Source: USA TODAY
SAN FRANCISCO — Bra shopping made easy and bra fitting made more precise, courtesy of your smartphone and a tight-fitting tank top.
That’s the promise of ThirdLove, a San Francisco startup that heads into the holiday shopping season with an iPhone app that turns your phone camera into a virtual tape measure to help deliver a curated bra-and-panty selection based on its own unique bra-sizing system.
With a classy-looking gift card option launching today and an Android app on the way, ThirdLove’s technology aims to make the phone “a personal shopper for a woman,” says co-founder Heidi Zak.
ThirdLove’s bras aren’t exactly a custom fit; they’re more like “half sizes,” says Zak. But the tech endeavors to give you a much more precise fit than an old-school tape measure — which is how most of us have, if ever, taken a stab at buying a bra that actually feels comfortable.
The starting point for now is a camera-driven iPhone app that launched in November: Think selfie in a tight-fitting tank or your current bra. Following guided video instructions designed to pull you through to a successful fit, you snap a couple of photos of yourself that get uploaded (privately) to ThirdLove. Once you’ve successfully measured yourself the ThirdLove algorithm kicks in to deliver a “TL size.”
In a demo at ThirdLove’s San Francisco offices, the app seemed a little fiddly but do-able. And the bras themselves look great. They’re priced at $45 and up. When you are logged in to the app you only see selections that are currently available in your size.
This isn’t an augmented reality app; it’s all about the fit. I tested the app at home and came up with the same TL size each of three times I went through the sizing process. (You need only go through that fitting process once.)
The classic, physical gift card is made of brushed stainless steel. It comes in a little black box and includes a free lace thong. Shipping is free. There’s also an e-gift card (no free lace thong included).
In addition to the app-fitted bras, the lingerie selection also includes thongs and camisoles.
Follow Nancy Blair on Twitter: @nansanfran.