Understanding the different Ewa Michalak bra styles

When placing my most recent order with Ewa Michalak I decided to try some different styles – my theory was if they fitted it would mean a whole raft of new bras would then be available to me 😉 Previously I have only ever gone for the plunge style as this is the only one available in my size range; however I have always wondered if I might be able to fit into one or some of the others.

The current styles are described as follows on the Ewa Michalak site:

Plunge bra
Bra designed for deep, plunging necklines. It is very low at the centre. The plunge bra makes your breasts closer together.

Halfcup bra
Bra worn under broad and low necklines. Cups have one vertical seam. The edges of the cups form an almost vertical line. The halfcup bra is low cut and shows the upper part of your breasts.

Strapless bra
Bra to be worn without any straps. Perfect for any special occasion (under strapless / halterneck tops or dresses). Thanks to moulded cups and band strengthened by sillicone tape, it gives enough support for your bust even without the straps.

Balconette bra
Bra for everyday use, giving the best support for your breasts. The cups offer more coverage than other bra styles. The balconette bra gives you lift, shape and comfort.

This information is most useful; however it does not address the matter which causes most confusion (for me at least) – what is the difference between the styles available on the site?

I have spoken to friends in the past who have explained the differences between the various styles (PL, HM, HP, CH) but I wasn’t sure how each one would suit me. I knew therefore that I would have to try them out for myself in order to be sure I was going for the best style for me.

The PL (plunge) style is available in every size, as far as I am aware. However, the CH, HP and HM styles are not and only go up to a certain cup size. For my size range, most of the CH and HP bras stop at a 36/80H or a 34/75HH. The HM, which is an unpadded style, goes up to a 36/80G or a 34/75GG. I emailed the lovely Ewa a while ago to ask her if any of these three styles would ever be available in larger cup sizes. She replied very promptly to tell me no they wouldn’t as they do not look good on larger breasts. Despite this advice, I decided to find out for myself how they looked on my 46″ overbust and 33″ underbust chest.

I will write separate reviews for each of the bras I ordered, however in this post I am hoping to summarise my findings of the CH and HP styles. Please note that the comments here are my personal opinions and findings of the two styles – they may well come up differently on other people as we all have unique and very individual boobs!

The PL style is a plunge bra with two vertical seams and one horizontal (ish!) seam on each cup.  This bra is designed to pull everything into the bra and push the boobs together, whilst giving a rounded shape.  The central gore is lower than other styles, but is of course higher on the larger cupped bras than on smaller.  The wire comes up much lower on the sides when compared with other bra manufacturers (significantly lower than Panache, Freya and Fantasie, for example).  The plunge is the best style for larger breasts but it is important that wearers find their correct size as otherwise there can be some spillage in the centre of the bra.

I have PL bras in a variety of sizes – 36/80J, 36/80HH and 34/75J, with the latter being the best fit so far – and adore the shape and lift they give me.

Here I am in a 36/80HH in the PL Panterka Czerwona:

The CH style is a halfcup bra and on larger cups it has two vertical seams.  These seams are very vertical indeed, which is what gives the cups their depth and in turn gives my boobs the ‘facing forward’ and pushed up shape.  Ewa Michalak describes this shape as ’rounded apple breasts’ and I think this is the perfect description.

The central gore is higher than the plunge style by about an inch, meaning that the tops of the cups run almost horizontally from here to where they join the shoulder straps.  The sides of the CH also come up higher, but not so high that they poke into my armpits (as is the case with bras from many other manufacturers).

I tried the CH bras in 80H (CH Miętus) and 75HH (CH Pawie Oka) – these both fit well in the cup (as technically they are the same volume) but the Pawie Oka has a stretchy band and so I am hoping to exchange it for a 70J if it is available.

Here is a picture of me in the CH Pawie Oka:

If you like the shape the Bravissimo Demi Diva and the Curvy Kate Tease Me give you then I believe the CH style will be a good one for you.

The HP style is also a halfcup bra and has two vertical seams on larger cups.  Well, I say they are vertical, but when looking closely at them it is clear they are curved in order to give the cups their shape.  The central gore is the same height as the CH but the wires at the sides do not come up as high.

