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Hanesbrands R&D professionals develop Smart Sizes
Jun '10
Hanesbrands Inc. announced that it is rolling out its latest intimate apparel innovation – proprietary shape-to-fit bra technology – under its Hanes and Barely There brands.

The innovative new system, called Smart Sizes, uses patented construction that molds to the shape of the wearer and allows five shape-to-fit bra sizes to replace 16 traditional cup-and-band sizes, resulting in easier shopping, a custom fit and superior comfort.

Hanesbrands, one of the world's leading innovators in intimate apparel, is using the Smart Sizes patented technology in new Hanes and Barely There bra collections launching across department store, mid-tier and mass-merchant retailers this summer.

“The launch of Smart Sizes is great news for women whose No. 1 complaint when shopping for bras is that they can never find a size that is comfortable for them,” said Christy Respess-Jones, vice president/general manager of intimate apparel for Hanesbrands. “With a streamlined sizing configuration, retailers can now display more bras in each size and carry more colors per size so the customer can easily and quickly find what she needs and make her purchase.”

After several years of product development work, Hanesbrands' research-and-development professionals developed the Smart Sizes bra system using a series of unique flexible and floating frames that allow bras to mold themselves to the shapes of the wearers. The system works with wirefree bras as well as more complex underwire styles.

Hanes and Barely There will continue to offer bra lines that use the traditional alpha-numeric sizing, but the introduction of brand-specific Smart Size bra lines – Hanes ComfortFlex Fit and Barely There CustomFlex Fit – will give consumers an innovative new choice to find the perfect bra fit.

The streamlined five Smart Sizes – extra small through extra large – are used in place of traditional alpha-numeric bra sizes from 30A through 42C. Those sizes represent 58 percent of the bras sold in the United States, according to retail market data.

“Smart Sizes is a very big concept that revolutionizes how women fit and buy their bras,” said Sandy Waitz, vice president of intimate apparel design and development for Hanesbrands. “With the flexible fit properties of Smart Sizes, women can find a bra that literally molds to their individual shapes, including unique fit challenges such as between sizes and unevenly sized breasts.”

Hanesbrands uses its product innovation across brands and distribution channels to take advantage of its strong market penetration. Hanesbrands has five of the 10 most preferred intimate apparel brands by consumers, including top-ranked Hanes and Barely There, according to Retailing Today magazine's 2009 “Top Brands Study” conducted by Leo J. Shapiro & Associates.

“Our design team is the best in this industry, and we are constantly exploring new ideas and technologies that our brands can use to transform the bra category,” Waitz said. “Hanes and Barely There, which target the average-figure women, are applying this technology to give their consumers one of the biggest advancements in bra sizing, convenience and comfort.”

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