Are you wearing the correct bra size?

June 18, 2011

Most ladies are already aware that it is really important to make sure you wear the correct bra size – however, this does not mean everyone necessarily is.
Wearing the wrong size can damage your back and posture, it can change the shape of your breasts, not to mention make you look bigger than you really are (and I don’t just mean around your bust…)

Bravissimo Campaign

80% of women are wearing the incorrect bra size, and it’s not even necessarily their fault.
DD+ sizes just are not talked about in the media. They are largely ignored, and sometimes considered ridiculously ‘big’ sizes because they haven’t been openly discussed; people are not quite aware of how common these sizes really are.
I know a few years ago, I myself wouldn’t have even thought that there was anything beyond an E cup – that was the biggest I had come across. I didn’t have busty friends, or female family members to ask, and there was no one to tell me that the 34DD I was wearing was completely wrong for me in every way.

One day I got so fed up of being in pain, and feeling uncomfortable in my bras, that I agreed to a fitting at La Senza. The woman there was quite hard on me for wearing a bra that was “so clearly the wrong size”, going on to say that my breasts were becoming deformed because of all the ‘sideboob’ squishing out – she wasn’t wrong, but she wasn’t nice about it either!
She decided (without a measuring tape) that I was a 34F and that’s what I should wear from then on. So, I did.


I was probably a 32FF at the time. The problem is, that if a professional bra fitter tells you “this is your size” and you don’t know any better, then that’s what you will wear.
Nowadays, I know immediately if my breasts are changing and whether I need to increase/decrease my bra size; I’m currently a 30GG-32G, and so clued up about my sizing, I wonder how on earth I didn’t see it all through my teens and early 20s.

So, I thought I’d give a few tips on how a correctly fitting bra should look, and what to avoid.

First of all, tape measures are unreliable. BUT, if you have no clue where to start, I would recommend using one just to measure your underbust. Say for example you measure 31″ underbust; that gives a pretty good indication that you should try both a 30 band and a 32 band, and see which one fits you the best. It is important to note that both band size and cup size can vary depending on which brand you wear. As for finding the right cup size, try a few around what you already wear, and you may discover that some seem far more comfortable than others.
When you become familiar with your size and shape, you will probably have no real use for a tape measure. You will know instantly by the fit and feel whether a bra is right or wrong for you.

I will be using this gorgeous Curvy Kate bra as my ‘correct’ example of how a bra should fit. It’s new, today, this is the first time I have worn it. I measure 30.5″ underbust, and this is a 32G. Remember, it’s important to try a few of the closest band sizes to your measurements to find the best one.

Curvy Kate ‘Emily’ Flame – 32G

The first thing to remember is that you should always start off using the loosest hook. Bras loosen with wear and age, so you need those other two sets of hooks to be able to tighten it up over time. Otherwise, within a few months your bra will become useless and unsupportive.

Horizontal bra band – doesn’t ride up your back, fully supportive

You should comfortably be able to fit two fingers underneath the band; any looser and it will be too big, any tighter and it will be too small. If you stand side-on, the band should run horizontally around your chest, and not ride up at the back.

Check that two fingers can fit comfortably under your bra band

The band is 80% of the support for your breasts, this means the straps should not be tight on your shoulders. Again, you should be able to fit two fingers under the shoulder straps – they should not be digging in or causing you pain.

Enough space for two fingers to fit under your shoulder straps

The centre gore (which is the join piece in the middle of your bra), should lie flat against your chest, and not pull away from it at any point. If it does pull away, then you need a bigger cup size.

The centre gore should lie flat against your chest

The cups should fully encase your breasts, and there should be NO overspill on top, (creating the four boob effect), or round the sides (giving you the ‘sideboob’ effect). Most women will have one breast slightly larger than the other, like me.
If this is the case, it’s best to make sure the bra fits your biggest breast, not the smallest. If you have a noticeable difference that you’re not comfortable with, there are lots of breast fillet products that can placed inside the cup to even them out.

Your breasts should be fully encased in the cup, with no overspill on top or around the sides

What to avoid:

These are the same sort of examples, but wearing the ‘wrong’ bra, to show you what it shouldn’t look like.

If your back band is riding up all the time – this means you need a smaller band size, and you current one is not supportive enough; your shoulders will be feeling the effects.

Band riding up indicates you need a smaller band size

If the band feels tight instead, and is causing you pain – this means you need to try a bigger band size.

If the centre gore pulls away from your chest, then you will need to go up a cup size so it lies flat.

Centre gore pulling away – bigger cup size needed

The same goes for breast over spill on the top (or underneath) of the bra, and also what I like to call ‘sideboob’, where breast tissue spills out of the sides of your bra – this again means your cup size is too small.

Over spill and ‘sideboob’ indicate a bigger cup size is needed

If instead, you find you have excess material in the cups – this means you need a smaller cup size.

Don’t forget, when you put a bra on, you should ‘arrange’ your breasts inside them so they are properly encased. This is the best way to tell if a bra fits you or not.

The most common mistake is wearing a band size too big, and a cup size too small.
If you have just discovered you are wearing the incorrect band size, and you need to downsize, remember that you must increase your cup size too. For example, if you have been wearing a 34DD that’s too big in the band, you would be a 32E or a 30F. Even then, if your original 34DD was small in the cup, you may still need to go up a few more cup sizes, and vice versa.

If you want to get measured professionally, I would recommend heading into a Bravissimo store – they are the most accurate fitters I have come across.
If you also want to buy a new bra to try some alternative sizes, I recommend having a browse on Brastop, they do some great deals on gorgeous Lingerie.

If you want to check your measurements online, the most accurate bra calculator I have come across is here: Butterfly Collection Bra Size Calculator
It may not be perfectly accurate, it was for me, but of course it depends on the person. Give it a try anyway.

If you have any questions, or concerns that I haven’t addressed here, please feel free to ask me. Between me and my blogging bra friends, we can probably work out what the issue is.


Sophia xxx

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  1. Beautifully written and very informative – excellent post Sophia xx

    • Thank you πŸ™‚ xxx

  2. Just tried the bra calculator and it gives me 26GG 😦 with an underbust of 26.4 inches I already suspected I should be wearing a smaller band, but where on earth will I find 26 sizes to try??! I know Ewa Michalak makes them but it’s made to order which sucks in case it doesn’t fit because one can’t return it.
    I currently wear 28F (by the way, regarding the calculator I think GG might be a little too big, a FF or G might probably be better) and my bras show no sign of bad fitting apart from one little bruise under each armpit, in the place where wires end, but I always attributed that to the fact that I have absolutely no fat in that area… looks like maybe I need new bras instead.
    It’s funny that I usually complain that most brands don’t do 28s, but what to say about 26s? It’s becoming harder to satisfy my lingerie addict cravings.
    Sorry all the mumbling, if you find about any brand that makes 26 back sizes please let me know. Really liked the article & the blog (but I’m a suspect as I usually love anything lingerie related).

    • Hi Ana, it’s a tricky business indeed finding 26 bands, in general you’ll have to wear 28 bands on the tightest hook, but my lovely friend Brittany has a blog called Thin and Curvy, here is the link: http://www.thinandcurvy.com/2011/05/where-to-find-26-and-24-band-bras-and.html – and she’s written about her search for 26-band bras, because she also needs that. I see you already know about Ewa Michalak, I have ordered and returned bras from them, so you might want to give it a try. Returning it does take a bit longer all the way to Poland, but it’s probably worth it if you are suffering.
      The calculator isn’t always dead-on, it’s hard to make a really accurate judgement just going by measurements, so only you will know what size is right for you.
      I will keep an eye out for any 26 backs, I know girls are always on the search for them. I hope this helps a bit. πŸ™‚

      • It certainly does πŸ™‚ thanks for the fast reply.

  3. Fantastic article! I, too, found I was wearing a drastically wrong size for me after losing weight. Imagine my shock to drop from 40DD to a 32G in one fitting!! And, for the record? I LOVE Curvy Kate bras!

    • Thank you, and I’m so glad to hear your found the right size, or your new size anyway! Curvy Kate bras are very pretty, I agree πŸ™‚

  4. size and fit are not the only issue in a good fitting bra but the style must suit too no use wearing a balconette bra if you a sternum that protrudes out or try and seperate your breasts if they are joined as many ladies are just because you may be that size doesnt mean its right for you .Also beware with some companys were the cup of the bra comes up too high at the sides and ends up rubbing from the underarm up towards the shoulder !!!
    Isabel… Body Talk

    • Hi Isabel,
      Yes that’s true, all women have different shaped breasts. This is just a general guide on how it should fit to be the most supportive, but as I say, I recommend going into a Bravissimo store to be measured – that way they’re sure to find the right bra for you.

  5. This is a great guide. I just ordered my first bra based on my new measurements. I am hoping for the best!

    • Thank you, I’m really glad to hear that! I hope it works and that you find the right one πŸ™‚
      Good luck!

  6. I’m late to this game, so I really hope you can help me! I’m totally fed up with my size options here in the US. Victoria’s Secret measured me as a 36C awhile back, and not knowing any better, I took their word for it. I know feel like I have my very own personal torture device. I measure around the ribcage at 32″ and around bust 38″. Which sizes do you think would be a close match? The best I could find around here was a 34DD at VS, and the demi created “armit fat” and the padded/push up created some spillage. I’m thinking 34E? Or 32E/F? Or maybe 34DD is right and it’s the fault of VS? Also, since the girls aren’t all that large, I’d love something that lifts and gives a little something extra. πŸ˜‰ I’d like to get something that is both pretty and practical for wearing everyday, if possible. πŸ™‚ I would REALLY appreciate your input… I’d like to be out of this bra ASAP! And I’d like to have a good idea of size and style before I order directly from the UK. Thank you!

    • Hi Laura, 32 gives a pretty good indication that you will need to wear a 32 band bra. Of course this changes depending on the brand – so in tighter brands you may prefer a 34 (a lot of it is personal taste and comfort). As for cup size, your measurements indicate that you would be a 32F, however, it’s really really difficult to get an accurate bust measurement, they don’t always correspond to the bra size. I know someone who measures 39 bust, and is actually an H-cup so it completely depends on the shape and position of your boobs. I think if you can, order a cheap bra from Brastop in a 32F, and see how you get on. If you are buying freya, their bands are generally a bit looser than others, and if you buy Curvy Kate padded bras, their bands are also looser, and the cups come up small. If you have any other bra size queries, feel free to ask and I’ll try and help as best I can.
      Oh and also, VS are notorious for their incorrect sizing, best to stay away from them if you can. Try and get to somewhere like nordstroms! x

  7. Oh, and I forgot to mention, I measured standing up without a bra, since I don’t have one that even remotely fits. When I bent at the waist, I measured 39″ or so around the bust. Didn’t have anyone to help this time, so I may have been a little cautious on the 39″. πŸ™‚ Thank you!

