h1

Christina Hendricks – Bra Size Controversy

June 30, 2011

I have so much to say about the lovely Christina Hendricks, it’s hard to know where to start.

First of all, it’s important to say that I personally think she is a stunning, elegant and very talented woman. She rocks what she’s got like no one I have ever seen. Half the world has gone Christina mad, the other half seem to dislike her purely because she flaunts her curves – not sure I understand how that can be a bad thing, but anyway.

She has always been someone I admire, especially because I can be insecure about my own curves. Far less now than I used to be, but I think it’s a difficulty that a lot of women face.

The one thing that irritates me no end however, is the topic of Christina’s bra size. There are all sorts of apparent ‘facts’ circulating about her being something like a 36DD or a 38DDD (in the UK, DDD is not a real cup size). If she really measured 38 underbust, that would makes her a UK size 16-18 – something she is most definitely not. If I was going to guess, I would say she is probably a 32H or HH – or something along those lines. I often see her practically bursting out of her outfits, and it makes me think she has a lot of difficulty finding both bras and clothes to cover her bust.

Christina Hendricks

Sometimes it becomes more obvious that a bra just doesn’t cover her assets, and she’s gone for something in the wrong size. Of course she still looks gorgeous, but it does appear she might burst out of those dresses any second.

The sides of Christina’s breasts are not being fully encased by her bra.

Even more disappointing, is how companies using her in their advertising campaigns, also cannot seem put her in the correct size. Here are a couple of shots from magazine shoots with Christina. Below on the left, the cup is clearly miles too small for her, and you can see the underwire is actually sitting on the breast tissue. On the right, the centre gore of the basque is not remotely flat, and is being pushed out because the cups are again, too small.

Christina modelling in badly fitting underwear.

It is made more difficult to guess her size because unfortunately, I have noticed, she often wears a bra that is at least a few cup sizes too small, pushing her breasts up much more than her correct bra size would. This fact was actually pointed out to me by fellow blogger Brittany from Thin and Curvy.
We have both decided to test this theory out ourselves…and show you the results!

Wearing a ‘DD’ – four/five cup sizes too small.

Above I am wearing a DD – a size which some lingerie companies (who incorrectly use the ‘plus 4′ band method) actually recommend I wear.
You can clearly see that it is miles too small for me – but I do have the ‘Christina Cleavage’ effect.

Wearing the correct bra size ‘G’

For a fair comparison, I have used a deco bra, (which is good if you want to show a little cleavage anyway). This is in my correct size, and you can see that the amount of cleavage on show is far more toned down and appropriate – I say appropriate, but in real life I would probably wear a top underneath for modesty!

Brittany wearing a ‘DD’ – five/six sizes too small

Above, Brittany who normally wears a 26HH, tried on a size 30DD – this is apparently her ‘correct’ size according to Victoria Secret’s online bra calculator. Here is what she had to say on the subject:

“I had bought this Fantasie 30DD bra because it was on sale and I thought it might fit my little sister. It occurred to me that it is the same size that I would be according to Victoria’s Secret’s method of measuring that they have on their website, so I decided to try it on just for fun to see how awful it would be. It was just as bad as I expected, but what struck me about it once I had it on, is how much my cleavage looked like Christina Hendricks!
I have often wondered how she achieves such massive cleavage, since I have pretty full, close set breasts and mine never look like hers even with the best plunge bras. Now I know how she does it. Of course, this bra looked horrible from the side and cut into my breasts painfully. I feel very sorry for her, and anyone who goes around wearing such a badly fitting bra.”

What makes the ‘too-small’ bra idea even more bizarre, is that obviously on the set of ‘Mad Men’ (which I love by the way) Ms. Hendricks has clearly been fitted into proper garments of the correct size. Now fair enough, I don’t know what sizing method they use, perhaps it’s vintage sizing which would probably render us even more confused, but you’d think she might have been given a little information about sizing.

Joan Holloway – Mad Men

There is of course, the possibly that Christina is well aware of her correct bra size, and perhaps in her own free time she wears a HH and is perfectly content – I could quite easily imagine that she might put on a smaller size for public appearances, to show off her famous assets. Either way, I wouldn’t judge her for doing that. Why not show them off; she has a truly fabulous figure. I only hope that she really does know her correct size, and spends the majority of her time wearing the right one, otherwise she will end up (if she isn’t already) very uncomfortable and probably in a lot of pain.

Something I discovered today, is that Christina Hendricks plans to bring out her own line of swimwear. Again, it is yet another article stating she is a 36DD, click here to see it. I fail to see how she can design her own range of swimwear for a larger bust, when she isn’t wearing the correct size herself.

There is actually a photograph out there of Christina in a swimming costume that does imply she has a lot difficulty finding her size – a problem a lot of us busty women face. Soon I will be compiling a list of all the best places to shop for large cup bras internationally – hopefully this will help anyone having trouble (the way Christina possibly is) find well-fitting bras too.

I really hope the world can start to understand that a DD isn’t necessarily a big cup size and definitely not the biggest, not to mention that the band measurement must be taken into account.

I measure about 31″ underbust and wear a band size 30 to 32.
Brittany measures 24″ underbust and wears a band size 26 (finding a 26 or a 24 band is a struggle in itself, you can read more about that on her blog).
In my personal opinion, Christina doesn’t look much wider than either of us, in fact she looks to be about my measurements (or smaller) underbust. Does that sound like someone who should be wearing a 36 or 38 band? I don’t think so.

105 comments

  1. Woah, your titties look mega amazing but a tad painful x


    • Yeah it was so uncomfortable!! :S x


  2. I notice this “mislabeling” of bra sizes of celebrity figures a lot. I’ve always wondered if the celebrities really don’t know their own bra sizes, or they give fake bra sizes to articles, or the articles themselves are guessing. I hope they know they correct size – you’d think they’d be able to get a good bra fitter!
    I’ve also noticed the very common labeling of anything D+ as “huge” in these same articles; for example, I’ve seen articles claiming Katy Perry has “infamous cleavage and 34D boobs.” I don’t know what Katy’s actual size is, but I doubt it’s 34D (which is actually rather average). Also, labeling Heidi Montag as a “cartoonish huge DDD” cup after all her plastic surgery, implying that no one could be “that huge” unless they had major surgery.
    I think your “bra comparison” was really interesting! I’ve tried on DD’s before “for fun” recently, and they’re so painful and ill-fitting it’s not even funny :O But rearranged in the right way, I suppose they can make your poor squished boobs look really cleavagey!


