Burn the bras, ladies, it turns out we don't need them after all.
No, this has got nothing to do with the women's movement. It's according to a French researcher who appears to have spent the last 15 years measuring women's breasts.
We kid you not.
Professor Jean-Denis Rouillon at Besançon University has been measuring the breasts of 330 women (volunteers, we're presuming/hoping) over a 15-year period and has concluded that bras do no good either in terms of preventing sagging or back pain.
He claims his results show a 7mm difference between the breasts of women who wear bras and those who don't. Surprisingly, those who don't wear a bra were the group who were the average of 7mm up. Take that, gravity.
Going against all recommendations, Professor Rouillon has called the humble bra a 'false necessity', that actually weakens the breast-supporting muscles by removing their need to work.
He explains: “Medically, physiologically, anatomically – breasts gain no benefit from being denied gravity.”
Though he does add that women who have been wearing bras for years shouldn't now throw them out, as their bodies will rely on the support.
Of course this flies in the face of everything we're told - that it is fundamental that we have a properly-fitted bra to prevent breasts we've only seen on television documentaries.
And what will happen to department stores and lingerie retailers if word gets out that bras could be an optional extra rather than back-supporting, anti-aging necessity?
And really, don't they just look sort of better strapped in?
Clare Fallon, bra-fit expert from Panache lingerie, remains on the side of the bra, of course. She says: "When you have a bra that fits perfectly, you immediately notice a difference to your posture, comfort and confidence.
"A badly-fitting bra - which unfortunately so many women are experiencing in the UK - can literally drag you down. Wearing a correctly fitting bra is vital for your heath, helping to prevent neck, shoulder and back ache and reducing long term breast sag caused by damage to breast tissue. A well-fitting bra will be supportive and comfortable, resulting in improved posture and shape."
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