  8. Thanks so much! I can’t seem to get away from the Curvy Kate bras… maybe I’m much more of a pretty bra girl than I thought! Anyway, based on what brastop has in stock in my size range (I think they just had this huge sale?), this is what I have in my cart currently. I added the 32FF based on your recommendation that Curvy Kate’s bands are looser, and their padded cups run smaller.


    I really, really appreciate your response! This bra thing is tricky enough without having to muddle through it online. I’m a couple of hours away from the nearest Nordstroms, and based on gas prices and subsequently, their prices for an individual, I think I’m better off financially going the online route.

    Thank you! πŸ™‚

    • Ah yes I know that feeling. I’m not even too far away from my nearest Bravissimo shop, and I usually end up ordering online anyway!
      I can’t check the link, but if it’s a thrill me or a tease me bra, they’re near enough the same, I’m normally a 32G/30GG, and I wear a 30H in those ones, so I think 32FF should work well for you. The regular unpadded Curvy Kates I have in a mixture of 32s and 30s, but all G/GG, so I’d definitely go for something along the lines of 32F in those ones – I’m a sucker for pretty bras too! πŸ™‚

  9. thanks for the article. that was very informative. i used the bra size calculator that you recommended and i got the result 30D. i thought i was a 34B because i measured myself using a measuring table but i’m not sure anymore. is 30D and 34B quite similar or is it hugely different? shall i just buy both sizes and see which fits me better as i don’t really like trying bras on in shops.
    Thanks so much

    • Hi Kristina, yes a 30D is the same cup volume as a 34B, so I imagine that it would fit you…but a lot better. My advice is to buy a 30D on brastop (they’ve got some good deals on bras) and see how it fits. If you don’t like it, or it doesn’t fit, then just send it back, and try again! It sounds to me like it will though if you have been wearing a 34B.
      This one is a lovely bra: http://www.brastop.com/SetDetails.aspx?setId=3271 – I have it myself, and if padded style is what you’re after, I think you’ll like it. The back does run loose sometimes though, and the cups can occasionally be loose, so maybe try a 30D, but also 28D may fit too. This Masquerade bra is also lovely: http://www.brastop.com/SetDetails.aspx?setId=3191, so that’s another possibility. If you’re looking for unpadded, I recommend the Freya Arabella πŸ™‚
      Hope this helps! x

  10. I’m late on this, but excellent post! Very very informative. Highlights a lot of problems with bra sizing too actually ’cause for eg. if you’re like me and have large boobs but a tiny frame, then getting a much smaller band size is not option. You take the lowest band size available and feel the discomfort of going up and down in size in the same bra.

  11. Hi Ladies, I have completely re-designed my site and have an up to date link to the calculator:

    Hope it helps!
    Josephine x

  12. I’ve been a 34B since long time but in VS they said i’m 34C which i felt was ridiculous coz i’ve jus put on 2kgs of weight n that wouldn’t make them drastically big.. but i found out that my bra is not covering the entire bust.. so i’m like wondering as you said i cud be a 32C rather? may be i’m wearing a loose bra? or a 34C? i used ur calculator n it says i’m a 32C.. may be i wanna try that one next time.. thanks for the info

    • Hiya, yeah it sounds like you might be a 32 – if you measure under your bust, go with the closest band size to your measurement in inches. If she said you were a 34C, it’s possible you could be a 32D, as the cup size goes up as the band size goes down. I have to say even when I gain or lose just a little bit of weight during the month I often fluctuate between bra sizes, it’s not uncommon, you may need to do a little trial-and-error with some sizes to find the best one. I hope you find the right fit! πŸ™‚

  13. I commented over on one of your other posts just a few moments ago, and then found this calculator. I’ve been wearing a 36A or 36B (depending on what fits better at any given time, for any number of reasons), but I measured myself today with a band size of 34″ and bust of 38″ to get an estimated size of 34DD. I’m so surprised! I’ll be interested to go into a store and try some on, see how they fit.

  14. Hi Sophia, I love your blog and I hope you can help me with my bra wows. I measure about 28 in under and over something like 34 or 35 if I lean forward. The only bra I have that I can kind of wear is 32d on loosest hook because it’s full coverage and if I tighten up the back (which I know is to big) it basically kills me. Recently after realizing that VS cannot help me I finally ended up in nordstroms twice because first β€œbra specialist” tried to squeeze me in 30d and after begging them for a while they finally sold me 30dd that I wore for 15 min and home and realized I couldn’t breathe or move my arms in it. Anyway on third trip to another nordstroms and some begging for bigger cups (yes I have to beg for them just to try because I guess me being almost 5’8” I proportionally look smaller that’s my theory anyways) I ended up with cleo jude 30e and it is still killing me. I know the band is fine because I can tighten it to tightest hook with no problem but even on loosest hook it feels very tight and I am still spilling on the top a little bit. What do I do get 30f go online and get 28f or maybe ff. I really just want ONE bra that doesn’t kill me.

    • Hi Emily,
      It does sound like you’re struggling, I’m sorry to hear that. Yes, you’re right, from your measurements it does seem like you would be either a 28 or 30 band, but it sounds like that isn’t comfortable on you. The easiest way to tell if the band is the problem, is to put the bra on back to front, and feel how the band is by itself, without the straps up or the cups on. Perhaps because of your measurements, you’ve had the band sitting too far up on your back? I just wrote a new blog post, and in it there are some pictures of where the band sits on me (from the back). Try loosening the straps and pulling it down a bit at the back.

      I really think your size is either 28FF or 30F (or something similar) – I think the D’s and E’s are still to small for you going by your measurements. A combination of the band and cups being the wrong size will make you uncomfortable. Perhaps you could order from somewhere like Brastop, Bravissimo or Figleaves – they all accept returns, so if it’s the wrong size, you can always send it back. Let me know how you get on. x

  15. Thank you sooo much for this great post — I have used the calculator and read through all the past conversations, and was wondering if you could give me your educated guess before I make my second order from brastop.com.

    I am just moving out of nursing bras back to regular (and pretty) bras, and a couple of my old 32Ds are fitting well, so I ordered some Fantasie pretties in that size. Cups are way too small, not nearly wide enough at the sides primarily and cutting in slightly at the tops of the cups.

    My underbust measurement is 30, my full bust is 36, so I’m wondering if I should gamble with some 30Fs, maybe trying Curvy Kate this time? The fullest part of my breasts is low (and also to the side) and I am happy to order several bras (figuring some will go back) but want to try to make some *good* guesses in my order. Any thoughts or suggestions would be VERY welcome!

    Thanks so much, –Jennifer

    • Hi Jennifer,
      It does sound like 30F would be a good guess. You could order a 30F, and a 32E to see what feels most comfortable, then send the least comfortable one back. Even though 30 band is probably the best for you, if you’re coming out of nursing bras, the 30 might feel a bit tight or uncomfortable at first. I say why not try it out anyway. I recommend fantasie bras as their bands are the most comfortable I’ve come across. Curvy Kate and Freya are also good, Freya is a looser band than CK (unpaddeds).
      Fantasie/Freya – looser bands
      Curvy Kate/Panache – tighter bands
      You may also want to try the Poppy bra by Bravissimo in a 30F or even 30FF (as the cup runs very slightly small) because that’s a very comfortable bra. I hope this helps!

      • Thank you so much — this helps tremendously, and I truly appreciate the time you took to offer these suggestions. I am so happy to have found your blog! All best, –Jennifer

      • No Problem Jennifer, glad to be of help! πŸ™‚

  16. Up until two or three months ago, I was wearing a 36B — the size I’d been wearing since I was 13. Even though I knew my bra fit always had serious issues, bra sizing always confused me.

    I finally decided that my cup size was too small and band size too big, and went and bought a 34C. But it still hasn’t been fitting right.

    The calculator says I’m a 30G. Holy mackerel. Is this as big of a size difference as it sounds?

    • Hiya, well as soon as you go down a back size, you go up a cup. So for example, a 34C is the equivelant of a 30DD. What that means is that you have been wearing a bra that is 4 cup sizes too small, and was 2 band sizes too small. It’s quite common don’t worry. Before I discovered I was a 30GG, I was wearing a 34DD, and that’s still 3 cup sizes too small. You may find that going straight from a 34 band to a 30 feels tight at first, but that’s always the way. I wore a 32 for a while before I went down to 30s, but it just depends how it feels for you. The thing is, it’s much easier to squish into incorrectly sized padded bras than unpadded. I suspect if you had been wearing anything unpadded it may have been more obvious. Try a 30G or 32FF and see how you get on! πŸ™‚

      • Thanks so much. Wearing my new bra right now, and wow — I am amazed at the difference.

  17. Hi Sophia, thank you for responding to my question. I did order cleo jude in 30f just to try and just like I thought the cups came out to big. Actually the wires were finally wide enough on the sides but top portion of the cups was to big and came up to high so now I am really confused because on the 30e wires are to small and doesn’t contain everything on the sides and I’m still spilling a little in the middle. I think 30 band is still to big because it feels like it’s sitting to high on my back and if I tighten it on smallest hook it finally feels tight enough on the back and doesn’t wrinkle or move but the front then becomes unbearable. I could try to order 28f and 28ff in jude to try but I just have had such a bad experience with this one I would like to try something else instead and I just need advice on different styles (thinking about buying from figleaves). All I’m looking for is practical (light color, lightly lined and looks fine under most clothing). I’m I guess what would be called bottom heavy and very wide, top not and more confused then ever…
    Thank you

    • Hi Emily, it does sound like perhaps the Cleo Jude is just not the right shape for you maybe? Have you tried the Freya deco bra? It’s a similar moulded cup bra, but usually much more useful and comes in lots of styles. I would try it in a 28FF (although possibly just F because the cups run a little big in the deco) – when I was a few sizes smaller I actually wrote a blog post on the deco, which is here: https://sophiajenner.wordpress.com/2011/03/29/deco/ – I think 28 is your band size from the way you describe the fit, and with Freya especially the bands are looser.
      The Curvy Kate Tempt Me bra is also a good one to go for: http://www.brastop.com/SetDetails.aspx?setId=3445 – this one however is small in the cups, so you would definitely need at least 28FF.
      I’m bottom heavy too, so don’t worry, I understand πŸ™‚ x

  18. I have a couple questions….like so many others, I have been wearing the wrong size, pretty much forever, I think. I’ve been wearing an ill-fitting 34D, however I’ve recently discovered my measurements are actually 29.5 and about 36. I’m trying desperately to find some new bras that fit right, but hardly any local stores (I’m in the midwest of the USA) carry small bands/bigger cups. I’ve found a very few 32DDD’s at Dillards, but the underwires on most simply aren’t comfortable on my ribs…although that’s straying away from my original question. My question, is this: Some of the bras I’ve tried on have a weird thing happening in the area where the top of the cup meets the strap. This area pulls away from my skin, so it’s half to a whole inch away from my body, instead of laying flat on my skin. I’m thinking this may be an indication the cup is too small….would you agree with this? On the bras this has happened with, unfortunately I haven’t been able to try a larger cup size because (1. Dillards has hardly any 32G’s, and (2. some have been from online orders where I only ordered the one size.