    • You’re spot on there. I’ve noticed it too, anything considered ‘huge’ is always D or DD or DDD…as if they couldn’t imagine anything beyond that! The same with Katy Perry, she’s fairly normal-big but gets the label of 34D which is near enough what I was wearing in that photo, and she’s much slimmer than 34. I imagine lots of celebrities have no idea – there needs to be an official celebrity bra-fitter :P


      • Oh, and I also wonder if the badly-fitting underwear on the magazine covers in particular here have to do with photo shoots that only have certain sizes of clothing on hand, so models like Christina have to make do with what’s there? I’m not sure how that all works exactly, but seems plausible.


      • Yes, I think that’s a highly likely possibility too!


      • My girlfriend is a large busted woman, so I’ve come to understand a bit about bra sizing, and the difficulty in finding larger cup sizes in normal band sizes. Having bought her a few myself (and convincing her she’s a US H cup, not a DDD) I can understand how Christina might be wearing the wrong sizes, mistaking lingerie store’s ‘advice’ as her real size. There seriously needs to be more help for bigger chested women!


  3. Victoria’s Secret’s calculator has a lot to answer for… that 30DD on Brittany looks positively painful! Even if adding 4/5 inches or measuring above the bust gave the correct band size, it can still result in a cup that’s far too small.

    Anyway, Christina Hendricks’ bra size is obviously her own business, but when the media claims she’s a 36DD/38DD (I once read 36C) a lot of people are going to get a completely false impression of what those sizes look like. Figuring out your bra size can be hard enough in itself; all the misinformation and stereotypes don’t help!


    • Well exactly. It doesn’t do anything for that 80% of women out there wearing the wrong bra size. If they think Christina is a 36DD very few women will believe they they themselves could be any bigger than DD.
      It is her own business of course, but I can’t help but think maybe she just doesn’t know she’s wearing the wrong size, or has given up hope of finding big sexy looking ones. A few of my friends over in the US never buy bras over there (only order online from UK/Europe) because they can’t find anything remotely nice or flattering bigger than DD!


  4. I managed to find this article about how the show’s costume designer dresses the actresses, particularly Christina Hendricks.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/celebritynews/8053267/Mad-Men-costume-designer-reveals-secret-to-Joan-Holloway-look.html

    I think it’s pretty obvious why she doesn’t wear those undergarments except when she has to for work. It seems likely from that that she doesn’t know her correct size. Even if she does, it wouldn’t make much difference as she is unlikely to have any control over what she gets to wear in photoshoots, and at least to me her ill-fitting premiere dresses seem much more of an issue than whatever she may be wearing under them (if anything at all…).


    • Hi, thanks for the link. I had read that before, but one would assume if they were fitted into special garments for the show, whoever does the fitting might know what size she actually is, and possibly give her that information. But then again, perhaps not!
      As for the photo shoots, of course yes, she wouldn’t have a choice, I was just surprised that companies wouldn’t at least try to put her in something that at least looks to be her size. She’s so often in a badly fitting bras, it just makes me wonder if she really knows her size. I’m sure if she did, she wouldn’t be very happy with all the 38DDD/36DD comments all over the internet!


  5. Interesting article – I always wondered how the stylists manage to make such a beautiful woman look so awful. Especially as she looks so fabulous in MM! Those photos at the top look painful – surely she must be horribly uncomfortable? With her resources she could have her lingerie bespoke!

    I think 32H is about right – I am 32GG/32H and she looks about my size.


    • Hi Katherine, thanks for your comment!

      I know what you mean, I imagine she is fully kitted out in rago shapewear in Mad Men, but I still think someone should be able to give her a better idea of her correct bra size.


  6. Thank you for posting this article. I have been wondering about my own boobs for a while now! My moms mom was a seamstress so my mom taught me how to measure my self. And she said not to add 4 inchs to. After measuring It turned out I am a 30E. One of my friends asked me about my bra and when I said 30E she didn’t believe me,so then the next time someone asked I just said 32D and they said oh really? Okay I thought D or DD. Anyways because bras are hard to find I’ve been buying them from Victoria secret because there the only stores near me who sell 32 with a D or DD cup size. But all the bras never feel or look quite right. The straps dig,the band I feel should support me more,and my breast are usually sore from my bra. Not to mention My boobs are bulging out of the bra. Anyways my point is I was avoiding ordering online for my correct size but your article helped give me the push I needed to go and get a real bra. Thanks =)


    • Hi, thanks for your comment!
      I’m really glad you found your correct size! It’s a shame that because so many people aren’t aware of what women’s sizes really are, when they hear anything above a DD, they look either surprised or puzzled. Don’t worry, I’ve had the same thing from some people :)
      If you’re in the US (it sounds like you are), I have a friend who strongly recommends getting fitted at Nordstroms or Dillards if you can. She told me that even though they do also sometimes add 4 inches, if you are firm with them and tell them you want to try a 30 as the others haven’t felt right for you, that they do carry those sizes (they sometimes even keep them in the back, which is crazy!)
      Unfortunately with Victoria Secret, while they do nice lingerie, their models are really badly fitted in every picture and in their videos, and their bra size calculator is seriously off. Avoid them if you can. I hope you manage to buy some good ones online – I plan to write a post soon about best places to shop online, so that may help too. Good luck!


      • The nice thing about Nordstrom’s is that they carry Panache! And, if Cass is anywhere near a store called Intimacy, I HIGHLY recommend them! I was finally fitted properly, by Intimacy, when I was 42 years old. I’m a 32H or 32HH (depending on the bra, of course), and I wonder about Christina. I’ve lost a little weight, and I was wearing 32J in Panache’s Tango II, before. Volume-wise, she looks about like I did before I lost weight, if not larger. I don’t know what her frame is like, though … her height & proportions. Could she be a 30K?

