The Ultimate Fit Guide
How should the cup fit?
How should the band fit?
How can you tell if your bra is fitting incorrectly?
While nothing beats an in-store fitting, we will try our best at helping you at home!
First Thing's First...
The Bra Band
80% of your support comes from the band... that's right ladies 80%!!!
For the wire to work properly, it must be held in place by the band of the bra. Throughout the day, your band is responsible for keeping the wires firmly against the body so they do not poke or rest on the breast tissue.
You should feel it holding, but it should not be so tight that it is uncomfortable. As a guideline, you should be able to comfortably run two fingers under both sides of the bra at the same time. If the bra pulls away from your body easily, it is too loose. If you have trouble getting your fingers under the band and it feels uncomfortable, it is too tight.
The band should be level front and back. If the back rides up or the breast tissues falls under the wire in the front throughout the day, it is too loose. To check to see if your band is too loose, lift your arms above your head. If the band moves up your sides or back or if your breast tissue starts to come out from below the underwires or band, it’s too big.
Having your band nice and snug can help reduce back pain by lifting the breast up, and taking the pressure off of your shoulders.
Checking the Cup Size
The first thing to do when checking your cup size is to be sure the breast tissue is as far into the cup as possible! We call this trick the scoop and swoop...
Sweep the breast forward with one hand while pulling the wire back under your arm with the other hand.
Set the wire in place and then let the breast tissue fall into place.
You can also lean forward and hold both wires away from your body while letting the breast drop into the cup. Then pull the wire back and set into place before straightening up. Once your breast is pulled forward, if the tissue is not completely in front of the wire, you need to go up in your cup size. For every 3/4 inch of breast tissue under and behind the wire, go up one cup size.
If you have never been fitted, it is likely that you will need to go up several cup sizes. Don’t let the letters scare you!
The social norm tells us that a DD is a large cup size, when in fact, in the scale of things, it's actually on the small side. Cup sizes start a AA, and now they go all the way to K... yes, K!
The average cup size of our customers is typically F-GG, if you consider yourself full busted, there is a large chance that you are probably in one of these cup sizes!
Proper cup fit is influenced by band size. As the band size changes, so does the cup size. For every band size you go down, you should go up one cup. If you are in a 34D with a good cup fit, but want to go down to a 32 band, you would go to a 32DD for a tighter band with the same cup fit. Likewise, if you were in a 34D and wanted to keep the cup fit, but get a looser band, you would want a size 36C.
With sister sizes like this, you could end up leaving our store with 4 bras, in 4 different cup sizes that all fit exactly the same! We know how confusing this can be, which is why we are here to help every step of the way!
How to Know if your Bra doesn't fit
8 out of 10 women wear the wrong size bra. Most have never been fitted properly for a bra either. Ladies... your bra does not need to be uncomfortable! A properly fitting bra won't even be noticed after a long day of wear... trust us!
Here are some signs that your bra isn't fitting correctly
- Straps are sliding off the shoulders
- Band is riding up the back
- Extra space in the cups
- Wires are poking in the center, or under the arm
- Underwires poked out of the bra, or completely broke
- Band feels way too tight, or way too loose
- "double boob" spillage
- The bra is on the tightest hook
Quick Fixes for the Most Common Bra Problems
- "My wire digs into my breast all day"
Go up in the cup size!
Typically, this problem means that the cup is too small! When wires sit on the sensitive breast tissue for long periods of time it can be very painful.
- "I used to love my bra, but now it hurts"
How long have you had your bra?
Bras are made of delicate fibers. The life of an average bra really depends on a lot of factors.. mainly how often you're washing and wearing each one. The less you have, the shorter their life will be. The more you have, the longer each one will last! We recommend a wardrobe of 7 bras, one for every day of the week!
- "I am constantly pulling the back down"
Go tighter in the band!
It sounds like your bra has stretched out. If you aren't on the tightest hook already, go ahead and tighten the band. Also, loosen the straps if you previously tightened them. When the band starts to ride up it can also cause the straps to fall off of your shoulders. Most people will automatically tighten the straps, when in reality... all that needs tightened is the band!
- "My breast keep sliding out the bottom of my cups"
This means that the bra band is way too big!
If the bra can’t get down on your body and stay there, it’s too loose. Many women make this mistake when trying to find the right cup size, thinking they will have more room when the band is larger. While that is true, it creates a new set of problems and makes it impossible for the bra to be positioned properly and support you well.
- "My breast tissue is spilling out the top of my cup"
Oh the dreaded double boob, probably the worst offender of them all!
Your breast should always have controlled support, even in push up styles. If your breast tissue is “bubbling” over the cup, it is simply too small in the cup.
- "My bra straps dig and give me grooves in my shoulders"
The band is too loose!
Shoulder straps digging in is one of the most common complaints, but it has a surprising and simple fix. Get a smaller band size. The straps should be responsible for no more than 10% of the overall support. With a firmly fitted band, the frame can take it’s full share of support and leave the straps to just hold the bra in place. For women with particularly heavy breasts, a tighter band may not be enough (although it is still recommended) and our strap pads should help. Everyone's body is different!
- "My wires dig into my ribs"
You're wearing the wrong cup size.
Most people have this issue and think it is that the band is too tight, when in fact it is actually the pressure from the weight of your breast pushing the wire down into your ribs. A tighter band will help, but more importantly try a larger cup size.
- "I have gaps or wrinkles in the cups"
Think of your bra like a see-saw, when it rides up in the back, the front will fall down, which will cause the bra to gap, and fall away from the body. Gapping is 80% due to an ill fitting band, and 10% cup size, and 10% cup style!
If you take away one thing from our quick fix guide...
BAND BAND BAND! We cannot stress how important a well fitting, snug bra band is. Of everyone who comes into our store, the bra band is always the first, and usually the issue that causes everything else in the bra to feel uncomfortable!
We also understand that sometimes, you just can't wear it snug... which is okay! We will educate you on the signs to watch for when the bra starts to stretch out, and feel uncomfortable again!