    Of the few 32DDD’s I’ve been able to try, some of the cups are a bit too small (quad-boob), while a couple have actually been too big. Same thing goes for the 32 bands, argh!! But I’m just not sure when that cup/strap area pulls away from my body… I don’t know if it’s simply a bad style for me or if the cup is too small. For sure, nothing I’ve been able to try on so far has fit anywhere near as nice as the pics you’ve shown on the blog! Sigh….

    Anyway, have you ever had a bra pull away from your body where the cup and strap meet? I would greatly appreciate any thoughts you might have! Thanks!!!! πŸ™‚

    • Hi Amber, so sorry to hear about the bra problems!
      It sounds unusual about the bra and strap pulling away, but perhaps I don’t know exactly what you mean – do you mean it’s not sitting to the outside and that it’s pulling further on the breast rather than around? That would mean it’s too small. I suspect in any case that must be what it is, combined with a band size that’s a bit big. Your measurements would suggest a 30F, you could buy online and return it if it doesn’t fit, but it might be a good way to get an idea of your size. I have heard nordstroms carry smaller bands and bigger cup sizes, but I’m not sure where abouts they are situated around the US. Sorry I can’t be of more help!

      • I was able to find a picture online that sort of shows the issue I was describing, but I think you’re right that it’s probably the cup being too small when this happens. (The 2nd pic on this page: http://www.cathyempey.com/2010/09/23/denise-jager-guest-blogger/ shows a girl with the area of the top of the cup/bottom of the strap being pulled out from her body. Of course the bras I’m trying are more the everyday type and more full coverage than hers, but it shows the issue, anyway.)

        I’m a bit scared of 30 bands because I tried on a 32 that was so tight that my underbust actually measured half an inch less when I had it on. But of course there are other 32s I’ve tried where I can reach behind my back and pull the band out 2 or 3 inches, so I suppose I should give some 30 bands a try. I have debated about going to Nordstroms, but the closest one is a 3 hour drive although it may come to that eventually. I did place an order online with them for a couple Fantasie bras and a Panache, so I guess I’ll just have to wait and see what happens when they get here. They do have a decent selection, plus free shipping and free shipping on returns too, but I fear it may take a few orders/returns to get something just right. I hope they don’t ban me from shopping with them for ordering/returning too many bras, LOL! πŸ™‚

        Anyway, thanks for the reply Sophia, I really appreciate it. I’ll take the 30 band suggestion under advisement and probably try a few on my next Nordstrom order. Wish me luck! πŸ™‚

      • Yes I see what you mean. I think it’s mainly the cup being too small. I have that sometimes with certain bras, depending on what sort of lift it gives.
        As for the 30 bands, you will find the band sizes vary with each brand – for example I could never wear a La Senza 30 band because their bras are very tight, so of course, it’s best to go for the tightest comfortable band.
        Let me know how you get on with the fantasie bras, they have loose bands, so you may need a 30. I hope they work out, good luck! πŸ™‚

  19. Well, my Nordstrom’s order came, and it’s already on the way back. The Panache Porcelain (32F) and Fantasie 4510 (32E) were both too small in the cups, and while the Fantasie Esme (32F) wasn’t completely terrible, it was more east/west than what I’d like. Oh, and the 32 bands were all too big, as well.

    My tendency is to go for the seamless t-shirt style bras, however my mother pointed out that you and many of your blogger friends πŸ™‚ are wearing mostly seamed bras. I’m considering trying a few, but I’m concerned about the seams and lace accents showing through tshirts. Do you find this to be a problem, or not really? And do you know if there are any brands that have flatter seams than others?

    I’m going to work on putting together another order tonight, which will include the Porcelain and 4510 in 30 bands and bigger cups, but I’m going to try to find some others to add to the order as well. Here’s hoping…. πŸ™‚

    • Hi Amber, sounds like you need a 30FF or even 30G. Different brands do have different styles, and I have heard the ‘east-west’ comment before, so perhaps you need to find a different stye. I find Fantasie looser in the band than panache, but perhaps it was different for you.
      About the t-shirts – there are two things, 1. there’s a very short period of time over here when it’s ever warm enough to wear them, 2. I generally don’t wear t-shirts because I can’t fit my top-half into them without it being baggy everywhere else, and 3. On the rare occasions I do wear something tight fitting that perhaps would show the seams, I wear my freya deco bras. There are a few nice moulded cup bras out there for bigger busts which work well for t-shirts – if you need any suggestions I’ll make a list of all the ones I can remember.

      • Sophia, I determined the same thing as you, 30FF or 30G. I went ahead and ordered some more bras in those sizes, and delivery is scheduled for next week.

        I never realized the weather over there would be so different from here, that’s really interesting! Around here t-shirts are the standard for close to half the year, with temperatures between 70 to 100, so seamless bras are quite a concern for me. It is a challenge to find a decent tshirt fit, nevertheless I do have a collection in my closet that I love to wear.

        Thanks for the offer of moulded bra suggestions, I may take you up on that! But first I’ll see how things go with my order as I did get a few moulded ones to try. I also decided to try some seamed styles, I figure I can wear them in the cold months when I bundle up, and also on mild summer days when I wear a low v-neck with a tanktop underneath, thus 2 layers hopefully hiding the seams. Thanks again for your time and help, I appreciate it so much!!!

      • Let me know how it goes with those sizes, I hope they work out!
        As for moulded cup bras, these ones are my favourites: freya ‘deco’ bra (of which there are many different colours and versions, strapless too, hence it’s a favourite), curvy kate ‘smoothie bra (which is new and has had great reviews). A lot of the Ewa Michalak bras too, like the CH (or PL) Onyks, and the PL CieluΕ›. I’ve heard good things about panache’s moulded bras, but I’m a bit too wide-set for them myself. I’ll keep looking for you, to try and find some others.

  20. I’m confused not sure what bra size I should be wearing, I’m a 32 band and a 36 bust plez help.

    • Hi Julie, do you measure 32 underbust, or do you mean you just wear 32? You should wear the band closest to the size you measure, so if 32 is correct, then you would most likely be a 32DD I expect!

      • The under band is 32 right now I’m wearing at 32 d and my boobs are still poping out. I live in the us. Does that change the size at from the uk?

      • Hi Julie, yes there are some variations with sizes from the US to the UK. I get very confused with how it works out, but in the US they include sizes like ‘DDD’ and use ‘I’, while we skip the letters ‘DDD’ and ‘I’ completely. The Butterfly Collection has a really handy bra calculator where they show the equivelant sizes: http://www.butterflycollection.ca/bra-size-calculator/
        When I put in my own measurements, it tells me I am a 32G in the UK, or that in the US I could be a 34DDD or even 30H. It’s the closest I have come to knowing what I would be in US sizing. As far as I understand, there are shops like nordstroms (and other companies too) that use the UK sizing anyway.
        If you can work out which bits of the bra aren’t fitting comfortably, so if the cup is too small or band feels too big, perhaps you can work out what size to try next. It’s tough I know.

  21. Hello, I’ve enjoyed this post πŸ™‚ And I have a question..

    The bra I just bought is a 38D, the cup fits almost perfectly, and the band is perfect as well- however the sizes of the bra go up too high into my arm pit. What’s the solution for this?

    Although I’m young, I believe my breasts aren’t as perky as they should be so in previous bras and such (and potentially this one too) they fall out the bottom (I was wearing a 1-2 year old C cup bra)… So, I don’t really know what to do.

    Btw, I bought it at Target. It’s a self-expressions Maidenform, it has some push up (because I want them up and to give me cleavage at least a bit.

    Hope I can get some answers πŸ™‚ Thanks!

    • Hi Crystal, what are your measurements underbust and overbust? The two points you made conflict slightly, so I’m not quite sure what to suggest. The bra wires being too high/far round the sides indicate the cup is too big (or in some cases the band is too small), but, breasts falling out of the bottom is definitely a sign that the band you’re wearing is too big. If you give me a bit more info about it, I might be able to help more πŸ™‚

      • Well I did measure myself (in a not so great fitting bra, idk if that matters) but I got 30.75 for band and 37.25 for bust.. With the new bra (38D) I only have maybe a little bit of boobage wanting to go out the bottom and on the sides, yeah, I don’t know what could work for me as far as that.. All the “bands” on the sides seem to get wider as the sizes of the cup gets larger.

      • Crystal, according to your measurements that would make you a 32F. A 38 band will be much too big for you if you measure close to 31. If you have breast tissue trying to escape the band (then it’s too big) and round the sides of the cup (the cup is too small). That would make sense if you are actually a 32F (or 32FF) rather than 38D. Are you in the UK or US? I recommend going to brastop.com and buying a cheap 32F/FF bra on there to try it out. x

      • I live in the US, Brastop looks like they have perfect bras!! Can I order from them even though I’m in the US? If not, what do you suggest for an online store in the US.. Or even a retail store?

      • Yes you can still order from Brastop in the US. Another great store is the butterfly collection over in Canada, not sure but they may offer free shipping to the US. There’s also figleaves who ship worldwide. If you can get to a nordstroms store, I understand they also sell bigger cup sizes – that would be a great place to try sizes on to make sure!

      • Well perfect! I’ll try out a couple at Nordstroms and go from there.

