WYCKOFF, N.J. – Paul Haber calls his Wyckoff and River Edge employees “heroes.”
“They are complete heroes for making so many women feel good,” said Haber, who co-owns the Wizard of Bras (WOB) lingerie stores with his brother Mitchell and sister Loren.
“They spend so much time fitting everyone to make them feel good, help their self-esteem,” Haber said, as he stood in the Wyckoff store beside two of his employees, Sherry and Marcie.
Many of WOB’s customers have endured things like mastectomies, lumpectomies, skin problems, posture issues, back pain, breast augmentations and breast reductions. The staff listens to them, and helps them find the right bra.
“You meet really great women,” said Sherry, adding some cry when they find the right fit, and she often tears up too.
“It is weird that it is such a little thing you would think of, but for somebody else, it is a major adjustment, it is a major change,” Sherry said.
“If they can walk out of here liking the way they look, that is very important,” Marcie said.
Haber and his siblings opened WOB in River Edge 35 years ago, and expanded to Wyckoff 12 years ago.
All three had worked for their father Arnold, a lingerie manufacturer. When Haber worked for his father, he said he was an “unsuccessful” bra salesman, because “I would not pull anything out of my sample case that I didn’t believe in, and I could never make my draw.”
Now, “I only sell what I believe in. Every single item we sell, I am sure of the quality,” he said.
It pays off. Women from Bergen, Passaic, Essex, Morris and Rockland counties frequent the shops. Many come from Manhattan, and some women who live as far away as England and the Dominican Republic make special trips when they are visiting the United States, Haber said.
WOB also specializes in corsetry for bridal gowns and black tie affairs, and helps women find bras for gowns that are “plungy” and “backless,” Haber said.
“We get people in that go to the Grammys and all these awards that are on the red carpets,” Haber said. The cast of The Real Housewives of New Jersey also shops at WOB, which was shown on an episode, Haber said.
For Haber, the best part of it all is the satisfaction of helping women.
“When I see the customers hugging my employees it is the most rewarding thing in the world. It really is. Maybe that is why we have been around 35 years,” he said.