AIBU to think that being a size 32AA, I don't need to...

(103 Posts)
BalthierBunansa Sat 17-Nov-12 21:08:42

wear a bra all the time? Went over to my DM to drop over some shopping I had bought her and talk off my jumper as I was warm, revealing a tank top underneath. My DM looked at me like shock and said "Have you not been wearing a bra all day? Someone may have noticed." AIBU to think does it really matter being a 32AA if I go out without a bra once and a while?

CaliforniaLeaving Sat 17-Nov-12 21:14:44

I was 32A before kids and hardly ever wore one in winter time, I had on layers and no one would notice. So you are right and DM is inventing problems.
This winter I have a bunch of tanks with a shelf bra in for under my layers, now I'm so enormous at 32B grin so going braless yet again, nice an comfy isn't it.

Smeeeinit Sat 17-Nov-12 21:15:50

Yanbu and Oh how I envy you.... To go braless without tripping over my mahooisive 40J's is just a mere fantasy to me. sad

picnicbasketcase Sat 17-Nov-12 21:16:40

I wouldn't have thought so. Do whatever you feel most comfortable doing really, isn't it? I wouldn't expect most people to be shocked by it anyway.

Nagoo Sat 17-Nov-12 21:19:22

buy your DM this for Christmas.



You lucky buggers. I dream of being able to ditch the bra but 38Gs wouldn't look pretty!

I used to be a 32A and went for about 10 years without wearing one. I didn't plan to wear one while breastfeeding, but realised that the increase to an E-cup, combined with tender nipples that I couldn't bear my clothes brushing against, and a need for breastpads to stop me being drenched in milk, made a bra a necessity. Oh, and I needed somewhere to stash my cabbage leaves grin.

Now I'm about a C, and floppier than in my youth, with nipples like walnuts (not a good look through my clothes), so I'm very jealous of you OP.

BTW people did notice sometimes, but who cares? grin

WorraLiberty Sat 17-Nov-12 21:37:09

It depends on whether you look like you're smuggling peanuts or not.

mamalovesmojitos Sat 17-Nov-12 21:42:14

envy would love to have your boobs!


CouthyMowEatingBraiiiiinz Sat 17-Nov-12 21:44:22

I haven't been able to go without a bra since I was 13. Not even in bed. Only time I'm not wearing one is if I go in a shower.

I am envy. 32G does not look good without a bra. Unless the look you are going for is knee warmers. hmm

LucieMay Sat 17-Nov-12 21:44:59

Depends how perky your boobs are and how tight the tops are.

MathsCat Sat 17-Nov-12 22:06:45

See I'm 32A but always wear a bra so that I look like I actually have boobs!

OHforDUCKScake Sat 17-Nov-12 22:10:50

I have Kiera Knightly boobs too, and I cant remember the last time I wore a bra.

Tbh the reason I dont is because I bf a boob obsessed baby, as wells not needing one. Feeding bras dont work because I have small boobs the side bit of elastic cuts across his mouth. So for easy access I wear no bra.


SorrelForbes Sat 17-Nov-12 22:11:52

If you're a genuine 32AA (that means a 32" measurement under your bust and a 32" measurement across your bust) then I guess, no, you probably can get away with not wearing one.

However, I have yet to meet any adult women whose two measurements are the same.

BluelightsAndSirens Sat 17-Nov-12 22:14:42

I used to be an A, now a B after babies and always wear a bra because I have always wanted to look bigger and according to my oh so romantic DH have nipples the size of cigar butts.

froggies Sat 17-Nov-12 22:17:01

I am AA as well. I only ever were bras if the clothes I have on make it necessary. 3 babies and still AA. Not fair.

SorrelForbes Sat 17-Nov-12 22:22:23

Have you all read the Small Boobs thread? I think some of you maybe surprised to discover that you might not be an AA, A or a B but something bigger with a much smaller band size.

If you are a true AA, your under bust and across bust measurements will be the same. If you an A, there will be a 1" difference , a B a 2" difference and so on.

Whatever you measure under your bust is your band size.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Sat 17-Nov-12 22:31:50

Sorrel speaks the truth

Go measure yourselves - I bet, bet, bet you are not AA...

kim147 Sat 17-Nov-12 22:32:53

I knew sorrel would make an appearance smile
Champion of small boobs

MissNJE Sat 17-Nov-12 22:35:58

That reminds me of a boy at school who asked my flat chested friend whether she would buy shoes if she didn't have feet. To which she replied no of course not. He then asked her why she buys bras.

