Finding the Right Bra

According to research, 80% of women are wearing the wrong bra size. That means there is a good probability that one of those women could be you. Finding the right bra is about more than identifying your correct size and what is the most comfortable. It is about helping yourself to feel your best. When you look good, you feel even better.

A good first step is finding out your size. Make sure you are not wearing a padded bra or push-up bra at the time you take your measurements, as it will not give you an honest result. All you have to do is:

  • Wrap a measuring tape directly under your breasts
  • Measure the bust by placing the tape at the fullest part of the bust, checking to see that it is parallel to the band
  • Subtract the band size from the bust size to determine your cup size

The easiest way to remember this is to know that every inch equals a cup size. Some examples include:

  • A 1-inch difference means you are an A cup
  • A 2-inch difference means you are a B cup
  • A 3-inch difference means you are a C cup
  • A 4-inch difference means you are a D cup
  • A 5-inch difference means you are a DD cup
  • A 6-inch difference means you are a DDD cup

When you are figuring out your band size, always round to the nearest whole number. If the number is even you want to add 4 inches and if it is odd, you want to add 5. For example, if you measure 32 inches, your band size is 36.

Some stores have professionals that will measure you. It is possible that, depending on the brand, your size may be a little different, but measuring will give you a baseline. If you ever notice wrinkling in the cups, the underwire poking the side of your breasts, or you just feel sore or uncomfortable from your bra, it is most likely because you are wearing the wrong size and that is easy to fix.

Keep your measurements written down in your cell phone or on a note pad that you keep with you so you have them handy when you get the urge to go bra shopping. If you think your size has changed, you may be right, and it is perfectly normal. There are many factors that affect your breasts, including aging, pregnancy, hormone fluctuations, and weight gain or loss.

When you try a bra on, do a self-check to be sure that it fits properly. Taking a little extra time to make sure it is a good match for your body will avoid problems down the road. Some things to do include:

  • Making sure the front and back of the bra are even
  • Seeing that the straps are not falling off and adjusting them if necessary
  • Making sure you can only slide one finger under the band
  • Stand in front of a mirror and get a glimpse of yourself sideways where you should see the breasts are the halfway point between your shoulders and elbows
  • If you need to go down a cup size to fit better, go up a band size. An example is that if a 34C feels too large, try a 36B.

Bras should last a while. Sometimes they can become loose just from wear and washing. When this happens, move toward the tighter hook. A good bra will fit smoothly, so there should not be room between you and the bra. Even in a sports bra, your size should be the same. A final helpful trick can be taking the straps off your shoulders and seeing if the bra stays in place. If it does not move, you have found a winner. When you understand how to find the right bra size, you will see it is possible to feel comfortable and be in style at the same time after all.


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