Ewa Michalak PL Carmen Bra

For a while now, I have been finding that my 36J/HH and 34J Ewa Michalak bras have been feeling too loose in the band.  This has made me sad because I love these bras so much…but wearing a bra with too loose a band is no good, regardless of how pretty it may be.  *Sob*

You can imagine my delight when Ewa very kindly agreed to send me some new bras to review.  I was thrilled to be able to try one of the bras I have lusted after for some time now: the PL Carmen.

EN Carmen

Image courtesy of Ewa Michalak

I decided to opt for the 65/30KK as the 70/32 backs I had tried recently were all a little on the larger side for me.  I love those matching shorts in the pic above!  Must try them out sometime.  But I went with the size 44/16 thong on this occasion as this looked to be a saucily sexy set…

…And it was!  At first, it looked so different in real life that when I took it out of the box I did not recognise it and thought it was some fabulous new design I had been sent.  Then I suddenly realised that it was the PL Carmen and I was in love!

As with all Ewa Michalak PL bras, the cups are lightly padded with foam.  The Carmen has removable pads which work well to correct asymmetry if required, or add a bit of extra uplift in the cups if not.  Please note that the photos above show the bra with the pads in place, which is why the cups look a touch small.  If I remove the pads the cups fit really well.

The cups are overlaid with gorgeous red and black lace in a subtle floral design – very sexy!  There is black frilly lace edging along the tops of the cups which gives a real ‘showgirl’ feel, although it’s worth nothing that this definitely shows under clothing that is thin and close-fitting.  I love it though!

On the central gore, there is a large black ribbon which adds to the opulent feel of this set.

The Carmen’s straps are fully adjustable, have minimal stretch and are a few millimetres wider than the majority of my other Ewa Michalak bras.  This definitely makes them extra comfortable.  I was told by a bra fitter recently that I have ‘short shoulders’ and I tend to wear my straps shorter than the average person (although not all that short, in my opinion).  This means that the straps can sometimes dig in, especially as they are holding up some pretty heavy boobage.  I also have fairly soft skin so it can sometimes look like the straps are digging in more than they really are.  Wider straps are therefore a blessing for people like me and the Carmen scores highly on this front.

The 65/30 band is a great fit on me.  It feels firm but comfortable and supportive.  I can definitely feel that my old PLs are now way too loose for me!  As the band is short, there is only limited stretch but it is not of firm construction like the PL Czerwona Panterka, for example.  The lace featured on the cups is continued all the way around the back, which is a really nice touch.  It’s incredibly soft and is not scratchy or irritating at all.

The Carmen’s band fastens with four rows of three hooks.  I comfortably wore the bra on the loosest hooks, which is great as it means I have room to tighten it if needs be.

The Carmen thong was equally as lovely.  It’s made from the same soft, stretchy overlay lace used on the bra, which means that it gives a great fit without being tight.  I am so glad I went for the 44/16 as anything above this would have been too large on me.  I have previously ordered my bottoms in 48/20 as I thought that they were the best fit but sizing down has definitely proved to be a good choice.

The thong is not lined so when worn it is cheekily sheer, but the red colour and the lace detailing helps to at least partially preserve one’s modesty (I hope!!).

The back of the Carmen thong is also lovely, with a large black ribbon bow which matches the one on the central gore of the bra.  The frilly edges along the bottom edges of the thong also make it more saucy and appealing.  These frills kick out a little over one’s backside so they really add to the set’s slightly naughty feel.

I adore this set.  The richness of the red coupled with the ever-elegant black works so well together to create a look that is definitely sexual but also practical and very wearable.  I love opening my lingerie drawer and seeing a red bra and thong looking up at me – there’s something about red and black lingerie that appeals to me very strongly!

You can read my updated reviews of the PL Violet here and the PL Czerwona Panterka here – I now also have these in a 65/30KK.



  1. Reve
    5 September 2012 / 02:28

    Beautiful, I can't wait to have some money and finally get some good-fitting bras…although is it bad that part of me feels "eh" about getting such gorgeous underwear since I'm the only one who'll see it for a while :-p3 questions: 1) How long is the 30 band stretched out (in general)? Right now I'm wearing a 32 band in Freya and the band has a lot of room to stretch out, is on the tightest hook, and the central gore doesn't lay flat, so I think a 30J/JJ would be the best fit for me, but my underbust is 31" so I'm not sure. Would it be good to also buy a band extender?2) Since some of the bras have removable pads and I'm not sure if a J or JJ would be the best, should I get the smaller or larger cup size? I'm ~110cm overbust or so (between 43 – 43.5").3) Do you prefer the thong to the shorts? My butt is on the round side so I figure the thong might be best as I doubt the shorts could cover my butt all that well.