        Anyway, I love your blog. Will be returning to it often. :-)


      • Thank you, and thanks for the comments. Very helpful info as well – I know very little about bra shopping in the States :P x


  7. I know exactly what you guys are saying. Victoria Secret’s associates always tried to put me in a 38C… When I finally looked elsewhere for fittings, I discovered I’m really a 40F. Really?! How on earth can they get it wrong so much. Now that I wear my correct size, my back has stopped hurting, and I feel SO much better. But still I go in VS from time to time looking for perfume or undies, and they ask if I need a bra. I say no, your bras don’t fit me. They say We go up to 38DD. They never believe me when I reply that I’m an F. These women have no idea what they’re talking about, and they are probably putting a lot of other women in pain being in the wrong size bras!


    • Hi Danielle, are you really a 40 band? I only ask because Victoria Secret notoriously put women in bigger bands than they usually are, so it’s interesting to hear they put you in a smaller band you say? It’s simple to check what band you’re close to, just a quick underbust measurement will tell you – although it sounds like you’re happy with the 40F, so I’m glad to hear that. It’s always a relief to finally wear the correct size :)


      • Yup. I always wondered why bras felt like they were cutting me in half. I found a great wire free bra from Lane Bryant, so I tried the 38 and the 40. I couldn’t even close the 38. It’s amazing what the right size bra can do! Having the right size bra does make me look smaller though. So I can definitely see your point that Christina’s bras make her look so huge because they are really too small.


  8. I think that her Mad Men size might be 36DD. The show strives to get every detail right that includes the undergarments.

    But buying new bras is some how different. This might have to do with the stretch material. I once forced myself in to a 40 DD when i’m a 36K the results weren’t all that attractive in my eyes, but the fella that saw me in it thought I looked divine.

    I do wish that more celebrates would be honest about their bra sizes if they are gonna speak of them at all. Maybe a few of us might feel less like freaks.


    • Hi Angela,
      The garments used in ‘Mad Men’ do reflect those of the 50’s and 60’s, but they are made today. My guess is that if they did put her in a 36DD, it would not be to reflect the time period, but rather that they’ve used the terrible method of adding 4-5 inches. As I mentioned in my one of my previous posts ‘Simply Ill Fitting’, materials back in the 50’s were a lot stiffer so there usually wasn’t much stretch – however, it wouldn’t make sense for them to do that now; they have so many resources available to get her size accurate, whilst still creating period undergarments.
      I agree with you that a lot of women would feel better if they knew celebrities true bra sizes, but I personally think many of them don’t actually know themselves.


  9. [...] of as the same. After all, a 36DD is often seen as huge (its not, I swear). After all, apparently Christina Hendricks is supposedly a 36DD (I can guarantee she’s not, Christina Hendricks is probably closer to a [...]


  10. I’m so happy to find this site! As a 34/36 G/H (depending on brand) I was always fitted into the wrong size. It wasn’t until I went to Nordstrom and was fitted, did I find the proper bra sizes. If you have one in your area, Nordstrom is really the place to go.

    Christina Hendricks is an amazing role model out there for women who have smaller band sizes and larger cup sizes.
    To me, she looks larger than you, so I would say a 34 or 36. She isn’t small enough to be a 32. Cup size, I agree.

    It is so frustrating that when sizes in clothing gets larger, the fit gets wider. I always want to scream, “just because I have huge tits, doesn’t mean I’m wide!” I should stop complaining and learn how to use my sewing machine!
    :)


    • Hi Elizabeth. I’m glad you were correctly fitted, it’s always a relief to have that. As for CH, she said in an interview people were always surprised at how petite she is, and her waist measures 30″ so that’s why I would assume she’s probably only a 32″ back. But who knows! I do plan to write a blog post soon about available places to shop internationally, but I do know that both brastop, ewa michalak, and bravissimo ship to the US, as I have a few friends over there who swear by them. Hope that helps a bit. I feel your pain about the clothes sizes, it’s a nightmare for me too!


  11. Yeah I will never shop at a Victorias Secret again. When I was a 32d, I was too poor to afford buying their bras, and the cheapest ones I could find ran in 34c. At that point I was still loosing weight (I had gotten mono really badly and lost 20lbs in 4 days). But I grew again and it was soo bad that the cup couldnt even stay undreneath my boobs. I had to argue with the bra fitter that I needed 32dd, and she reluctantly gave me a 32d, so I walked out of my fitting room showing her that it didnt fit and not to argue me. Now im a 32f and I seem to go up a size a year, I’ve found that Fredericks of Hollywood sells them but even a 32 band still rides up. Where can I find 30Gs? I’m more so worried about growing again.. I’m 19 so this can only go on for so much longer, right? I do live in America, my grandma is from Ipswitch though =). Please give me the cheapest options! Thank you for your time!


    • Hi Shelley, I’m so sorry to hear you’re having difficulty. It’s such a pain not to be able to find the right size. A friend of mine over in the US always recommends Nordstroms, she says they are very good at stocking bigger cups and smaller bands. Otherwise, you may have more luck shopping online with companies like brastop, bravissimo, figleaves etc. Ewa Michalak are a Polish company that do fantastic bras and do deliver worldwide as well. Are you on facebook? If so, a friend of mine runs a group called ‘bravolution’ and she lives in the US, so she will have lots of useful advice as she’s a 30H I think. x


      • I don’t have a facebook, I should but I still believe in myspace. I hate how facebook is set up…. I will definately check out Nordstroms, there’s one not too far away from where I live so that will be my first stop. I’ll check out the onlie sites too and see what my poor paycheck can get me, I’m basically set for now minus a good old nude. Does you friend have an actual site or is it just on facebook? Thank you so much for your help! Nobody in my family is larger like me so I’m all alone in that aspect.


      • She doesn’t have a website, but she’s been campaigning trying to get smaller back sizes available. She told me recently Nordstroms has also just announced they will do bra alterations too – no idea whether that costs, or how much, but it may be good for some of the ones that don’t fit but you want to keep. For lowest cost I’d recommend brastop (and also lovebras.com, they’re the same company, but lovebras has more available stock I think) because those sites have a lot of good deals on usually.
        I am also the only larger one in my family, so I know how you feel :)


      • Thank you so much for your help. I’m going to check out Nordstroms today and see if the store over here does that or not, I’ve learned the hard way that most of the stores that are supposed to carry sizes don’t. Depending on how this turns out I may have some research homework to do! Thank you again, sooo much.
        Yeah my mom thought I was lying and then she sat there for a while trying to figure out how I had gotten so big… The look on her face was priceless.


