Look and Feel Fantastic!
Discovering your true bra size can be life changing. This might sound a bit over the top but it is easy to underestimate how much your figure, the way your clothes look and the way you feel about yourself can be transformed by the right bra.
There's a lot of mythology out there when it comes to the subject of bra fitting. The simple truth is, when you know what a bra should look and feel like when it fits properly, you can tell in a matter of seconds whether you've got a good fit.
A helpful comparison
We think it's useful to compare buying a bra with buying a pair of shoes. Just as our feet vary in terms of size and shape, our busts differ in terms of the volume, shape, and spacing of the breasts. You might know your shoe size but it is very unlikely that you would buy a pair of shoes without trying them on first. The same goes for bras - one style of bra may be perfect for one woman and totally wrong for another, even though they are the same size. Added to this, bras tend to vary in size according to manufacturer and style so you really need to try every bra on before you buy it.
Our breasts change for all sorts of reasons over our lives (age, weight, variations, pregnancy, and the use of the contraceptive pill) and you may not be the same size for longer than a few months, let alone a lifetime! So, if you want to look and feel as good as you deserve to, you should look at your bras reguarly and use our 3 step check to ensure you've got the perfect fit.
What your bra should look like
This is our 3 step check for the perfect fit:
1 The strap around your body should be firm but comfortable. When you stand side-on at a mirror, the strap that runs around your body should be horizontal and should not ride up the back at all.
2 The wires at the front should lie flat against your rib cage and should not dig in, rub or poke out at the front.
3 Your breasts should be enclosed in the cups and you should have a smooth line where the fabric at the top of the cup ends and meets your bust. You shouldn't have any ridge or bulging over the top or sides of the cups, even if you are wearing a balconette style or lower cut shape.
Trying on Tips
When you are trying a bra on, it's best to start off by fastening it on its loosest hook. This way you will be able to tighten the bra up if it starts to give in the back a bit when you've worn it a few times. Also, remember to adjust the shoulder straps to ensure that they are not too lose. When you've put on a bra, you may need to adjust your breasts to make sure that they are in the cups properly. It's a good idea to try a t-shirt or top over the bra that you are trying so that you can see the shape that the style gives you underneath your clothes.
Why isn't my bra fitting me properly?
Here are some of the most common reasons together with our advice for how to put things right:
My breasts are bulging out of the top or sides of the cup and my bust looks lumpy under clothes.
This is a sure sign that the cup size you are wearing is too small as your breasts should be totally encased in the cups. Try at least one cup size bigger.
My bra rides up my back or moves around as I move.
Apart from trying to squeeze ourselves into cup sizes that are too small, the most common mistake that we make is to wear back sizes that are too big. The strap around your body should fit snugly and it will only move around if it is too big. If this is happening, you need to try a smaller back size. BUT REMEMBER a smaller back size will also be smaller in the cup (i.e. a 34E is smaller in the back and cup than a 36E). For example, if you found a 36E fit you well in the cup but was too big around the back, you would need to try a 34F.
The wires stick out at the front or dig in under my arms.
When the wires stick out or dig in like this, it's often because the cup size is too small and your breasts are forcing the bra away from your body. Try a cup size bigger so that the wires lie flat against your body and fully encase your breasts.
The straps dig into my shoulders and give me red marks.
The main support provided by a bra should come from the strap around your back and not the shoulder straps. If your shoulder straps are digging in, you are probably wearing too big a back size so you need to drop a back size. Alternatively, you may simply need to loosen the shoudler straps.
The cups are wrinkly, particularly at top and sides.
This is usually a sign that the cup size is too big so you may want to try one cup size smaller. However, if the wrinkling is only at the tip of the cup, this could be an indication that the cup size is too small because your breasts cannot fit into the cups properly - in this instance, try one cup size bigger.