    • CurvyWordy
      13 September 2012 / 02:17

      Hi Reve,Sorry for the late reply to your questions.I totally hear what you're saying about gorgeous underwear being for your eyes only for the time being but (a) you never know when that might change so you're as well to be prepared (hehe), and (b) I love wearing fab lingerie for me, as well as for a man.Here are the answers to your questions which I have numbered in the same way you did…1) I have entered the PL Carmen's measurements on Bratabase so check them out on there to see how they compare to your Freyas. A bra extender is always a good thing to have on hand and you can get them very cheaply from Amazon or eBay. With your 31" underbust you may find the 30 band very snug but it depends how tight you like them!2) I am not sure of the measurements for other cup sizes so can't offer specific guidance on this I am afraid. Again, Bratabase should be able to help you, or try entering your measurements into this bra size calculator http://www.butterflycollection.ca/bra-size-calculator/ and I would usually suggest going a cup size up from the recommendation. You can always keep the pads in if the cups are a bit too small.3) I have not tried the shorts but they look to be kind of thong-style shorts from the pics so not like regular shorts. I would expect that the shorts are made from the same stretchy lace as the thong but if you are worried about coverage then as you say perhaps the thong would be best. I like the look of both!Hope this helps! 🙂

  2. Cynthia Maria
    5 September 2012 / 02:41

    Screw the bra! I can't stop looking at your nicely rounded bum and flat stomach!! This set looks glorious on you.

    • CurvyWordy
      6 September 2012 / 21:34

      Hahaha aww thank you, Cynthia Marie. Sometimes with lingerie as gorgeous as this it seems a shame to cover it up with clothing!!

  3. Anonymous
    5 September 2012 / 06:21

    Very cheeky Caroline! ;0)You look amazing as always!FF

    • CurvyWordy
      6 September 2012 / 21:33

      Always with the bad jokes, eh? Thank you 😉

  4. Koolkemp
    5 September 2012 / 11:23

    Wow that looks fantastic on you!!Steve

    • CurvyWordy
      6 September 2012 / 21:32

      Thanks Steve – decent lingerie is a girl's best friend!

  5. June
    5 September 2012 / 12:38

    Looks amazing! Are they still selling this then?

    • CurvyWordy
      6 September 2012 / 21:32

      Yes! I just it just a couple of weeks ago. Click the links in the post x

  6. Eve
    5 September 2012 / 20:30

    Hi I was wondering if you could help me, usually I wear a 28G in Freya but on the tightest hook and even then I'm able to fit an entire fist under the band! I'm looking at buying a 26(55)GG in an Ewa Michalak PL style (not decided which one yet) but I keep reading reviews that say different things. Do you think it would be worth trying the 26 or just to stick with the 28G ?I measure 26'' underbust and 36'' over and their calculator puts me in 75FThanks, Eve

    • CurvyWordy
      6 September 2012 / 22:20

      Hi Eve,Your best bet is to try an online bra size calculator and then order that size from Ewa. These two are good http://www.sophisticatedpair.com/bracalculator.htm and http://www.butterflycollection.ca/bra-size-calculator/. Some people say order the same band size but one cup size up from Freya for the EM plunges, so if that's the base then you would need 26H. I would recommend going for the smaller band size because if it's a bit tight you can always use an extender, whereas if it's too loose there's nothing you can do 🙁 And you say you measure 26" under so that should be fine.So far I have found the PL Violet and PL Czerwona Panterka have particularly tight bands in the 30s I've tried.Good luck with your order 🙂

  7. MiaRose
    6 September 2012 / 09:34

    I love how this looks on you! I tried the bra, too in 75E and send it back. It was still a great fit, but I felt the bra was bulkier and had more padding than usual even with the pads removed. I didn't look bad, but it did not give me the rounded, lifted shape I am used to.

    • CurvyWordy
      7 September 2012 / 00:22

      Thanks MiaRose 🙂 Sorry to read it didn't work out for you – I wonder if a different size might have worked better?

  8. wait until the sunset
    7 September 2012 / 21:28

    The set looks gorgeous on you!!! The frills are so pretty!

    • CurvyWordy
      7 September 2012 / 23:34

      Thank you – I love it!

  9. Amy
    14 October 2012 / 20:29

    How stretchy are the bands? I measure 31 inches underbust, and often my 32's are on the tightest hook within a few weeks. Should I order a 30 or 32? Thanks.

    • CurvyWordy
      14 October 2012 / 21:42

      Hi Amy,On this particular bra I (and others I know) found the band to be very tight so I would recommend going for a 32 rather than a 30. Band firmness does vary somewhat from bra to bra.

  10. Roi
    2 February 2013 / 05:23

    Hi Curvywordy,I want to thank you for your detailed blog regarding Ewa! Just adore all your posts, I was able to snag the Carmen set recently and I love it, definitely worth the investment. The fit is absolutely amazing, so happy my first order worked out so well.

    • Curvy Wordy
      2 February 2013 / 22:27

      Aww thanks so much, Roi 🙂 I'm so thrilled to hear that your first experience of EM has worked out so well – fingers crossed it's the first of many!

  11. Amanda Sandoval
    25 March 2014 / 22:08

    Hello! I am wanting to order my first em bra, the pl onyks, but clueless what size to get. My underbust is 30in and my overbust is 41. My breast are very soft thanks to nursing and two pregnancies! Any advice on size or style of em bra to get?

    • Curvy Wordy
      31 May 2014 / 13:44

      Regarding styles, I think the S and SM bras would be great on you. For sizing, I strongly recommend that you go to Bratabase and enter your measurements. Here you can get advice on which bras might work for you and what size(s) would work best. Good luck!

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