      • No problem, let me know how you get on! One other thing, my friend also mentioned that sometimes with 28s and 30s you may have to ask them, because they keep a lot in stock and not so many on the shop floor – I hope they have the right ones for you, good luck!


      • I did have to ask, she gave me 3 manufacturer names. Unfortunately I’d have to work 10 hours to buy one but the one I tried on was a dream.. The Fredericks bras run bigger in the sense of the side of the cup. Like the bra is made for a tiny person but not for a short-shouldered tiny person. So the underwire (since a 32 is too big, 30ff is perfect) rubs up into my armpit and there’s a stay bar (I believe my mom called it) running in the band to keep the band from being ruined, also goes up. For the first couple weeks I had to get used to it, painfully since I have a physical job, and it didn’t start to bother me until I put that fabulous one on. I litetally think the heavens opened. So as long as you aren’t completely short shouldered like me then the Fredericks bras are great, especially since they’re cheaper. But now I’m tainted and want that $80 wonder, I wish I knew which bra it was! The best part about it is I only have to drive 15-20 minutes to get to Nordstroms; the closest Fredericks is 30-45 minute drive. There’s only 4 in my state.

        I think it’s funny that the only reason I found this article of yours (which I thought was fantastic by the way) is because me and my boyfriend got in an argument over how big Christina’s boobs were. Let’s just say we both lost. ;)

        Thank you again, this was a great help.


      • No problem Shelley, I’m glad that at least you got to try one you liked. I know how you feel, sometimes I have to return these lovely bras I buy, otherwise I can’t afford food for the month! It’s a struggle, but hopefully one day you can get that lovely one you tried. :) x


      • Shelley:
        I’m in the U.S., too. What I have done is a lot of shopping on eBay. Once you know your size of the actual bras you want, it’s easy. There are overstock/clearance/factory direct sellers on there who are in the U.K. and sell those $60-$80 bras for a LOT less. Just look carefully: Most of them don’t even sell seconds or imperfects, but some do. (Although, I used to buy seconds all the time. Usually, there is very little wrong with them.) I’m usually buying Panache or Freya, with shipping, for about $30-$40–half of retail.

        And just wait until you try bra-sized swimwear! It’s like a whole new world has opened up. It will make you feel like a new person.

        Just remember that if you’re trying a new style or brand, it wouldn’t hurt to try it on in a brick & mortar store, if possible, first. Every manufacturer–and even every style from the same manufacturer–fits differently. I must have 10 different sizes in my drawer. Good luck!


  12. [...] pleased to see on Boobpedia Christina is listed as being a far more realistic 32HH, largely due to this awesome article by Miss Sophia Jenner. However, if Jordan is a 32FF and Kat Dennings is a 38D then something is [...]


  13. It may a be a little late to add to this but Brastop and Bravissimo both ship to the USA, Brastop for only £6.95 about 10 dollars and free shipping over £75( and all their bras are on sale). Bravissimo has an excelleny online fitting guide and you can also telephone their staff for fitting advice. Both of them give excellent service.No, I don’t work for them but they changed my life. I thought I was a 36DD (thanks Marks & Spencer) when I am a 30GG.


  14. [...] pleased to see on Boobpedia Christina is listed as being a far more realistic 32HH, largely due to this awesome article by Miss Sophia Jenner. However, if Jordan is a 32FF and Kat Dennings is a 38D then something is [...]


  15. [...] lovely Sophia Jenner has blogged about Christina Hendricks doing exactly this. I’ll tell you something: there is no way that Christina Hendricks does not know her right [...]


  16. It’s so funny what a Google search for BraStop will turn up I would have never seen this otherwise… :)
    I’m another one (like all of you apparently) who the “professionals” can’t seem to fit correctly. According to an in store fit at Lane Bryant, I need a 42E/F US size… that’s a joke. I’m actually a 37 band so I can wear a 36G or a 38FF UK very comfortably… and luckily for me BrsStop & LoveBras both carry in stock, ship to US, and are nice & inexpensive (seriously…$90 for a bra? I’ll pass)


    • It’s such a shame that they are so unaware of how a bra really should fit. I’m so glad to hear you found the right size Jamie, I hope more women can too! :)


  17. I’ve always questioned my bra size. I’ve had fittings before and been labelled this or that, but even when some bra sizes “fit” — as in, my breasts definitely fit in the cup without suddenly looking like they’ve been squashed to death; or in the case of strapless bras, they hold up on their own — I always have the same problem with each size I’ve tried.

    I have a little bit at the outer corner that looks like it’s just hanging out, and I refer to it as the “sideboob fat”. I don’t know if it’s because I lost a lot of weight a few years ago and my breasts changed shape, or what, but any bra size I’ve tried over the past few years just leaves me with that weird about of fat at the sides, like maybe the cup isn’t wide enough to hold everything in. It’s kind of hard to describe, so I know it might be hard to picture in your head. If it helps, I’m willing to take a picture in my current bra to showcase the problem.

    I was wearing a 36A for the past 2 years, but in May I suffered a really bad injury and I haven’t been able to be as active as I was before, so I have gained a little bit of weight. Oddly enough, it has caused me to go up to a 36B, even though my breasts are usually the last place I gain any weight, and the first place to lose.

    The 36 band seems to be fitting really well, whether it’s in the A or the B, so I do think that at least that is correct, but I’m wondering what cup size is out there that is better suited to me? So far I don’t think I’ve found it. Do you think it would be a good idea to go to a speciality bra shop and get a fitting done there, since they’re likely to have more options and experience?


    • Liana, I don’t know if I ever managed to reply to this, but it looks like I didn’t, I do apologise – It’s hard to work out what I have & haven’t replied to.
      I’m sure you’re all sorted bra-wise now (given how long ago you commented), but just in case you’re not, I’ll reply to your questions.
      The ‘sideboob’ is migrated breast tissue. You need to find a bra with cups big enough to fully cover it, so it slowly works its way back into place. I had the same problem a few years ago, and it’s mostly sorted itself out now from wearing the correct size.
      As for band size, make sure the number is closest to what you measure. So if you measure 33, you could try both 32 and 34 etc.
      If you haven’t already, definitely go to somewhere like Bravissimo for a fitting – most shops don’t fit very well, but they do! x


  18. Online bra calculators are the worst! I found one that said I should be a 40DD, when in reality, after much googling and some shopping sprees to Figleaves I found out I was actually a 36HH. I swear it’s like those online wigets only go up to DD and whenever someone sees big boobs “oh those MUST me double D’s” yeah cuz the boob alphabet ends in double D…

    It’s just annoying it took me this long to find the correct size. I’m 26! I’ve been wearing the wrong sizes for more than half my life! The last few years I was stuck buying super plus size bras and cuting them apart to sew them in a few inches on each side just to fit.
    Frankenbras! And I suck at sewing so these looked really pathetic.