        If I remember, I’ll come back and give an update.
        But for now.. I’ll be taking the bra back that I got the other day =P

        Anyhoos.. Thank you for your help, Sophia! I’ve gladly appreciated it πŸ™‚

      • No problem Crystal, let me know how you get on! πŸ™‚

  22. I love this blog post! I have settled for a 32G, though the back and straps are always huge on me. It is so annoying! It has been impossible for me to find someone to do an accurate fit, though. Most sales associates try to shove me into something ridiculous, like a 34C. According to the calculator you suggest, I am a 28FF (yikes!). Is that a UK size or a US size? (I’m in the US.) My measurements were 27 under and 34 over. I have always worn unpadded bras, because I don’t need/want to add anymore volume to my already crazy breast size, but now that my I have breastfed my baby, they seem deflated a little bit. If I get a good fitting bra, will I get some good lift, without having to resort to padding? Thanks!

    • Hi Kieren, it’s a bit complicated with US vs UK sizes. Technically 28FF is a UK size, but a lot of companies in the US use those sizes too. If you can get to a Nordstroms, they may have some for you. If they don’t have 28FF, they should at least have a 30F. You can always order online from places like Brastop/Lovebras, Figleaves and Bravissimo etc, they do ship abroad. You can also try the Butterfly collection in Canada too, they may offer free shipping to the US, I can’t remember exactly. They also have a great online calculator that gives you equivelant sizes for US/UK etc.

      • Thanks! I’ll try Nordstroms!

  23. I have a question, I was just sized at a 32G and the bra seemed to fit nicely but my concern is that my measurement I took was 30″ around underneath my boobs. So shouldn’t I be in a 30 not a 32? What would the equivalent size of a 32G be in a 30?

    • Hi Candace, it all depends on the brand. If it’s Freya bra, then yes 30 would be about right, but a brand like Panache or Curvy Kate sometimes their 32s are tighter. Your equivalent size would be 30GG (when you go down a band size, you go up a cup size). If you feel the 32 band is too loose, then yes definitely try to get hold of a 30GG.

  24. Thank you so much. Ive been wearing a 36D for quite sometime and I am just never comfortable. I experience a lot of the problems you described with a too small band size and cup. I used the sizing chart you recommended and it gave me a 34DD, which honestly seems unrealistic but I guess I am just really used to over boob and having my boobs squished to the side. I cannot wait to try a bra in this size and see how t feels!

    • That’s great! Let me know how it goes πŸ™‚

      • Ok, I got 2 bras from VS ( I’ve heard people talk about how bad they are but it was convenient). One fits pretty well, a little tight but not uncomfortable but the lace on it is terribly itchy. The other one is a slight push up with barely any padding and I’m spilling out of it :(. Any US shopping recommendations?

      • If you can get to a nordstroms then they usually have much nicer bras in bigger sizes. You can also order online from large cup lingerie (they do free worldwide shipping), Brastop, bravissimo, figleaves etc. They all ship to the US. Butterfly collection in Canada also ships to the US and they have a great selection too.

      • Oh also, if you’re spilling out of the cup, you need a bigger cup size. 34E or 34F maybe. X

  25. Help! I am looking for a nursing bra in a size 30H. I know this size works for me because I had a professional fitting, and bought one in this size that actually fits well and feels good. But where on earth do you find these? I’ve tried all kinds of websites that say they have DD+ sizes, but finding MY size seems impossible!

    • Hi Heather, Freya do some really lovely nursing bras in 30H. I can’t send you the links from my phone, but try Bravissimo, Leia Lingerie, Large Cup Lingerie, Brastop and Figleaves, they should all have nursing bras in your size. X

      • All of these sites have prices in Β£ so I’m assuming sizing is UK sizing, which I believe is a bit different than US sizing. Do I need to take that into account?

      • Try this bra size calculator: http://www.butterflycollection.ca/bra-size-calculator/ – it will give you the correct size in both US and UK sizing. Most bigger cup stores online (even many American ones) use UK sizing.

  26. Dear Sophia, what a great post! Thank you so much, I’ve been looking for something as explanatory as this for so long! I love both the websites – braspot and curvykate- I haven’t heard of them before and now I feel like I’m in bra-heaven! πŸ™‚ I have a question. though. I measured myself and my under the bust is 82cm which I converted to 32 inches, my bust measurement is 105cm or 41 inches according to the conversion table I found online. The bra size I use is 80E (European). The calculator on curvesandcorsets says I’m a 32GG, but the conversion table on braspot says that I need 36E (if I turn 80E into the UK measures). What do I do? Which band size should I order – 32 or 36? Thank you so much for your help! Keep up the great work with this blog! Best wishes!

    • Hi Petya, thanks for your comments πŸ™‚
      The band size you need will be closest to your underbust measurement. So, if you measure 32 inches underbust, then a 32 band is what you need. I’m a bit confused as to what chart gave you 80E? I wear 70G in Ewa Michalak which translates to 32G in UK sizing (which is exactly what I wear). I think your best bet is to go for the size that the curves and corsets calculator recommends, especially if you shop at Brastop.

      • Thank you for your advice! I was very confused too, but I’m going to go with the 32GG. You really helped me out, much appreciated! Best wishes πŸ™‚

      • No problem, I hope it’s the right size! Let me know how it goes πŸ™‚

  27. Thanks so much for this lovely post. I’m still trying to find my correct size, but it is getting difficult as my rib age seems to be shrinking :/ I’ve gone from 27.5 to 26″ lol. I do have a question about fitting if you can help. I have a Deco in a 28 E (I measure 26 under 34 over). It gaps after several hours of wear, but when I scoop myself into the bra it wrinkles on the sides. I’m not sure it it’s actually the correct size with a too big band, a too small size with the band meaning I’m falling out the bottom, or if it’s a too big cup. I’ve heard a lot of mixed reviews about the Deco, so maybe it’s just the bra? I’m also wide set and fuller on bottom, so that could be it too? Sorry for all the questions lol

    • Hi Mikayla,
      I suspect it it just the bra. My usual size is 30GG, but I wear the deco in a 30G as the cups definitely run on the large size (perhaps why you have the gaping). They also tend to stretch a little over time, which can be a pain.
      I am also wide-set and fuller on bottom, and I get a little wrinkling in the bottom of the cups. Sadly that’s just to do with my (and your) shapes, so don’t worry too much about it. If you find it comfortable enough, and it’s not causing you too many problems, then it’s probably ok as it is. It can be a real love-hate bra sometimes. x

  28. I wore a 34A La Senza, only to find out 2 days ago that It was too small! My SA told me the the fats has gone to the sides due to the bra pushing. So they gave me a B70 for half cups and C70 for full cups. I am surprised that it actually fits really well!

    I don’t think I notice any breast bulging out (shall try tomorrow) I went to see the bra fitting website you introduced and they told me that I am a 28D. I am so confused.

    Can you tell me why I am a B70 for half cups, C70 for full cups and 28D according to the website?

    I am also very disappointed. I never thought that C cups or D cups were my breast sizes. I always thought that C cups are very big and not this tiny mountains of mine. haha. I used to wish that I had C cups and now my dream came true but i also didn’t expect to get it only at the age of 15!

    Oh and I read somewhere that laces and the design of the bras matter. Why? I found that when the cups are closer to one another (more towards asian bras) It gives me cleavages but if I wear La Senza or Triumph bras, It does not give me any boosts. My asian bras are all not padded.

    I find that I suit asian bras more. I think that most asians should not use the western bras since they are a little differently shaped compared to asian bras.

    • Hi there, it’s interesting to hear about your bra experience, and I’m glad you are closer to finding your correct size.
      Don’t forget, when you go down a band size, you go up a cup size. So, for example, a 34A has the same cup volume as a 32B, a 30C and a 28D. That makes 34A and 28D exactly the same size in cup volume, but the 28 just has a smaller band. You should wear the band size closest to your underbust measurement. So, if you measure 27, 28 or sometimes even 30 you might feel comfortable in a 28D bra. I hope that makes sense! The bra fitting site usually gives quite an accurate size, so maybe go to a store and try one on if you can. Take a look at this post I wrote that shows what D and G sizes can look like (scroll down to the D-size pictures): https://sophiajenner.wordpress.com/2012/02/20/are-celebrities-bad-bra-role-models/
      Of course, different brands make for differently fitting bras. I almost always wear either 30GG or 32G, but sometimes I might wear a 30G or a 30H, it all depends on the bra.

  29. Hi, just been looking through your blog posts and could really use your help! I recently went to a Bravissimo store and was told I should be wearing a 28F instead of the 32DD/32E I had been wearing. I purchased Bravissimo’s satine bra and 2 Freya Deco bras but these seem slightly too big in the band. Everyone seems to really rate Bravissimo’s fittings but I can’t help but think they put me in a 28 band as they don’t sell 26 bands. I’ve tried the bras on tighter hooks but the seams in the satine leave deep marks on my breasts when I do this and the straps really dig in even though I can fit 2 fingers underneath. When I try tighter hooks on the Deco the underwires leave deep marks under my breasts.

    It seems the band is riding up very slightly, about 1.5 cm. As I feel I probably need a 26 band and these are hard to come by are you able to recommend any brands which you know come up quite tight in the band? I don’t really like the idea of weraing a brand new bra on the tighter hooks and I won’t get much wear out of it before it stretches 😦

    • Hi Megan, this is a common problem unfortunately. Hopefully soon 26 bands will be more readily available. Both Freya and Bravissimo’s own brand run quite loose in the band, so I’m not surprised it was loose on you. First of all you could try Panache (not the cleo range) and Curvy Kate (not the showgirl range) as the rest of their bras usually come up tighter than average. The next thing is to try Ewa Michalak the Polish brand. They do gorgeous bras and custom make to your size. The band tightness varies from bra to bra with them, but on the whole they are normally tighter than usual. The big bra bra which is a fairly new company (but it’s based in the UK) have started stocking Ewa Michalak bras, although to be honest I prefer ordering straight from Poland. Either are great options though.
      You may also want to check out Brittany’s blog ‘thin and curvy’, because she’s also a 20 band girl. x

  30. Hi,
    I’ve commented on this post before and for a while I thought my problems were solved. I went from a 36D to a 34DD and thought everything was all fixed. Recently I went to buy some more bras on and I’m just confused again. I found a 34D that I could wear and some 34DD’s that I was spilling out of.
    I think I may have lost some fat around my rib cage or something because I measured differently than the last time I tries. My rib cage measures 32 and across my chest is 37. According to curves and corsets I’m a 32E but I dont feel I look that way. Like I said I found a 34D that fit pretty well. I’m afraid of ordering a 34E online and having to go through the process of returning it if its a no go.
    Its a little silly but I have a link to picture of me. I thought maybe it would help. https://sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/s720x720/292448_4509012328238_1982115121_n.jpg
    sorry its a silly photo I dont have many full body shots.

