Ok so first things first, let me explain how I learnt the importance of finding your true bra size. Back in 2015 I went on a girls holiday to London and budgeted HELLA cash to treat myself at Victoria’s Secret. Fab – I was extremely excited. So up comes the day and I see the most beautiful bra, which I grab straight away. Now the queues to the changing rooms were a bit long so little me thinks, no problem, I know what size I am anyway, it’ll be fine. Long story short, 17 year old Elise spent £75 on a bra that was one band size too big and 3 cup sizes too small. Yeah, I got some wear out of it, but it was incredibly uncomfortable and bits were popping out all over the place. This was probably my most major fashion mistake to date.
So yeah, my point is that I was absolutely convinced, to the point of forking out £75 of my hard earned cash that I knew what bra size I was. Sure, I had never been professionally fitted but surely you can just tell? Wrong! Through a few years of trial and error, however, I do believe I’m now pretty informed on the subject. Please note that I am not a professional bra fitter, these are all just little tips I’ve learnt over the years. So without further ado, here are my top 5 tips on finding the perfect bra for you!
- Get fitted. This is the absolute best way to find your true bra size. You may be convinced what you’re wearing is right, but you might be surprised. I was adamant I was a 34B for ages and when I actually went to get measured I turned out to be a 32DD! If you have a fuller bust, I would personally recommend getting fitted somewhere that stocks DD+. This may be the cynic in me, but I do sometimes worry that stores might falsely measure you as a ‘sister size’ to what you really are, so you fit into a size they stock. For example, you may be measured as a 36DD but in reality be a 32F. I’m not saying this does happen, but it’s something to be aware of. Please also be reassured that getting fitted is not scary at all! I think the biggest misconception is that you have to strip off, but you do not have to take your bra off to be measured. Just go in wearing a comfy and unpadded bra, as this makes life a bit easier.
- Find your style. Balconette, plunge, push-up, T-shirt, bralette, the list goes on! Try on a variety of styles to figure out which is your favourite and feels best. If you have a fuller bust, plunge is always a great option as balconettes can run the risk of spillage, but try them all and you’ll figure out what feels right!
- Don’t be afraid to scoop. This is such an important step! Once you’ve got your bra on, get right in there and scoop your boobs up into the cups, which will immediately make it so much comfier (also do this every time you put a bra on). When you’re all nicely in place, lean forward – there shouldn’t be any gaping and everything should sit nice and comfortably in place.
- Are the straps and under-band sitting right? Firstly, check the bit at the front that connects the cups – this should sit flat against your chest. It shouldn’t stick out or sit on actual breast tissue, which would be super uncomfortable anyway. Look at the back of the bra, this should be straight and not riding up. If it’s not totally straight, adjusting the shoulder straps might immediately help but if not, your band size probably isn’t quite right.
- How does it feel? This is actually the simplest but most useful indicator of them all. A bra that fits will almost feel like a second skin, and based on my experience at least, you will almost immediately know if it’s the right size just by how it feels. If something feels ‘off’, it probably is. As far as tightness, always choose a bra that fits on the loosest hook; this way, when it stretches over time, you’re able to tighten it. You should be able to fit two fingers under the back, but there shouldn’t be much give.
Honestly, once you find a bra that fits, you will never again underestimate the importance of ensuring they do. It might sometimes feel like a bit of a minefield, but bra fitting is something that’s definitely worth getting your head around; once you do, it’s a skill you’ll always have.
*P.S. If you were looking for a sign to treat yourself to some new lingerie, this is it…