I have found that the HP bras somewhat flatten my boobs, giving a slight minimising effect.    Ewa Michalak make note of this on their website: ‘In comparison with the CH, the HP pushes the breasts to the chest and pushes upward.’  I thought this minimising shape would be immediately apparent in the photos I took but perhaps not – I think my boobs actually look quite good!  However I know the bras do not feel quite right when I am wearing them and when I look down I do not see the beautiful shape the PL and CH bras give me but instead a slightly misshapen appearance where my boobs are being unwillingly pushed out to the sides somewhat.  I must stress that this is how I have found the HPs fit – I have no doubt that on others they would be perfect, but perhaps these others would need to be a few cup sizes smaller than me.

I tried the HPs in a 75HH and found them a good fit sizewise on me.

Here is a picture of me in the HP Nina (an exquisite bra but sadly the wrong shape for me):

My opinion is that if you are a fan of the shape Panache and Elomi bras give you then you will suit the HP style very much.

The HM style is an unpadded halfcup bra.  This style is not available in my size so I am writing this based on my observations from the Ewa Michalak website.  I am most envious of ladies who can fit into this style as the designs are every bit as beautiful as their padded counterparts and I would love to own a Ewa Michalak lacy unpadded bra.  The fit seems to be similar to the HP, where the breasts are pushed against the chest and lifted up, which is why this style would not suit larger cups.

Obviously I do not have any pictures of me in an HM bra as I have not tried this style. However, from reading others’ reviews I think this style would give a similar fit to Panache and Elomi bras.

I love the CH shape so much that I am planning on ordering as many as possible for my collection.  I notice that Ewa Michalak don’t have many new designs available in CH and are instead concentrating on the HP – for my own reasons I hope and pray that this soon changes and the CH is brought back into the spotlight again as for me it is a stunning shape.

You can read another guide to Ewa Michalak on the Venusian Glow blog here.



  1. June
    28 December 2011 / 19:43

    Thanks so much for this! I haven't tried all the styles yet, well, basically everything but the strapless bras and the CP bras. 🙂 I hadn't heard that a poor fit in the plunge causes spilage towards the middle… I've tried two on so far and I had it on both (although both were too big in the cups for me). I just assumed it was because my breasts are very close together so I never bothered trying on different plunges in my actual size… So far the CH is hands-down my favorite. I definitely prefer a more full coverage bra because between weight loss and lots of nursing my breasts don't have much in terms of natural shape! However, I have to say I love my CH Onyx and will probably stick to CH's from now on because of that. 🙂

  2. CurvyWordy
    28 December 2011 / 20:32

    Thanks June :-)It might be worth giving the PLs a whirl again in the correct size – as you can see from my pics and those of others they really do work wonders when you get your sizing sorted.I think the CH is my favourite too…it's hard to say for sure as it's early days but I do love the shape they give me. And it's very exciting for me to find another style that works for me! Cue lots more EM purchases!! x

  3. Birdie
    29 December 2011 / 00:41

    Thank you! I'm planning on ordering this coming payday, and have been trying to get a handle on what's available and what exactly the style names mean.

  4. Birdie
    29 December 2011 / 00:44

    Oh… can I ask what your measurements were in the EM measuring style? I believe you're bigger than I am, but they've recommended I buy a 75 band. I measure 31 tight and 33 loose (perhaps I'm measuring too loose?) but I have 34 band bras currently, and they're far too loose on me and slip up my back instantly. (for further reference/sizing help, please(!), I'm 5'0" and weigh about 125lbs, I just have a, um, well-developed rib cage)

  5. CurvyWordy
    29 December 2011 / 01:11

    Hi there,I measure 32" tight and 33.5" loose underbust and the chart makes me a 36/80H. This is too small for me in the cup in the PLs and too big for me in the band in most styles. I am now going for 32/70 or 34/75 bands and HH or J cups where available.I'm afraid this may simply have confused you further! My advice would be to order a couple of different styles and back/cup sizes for your first order and see how you get on. Also have a look on http://bratabase.com/ which is a fab website where you can compare fit and measurements of bras. Just don't forget to add your own bras so the site can grow!Don't worry if you don't see your size available on the EM website at the moment. As it's the holidays, they have taken down any sizes which have to be made to order and only left up those in stock. Normal service should be resumed in early January.Good luck and let me know how you get on 🙂

