How do you know if you’re wearing the right bra size? If your bra isn’t comfortable, it’s not the right size for you—no matter what size it says on the tag. Don’t let yourself be fooled by vanity sizing, where manufacturers cut larger band sizes down to make people feel better about themselves. If your bra causes back pain or if you have back fat spilling out over the tops of your cups, then your bra is too small and you need to find one that fits better! But how do you know if your bra really fits?
Understanding Your Breasts
When it comes to bras, understanding your breasts is important. Women who don't know their right size often purchase a bra that doesn't provide adequate support. But first things first: you need to understand the anatomy of your breasts so you can measure yourself correctly. Your breasts have three major parts:
- The fatty tissue that makes up most of your breast (called subcutaneous)
- The glandular tissue at the centre of your breast that produces milk (called lactiferous ducts), and
- Overlying skin and muscle tissue known as superficial fascia.
Many people think measuring for a bra is about measuring themselves whilst standing. However, this method is inaccurate because women's breasts are usually uneven and not every woman's breast are perky and gravity-defying.
Knowing Your Cup Size
Breasts come in all shapes and sizes, so a woman may have one breast that is smaller than the other. That's why it's important to measure your breasts before shopping for a bra. This can be done by taking two measurements - one over each breast - measuring around the under bust and, across the fullest part of your breast (usually over the nipple).
When taking your measurements make sure you take them three times. Once where you are standing straight, bending over, and once again laying on your back. This means your bra size will accommodate the movement of your breasts to offer you the best comfort. Once you've gotten all of the measurements, find the average and look at the difference between the under bust and over nipple sizes. The bigger the difference, the bigger the cup.
Finding the Right Bra
Now you need to look at your breasts. Another issue with women face when finding the right bra fit, is the distance between the breasts that make up our cleavage. Some woman have breast tissue that is knitted closely together along the breast bone whilst others have wide set breasts. This is where many problems with the underwire digging up, the band not sitting flush to the skin, and not getting that long-lasting support that a bra should offer.
If you have narrow-set breasts, you'll find more comfort choosing plunge underwire bras due to the wire resting lower compared to other underwired styles. or choosing a wired bralette such as our Enchantress bralette where the wire is continuous along the under bust.
If you have a wide-set breasts, you'll find more comfort and lift with a full or balcony underwire bra as they offer a wider bridge with hide wired support for your breasts such as our Savis and Amural Bras.
Common Fitting Mistakes
Most women have their bras fitted incorrectly, which can lead to discomfort and frustration. When you measure yourself at home, it's important that you get an accurate measurement by following these guidelines:
- Check your band size. This should be done snug but not tight. If you need help loosening or tightening your bra straps, this is a sign that your band may be too big or too small, respectively.
- Make sure that the shoulder straps are comfortable on your shoulders. The back of the bra should fit close to your body without digging in.
- Your breasts should fill out the cups completely with no spillage at the top or sides, and there shouldn't be any gaps between them and the fabric.
- Your cups don't need to fit like a glove; they just need to cover most of your breast tissue without being too loose or too tight (considering all variables).