    I found Figleaves because another blogger did a post on the importance of correct bra sizing and linked a few sites that sell the hard-to-find sizes. It’s just a shame it seems the UK is the only place on the planet that realizes some of us have bigger than DD boobs and would like pretty bras too.

    The specialty shop here wanted $120 for 1 bra. Not cool. Why should we be punished for being curvier? It’s not like we can do anything about them besides surgery and I’m not lopping them off lol

    And I’ll stop my ramblings now :D


    • Hi Mindy,
      Thanks for your comments. You’re right, it shouldn’t be such a struggle, I have high hopes that one day it won’t be anymore. The word is already starting to get out to more and more women and countries that bigger cup sizes and smaller bands are needed.
      Over here in the UK, a company called Marks & Spencer started making bigger cup sizes, then made the bras more expensive, so the curvier you were, the more you had to pay. Fortunately Busts4Justice did a big campaign and eventually got M&S to admit they had made a mistake doing that, I think the line was “we boobed”. Becky at Busts4Justice (http://busts4justice.com/) often calls companies out on their bad bra calculators, and issues like that. Just recently she got Playtex to take down their bra calculator from their website. Slowly but surely we are being heard :)
      Sophia x


  19. So I don’t have a lot of money to spend on bras, and recently my 34C bra has felt wrong. (it is Victoria’s secret). I’m nowhere near as large as an H but I’ve been trying to find my proper size on my own…. I feel like I’m a D possibly but I’ve tried several calculation methods and they’ve all given me an A or AA cup. I KNOW that’s wrong. my measurements are 30in under bust, 34in across, and 34 above (I also live in the US). I’m going to try a 30 or 32D after reading this…


    • Hi Grace,
      The most accurate bra calculator I’ve come across is on the site Curves and Corsets. Here is a link: http://www.curvesandcorsets.com/uk_files/BraSizingCalculator.htm
      When you say 34ins across, are you leaning over to measure? That’s the easiest way to do it. If the 34 is accurate, I’d estimate something like a 30DD. Hope you find the correct size!
      Sophia


  20. [...] Jenner gives Christina Hendricks a run for her money… she looks as sexy as hell but points out that it’s ‘miles [...]


  21. [...] is precisely this sort of thinking that bothers me – as I have blogged about before, Christina Hendricks is apparently something like a 38DD or 38DDD according to the media. Now [...]


  22. [...] Luckily for us the ever fabulous Sophia Jenner has already covered this mystery beautifully on her lingerie blog and you can read all about it here! [...]


  23. I wear a 32H and I am not nearly as big as that woman. I was fitted by a fitter too. I think she must be somewhere north of M. Is there anywhere you can find a bra brand comparison for size?? I bought a Chantelle T shirt bra in 32 H and it is a cup or two too small, I wear a 32 I in Rosa Faia, and a 32H in BB Curves. I live 100s of miles from a good bra store so I buy them online. It would be nice if someone knew “these guys run big” or “these guys run small”. Like Freya…do they run big or small? Any help would be appreciated.


    • Hi Jessica,
      It’s hard to tell her bra size accurately, especially because of the ill fitting bras and clothes she wears. She could be HH or she could be K, we don’t know really.
      As for brands, you have to learn as you go along. Fantasie and Freya run loose in the band, Panache run quite tight but their cleo range is spot on. Curvy kate run loose in their showgirl range, but pretty standard in their unpaddeds, Gossard run loose. It just takes trial and error unfortunately. x


  24. [...] find great clothes for a bigger bust. She also wrote a joint post with me about Christina Hendricks here. Brittany – Star in a Bra [...]


  25. just dropping in to say that I’m a UK 12 and my underbust measures 34″ (so I wear a 36″) because I have a large ribcage. Unfortunately this means I can’t buy lingerie ‘sets’ in shops since they assume if you wear a 36″ band, then you need size 16-18 pants. I don’t ‘look’ particularly wide on the underbust area either (most people don’t believe I require a 36″ until I measure myself and they personally can see that, yes, my ribs are that big), so it is entirely possible that Christina has the same problem I do and requires a larger band.

    (Although, being a 36DD myself, I can agree that she most definitely ISN’T that cup size)


    • If you measure 34, then you should probably be wearing a 34 band. Of course some brands are tighter than others, so it’s entirely possible the occasional 36 would work. Make sure it is fitting you correctly though.
      As for size, yes I’m a size 12/14 and wear 32 underbust – that’s because my waist would probably be a size 10. It’s rare for a woman to be one general
      size, so you should only relate it to waist/underbust size (perhaps I should have made that more clear).
      As for Christina Hendricks, it’s very obvious she has a small waist and underbust, especially when she wears tight fitting clothes.
      She may be 32 or 34, but definitely not 36, and absolutely not a DD or DDD.


  26. Victoria’s secret said that I am a 32D, (rather small compared to you ladies) but after reading this.. now I wonder if they are wrong. How do you measure you bust?


    • Hi Cheyenne, first measure under your bust. For example if that measures 28, then you might want to start with a 28E, but..VS often put women in bras too small so perhaps a bigger cup size than that will be needed. Try curves and corsets bra calculator online to give you a good starting point – they use your underbust then bust measurement to calculate it.


  27. The whole bra industry is a giant pain. I bought two desperately needed new bras today – totalled £56. And i am one of the lucky ones, I got to go into a Bravissimo on the high street and do the required trial and error there. I can’t imagine having to bra shop online. I went through Gs and GGs and the two I ended up with were 30GG and H. I love their clothes, too. Pricey but SO FLATTERING.


