This is Part 2 of my Bra Fit 101 blog series. If you missed Part 1, “What Bra You Should Be Wearing,” click here.
I have been working in the lingerie industry (or “intimate apparel,” if you want to get technical) for over four years now. I’ve worked both on the business side of things, and on the modeling side, specifically relating to fit, so it is a topic very close to my heart–literally!
I have had an absolutely amazing time working in this industry. It feels so great to help brands perfect the fit of their products and encourage women to find their correct bra sizes – and it’s fun!
After all my years of experience, it is very easy for me to tell in an instant if someone is wearing the right or wrong bra size. And, more importantly, the WRONG size!! So…if you catch me staring, I’m not checking you out, I’m probably just trying to guess what bra you’re wearing.
I know from personal experience that many women hang on to that one super-soft beige Victoria’s Secret bra we got 5 years ago because it is so comfortable, so we assume that it fits perfectly. I hate to be that person, but you probably need to throw that bra out. Not only does the fit of a bra change after years of wearing them (our bodies can change too!), but the technology and fit precision in the industry is advancing and improving every single season.
If you are reading this post and subsequently thinking “oh, crap, I’m totally wearing the wrong size,” be sure to check out Part 1 of this series, “What Bra You Should Be Wearing” here for a bra size chart, and to find out how to measure bra size correctly!
**Please keep in mind that I am not a professional bra fitter, but simply sharing the knowledge I have gathered during my time in the industry.**
6 signs you are wearing the WRONG bra size:
1. You have breast tissue overflowing out of the top or side of your bra cup.
Look in the mirror and turn to the side. If you see your breast tissue (soft skin of your breast) bulging over the top of the cup, your cup size and/or band size is too small! You need a bra with more cup capacity that isn’t squeezing your tissue too tight, or a larger band.
Now look in the mirror and face front. If you see your breast tissue bulging out of the side of your bra cup (some might call this “armpit fat” but it’s really just breast tissue), your cup size and/or band size is too small!
The Solution: You need a bra with a larger cup size and/or a larger band size.
2. The wire of your bra is digging into your side.
One of the top complaints about bra fit is a wire that uncomfortably digs into the skin (or, god forbid, stabbing through the material). The wire should sit comfortably underneath your breast tissue, so if you feel it digging, your cup size is probably too small.
The Solution: You need a bra with a larger cup size. And, if the wire is stabbing through the material, it’s time for a new bra, girlfriend.
3. You are spilling out from underneath the wire.
Run your fingers underneath the wire of your bra where it meets your body. If you notice your breast tissue bulging or spilling out from underneath your bra, your cup is probably too small.
The Solution: You need a bra with a larger cup size.
4. The band of your bra is riding up or down.
The band of your bra, specifically where the clasp is on the back, should be relatively low and completely level on your body. If your band is arching/riding up (and/or digging into your skin), your straps may be too short, and your band may be too tight. If it is sagging, your band is way too loose.
The Solution: Try loosening your straps a bit. If your band is still riding up or feeling too tight, you need a bra with a bigger band size. If your band is drooping down, you need a bra with a smaller band size.
5. There is a gap in between your body and your bra.
Look down at your bra and pay attention to the top of your bra cup. If there is a gap between your body and your bra, your cup size is probably too big. Now, look at the center of your bra (called the “gore”). It should be laying flat against your body. If there is a gap, your cups may be too small, or your band may be too large. And, if there is space between your band and your body (at the sides, back, or center) your band is too large.
The Solution: You need a bra with a smaller cup size and/or a smaller band size.
6. Your bra straps are digging into your skin or are falling down.
If your bra straps are (1) digging into your skin uncomfortably, or (2) falling down off your shoulders, you need to adjust your straps! The support of the bra should be coming from the band (under the cups), not the strap. The straps are simply there to hold the cups up and in place! If your straps are still loose on the tightest adjustment, your straps are stretched out and it’s time for a new bra, baby!
The Solution: Adjust those straps!
If you are still unsure about what bra size you should be wearing (or how to adjust your cup or band size based on the recommendations above), check out ThirdLove’s awesome bra quiz here. Many brands have their own fit charts or “find my size” tools, so be sure to check that out when you are shopping!
I really recommend trying out ThirdLove, especially if you are having trouble with your fit. Use code BREAKUP20 for up to 20% off your first purchase! Treat yo self. Your boobs deserve it.
This was Part 2 of my Bra Fit 101 blog series. If you missed Part 1, “What Bra You Should Be Wearing,” click here.