Sorry tipping from mobile.

BluelightsAndSirens Sat 17-Nov-12 22:40:14

Can some one please link to the small hope boobs thread.

OHforDUCKScake Sat 17-Nov-12 22:42:44

I'll have to measure myself tomorrow now then.

LadyMetroland Sat 17-Nov-12 22:44:09

Sorrell is completely right. Most people are wearing incorrect bras, me included.
I am a small boober and always thought I was 32/34AA. Thanks to the small boobs thread it turns out I am actually something like a 28C (although currently pregnant so probably not right for me longterm)

The very small amount of boobage I do have looks loads better now.

Make sure you read thread properly and lean forward without bra when you take the 'fullest part of the bust' measurement.

kim147 Sat 17-Nov-12 22:44:44
boomting Sat 17-Nov-12 23:33:01

I'm a 32A. Can't say that I've been out without a bra, but I wouldn't want people to be able to see my nipples through my clothes!

Startail Sat 17-Nov-12 23:40:54

I'm a B and bras disappear in warm weather and shelved vests appear in cold.

Bra straps drive me demented, it's great to do without

Fancy you finding this thread Sorrel smile

SorrelForbes Sun 18-Nov-12 00:30:33

Just kind of stumbled across it. You know how it is... blush

YerMaw1989 Sun 18-Nov-12 00:34:37

Why are people assuming she is wearing the wrong bra?.


boobage probably isn't really the issue OP , its either knee cap polishers, or nine inch nails ..or both shudders.

EvenIfYouSeeAPoppy Sun 18-Nov-12 00:34:51

I don't know what cup size I am. AA cups are loose/wrinkly on me shock I wear a variety of AA, A, B cups. But mostly - if I'm wearing something my nipples won't show through - I go braless. When I was bf they were a little bigger - I might possibly have made the dizzy heights of a C cup - but I usually went braless then too because I did a lot of feeding in the sling and couldn't be doing with faffy nursing bras.

I like my shape, but I really am very, very flat and wonder sometimes what it would be like to have cleavage.

yermaw people are just wondering because experience is showing that a lot of women who think or have been told that they are AA/A cups actually aren't.

On many occasions this is down to an outdated fitting method.

It's entirely reasonable however for a woman to not wear a bra if she doesn't want to - but there have been a few women who don't wear one because they have never found one to fit properly. They thought they were too small for one because an AA/A didn't even fit - but it turns out the back was wrong instead. And for some women finding that out is quite a big deal. Hence people asking.

Speaking of which, EvenIfYouSeeAPoppy maybe you should check your measurements just in case the size is totally off - if the back is too big you might never find a cup that feels rights as they will be incorrectly positioned for your boobs.

mrskeithrichards Sun 18-Nov-12 00:54:22

Sorrell and statistically are geniuses

CaliforniaLeaving Sun 18-Nov-12 04:17:19

Hmmm Well I read the small boob thread and measured, 29 and 32 are my measurements, does that make me a 29c? Do they make bras between sizes?
I've been losing boobidge due to weight loss and exercise, Chances are I'll get smaller as I'm still loosing. I will be in training bras all over again confused

CaliforniaLeaving if such a bra existed yes it would. Because they only make even number back sizes I would suggest you try a 28D to start with.

If that fees too big in the cup then try a 28C (available to order on M&S and reportedly decent). If it feels too small in the back (not just tight, it's meant to be!) then try a 30B and 30C.

Most people who measure an odd number seem to have more luck rounding down than up for the back size.

KenDoddsDadsDog Sun 18-Nov-12 07:39:07

I'm jealous !
But how do you carry your Sky Remote with hands full of child ? grin

OHforDUCKScake Sun 18-Nov-12 09:32:42

Ok I measured my boobs. They are not normally this size because Im bf, but they are 32inches under my boobs and 37 across my boobs.

What does this mean?

SorrelForbes Sun 18-Nov-12 09:38:59

I'd try a 32DD and maybe a 32E.

Ducks- approximately 32DD.

I was 38AA a couple of months ago.

I argued with sorrel and statistically for a couple of weeks.

I am now a 32D/34C and a much better shape by just wearing a different size.

And when you look at how to measure properly you realise that a AAA cup (which you can buy) is actually a measurement which would result in a very strange shaped woman.