  28. So Idk if I’ll get a reply so late but anw I hate shopping for bras I never know my size last time I bought a bra from VS they told me I was a 32C but after wearing it for a day my boobs come out of the cups!I think I might be a D, the 32 band feels fine though and before this I was wearing a 34C but then my boobs were falling out too but because the cups were too big! This is so frustrating. :(


    • I just used the curves and corsets calculator and it says I’m a 30F, Holy Jesus! I’m really short so anything over a B is big, I’m gonna try and find some actual bras that size to try on and see how they fit.


      • Sorry for so many post but I just realized that’s the UK size not the US size in the US sizes I am supposed to be a 30DD, that makes more sense I think.


      • Hi Crystal, try this calculator: http://www.butterflycollection.ca/bra-size-calculator/ – it gives the US sizes too I think, but remember, lots of other US stores do use the same UK sizing. VS are different, they’re stubborn and refuse to change their sizing method even though it’s outdated and doesn’t work. You probably are a 30F in UK sizing, and if you can get to a Nordstroms to try some on, then you’ll know for sure!
        Sophia x


      • That’s the one I ended up using and it came up to a 30DD “U.S.” size but now I am a bit confused, how do I know a store is going by UK/US sizes? And I am definitely checking out Nordstroms, thanks again.

        P.S. I went crazy and measured my sister, she wear a 36C which I always thought was wrong since it’s digging into her skin but the cups aren’t supportive, according to butterflycollection calculator she’s supposed to be wearing a 40D!


      • You’ll know when you look at the bras whether it will fit you or not. Remember US sizes can even vary according to the store! I think a 30F is a 30DDD, but maybe even 30E. Just see what you can find, and try it on.


      • Can’t wait to go bra shopping now!Thanks again :)


  29. Yeah when I gain weight or it’s that time of the month they definitely go up some, thanks for all your help .


    • Anytime, let me know how you get on! :)


  30. I have a theory that “DD” SOUNDS good – and that’s why not a single actress I’ve ever seen is said to have bigger than “DD” breasts.

    Apparently “DD” sounds sexy – it sounds big, but in a good way …. whereas “G” or “H” or whatever maybe sounds too big – gross?

    That’s the feeling I got. For twenty yrs I was a 36DD. Then in my late 30s I inexplicably grew about 4 or 5 (don’t even know yet!) sizes. I feel HUGE. At 36DD I felt big, but manageable. Also, in society “DD” seems to be heralded and exalted in some ways.

    The feeling I had was that breasts simply did not get any bigger than DD – like that was the end of the line. When people talk about bra sizes, or when I’d shop in stores, the bras on the racks would range from size A to DD. Since I was a DD – and since I stopped growing there (or so I thought), I just assumed somehow psychologically more than physical reality that there simply were no breasts bigger than DD.

    I wonder if it isn’t the agents and managers who put the bra sizes out there for actresses as “DD” to make them sound smaller and sexier.

    it’s a terrible shame — because it encourages the thinking in people like me that anything over DD is just getting ‘gross’ — like it’s ‘too big’. Which makes me feel very depressed as I pour out over the top and sides of 36F bra — yet to find my correct enormous size.

    It would be SOOOOO nice if actresses would come out and claim their true sizes! If Christina Hendricks is considered sexy and she claims her true size – whether it’s H or M or whatever. Wouldn’t that be a wonderful boon for people who are big breasted? I’d like ti!

    Question – to those out there who are also big breasted. Have any of you also had the experience I had where in your late 30s (or whenever) you suddenly increased your cup size by 4- 5 sizes or more? (no over-all weight gain, just boobs that keep growing and growing and growing.)?

    And also — how do those of you with cup sizes G, H or bigger deal with the breasts’ weight? I feel the terrible pull on my neck and upper chest. I have deep canyons in my shoulders from the bra straps digging in. What have you found that works for you? Anything that helps? (I do not want surgery – no nerve cutting!! :))

    And finally …. any of you have problems with your seatbelts in the car? Mine keeps riding up over my breasts and cuts into my neck – ouch! I pull it back down into place, but driving shifts it back up. Anyone else have this happen to them? What did you do t ohelp?

    I’m so glad to find others who are my size!!! Thanks so much for writing this blog!!!! It’s nice to start thinking of myself as sexy and beautiful again (as opposed to deformed!)

    Thanks! K.


    • Oh K, I’m sorry to hear of your struggles. It’s much more common than you think for women to realise they’ve been in the wrong size for a while. The body also changes all the time, and cup size change like that can just happen at any point because of any number of factors.
      I think you’r right, DD is so familiar that anything over DD would cause confusion. They really should come out and admit their real sizes. x


      • Hey K, how’s it going? I too grew unexpectedly recently and I am in my mid 30s. I grew from a 34B to a C in my late 20s then recently from a C to a DD, or so I thought until I read all these curvy lady blogs and discovered I am now a 30G.

        Great website btw Sophia! I agree about Christina she is quite a petite build I wouldn’t have thought her bigger than a 32 band. I went into M&S the other day (their bras really hurt in the underwire btw!) and a lady in the changing room next to me was (at a guess I would say) size 12. I would have put her in a 34 band just by looking at her. However the so called bra measuring expert measured her at a 38 something or other. Gawd knows what they would have put me in if I’d let them.


  31. Great article! I have had many struggles with bra fitting and clueless sales assistants but have figured out through perseverance that I’m a 32FF/G. In Sydney there were a few stores I could go to like DeBras or More Than a Handful, but now that I’m in the midwest US there seems to be no shops catering to my size!!! So I’ve been ordering from the Australian online store storminadcup.com.au – they are a litte pricey but good quality, beautiful, and have a large range. My heart goes out to all the clueless women out there who’ve been misled about their bra size – CH included!


    • Hi Kristen, thanks for your comments. I actually order online a lot too, even though there are a couple of stores I can visit. You could also try ordering from places like Large Cup Lingerie, as they offer free shipping worldwide. x


  32. Reblogged this on Madfashionhouse and commented:
    This is an interesting blog, I am loving the commitment. With the self pictures for very clear illustration of the point I thought there was a lot of emphasis on how they are sizing her.


  33. [...] and pretty enough that I didn’t mind. So I wore those for a while. The only thing is that when you wear a bra too small for your body, it makes your boobs look even huger than they are. So when I would wear a lowcut shirt it would look a thousand times worse than it actually was. At [...]