    • Sorry I forgot to add that I also have a pretty big problem with sports bras. I usually wear a small compression bra because that is the best in the band but I’m really squished in there. Wearing a normal bra with a sports bra over it is better but I feel like I’m ruining a bra.

    • Hi Laina,
      Of course it’s hard to tell from the picture, but in that particular picture I would’ve guessed that you were perhaps a 30F. However, if you do measure 32 underbust, then I think a 32E is probably going to be just right for you. Remember that’s the sister-size of a 34DD so it would be the same cup volume, just with a more snug band. When you go from wearing a 34 to a 32, it may seem tight at first, but it’ll give you the best support & it’ll be more comfortable for you in the long run.
      As for the differences in the 34Ds & 34DDs, it very much depends on the bras. Your size can vary a lot between brands, and can even vary between styles, so it’s best to try all sorts of sizes on (ignore the label, as in don’t worry if it’s a bigger cup than you’re used to, and just go with what feels right for you).
      As for sports bras, I can really recommend the new panache sports bra, it’s very comfortable and won’t squish you. I’ll probably be doing a post on it when I’m back writing the blog regularly. Hope this helps.
      Sophia x

      • Thank you. I ordered a the Panache Cleo Lucy in yellow that you posted about in a 32E to try.
        I’ll try the sports bra when some more money rolls in.

  31. I’m sorry to keep posting and bothering you. I know you are enjoying being married (congratulations!). I received my Panache in the mail and the 32 felt pretty tight and the E cup felt too small! I was very surprised and am still confused.

    • The first thing to remember is that Panache is one of the tighter banded brands (unlike Freya), the second is to work out whether it really is too tight, or you just aren’t used to the tighter band yet..? In any case, what you can do if you want, is buy a bra expander/extender, they are usually only a few ££s on amazon. Did the cup feel ok?

      • The cup was too small. I had a hard time believing it was an E.

      • Remember it’s the equivalent of a 34DD. So it sounds like you just need a bigger cup size, go for the 32F I reckon!

  32. I’m having the issue of the bra poking out the sides. There is a perfect photo at this link http://bratenders.com/support/goodbad.html
    Its the pink bra 2nd bad pic. I’m not sure what the remedy for it is. Thanks!!

    • Hi Sarah, you definitely need a bigger cup size and a smaller band. The arching of the band around your back is because it’s too loose and you need a much tighter band size than that. As well as that, a lot of your breast tissue isn’t encased fully in the cup, which indicates you need a bigger cup size. If you need any more help finding your correct size, send me an email from the ‘contact me’ section ok? X

  33. Hi Sophia, I find your blog very helpful can you please explain what this means :

    -At the top of the bra, the fabric should meet your boobs with a smooth line without a gap or ridge. Even when you raise your arms up, the boobs should remain enclosed in the cup of the bra.

    I wear La Senza’s padded bras and I was told to wear 32A by them. But whenever I wear thier bras, the problem i mentioned above happens. Theres always a gap between the bra and my boobs,
    also when i wear them , even on my loosest hook, it feels too tight its difficult to breathe.

    I used the calculator you mentioned in your blog and my measurements are A = 29 inches and B= 32 inches, according to the calculator my bra size should be 30D , but I i feel my rib cage so tight in 32 how can i breathe in 30 ?
    please help

    • Hi, well the first thing to mention is that la senza bra band are notoriously tight. If I were you I’d try some of the Freya bras in a 30D. In fact the deco bra runs big in the cup, so you could try a 30C possibly in that one. But I suspect 30D will be your usual size, then in tighter bands a 32C.

      • Thanks for your reply, I live in middle east and the brands you mentioned above aren’t easily available here, yes Freya is at Debenhams but they dont have all the sizes here, can you guide me with Bhs bras please?

      • I haven’t tried BHS bras myself. Have you had a look on figleaves, brastop or large cup lingerie? They have a great selection of brands (including Freya, Curvy Kate, Panache etc) and they do usually have offers. If you spot anything and want advice on sizing for it, let me know and I’ll help as much as I can.

  34. Thank you so much for this info. I have had four children in 6 years and am pretty pettite. Yet with each pregnancy and breastfeeding, my breasts have changed so much. My oldest is almost 7 & and my baby is 15 months (hes still nursing very minimally) I was so tired of improper fitted bras! So I went to VS, they sized me at 34 D. I bought two bras and after two days of wearing a “full coverage” bra, I was spilling out! So frustrating! Hopefully I can go back educated and make an exchange for the right size. Just want to be comfortable:) Thanks for your insight.

  35. I have been using this method for bra sizing, and I think it is great. I have but one problem though. I can never get the center to lay flat. It doesn’t matter the style. I am a 28E and if I use a larger cup size, it is too big, and if I wear a smaller band size, I might not be able to breathe. I also tried a 30 band, but it was too loose, and it still left a gap as well. A 32 band is also way too loose.The center of my chest caves in a bit, so that might be why. Do you know of any brands that would work for something like this, or is it something that I’ll have deal with?

    • Hi Catherine, I think you’re right, it sounds like a shape issue rather than a sizing one. I’m not certain of which particular brands would work, but I’m sure there is a style that will be more comfortable. Try a few different kinds out; plunge, half-cup, balcony, full cup bras, see what works best.
      Good luck, I hope you find something!

  36. Hello, I have a problem with taking medications which makes my boobs grow. I also have a problem with my mom not letting me get new bras. I’ve been fitted at A La Mode when I was 14 (I’m 15 now) and they said I was a 32D to a 34B depending on the bra. During that time I was on a medicine that made my boobs grow bigger a half a cup size, maybe more than usual but once I stopped taking it they went back to what they were before. Recently either a new medicine or puberty is making my boobs grow again and I measured myself again and my band size is 32 and bust is 35 I think. Should I get fitted again to see my size properly? Or should I experiment with bra sizes around the size of a 32C-B to a 34B?
    Also, I have 6 bras. 3 of them are nice ones (like from A La Mode/ Victoria’s Secret) and they’re from when my boobs grew from the first medication They fit nicely or almost the way they did when i first got them. The other 3 are 2 and a half years old and were bought before I was fitted. My mom refuses to buy me new bras because she says I have too many and claims that we just bought some. I feel like the three that are old and worn out and the wrong size should be thrown away but she says no because they’re still usable. It’s not a matter of money I know for sure. My family is very well off. I don’t understand her reasoning.

    • Hi Gabrielle, I’m sorry to hear that, it sounds very frustrating.
      You need to explain to your mum that the body is constantly changing, so actually you may need a few bras in different sizes, so that when your size increases or decreases you won’t find yourself with nothing to wear. It’s really important to wear a well fitting bra, and they generally last about 3 months, or 6 months with minimal wear. If you want, show her this blog so she understands, and try to explain to her that you don’t feel comfortable in the bras you have at the moment.
      I think currently 32C sounds about right, but with the constant variations going on, you may need a bigger cup size bra as a back-up as well.
      Good luck!

      • Your blog is so fascinating! And the fact that you’re not a size 2 and a model! I’m completely fascinated! I feel like telling a friend about this but they would all think I’m weird.
        And I didn’t show the site to my mom but she still won’t buy me bras when I told her a few convincing arguments. When I get enough money, I’ll buy a new good fitting bra because that’s definitely something I need. Then I can finally throw away one of the old 36A bras I have.
        But I’m currently having some body issues, like a lot of teenage girls, and I’m so fascinated that you’re a model with a 30 in. waist. My waist is 32-33 in. and I feel so insecure.

      • Hi Gabrielle,
        Believe it or not I know how you feel. My mother was great in some ways, but being a bit body/size/weight conscious herself, she quite quickly passed that onto me without realising. Along with the media and being surrounded perhaps in school by other girls with body insecurities, it can create a real problem. The only thing I can tell you is that you’ve only got one body, there will be things you like and things you like a little less, but try to focus (and dress to emphasise) the areas that you do like. Try to remember also that perfection is a myth, even the most famous of models have parts they don’t like, and they are not perfect. But the thing is, perfection is overrated, often the people we love, we love because of their flaws, because that’s what makes them them, and makes them human.
        Sorry for the long reply, I just want you to know you’re not alone, and that I know it’s hard when so many people place a lot of emphasis on size & looks. There’s so much more to you than that.
        Also, fyi, my waist isn’t always 30, at some points in the month it’s 32, bodies are constantly changing, so don’t focus on the number πŸ™‚
        Love Sophia

  37. Hi dear, need your advice πŸ™‚

    I’m 28″ underbust and 34″ overbust, who used to be wearing 34E (75E). However like you pointed out, most of my 34E bra bands are too loose for me (I need the inner most clasp and even that is too loose ): I struggled with ill fitting bras that rides up in the back, and spillage of side boobs and at most too small cups (slight four boobs effect ):

    I live in Asia and its hard to get an E cup bra let alone anything with smaller bands (32 seems the smallest here) and bigger cups (most stop at D): Could you advise some international brands and online shops that I can browse and purchase from (preferably lower international shipping and with returns feature).

    I’m petite standing at less than 5 feet – 34, 27, 35.

    Thanks dear! πŸ™‚

    • Hi Shann, a few places that you can try: Brastop, Large Cup Lingerie, Lembrassa, Figleaves, Bravissimo, and Asos to name a few. Large Cup Lingerie especially as they have free worldwide shipping. Good luck!

  38. i was wearing a 34D and had been putting off getting measured for ages- went today, 34F! Much more comfy ^-^

  39. Ouh also (sorry this is two comments) i was wondering if you know any websites that do really cheap bras, or good deals? because i really cant afford to re-buy all my bras in a different size :s

    • Hi, glad to hear you’ve found out your correct size!
      Places you could try are Brastop, Large Cup Lingerie (free shipping), Figleaves, Asos, Debenhams, Leia Lingerie, Lembrassa, Bras & Honey, & lovebras.

  40. Hi there; I have a question about bra size. I have a ribcage measurement of 27″ and breasted measmnt 33.5/34″. The woman in the store said 32DD. It fits ok but I know I can go with a smaller band because its on the last clasp. I want to order a bra nonlinear with a bend of 28 or 30″. Not sure what cup size I need. I’m also looking for a sports bra too. Please help. Thx

    • Hi, you probably need a size 28E or 28F depending on which brand you go for, as the fit can vary between brands. Sometimes in-store bra fitters either use the plus 4 method or just try to fit you in a size they carry, but yes, it sounds like a 32 would be too loose. Try the new Panache sports bra in a 28E, the one that also comes in pink to support breast cancer care. It’s a fantastic bra.

