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Ta-Ta Towel: Why the world has gone mad for a towel bra

Bum-enhancing leggings! Light-up phone cases for better selfies! A stick-on bra to "give your girls a lift!"

Why does it matter?

Well, traditionally capitalist Western society sexualises breasts in a bid to sell merchandise. Billions of dollars have been made from this strategy. But if there's one thing most people can agree on, it's that the Ta-Ta Towel is not the most sexually enticing boob-covering available.

More than likely, social media will soon be flooded with mischievous, consciously unflattering pictures of women posing in - might we call it? - the TTT. Facebook and Instagram aren't only for narcissists, after all - not when there's a new seam of shared comedy to mine.

The world has discovered a funny-looking boob-holder, and people are delighted. And when bra design changes so little as the years go by, perhaps it's no surprise.

This is a case of an innovative woman taking ownership of a female issue, and finding a solution.

Ta-Ta Towel creator Erin Robertson was living in Los Angeles with a broken air-conditioning unit, and got sweaty under her breasts the minute she stepped out of the shower.

She writes on her website: "I tried everything: I tucked wash cloths under my breasts, I tried dumping baby powder all over me, I even put a t-shirt on and tucked it under my boobs. But the wash cloths looked ridiculous, the baby powder made me look more like dough, and the t-shirt was making me sweat even more."

It's not pretty, but it's a fact - especially in summer, and for women with a larger bra size.

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That brings us to another novelty - the women advertising this product are much bigger than standard models. The denizens of the runway are rarely among nature's most buxom, and the Ta-Ta Towel is only available from a C to an H cup. It's an unusual sight, because women with more than an inch to pinch are rarely employed to sell mass-market products. Especially where they'll have to be scantily clad.

And for mothers, there's another bonus to the Ta-Ta furore: It's raised tricky discussions about breast-feeding which would usually only happen in baby groups or on Mumsnet.

On her babycenter blog, mum Sara McGinnis wrote about struggling with night-time leakage while breast-feeding, and how she had stuffed hand towels down the front of her t-shirt every night.

Certainly, not everyone with a view on the Ta-Ta Towel will go through that experience. But it's encouraging honest, empathetic discussions about what happens to women in their first months of motherhood - and making people smile in the process.