OHforDUCKScake Sun 18-Nov-12 09:43:12

Whoa no way. I cant even get this baps bips into a C cup.
There's no way Id get them in a D or E shock. I must have measured wrong.

But a 32DD would have the same size cups as a 38B.

Plus scooping tends to add a size or two...

Ducks what size are you wearing at the moment? I would agree that on your measurements a 32DD is the right place to start.

OHforDUCKScake Sun 18-Nov-12 10:10:02

Im not wearing anything at all. My boobs are small enough not to need a bra, and when Im not bf I have wear a bra to make it look like I have any breasts at all.

If I wear anything its a bikini top, so no measuring involved.

I know it sounds huge but on a 32 back a DD genuinely isn't enormous. Unfortunately the media have a lot to answer for when it comes to misreporting bra sizes - they ALWAYS get it vastly wrong.


She is at least a D-cup.

That can't be true, I'm 28 under and 32 over, by this reasoning I'd be a 28D or something? Or am I being useless at Maths as usual!

SorrelForbes Sun 18-Nov-12 10:25:23

SC speaks the truth. This is a good article about back and cup sizes.

queenrollo Sun 18-Nov-12 10:31:16

for years if I wore a bra it was a 32A......but mostly I never bothered because the damn things ride up at the back and the front too and I spent all day hoiking my thumb into the front of my bra and pulling it down. It's the size I wore because it was the smallest I could find in the shops.
Then I had a bit of extra spending money so I went on a trip to London and visited Rigby and Peller and got properly measured up. I'm a 28b.......I just find it so frustrating that I can't find many bras in this size. So I have the two bought at R&P (both of which I had adjusted by them) and I wear them when I have clothes on that dictate a bra as a decent necessity.

I'm pregnant, and have boob swellage but still not managed to get comfy bras and am dreading the search for nursing bras when my milk comes in....

OHforDUCKScake Sun 18-Nov-12 10:34:23

Ah ok then.

I knew someone who worked for la sensa, back when I was bf a new born DC1 and my boobs were big and very full. I asked her to tell me how to measure them as I wanted to see how much bigger they are. She told me to measure under my boobs and worked out my size from there. Which was 34A the size I'd been wearing before they were bigger from bf. Her way made no sense. My breasts were bigger, the underneath wont have changed. But she was insistant hmm.

OHforDUCKScake Sun 18-Nov-12 10:36:53

Nursing bra's are easier. If you get the 'crop top' type ones you wont have that problem. They are hideous but comfortable.

I used to have the 'riding up' problem too.

^ thank you
haha that's so weird! I'm not so bothered, I sometimes go without a bra. Mine's all old and saggy by now (H&M basic...).

The grownup version of It's Me, Margaret, this thread grin

thank you was to Sorrel blush

SorrelForbes Sun 18-Nov-12 10:41:14

La Senza are one of the many stores out there who don't seem to be able to train their fitters properly. They still use the add 4/5" to the underbust measurement.

She will have used to outdated "adding inches" method ducks. Unfortunately you will still find this on most bra sizing charts and an awful lot of fitters (looking at you M&S) still use it too. The result is a badly fitting bra. That rides up smile

OHforDUCKScake Sun 18-Nov-12 10:45:45

Yes! She added numbers, thats why she insisted it was the same. How ridiculous. Thats basically saying if you had a boob job you'd be the same size as when you started.

Sorrell how do you know so much about bra fittings?

queenrollo Sun 18-Nov-12 10:46:40

i don't know if this has been caused by badly fitting bras but one of the problems I have now is that I have lots of skin tags around my ribcage where the bra sits......I'm going to have to see about getting them removed because they rub and get sore...

SorrelForbes Sun 18-Nov-12 10:49:54

quirrelquarrel You're welcome! Yes, a 28D is the size to try.

OHforDUCKScake I'm just a very keen amateur who has a mission to make us all perky and lifted wink. I worked in JL many moons ago and used to do some work in the lingerie dept and did pick up some pointers there (probably outdated now). I've always been frustrated by the fitting in places like M&S so a few years ago, I decided to do some research and have been following a few bra bloggers for some time now. It's addictive!

Statiscally and HazelNutt know more than me about specific brands, shapes of wires however, as I tend to be a coward and stick to a few brands and only really wear padded balconettes!