  41. Hi thanks for your response! Can u give a link for the panache bra? I was measured in a store. I actually have a 34″ bust. I was able to fit into a 30f sports bra don’t know the brand but it was ugly. Thst was why i thouhht id fit into a 28g. I really like the Freyas underwire moulded cup sports bra. That’s why I thought 28g would work. I found some on ebay that are cheaper too.

    • Hi Lisa, the equivalent size from 30F would be 28FF, it does sound like G would be too big given your measurements, but only you know what feels best. The Panache sports bra runs big in the cup anyway, which is why I suspect you’ll be more comfortable with a 28E or 28F. If you can get to a store to try one on, then you can be sure.
      Here is a link to it on Bravissimo’s site, it’s available from other stores too. http://www.bravissimo.com/m/#products/lingerie/sports-bras/panache-sports-bra/navy/pr100nvy/

  42. Hello Sophia,

    Your blog post was real fun to read. Reading it, however, made me wonder because everybody was speaking of E, F and G cups and I do not even remember seeing things of that sort in any shop. I was going to write to you asking what about the other end of the spectrum.
    I’m twentyish, pear shaped, and was told rather tactlessly that I could do with putting on some weight around the chest, and that I look like a kid. Since then I have been looking up bra sizes and stuff once in a while because I am convinced that I’m of a normal build, and am just wearing the wrong size. By the way I also prefer wearing loose clothing that does not necessarily show off my figure, and in general the less bother I have about what to wear in the mornings, the better I feel. Recently I met a sales lady at the store who told me to try a 32B size instead of my usual 32A or 34A. She said, just like you do, that wearing a band size too large and a cup size too small was a common mistake. I was delighted at the fit of the models she showed me because it was so much better than what I was used to.
    However I am a perfectionist, and if I could feel my bra so much less after shifting a size, I was sure there had to be a size that allowed me to feel as if I was wearing none at all. Braless is the ideal state to be while asleep for me, and I’d love to feel that way even when I am wearing one, which is what made me look up further stuff.
    The corset bra calculator you’ve mentioned places me at 28D or 28C. I’m rather suspicious and will be repeating those measurements a couple more times to make sure.
    I have a much more basic question to put to you. Your blog title calls you a lingerie and fashion enthusiast. How did you become one? And why does a woman have to define herself so much by her appearance? Of course she doesn’t, but off late I have often felt that an edge is to be had so much more easily by appearance than it is by anything else.
    I look forward to your reply.

    • Hi Alice,
      Thanks for your comment. First of all, I’m sorry to hear people have been so rude in commenting about your shape – we come in all different shapes and sizes and I’m sure you look wonderful just as you are.
      Bra shopping is a difficult task, the easiest way to know your band size is to measure under your bust – you should wear the closest size band to the number in inches. I suspect that the fitting lady put you in a 32 because it’s not easy to find 28 bands, plus the limited experience of high street fitters might have made it less accurate.
      It’s sometimes (although not always) possible to forget you are even wearing a bra. If you have the right size, right shape, right style and right material, it can be absolutely brilliant and you’ll want to live in that bra. However, sometimes you can get the right size but the shape/style or material just doesn’t work for you. It’s just a matter of testing different styles out and seeing what you like.
      As for becoming a lingerie (sometimes fashion) blogger, well I just chose to do that. I started up my blog to help aid other women to find their correct bra size, as that’s something I never had in all the years I spent in the wrong size. The media puts a lot of focus on looks, yes, and I think that can be really draining on women all over the world to be evaluated on looks to such an extent. But, the only thing we can do is to try and encourage women that there is no ‘one shape’ that is beautiful and what matters most is being happy and healthy. I think these are the important things, and finding your correct bra size may be a little step, but it’s an important step which can really make a difference to how you feel about yourself. I hope this is a useful explanation!

  43. Hi Sophia,

    First of all, I love your blog! You offer a lot of great advice & insight into the world of lingerie and it inspired me to get properly measured for the first time! For years I had been cycling through 34B’s and C’s and 36B’s and C’s, none of which ever really felt comfortable. After measuring it turned out my band is actually 31-32″ and my bust is 37″. According to the Curves & Corsets calculator that you suggested, I was a 32DD/E (depending on brand). After making sure I got the correct size conversions to North American sizes, I went ahead and bought a Freya Deco 32DD a Chantelle 32DD and a Fine Lines 32E. All fit great! I also bought a Bravissimo Satine in 32E but the cups were a tad too big. I would have never believed a month ago that I would ever fit into these kinds of sizes, but I feel so much better at the end of the day and much more supported.

    On a final note, just the other day I came across The Butterfly Collection website which has bra size calculator. Out of curiosity I entered my measurements and was suggested to start at a 32F or even a 30FF/G. Have you had any experience with this calculator and would you say it’s accurate? I know there are many out there and they all vary. I seem to fit well into the sizes I just bought. Just wondering your opinion?

    • Hi Marie, I’m glad you’re finding your correct size! I have tried the butterfly collection calculator & it gave me the same results as the curves and corsets one, so that’s quite strange.
      In any case, I think if you try on all of the possible sizes you’ll find the perfect fit for you (as you seem to be doing anyway). Of course yes there will be sizing differences between brands, unfortunately the only way is to try them so you become more familiar with the brand and their sizing.
      Anyway I’m so pleased you’re finally finding your true size πŸ™‚

  44. http://www.alamodeintimates.com/index.cfm/page/bra-fitting/professional-bra-fitting.cfm

    This is A La Modes bra fitting guide, its fairly accurate and when i got fitted there in person, they were very accurate– went from wearing a 36A to a 32D

    • Their fitting guide is terribly inaccurate. It tells you to add 3-5 inches to the number under your bust to determine your band size. This is what our bra fitting blogs try and fight firmly against. It will give a band size much too big if that rule is accurately followed.

      • No they don’t. They’re terribly against that. which part are you looking at? If they said that i wouldn’t be wearing the bra I wear today. I’m 32 underbust and 36 bust. The only problems i have with my bras is that I cant find any the right size so i get 34 band sizes.
        I haven’t found anywhere where it says to do that

      • Well darn, i just re-read to find that and you’re right. I guess the lady who fitted me knew that was wrong! At the actual store they DO NOT add inches.

      • Well that’s good news. As long as the fitters in store know what they’re doing then that’s something!

  45. I just commented yesterday, but i just remeasured myself because my boobs are really hurting, like theyre growing, and i measured 31.5 underbust and 36.5 bust……. But my 32D bra fits fine, however the underwire near my armpits leaves a mark or bruise or something just recently… It’s my biggest bra and its a year old…. does that mark problem have to do with the band size being too small? Because 32 band sizes fit great with me and if its a 34 then it rides up. The cup size shouldn’t be the problem because a D is just right…. I used your calculator and it said I should be wearing a 32E but that doesn’t seem right at all…
    I’m confused… also, the 32D band rides up and when i loosen the straps the straps fall off my shoulders…. I have it on its closest hooks.
    😦 whats going onnnn??

    • Hi Gabrielle, with 31.5 underbust that means that generally a 32 band would be best for you. If the band is riding up and you’re on the last hooks, it probably means the band has stretched out too much and is now too big for you. They generally have 3-6 months wear in them.
      Your bust measurements indicate that maybe a 32DD would work best? All brands are different so just try some varying sizes on, and see what works best for you.

  46. Hi I’m 31yrs old, I’m not sure about my bra size iv gt huge breast the last time I checked I was 445DD, not comfortable in it. Please help. And I’m not over weight.

    • You need to measure underbust first, then that will be your band measurement. I can help you work it out from there.

  47. Hey I tried the link for the bra size calculator and it said the page was not found. Do you have any other suggestions for a size calculator online?

  48. I’m having the WORST time finding a bra that fits well. 36c is too loose around the band but good in the cups and a 34 d is too tight in the band. Idk what to do. I’m at my wits end!!

    • Hi Vanessa. Well, it’s always better to start with too tight than too big. It sounds like you might measure something around 35 underbust, which usually would suggest wearing a 36 band, but if you feel it’s too loose, then I wouldn’t go with that size. What you can do is buy a cheap bra extender from amazon or ebay, and this can help wear a 34-band bra in until it feels comfortable. Remember also that different brands size their bras in different ways. For example, if Freya isn’t one of the brands you have already tried, you should know that their bras often run loose in the band. So for example, if you got a 34, it may well fit perfectly as they’re looser than an average 34 band. I hope this helps!

  49. First off,
    I have always had problems in this area and this post is tremendously helpful. During high school, I opted for 36C bras that were just so very wrong. A few years ago, I transitioned to a 34D. Still wrong, but the most right I could find in my US department stores. Recently, I have played with various online bra calculators that were suggesting I was an A or B cup. Fortunately, I came across your blog and utilized the bra calculator that you recommended.

    My underbust measures 28″ and the largest part is 33.5″. I opted for the looser band it suggested of 30DDD. My initial reaction was that this size was ridiculous and completely wrong (despite the facts you presented at the beginning of this blog post). I decided to venture off to the closest Nordstrom (seemingly the only place in US that offers a wide range of sizes). At first, I bashfully poked around the nearest rack I could find and found a 32DD to try on. I hurriedly tried it on, approved it’s appearance, and ran to find it in a different color. Then I was approached. After some prying I allowed the lady to “fit me.” No sizing occurred. She based it entirely off appearance. She recommended a lovely little Freya bra in a 30DDD. I also still opted for the 32DD Betsey Johnson bra, which she approved of. She said that brand can tend to have tighter bands and is the equivalent of the Freya. She checked the fit while it was on me and said it was perfect.

    Today was my first day wearing the Betsey Johnson bra. While it is tremendously better than that horrible 34D I was wearing, I find that the underwire jabs me on my right side, leaving a slight red mark. The underwire rests along my sternum, I am fully enclosed, the band is just as it should be, and the straps are good. I don’t understand what might be wrong. Any suggestions?

    • Since I am so used to always having a much too loose band, do you think this is just a normal occurrence and I need to either “break in” the bra or simply adjust to the feel of a tighter band?

      • Hi Kayla, it sounds like yes your true size would be a 30E (sometimes 30DDD in the US). I suspect the problem is the shape of the bra. Finding the perfect bra is like finding the holy grail, it’s very difficult. It depends very much on your shape compared to the style of the bra. On the other hand, it may be just getting used to the tighter band. Try wearing it a couple more times (around the house perhaps), and if it’s still uncomfortable, you may need to try a different style of bra.

