A young boy at the bar asked me 101 questions about what I do for a living — drag. He claimed he wasn’t interested in actually frocking up but had questions that he had been either too scared to ask or didn’t have the opportunity.
A subject which is extremely important to the art of drag or female illusion is boobies. To boob or not to boob, that is the question. And how big or small can you actually go?
When I started out, all the showgirls wore something called a ‘Lovely Feeler’ which consisted of two small odd-shaped things with hard pink nipples on them. You would buy them from the sex show-connected and you would cut them free and stuff them down your top, giving you nothing like a natural chest at all.
The sizing was great for thin showgirls but we more ‘husky’ ladies just looked stupid, like hulking creatures with two macaroons down our tops.
We had to become creative. Many of us stuffed bras with odd pieces of material, foam, bird seed, or tea towels. One showgirl used to stuff herself with two Bonds T-shirts.
Thank goodness House of Priscilla started to sell foamies, which are just solid foam but they’d come in different sizes and in a gorgeous teardrop shape. They’d give you a relatively natural chest and could be slotted in quickly if you were doing a quick change on stage.
So how big do you go? Is there a size you should start at?
Like gay boys and their junk, it depends on the person. Some like them big, some like them small, others don’t mind going out with none at all. I like to take both looks to the extreme, whether it’s going out with no boobs in at all, or having the biggest things you have ever seen in your life. You just add or subtract with how you feel and what you’re wearing.
One trick I love is to buy a cheap bra from Paddy’s Markets, one where the inside material of the cup can be pulled away. When you do this, you will find the cup becomes a pocket, which you can stuff.
Cut a small hole and push in one of your foamies, and pad it out with wadding. When it’s the size you want, sew it up and, bingo, you have your chest ready to go in a bra. This can lead to making up your chest to give it a little more pop.
But we all remember the saying — more than a handful is a waste, or is it more than a handful is a party? Oh, I can never remember.