra, so I don't experience any discomfort like I did on Fearne, where the cup fit well but the wires were narrow and intolerable. Based on my experience so far with Freya Half Cups, the wires are all firm instead of the flexible ones used on their Unlined Plunges, so any mismatch in wire shape or size can be very painful. The bra band is printed powermesh and moderately firm. Freya's bands typically run large and this 28 is comfortable but not snug on me, though I might have to alter it down in time.
The appearance of the bra is nice, but a bit plain. It's the perfect kind of styling for an everyday bra. One of the purported features of Summer Haze is the lightweight mesh fabric used for the cups, which is a firm structured mesh rather than the standard stretchy mesh (like used on Cleo Marcie and Lucy), meant to be cool and breezy for summer. Indeed, the combination of this fabric and the lightweight foam lining in the cups makes this lined bra feel so much cooler than wearing a stuffy foam T-shirt bra in the summer heat. The little white dots on a solid base are similar to the Japanese traditional shibori print, and are reminiscent of tiny bubbles on an aqua background. The upper edge has a bit of simple lace decoration and isn't visible or lumpy under clothing. Though the bra is seamed, it isn't nearly as noticeable under clothing as many other bras of similar construction. Straps are plain wide satin, and a simple white grosgrain bow adorns the gore with no wacky charm.
I think this is a fabulous bra for everyday wear, and is a bra you can really live in. Overall, I love this bra because it gives me a great shape without a molded cup, and is supremely comfortable on me. This ticks all the boxes for what I am looking for in a padded (not foam cup) bra--the natural, easy shaping and lightweight feel of an unlined bra, with the rounded shape and additional modesty provided by a foam bra. I have very high hopes for Patsy and will be looking out for more similar 3HC styles from Freya in 28E while they are still available, and will probably pick up another Summer Haze in another color if possible.
Update: I have received Patsy and it is very, very similar, though Summer Haze is slightly more closed off at the top than the new Patsy fit. It is much more closed off at the top than the old Patsy fit.
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Updated on Jul 24, 2020 Flag this