  50. Hi there,

    Just trying to wrap my head around what size I should try next. I’m currently wearing a 36DDD (or I’m told the equivalent to 36E), and the band rids up my back & the centre most certainly does not touch my skin, AND I’m constantly trying to “tuck them in”, where I pull them into my armpits basically so they don’t bulge out… Basically I’m just wondering if, according to your tips, I should try a 34F or a 34G next?


    • I should also mention these are US/CND sizes.

    • Hi Kristie,

      Yes it does sound like the band is too big and cups too small. What do you measure under your bust? That should be the band size to try. If you measure something like 33/34ins, that would indicate a 34 band might be your best bet. I think 34F or 34FF would be good to try depending on how many cup sizes too small the E is.

  51. Hey Sophia! I’m 14 years old and recently remeasured myself and I am a 32dd. I have been this size for 2 weeks now, just this week my bra has started to feel a bit tighter, but I haven’t experienced any of the symptoms of wearing a wrong bra? Yet my bra feels extremely tight in the cup! Could you please tell me what I should do?

    • Hi Toni, have you tried a cup size bigger just to make sure? I suspect the problem may just be the shape of the bra. It can take quite some time to find the perfect style bra for your shape – some bras have wide wires or shallow cups, or vice versa. You also may find the fit is different with plunge bras, balcony bras, half-cup and so on. The only advice I can give it to try all sorts of styles, (and sizes if you think it’s possible you may need a bigger cup) and see what works.

  52. I need help finding that elusive, comfortable bra since at the moment I am loathe to put one on, but I need to since it is not socially acceptable to walk around without one.

    The best fitting bra I have now is a well broken in 32DD Freya. It seemingly fits directly when put on. The cups fill nicely when newly adjusted, almost but not quite spilling over except a little at the sides due to the underwires being too short on the sides. But after a few hours of wear, the top part empties out, and the sides spill out, and the underwire starts digging into the bottom part of my breasts as tissue tries to migrate underneath the band but can’t due to the band being firm and snug. I suppose these are all signs that I need wider underwires, to fully encase my breasts, but do I need a bigger cup too or just another brand that fits my shape better and doesn’t allow for migrating tissue?

    With the measurements 83 cm under/102 cm over I get a 32G suggestion from the bra calculator you’ve linked to but I’m bottom heavy, and really not that full on top. If I fill out a 32DD cup…how could a 32G possibly not be way too large?

    • Hi Camilla, it’s tough finding the right bra for your shape, so don’t worry about being confused.
      It does sound like the 32DD is too small in the cup which makes the wires narrower (unless you were specifically wearing a brand known for narrow wires, which Freya isn’t). I completely understand about not feeling like you would fit into a 32G, all I can say is you will only know once you try. It’s quite possible being bottom-heavy that a 32FF would be more suitable, either way, it’s a good idea to try some out if you can. The empty cups sounds like it’s because your breast tissue is escaping from the sides because the cup is still too small. You need the cup to come round the sides far enough to encase anything trying to escape! πŸ˜›
      Don’t forget also that different brands can fit differently even in the same size. A 32G in Freya may not be the same as a 32G in Panache for example.

  53. Thanks for all your information Sophia,
    Bra sizing has been my enemy my whole life time. I’m 46- busts very large-( pendulous/ omega breast) I’m currently wearing a 42H- (change -brand) from Scandinavia- 1 st bra that has ever fitted my breasts- – although not 100% perfect- I do like it and it is some what comfortable( I am comparing it to all my others over the years that were aweful) unfortunately the store that carried this brand – closed its doors. I have Recently lost some weight – and of course it has affected my fit. I had to take my bra that I am currently wearing in about 3″ in the hook area- so I’m figuring its around a 40H -just didn’t want to buy a new bra while I’m still loosing weight . Unfortunately my wire broke and now have no choice to get another one- have no idea what brands would work. I been looking online and happy to see lots of choices in plus sizes, but every site that I use for bra fitting- states a difference size help!!!! One site has me in a 38M – yikes -my Measurements are band 37″- bust with loose bra 49″. I did buy a different size in the same bra as previously mentioned ( change) its a
    38 J- bands feels good but the cup doesn’t quite cover top portion of breast, also have side boob & doesn’t fit flush in the centre – most Likely need larger cup- just not sure what one – and from what I have read about all the European brands they all fit differently- I love the look of curvy Kate, Elomi, panache, fantasie & freya – the change bra that I currently have looks very similar to those. thanks so much and hope to hear from you πŸ˜‰ Rita from Alberta Canada

    • Hi Rita, your measurements indicate you would be a 38H (if you are 37 underbust and 49 overbust), but if you are finding J cups small, then perhaps it is a shape issue, and might be easier to ignore the measurements. Have you tried Ewa Michalak the Polish brand? They custom make bras in sizes that are not listed on their website, including M etc. So it may be worth having a look, and you could try a size bigger on the cup than the one you have how that you say feels too small. If you are concerned about getting a smaller band, you can always buy a bra extender quite cheaply on amazon, so you can wear it until the band stretches a little. It’s tough finding the right size I know, feel free to ask any more questions if you need to.

    • Poor girl. Sorry about your problem. Were you an early developer like I was? I went from a size 38 at age 9 and went to a size 42 at age 12. Maybe that had everything to do with it.No doubt it did.Cathy

    • Hi Rita.This is Cathy again.I said about being sorry for your situation a few days ago. I also want to give you some caution about your beasts. I want to advise you of your in laws or you boyfriends moms wanting to tease you or make light of you having larger breasts than them. I had that with my former in laws including my former mother in law for being larger breasted than them. I still get that with my boyfriends moms and while some might compliment me most of them are teasing me about my breasts,or huggers.Just be aware of those things happening with your boyfriends mom.Cathy

  54. […] out Sophia Jenner’s post on correct bra size if you are a DIY kinda […]

  55. I’m not sure what to do next, I’m hoping you can help? Under bust measured 28, bust 32. I am currently in a 34C. The band is snug (and I’m still on the loosest hook) and I have no spillage, fill the cups fine, band sits in the proper place on my back. I feel comfortable in them but I don’t know that they are working how they should, because I have the dreaded middle gap.

    I knew they didn’t fit quite right for a while, the middle has NEVER laid flat for me, and I always felt like my chest was “too wide” or that I needed a bigger cup to fit the width of my breast. (would you believe VS once tried to tell me I was a 36B? UGH ) So I know I’m in the wrong size and after research decide that my by is more of a “cover” than a support, but, I’ve tried on some 32 bands and they all have been killer uncomfortable. I’ve got crazy boney ribs and everything 32 was quite crushing feeling.

    Anywho,besides that it’s practically impossible to find anything 32D, but I did find a few and found them terribly uncomfortable due to the rib crushing. AND, none of them solved the middle gap problem except for a bra I tried on at (hah!) The Gap. I decided against it though, because there was a weird “shelf” between where the underwire was, and the rest of the cup. If you sliced it down the middle of the cup and looked at it from the side, it was like a little v created where the wire met the rest of the cup- anyway, I found that really terrible feeling. Do you know what I’m talking about?

    I really like a smooth tshirt cup type bra., no push up nonsense. Do you have any advice? What should my next step be?

    • Hi Erica, I suspect the band is too small, but it may feel ‘snug’ to you if that’s what you’re used to. What brand is the bra? It really depends on the brand as the bands and cups can vary significantly. From your measurements I would put you as a 28D, but the equivalent sister cup size for a 34C would be along the lines of 34A, and if a C cup fits you, then you are more likely to be something closer to a 28E. As I say, all of this may still vary depending on what brand and style of bra you try.

      Having said all that, if you find the 32 band too tight, there could be a couple of reasons for this. 1. You don’t have much fatty tissue around your ribs so yes you may be better off a band size bigger than you measure, just for comfort. 2. The brand you tried either runs right in the band, or uses a type of material that is not comfortable for you.
      I think your best bet is going to be a Freya Deco bra if you’re after a moulded t-shirt style bra.

      • The ones I have now are Xhilaration from Target. I will keep searching for a better fit from some specialty stores and see if I can’t get the band/cup ratio right to fit my ribcage comfortably. Thanks for your help!

      • I’m not familiar with the brand enough to comment on their sizing unfortunately. If you can get to a Nordstroms and try on a brand like Freya, you might have a bit more luck – plus I can try and advise you a little more πŸ™‚

  56. Hi I just found your post and it is amazing! Also confusing, lol. I was wondering if you could help me. I am currently wearing a US 44D Ambrielle bra where the band is fine, I think, it does not feel tight and it does not ride up my back, but the cup size looks like it is too big for me, my gore does not lay flat and my breasts do not fill the cups. Now I also have a US 42D Cacique bra where the band is tight(there is some side spillage) and with the cups it doesn’t seem to fill. The calculator you provided said I am a 48H, and I can understand the 48 part because that is what I was measured at, but I don’t know how I came to be an H.Can you please help me make sense of all of this! πŸ™‚ Thank you for your posts and your help

    • Hi Lori, what are your exact measurements? I’ll try and work out why it came to 48H for you.
      Generally the gore not sitting flat on your chest means the cups are too small, ditto with the side spillage. It is possible that you are a bigger cup size than you think, because sometimes breast tissue migrates to the sides when you wear a bra that’s too small.

      • Oh thank you for your help! My underbust is 48 inches and the fullest part of my breasts is in between 55 and 56 inches

      • Ok so with those measurements I would estimate you to be a 48F/48FF. When I’m back at my computer I will check the bra calculator I’ve linked, perhaps it has changed since I wrote this post, but I’ll find out.
        If you get a chance to try on some bras in that size, (or alternatively with a smaller band as you mentioned that’s more comfortable – from 48F you would sister size to 46FF, 44G and so on) then you might be able to get a better idea of what size is right for you. Every bra is different, so it’s important to go with what feels comfortable and supportive.

  57. Thank you for your help! Are the sizes your talking about US or UK? And how do you tell on websites what bra size their going for? Also what are sister sizes?

    • The sizes I mention are UK sizes, but most major brands use UK sizing now. For example if you buy Freya, Panache, Fantasie, Elomi, Curvy Kate etc in the US, their sizing will always be UK sizing. Again in Europe (depending on the country) they are different again, for example Poland uses cm instead of inches, so a 32 band is a 70 band there. So, when ordering from a website, it depends which website & which brand.
      A sister size is when you have a bra of the same cup volume, but different band size. For example 48F will have exactly the same cup size/volume as a 46FF, it’s just the band size that would be smaller. Everytime you go down a band size you must go up a cup size for it to be the same volume, and vice versa.