Ephiny Sun 18-Nov-12 10:50:39

If you're comfortable without a bra, then I don't see the problem. I doubt anyone would notice, and it's hardly any of their business anyway!

I agree you might be a bigger size than you think though. I measured myself according to the M&S guide once and it had me as a 34AA or something. Which is silly.

Oh that sounds sore Queenrollo. A good bra shouldn't move really so I can imagine a bad one would be aggravating to that.

Ephiny, we were taking the mickey out of the M&S guide the other day. We were particularly amused by the fact that according to M&S, a woman who iis a 46c should measure 41.5" underbust, and 41" overbust. No I haven't typed that wrong - according to M&S someone can be a C cup and yet have inverted boobs. Ummmm.......

LucieMay Sun 18-Nov-12 19:38:05

Gosh I'm so jealous of all you women with a 28 back, you must be such petite little creatures. I feel like such a broad beast at 38!

SorrelForbes Mon 19-Nov-12 08:40:55

LucieMay I wouldn't worry! I am a very hour glasses size 10/12 and not skinny in any way. I wear a 30. My sister is a size 8 and measures 29 under bust but is finding 28 backs very tight so wears a 30 too!

Do you measure 38 under bust or are you wearing a 38 because that's what you've been fitted as? Just checking grin

Lucie I'm bigger than sorrel- the usual mix of clothes but predominantly a 14. I'm also crazy hourglass- something like a 15" difference between hips and waist and then pretty much the same between waist anbust. Very much not petite!

SorrelForbes Mon 19-Nov-12 08:58:48

Ooh SC, you are even more 'hour glassy' than me! I have a 10" difference between my bust and waist and a 13" difference between my waist and hips.

mrskeithrichards Mon 19-Nov-12 08:59:56

I wear a 38 as well but not sure why! I think the last time I was measured properly was when I was pregnant with my first 7 years ago!

This is very interesting. I want to measure myself but don't have a tape measure!

Ok found one in DS's sunflower measuring kit.

I'm 32 and a half under boobage and 36 over.

So what does that make me?

I was told 36 B when measured by debenhams

KatAndKit Mon 19-Nov-12 09:13:01

My guess would be try a 32D and see how you get on with that. If a 32 is too tight then try a 34C or D

SorrelForbes Mon 19-Nov-12 09:13:29

Amazing try a 32D for starters.

Thank you KatandKit, any excuse to go bra shopping really... grin

SorrelForbes Mon 19-Nov-12 09:14:18

Have a measure MrsKeithRichards

Back to the OP - I have an average sized chest and at the weekends I usually don't wear bras as it feels nice. I tend to wear vests - either the ones that have a bit of support or just nice snug ones and its great. DP can tell when I'm not wearing a bra - but not sure that the general public would notice. And so what if they do is my view? Its not against the law to be braless...

NotQuintAtAllOhNo Mon 19-Nov-12 09:23:33

See, I would be most envious that you can carry off wearing a tank top.

It would make me look like dolly duck. I kid you not.

See now 32D says largebreasted to me. Yet I don't think I'm large at all. I sometimes go braless blush

SorrelForbes Mon 19-Nov-12 10:03:00

I go braless around the house (tis not pretty!) and I'm a 30G!

Nope, a 32D is not large at all. It means that there is a 4" difference between the under and across bust measurements. I have a 9" difference!

I think ive been conditioned to think that the higher the cup size the bigger the breast. It's all in the difference rather than the actual end measurement!

An eyeopener. thank you.

SorrelForbes Mon 19-Nov-12 10:31:16

It is indeed! Have you read this?

blisterpack Mon 19-Nov-12 12:06:28

May I ask the resident bra expert Sorrel for some advice please? What is a good shop that you trust for sizing correctly?

specialsubject Mon 19-Nov-12 12:18:25

entirely up to you. I hate the things, always have, and while I am a bit bigger than you I wear a loose top and jumper throughout the winter so I don't have to bother. In the summer, sadly, it has to be a bra - but if I were your shape it would be great to do without!

there is no dress code. Isn't it great?

CailinDana Mon 19-Nov-12 12:34:40

I'm a 36E and I don't always wear a bra. My boobs are fairly pert in spite of a year of bfing - pert boobs seem to run in my family. I do have fairly prominent nipples though so on a few occasions I've had men go a bit funny on being confronted with them! I don't really mind, they're only boobs.