  6. Birdie
    29 December 2011 / 02:05

    Thank you tons for the quick reply. My plan is to pick two bras I like and order 3-4 sizes of each, then use the money from returns to order whatever size works in similar bras/matching panties. 😉 I really appreciate what you and the other bra bloggers are doing. I finally have some hope to get out of the aching breasts and sore back cycle I've been in since my early teens.

  7. Tia
    29 December 2011 / 22:38

    Thanks for this information. I've been thinking about purchasing from EM for a while and just recently revisted the site and wondered where the larger sizes had gone!With this band information I might need a 32 band but I'm not sure there will be any cup sizes large enough as I usually buy 34/36 band (from other makes) in the largest cups available and they are still too small.Looks like the first 2 options give your arms freedom which is nice!

  8. CurvyWordy
    29 December 2011 / 22:43

    Hi Tia, thanks for your comment.Just before Christmas they took down all the bras which weren't in stock, meaning the ones that are left are available for despatch within 48 hours. I heard today that all sizes will be available again from 9th Jan 2012 :-)It sounds like the 32 band would be good for you and probably the cup size you'd normally take in other brands, although it's hard to say without knowing your measurements.The PL and CH definitely give my arms lots of freedom 🙂 I always thought the Freyas I wore before discovering EM were pretty good but these bras are by far the best I have ever known.Good luck with your order and let me know how you get on!

  9. Marianne
    9 March 2012 / 03:10

    Thank you for helping me in discovering this company, they've changed my life! Got my first parcel of 4 bra's today, each one fitting perfectly!

    • CurvyWordy
      9 March 2012 / 09:25

      Hi Marianne, thanks so much for taking the time to comment. I'm so pleased that you love Ewa Michalak lingerie as much as me – they really can make a world of difference to a bigger-busted lady 🙂 Enjoy your new bras! x

  10. Bra nightmares
    25 March 2012 / 22:09

    Here's my question: I've been trying to see your Bratabase measurements on EM plunge bras to find out how much the cup width grows with one cup size. I found that they seem to vary a lot in different models. Do you find that the wires are wider in some EM PL bras than others? I thought that it might be just because you measures some bras new and some used or something like that…I'm asking this because I HAVE to find the right fit in EM. They are the best bras ever, but the wires should be a couple of centimeters wider. I'll go up a cup size in my next order, but I'm just thinking if there really is difference in the plunge bras width.

    • CurvyWordy
      2 April 2012 / 00:39

      Hi – thanks for your question and apologies for the delay in getting back to you.In all honesty I don't consciously notice a huge amount of difference, although there are several Ewas I wear more often than others and perhaps this is down to the wires.I did spot the wire inconsistency when I added my bra measurements to Bratabase but in practice I thought the difference felt minimal to me.The cups in some of the bras are/seem shallower than others. For instance, the PL Malachit and PL Bella are definitely less deep than others and therefore I would need a larger cup size. The PL Czerwona Panterka and PL Garden have good depth for me.I measured my first EM bras for Bratabase when they had been worn for a couple of months so that could well have influenced the measurements. The bras I have added more recently were measured either completely unworn or when they had been worn perhaps only once or twice.I wonder if the new BP (padded balconette) style will suit you better? It wouldn't surprise me if the wires in these are a little wider – time will tell I guess!

  11. Jes
    21 July 2013 / 04:41

    Thank you for an interesting read. Great bra's too!

  12. Jennifer Vance
    7 October 2013 / 07:38

    I was wondering what the CHP is supposed to be?I think it is a variation on the CH?

  13. Anonymous
    11 July 2014 / 14:14

    I measure a 16 inch difference in band and bust measurements. It is incredibly hard to find a cup size that large or to figure out which cup size that would be, I am a 38 L?, LL?, M? do the cup sizes come in any bigger and where could I find them? Thank YOU!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.