  58. Dear Sophia,
    This is a wonderful, very informative post. For us big busted girls, bra shoppin could be quite a task.
    Can you suggest some good brands?I currently use enamor 32 E.

    Thank you πŸ™‚

    • Hi Saumya, glad the post is useful!
      My favourite brands are Panache, Freya, Bravissimo own brand bras, Ewa Michalak, and recently a new company called Tutti Rouge. You can get them from various online stores and some you can get in-store as well. Let me know if there’s anything else I can help with.

  59. I have been a 34B for years and now the bottom of the bras are digging in and really sore. It is red.

    • Do you notice any other fit issues? How many fingers can you fit under the band? Is the centre gore lying flat against your chest? When you scoop your breasts and lift them into the cups fully, is there any overspill? Remember also different brands and styles can fit differently, so it could be the particular bra you are wearing.

  60. thanks πŸ™‚ very informative. I should have noticed this earlier. LOL. just want to ask. my under bust is 28. i am now wearing 34B cup. all of your tips fits me except for the cup size. the b cup does not give me the side boob effect, the band and the straps is okay with me. but the gore does not go flat like you said. i tried a bigger one and yes. it does not fits me well. so. do you have any suggestion for me ? thanks πŸ™‚

  61. Dear Sophia, I love all the information about bra fitting on your blog. There is one thing, though: In the above text as in almost every other bra fitting advice I’ve stumbled onto there is no explanation what it exactly means to “measure your underbust”.

    For myself, I’ve come across at least three different measurements so far: 66 cm (naked, having exhaled and measuring as tight as I can, as the German busenfreundinnen.net bra fitting forum recommends), 74 cm (naked, having exhaled and measuring only so tight that the measuring band stays in place, this is the second underbust measurement the busenfreundinnen forum recommends) and 72 cm (measured by a bra fitter in a store while I was wearing an underwirded bra).

    Obviously these three measurements lead to different underbust sizes.

    I find it quite interesting, by the way, that the proscribed “Plus 4” method actually yields pretty good results if I use the first of the three measurements. My 66 cm equal 26 inches, plus 4 are 30 inches, and that is exactly my UK underbust size. This measuring method is the same as the one recommended by the Simply Yours bra fitting video that was condemned in the “War on Plus 4” campaign by Busts 4 Justice two years ago – while they completely ignored that when you measure as tight as Simply Yours recommends the Plus 4 method actually makes a lot of sense.

    What I’m getting at: How you measure the underbust – very tight or not so tight, while having exhaled or not etc. – seems to be quite important, and while I agree that tape measuring is not everything, I would think that the results would certainly be much more reliable and useful if there were more instructions as to the How.

    • Hi, yes you’re quite right, it very much depends on how tight you measure your underbust. Different brands use different methods, for example I know Ewa Michalak use either +2 or +4, but also recommend measuring so tight that you almost break the tape. In which case it would probably work. I would recommend measuring as tight as the brand of bra you want suggests. The problem with Simply Yours, is that they sell numerous brands. For example they sell Panache, Freya and Curvy Kate, which all have varying degrees of band tightness, so one method isn’t necessarily going to work. The reason we always suggest avoiding the +4 method, is because more often than not that works better and for more people. Of course everyone is different and will have different ways that they like to be fitted.

  62. Hi!
    I still do not understand the measurements πŸ™‚
    I have under breast 30.4/31.2 inches.
    The cup would be of between 40.2 and 41.7 inches depending if the tape is exact or slack.
    I have taken the minimal measurement. Supposedly, my cup is 36DD, correct?
    In the shop, they have sold to me 36D and I am not completely comfortable. I thought that the problem is that the cup was big because, sometimes, the support doesnt fit to 100 % in the top part of the cup.
    But, the size 36C, although I can use it, it asphyxiates me a little.
    Then? Would it have to change the band size? I have seen that fitting more the bra 36D, the problems solve partially. Earlier, more than two fingers were fitting below of the band and this one was raised by my back.
    Do I have to try 34DD? I was sure of my band. I was always thinking about having wide back for my height (60,5 inches) and I dont meet the big boobs. Always, I was insecure with them, i wanted to go to the surgeon in an epoch.
    Sorry for my English, I am using an automatic translator

    • Luciana – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  63. Hi sophie! I was very confused about my bra size and a friend recommended this site….i loved your blog! But I have some confusions. Can you please help me?
    I measured my underbust at roughly a 28 or 29 inches, my under armpit measure is 34 to 35 inches, but I’m seriously confused about the bust area measurement. I measured it naked and standing up at 39 inches, but naked and bent over at 41 inches. Which one is correct? What do you think my bra size should be?
    VS sold me a 34DD but its band feels really loose and the shoulder straps feel droopy even though I hitched the plastic as up as up as it goes. So overall by boobs do not get the firm and fixed feel, and tend move around a lot making it very uncomfortable! Where can I get a bra to match my uncommon size?

    • Aniqua – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  64. Great article! I got fitted professionally only yesterday as for years I had been wearing a 34C but sometimes the band would ride high and my boobs were always coming out after 5 minutes of movement and there’d also be bulging. The woman in the store advised me I should wear a 30DD but when I tried one on I could barely breathe and my boobs were bulging from the cups in the most extreme way. The woman had said if the band was too tight to go up a size, so I diverted to a 32DD and 2/3 bras I tried fit well. And I went to a different store where the lady determined I was a 32 band but she just got me to try a 32DD and didn’t measure my bust but it fit very well and she was pleased. But had the earlier woman meant perhaps going to a 30E before? Perhaps that is why the 3rd bra didn’t fit so well. One of my friends wears a 30E and I had always thought we had a similar size and when she told me her bra size I was shocked. Should I continue with a 32DD?

    • Sonibel – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  65. I am a male in transition. I have breasts that measure 42 ” below the breasts and 46″ at the fullest part. I have been wearing either a 38c or 38d depending on the type of bra that I am wearing. What size of bra should I be wearing? I am still growing up there so I would appreciate any help you can give me.

    • Joanne – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  66. Hiya, Sophia, about a few months ago I went to v.s. to get measured, was told that I’m a 36DD which fit pretty well until just recently I’ve gained a little bit of weight and so again had to go and get measured again and this time the woman who measured me said that I was a 36DDD but I’m spilling out from the top of my bra and i was told that a 36 E is equivalent to a 36DDD but what size should I try?? I’m lost lol and I’m sure never returning to vs for a fitting any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    • Traci – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  67. Hi Sophia,

    I wonder if you can help me too, I have been wearing a 34e for ages but I was always uncomfortable! I would try a bra on in the shop it would seemingly fit then a day or two after wearing I would start to get spillage and would be constantly adjusting, earlier this week I went to debanhams where they fitted my as a 32G so I had been wearing everything wrong! The bra seemed to fit in the shop and I’ve been wearing it a couple days and almost instantly I was having the issue where if I bend over it move around then I get the dreaded quadraboob and I constantly have to readjust but the thing is if I stand straight the cups actually gape abit at the front near the middle so I don’t understand the problem! because gaping suggests a smaller cup size but spillage suggests a bigger one! If you could advise me that would be great xx

    • Ruth – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  68. Just wanted to say thank you for this & the link for the bra calculator- I’ve been ‘professionally’ measured several times and been told I’m a 38G but after NEVER finding a 38G bra that fit me properly I found your blog and after measuring myself I’ve now got perfectly fitting 34HH bras! It’s like wearing glasses or contacts for the first time and realising how blind you’ve been- thank you for this post-it’s improved my posture and confidence! πŸ™‚

  69. ola , *my measurements in inches:
    back 30′
    bust 38-39 ‘
    What is the ideal size?

    • Luciana – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  70. My band size is a 34. My cup size is measured as a ddd. What size do i buy!? Stores dont have racer backs and thats the style i really need, and i have to order online and i dont want to order the wrong one. Help? Thanks.

    • Hi Niki – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  71. For the one breast bigger issue do you go up cup size or band size?

    • Hi Lisa, apologies for the delayed reply, I have been somewhat out of action. If you have one breast bigger than the other, you should aim to size yourself to the bigger breast – you can then pad out the smaller side if you feel they are noticeably uneven. x

  72. I sympathize with the girls who have the problem finding the right size bra. I can relate to it. I’m a 42 size dd and have been since youth.Good luck. Cathy

  73. This post has been really useful, since I’ve been trying to find a push up bra that is comfortable and sexy at the same time, and I think I’ve been buying the wrong size bra all along.

  74. OMG love the article. Everything I needed to know. I was wearing 34DD but I really a need to wear 32 F or G

  75. Dear Sophia,
    I am 14 and I currently wear a 34d because that is the only size I’ve found in stores. However, the band on my of my bras feel loose and also slide up, down and around. I measure 28″ under bust and 34″ at my bust. I would like to know my bra size, if it’s not to much trouble please. Because I am still a bit confused on how to determine my bra size. My overprotective parents don’t want me to get measured professionally, and honestly, I’m kind of scared that my bra size will sound big. Even if it doesn’t look big, if it sounds big my parents will overreact and think that it’s just my “desire for bigger breasts”. So I also have one more question, how can I get them to take me seriously about my bra size?

    • Gabby – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  76. Hi, thank you for this post, it was really helpful! I have a question though: I was trying on a contour/t-shirt bra (didn’t actually say so I’m just guessing the style) in a 28D and 30DD. Both were comfortable in terms of band size, but my armpit kept getting trapped by the strap/top of the bra – but I think it was too high to be breast tissue. If it was breast tissue, I’d have to go up a cup size, but in the same bra there was a little space in the cup (not much, but enough that I don’t think I should go up) – do you think it’s the style of the bra that doesn’t suit my breasts or that I’ve got the fit wrong? (also the centrefold didn’t lie flat, but I’ve heard that it’s less likely to if the bra doesn’t have underwire so I wasn’t too worried by that)

    Hope the question makes sense, thank you!

    • Lizzie – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  77. Hi I have a question. I bought a few bras and they fit great, the band and everything is correct, the cups fit perfect. However when I lay down the cups look a little big. I do not have round breasts so I wonder if I got the right bra size or what’s going on no idea.

    • Beth – my apologies that I wasn’t able to get back to you. I have been out of action for some time! If you still have questions, let me know. x

  78. I’m glad the bra manufacturers are making bras this large.I was an early myself at age 9 starting with a 38 and I got teased about it at School.Fortunately for me I’m not as large as some of these girls are.What was large when I was growing up is considered normal today.I sympathize with these girls for growing breasts at such an early and for having problems finding bras to fit them,Cathy

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