  34. If you all are in England, your sizing might be different. I by no means have big boobs, I’m a c, but I am as thin as your friend and legitimately wear a 32 or 34 band size. There is NO WAY Christina Hendricks would wear a 32! I agree she looks bigger than a dd but I think, based on every person I’ve ever known or met, that 36 is probably correct.


    • As I mention in the article, DDD does not exist in UK sizing, the equivalent would be E. I’m aware of the difference in sizing, but band sizing does not vary. You can clearly see Christina has a very small underbust & waist measurement. While I couldn’t say 100% what her band size is, she’s clearly not a 36. As I also mention, a 36 is equal to a clothing size (around the waist) UK 16 which is a US size 14. She isn’t that size, and she’s also mentioned in interviews that people are surprised by how petite she really is. It’s possible that you yourself may be wearing the incorrect size. Try measuring under your bust and see what the number is in inches – you should be wearing the band size closest to this number.


  35. wow how enlightening….I actually have been struggling to find a bra that actually fits me right and here is the kicker…I used to work at Victorias Secret!!! According to VS I am a 38 D but I beleive I am probably a 40-41 DD if that even exists!


  36. An H is probably correct though Still struggling as you can see!


  37. After decades of squeezing into DDs, I’m a recently fitted 32 F. We have Brava lingerie in Australia – 32D is smallest in store. Victoria’s Secret seems designed for waifs, which is fine – I’m just not one! It was novel to spend an hour in store trying on bras until I found the exact fit. I think they ship internationally, but you’d need to work out which brands/sizes are right.


  38. I wear a Victorias Secret Bra 30DD and it IS TOO SMALL and horrible uncomfortable.. the under wire sits atop my breasts, which I find wears it out quickly and I end up with the under wire snapping in half or tearing out the sides to torture my underarms! Does that mean that I am a 26HH Like Brittany? Please help I can’t live like this anymore! Also, have you done the article of where to buy larger sized bras now? I’ll keep looking till I get a reply! Thank you for your time, Brooke


    • You need to measure under your bust, and that will be your band size. If its 26. Then yes you may end up being close to Brittany’s size. Try the curves and corsets bra calculator, that should be fairly accurate.


  39. Gosh, I had no idea that women had so much trouble finding the right bra size. I was surprised to learn from my best friend that his wife wears a size C (he didn’t know the the other measurement as men tend to focus on the number rather than the letter :-D) since she’s rather on the full-figured size. It not occurs to me that she might actually just not know her proper bra size, or indeed her proper clothing size, as I’ve noticed she’s often spelling out of her t-shirts and jeans. Thanks for the insight and congratulations for ignoring the sizing guides and figuring out what really fits you! :-)


  40. Yup, you’re completely right! Here’s a website that has Christina at 38DDD and Sofia Vergara at 34-C, whereas I’ve seen Sophia listed elsewhere as 34D, 34DD, and 32F. Of course breast size can change with weight, but Sofia doesn’t seem to have varied too much in weight over the years of the photos I’ve seen.

    http://www.hollyscoop.com/top-10/top-10-hottest-boobs-in-hollywood.html

    Here Sofia herself says she wears 32F or 34DD. http://www.starpulse.com/news/Kevin_Blair/2012/08/09/sofia_vergara_on_her_bra_size_nobody_w How does some author get from that to 34C?


    • Sofia announced lately that she was a 32F, but I think that’s still too small in the cup to be accurate. At least it’s somewhat closer I guess.


      • How do you determine the correct cup size?


      • Well to start with you need to measure your underbust & overbust, then it’s just a matter of calculations. Once you have a basic idea of size, then it’s time to try the bras on and find out what fits most comfortably.


      • Ah, so it’s an art and not a science. :-)


  41. Hi dear,

    Apologies, I’d given the wrong measurements earlier in your post about if we are getting the right fit for our bras. I recently lost some weight and decided to re-fit into my bras and here are my measurements are:

    Underbust – 28.5/29″ (when exhaled. 28.5″ is form-fitting while 29″ is slightly loose but more comfortable)
    Overbust – 35″ (loose fitting around the bust), 34″ (form fitting and tight around the bust)
    Bust difference – 6″

    My breast fit well into a Bali Underwire Minimzer 34E, however the band is too loose (even when i use the inner most clasp when the bra is new) as it rides up and the shoulder strap will fall (even when I make it the shortest). If I were to take a bra band 32, do I have to increase my cup size to F?

    Likewise, a Wacol strapless 34E is too loose for me for the bra band (i.e. it rides up even when I use the inner most clasp when the bra is new) and my breasts spill out at the sides (i.e. side boobs) as the band is too loose. And when I manage to arrange that my breasts can fit nicely in the cup, there is spillage over the cup (i.e. a slight four boobs effect).

    Lastly, I can fit well into a Panache CLEO Lucy Balconnet (34E) which still feels lightly loose for the band as it will move and rides up eventually. Comfortable fit for my breasts in terms of cup size.

    Could you be so kind to advise what would my bra size be? Another thing i struggle is different bras from different brands fit different despite claiming to be the same size. As I live in Asia and has to order online, I’m trying the reduce the chance of ordering wrongly and having to return the items.

    Many thanks


    • Well, strangely, your measurements indicate that you would be a 30E. I suspect that if you have been wearing a 34E that those measurements can’t be accurate. When you measure overbust, are you measuring the fullest part of your breasts? The easiest way is to lean forwards (without a bra on) and measure that way.


  42. nice article except I am a size 16 and wear a 32HH, lots of women have an underbust smaller than their waist (belly fat) so I would imagin this isn’t that unusual


    • Hi Elle, yes that’s my point. It would make her underbust/waist a size that is bigger than she really is. Lower tummy, hips, shoulders, none of that is relevant unless you are talking about entire body shape.


  43. Hmm I honestly feel like her measurements sound pretty accurate….

    Most sources say she is 5’8″ and wears a size 14. Her measurements are not really consistent (though I assume they are estimations from her MadMen costumes). Online reports seem to range from 36-38DD or DDD for bust, 30-32 waist and 36-38 hips. She does have a small waist, though it may be slightly smaller than real life if it’s taking into account the waist cinchers worn on set.

    Anyway, my point here is that I am 5’7″ and 36D, 32, 38 and I wear a size 12. I can clearly tell she has a smaller waist and larger busts in her photos, so those measurements obviously can’t ALL be right, but for estimations they seem really to be in the correct range.