Blisterpack I know sorrel loves rigby and peller. Bravissimo are fantastic, and both john Lewis and debenhams are much improved. Leia also has a good rep.

I always wore a 34A until I discovered MN. I am now a 32C and no longer spend half my day fighting with a riding up bra. It is a big improvement.

soontobeburns Mon 19-Nov-12 13:14:27

I have a love hate relationship with my boobs. This is interesting thanks :-)

One online bra size said I should be wearing a 54h!!! Wtf.

I seem to do best in a 44f but still have slippage. Will need to measure myself now.

ShamyFarrahCooper Mon 19-Nov-12 13:25:45

Good grief this thread is seriously enlightening (as is the other linked one). I've spent YEARS wearing a bog standard 34C as it appeared to be what works. I had no idea about this. I'm going to try to measure tonight and see what I come up with.
I feel like I don't 'fill' the cups properly if that makes sense. I don't care if I go up or down, I just want something to fit!

You poor thing soon to be! When you do your measurements also have a good look at how your current bra fits- this can also provide a lot of info about what needs to change!

blisterpack Mon 19-Nov-12 13:51:11

Thank you StatisticallyChallenged smile

soontobeburns Mon 19-Nov-12 14:06:17

Thanks statistically will do. I will do
My bras are all different sizes though :-/ atm I'm wearing a 42e which seems Good round the back but it sits out at the front and tends to gap under my breasts.
Definitely gonna buy a measuring tape when I'm out today!!

Base guess- too small in cup and too big in back- reason back doesn't feel big is because the cups are nicking the fabric. That's why you are getting a gap under your breasts.

MissCellania Mon 19-Nov-12 15:52:27

And don't forget, all those used to wearing the wrong size, that a properly fitting bra will feel very tight to begin with, until you get used to it. Don't be tempted to get the next size up just because it does feel tight.

LucieMay Mon 19-Nov-12 18:29:41

Embarrassingly I don't know what I measure! My weight has fluctuated so much over the years that previous measurements are useless. Alway worn at least a d cup, currently in 38dd. I shall measure myself tonight and report back. I have to say that I was used to the old method, this new one is enlightening!

Agreed MissCellania - a new bra is a bit like new shoes, it has to be broken in a little!

LucieMay Mon 19-Nov-12 18:52:49

I'm actually 36.5 below and 44 above...

Luciemay that probably makes you somewhere around a 36FF - try an F and a G too.

LucieMay Mon 19-Nov-12 18:59:32

I will do, thanks!

Wearsuncream Mon 19-Nov-12 19:37:46

So do I measure myself when actually wearing a bra or naked ??!

Back measurement - naked and tight!

overbust - two method:

1: if you have a bra that fits reasonably well - measure loosely over the widest part
2: naked - Lean forward so that your boobs are hanging down and measure.

I made DH help measure me (I struggle because my entire spine is fused!) I'm now searching websites for 32DD bras. I'm currently wearing 36B! I dream of a comfy bra I always thought the irritating movement and uncmfortableness was because of my curved spine!

Far too many exclamation points in my above comment!!


TheBigBangFairy Mon 19-Nov-12 20:26:31

I have minature boobs, but need to wear some sort of padded bra to give me an outline that vaguely resembles something female. YANBU if you don't like wearing them though. I'd dump all my bras too, but I've got so used to the (poorly fitting) bits of fabric there that it feels weird.

I honestly don't think they make bras in my shape. My best bet may be to construct my own out of a pair of DD's old baby socks, being the closest things I can find to what my boobs now look like following 2 pregnancies and multiple years of breastfeeding.

thebigbangfairy are you sure the size is correct? What do you measure and what are you wearing?

p.s. love the name

mrskeithrichards Mon 19-Nov-12 20:30:15

I am desperately raking for a tape measure!

PessimisticMissPiggy Mon 19-Nov-12 20:33:27

I'm so jealous. I miss tiny boobies. Miss them sooooo much. YANBU!

Leather Mon 19-Nov-12 20:39:57

Another big-up for the advice of the wonderful Sorrell and Statistically here...
34DD fidgety bras binned and boobs are comfortable now in new 28FF bras from Bravissimo.
Bonus is that it makes you look slimmer too when your boobs are sitting correctly
These ladies talk sense...go on, grab your tape measures and surprise yourselves!

Leather Mon 19-Nov-12 20:44:34

Amazingbouncingferret I can really recommend this bra really well made and sooooo comfortable

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