    I have a larger rib cage and perhaps Christina does too?

    I don’t really think DD sounds right, but DDD may be. When she’s not in super plunge bras she looks pretty proportioned for her body.


    • She is a very petite woman, she has said in numerous interviews that people are always surprised by what a small frame she has – being so curvy it makes her look like an altogether bigger woman than she is. Lots of people say “she looks the same as me” but without proportions it’s really difficult to tell.
      It is also evident from photos that she wears the wrong bra size, and 80% of the time the back band is too big on women wearing the wrong size. Whatever her real size is, she’s clearly in the wrong one.


  44. I’ve always been extremely concious of my small boobs, and after reading this and some of the comments, I’m in even more dismay. It’s obvious a 32D is inadequate in the world of boobs.

    Either way, my comment on the issue at hand. I personally feel that if miss Christina is so insecure to push her boobs up, and suck her tummy in, then she’s not as curvy as she implies. I do admit, she has a large chest, and brava on what you were given, but it’s not the most important thing in the world. Christina seems concious, and it could damage her health a lot if she keeps this painful act up!


    • Hi, thanks for your comment. There is no such thing as an inadequate size for breasts – my blog is from my own experiences so yes it’s dedicated to helping the bigger bust, but that doesn’t make smaller busts any less beautiful or important to be supported.

      While yes some of her lingerie choices do imply she could be a little self-conscious, it’s also not clear whether she really knows her size. She could be struggling, not finding well fitting bras, but we wouldn’t know it. It would be great if she did get fitted! :)


  45. I technically should be a 30DDD. Amusingly enough, when I went o Victoria’s Secret to get fitted, a newly trained member of their staff measured me and said, “Oh. That’s weird… It says you should be 30DDD, but I don’t think we even make those bras.” She told her manager who immediately came over and apologized, saying that the new trained had done it wrong and I was actually a 34C. Fuck 34C. I went to put it on and almost laughed, and then I just wanted to bash my head against the doorframe and cry, because where the hell am I going to find a 30DDD in the middle of nowhere, Kansas? I had a hard as hell enough time finding a 32DD, and I had to special order that! But skinny people can’t have big boobs. Skinny people are only skinny because they’re on a diet or something, not just because their bodies are like that, so they don’t have any fat on their body anywhere. I hate bra shopping. It’s the worst experience of my life. I’m glad I’ve found you, at least, who can relate.


    • I’m sorry you’re having such difficulty finding a bra to fit. If you know your size and want to shop online, you can order from places like Brastop, Bravissimo, Figleaves and Large Cup Lingere. They will have a 30E instead of DDD, but that will be the size you’re after I expect.


  46. The answer to this is very simple: American women are told to measure around their ribcage and then add 4 inches if it’s an even number and 5 inches if it’s an odd number. This often gives them a band size that is too big and, if they use that number to help find their cup size, they don’t arrive at the correct number. Add to that the fact that most department stores and mall-based lingerie chain stores like Victoria’s Secret don’t carry cup-sizes that are larger than DDD (F in the UK) and you can see why many women don’t wear the correct size of bra. I wear a UK size 36 G (depending on the brand) and I can only get them online. Buying bras online can be very frustrating, so many women just don’t bother with it. Plus, large cup-size bras are far pricier than others. On average I pay about $60 for a bra; most woman can’t justify spending that much money for a single bra so they go with a poor-fitting bra.


    • Yes, I did actually mention in this article about companies using the +4 method (after showing the examples we used). True it is more difficult in the US, as I understand somewhere like Nordstroms is one of the few places that does stock bras bigger than DDD. But with the aid of the internet, it’s much easier to get hold of bras in bigger sizes these days. I myself rarely shop in-store, I mainly buy online because it’s quicker. This is also another reason why I’ve written articles helping women work out their size (at home), as not everyone wants to be fitted in-store where as we all know, they may add 4/5 inches.
      I would say that as Christina has a lot of attention drawn to her breasts (by the media), she should perhaps make an effort to find out her correct size (if in fact she doesn’t already know it), and I suspect money is not an issue for her, so yes she could justify paying that much. My point is really to make people aware of her size, because it can confuse women who are unsure about what size they should be wearing. I’ve heard women state that they cannot be a G-cup because Christina is only a DDD – it sends out a bad message, making bigger sizes taboo.


  47. I absolutely adore this article! I’m so frustrated with the US version of bra sizing! I’ve had back problems for years, and I’m learning that my poor sizing could be the problem entirely. On a Hendricks note, I’ve read the book written by the Mad Men costume director, and she always puts the ladies in vintage lingerie. This would probably explain the reason that Hendricks is properly fitted in the show.


  48. I ready an article about squeezing yourself in a 1-2 cup smaller bra just to have that little extra push, but the other reason as well as bra designers aren’t always going up those extra sizes (us larger girls), but us girls still buy them. :-)


  49. Finding the right bra and swimwear has been my life long battle!! Must say Sophia has a handle on it!! ;)

    Can someone guide me with a good swim bikini in the US please!!! Currently I measure 27 in band and am advised to wear a 30HH.
    And yes, would like to go to a brick and mortar store like Linda’s (where I currently shop for bras). I live in NYC and go to Miami Beach often. Bought a US 14 (regularly wear US size 6 or 8 clothes) bikini – just to fit my boobs in!! The band was definitely larger and had no clasp options and I spent 3 days in fear of a wardrobe malfunction!! No, honestly… and I was the only gal with 6 guys.. scary!!

    And oh! I love Mad Men and can’t wait for the next season premiere on April 7th!!! :)


    • I’m not too familiar with US based shops, but I have heard that Nordstroms carry smaller bands and bigger cups, so if there’s one you can get to, it may be worth a try. Alternatively, there are quite a few online stores that ship to the US, I believe Large Cup Lingerie and Brastop offer free shipping. Brands like Curvy Kate and Fantasie both carry 30HH bands in swimwear (as far as I recall).


  50. [...] If you wanna see how wearing the wrong bra size can look awful and painful check out this other Sophia Jenner post. [...]


  51. I’ve noticed that while too-small cups can make big breasts look even bigger, they have the opposite effect on small breasts–too-small cups make small breasts look even smaller.

    http://www.venusianglow.com/2009/08/how-your-bra-might-be-making-your.html



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,027 other followers

%d bloggers like this: