To still be struggling with the bra situation - warning - saga!(82 Posts)
IABVVU since there have been at least 8 billion bra threads, but I'm clearly far too thick to get it right.
I watched with interest when the bra interventions began. I often heard it quoted that most women wear the wrong bra size, and I assumed I was one of them. This is due to a bra fitter making me cry as a pregnant teenager in mothercare, telling me I would have saggy tits forever since I was wearing a 'c' cup, and she said I only needed a 'b' cup even when feeding. So I've spent years ashamedly grabbing sizes c/d over the years convinced that a) people would laugh their socks off if they saw, and b) I'd just have to put up with saggy tits since I couldn't bear to wear anything smaller.
So when it started on here, I thought 'what the hell' and got the tape measure out. 32' under and 39' over. Wtf?? That's 32f! So someone said to lean over to do it. That's something I always avoid since my boobs seem to go long and sausagey when I do that, the reason I was convinced they were saggy, just seem completely empty. Well that was even sillier! Measurement 41' = 32g.
So I ignored that one and went to m&s and bought some 32fs which to my astonishment seemed to fit. All good. But within a couple of weeks I realised that I had 4-boob again. Weird! So I decided to measure myself again. But when I leaned over, I found the weirdest thing, my boobs no longer went sausagey, they were quite full. And measured 43'. Surely boobs don't just grow to the space available? Bit scary really! And another realisation, my boobs aren't saggy at all, they're pretty upright really when I stand up, it was only ever when I leant over, that I thought they were saggy. There's not much of a crease underneath at all.
So i went back to m&s (only place local) but couldn't find anything I was happy with the fit of. So I followed the advice on here and went to bravissimo. Had to make a day of it, since it's miles away.
The fitter agreed that my bra was a bit small, and put me in 32ff. I did query the amount of armpit fat, but she said that was normal, and then i felt so self conscious that I went along with it. I hate shopping at the best of times and since I was so far from home I felt pressured to buy (by myself not them), so I bought 3 bras including a sports one.
£90 down, I now realise that my bras don't pass the points put on here. The back doesn't ride up, but I can pull it quite far from my body even on the tightest hook, which I'm wearing it on. There's definitely overspillage of boob at the top, and I think under the arms, though that may be just my fatness.
I feel like I should have tried lots of different sizes, but the fitter kept telling me they fit great, and I didn't argue. She kept saying about scooping, but then showed me just a little gentle nudge to get them in place, I felt far too silly to do a major tit yank, like I've been instructed here.
So of course I've cut the labels off, they're never going to accept them back now are they, even though I've only had them 3 days. And the whole point of going was so I would once and for all know my size, so I could buy on the internet in future, and not have to trek about all over the place for bras, and I don't even know that! And I can't afford any for ages now!
Shame you can't sew the labels back in!!
Sounds as if you need to go down a band size-which might put you up another cup size also!
Not the actual labels, just the plastic tags from the shop.
And I don't understand why thy band is so stretchable, when I do actually measure 32. i'm wearing a 32 band, surely that should be right? Why would I need a 30'?
Do you have your receipt?
I would take them back and ask to see a manager, and explain you were measured by a member of staff and advised to buy that size. Believing what you had been told you cut the labels off.
But when putting them on at home you realised they don't really fit properly. Then ask very nicely if you could possibly have an exchange for ones that do fit.
If you are calm and polite they may be happy to exchange them.
As for the band, it could just be the fabric is more stretchy than the average bra fabric - I have found that with my current bra.
Bravissimo are really good at customer service. Honestly, fish the card labels out of the bin if they're clean enough, and take them back with your reciept, explain how you feel the fitting wasn't quite right, and ask for a second opinion and an exchange.
As to stretch, it's mostly to do with modern materials and fabrics. They're so, so much stretchier than stuff being used 15-20 years ago it's insane. I measure 31.5, mostly wear a 30 band, and even some 28's if a make/model is particularly bad for stretch (Curvy Kate, I'm looking at you!)
Maybe but like I say, it's miles away.
It cost us £25 to go by train, although tied it in with doing other stuff in Brighton. I just haven't got the time or money to go again.
Maybe they'll agree to exchange by post? But then I'd have to be really confident of what size I want without trying on. By going by what has been said on here, it could be 32g, 32gg, 30g, 30gg or 30h. I just don't know any more.
the fitter told me 32g was too big, but she didn't do any scooping really, which I definitely think helps for getting rid of lumps and bumps, and getting a better fit.
Wonderbra have started to be more stretchy too! Glares at designers for Wonderbra
Did not mean to make that bold, sorry.
Definitely give Bravissimo a call - they are exceptionally good at returning bras if they have got the fit wrong even when they have been worn.
Which bras did you get - as others have highlighted some band are stretchier than others.
I have experienced the slightly shy fitters when it comes to scooping - I no longer have any shame and just drag them in as I now know that I seem to "grow" about 1-2 cup sizes when everything is in the bra.
Bravissimo will accept the bras back! I had a similar problem.. Was measured in store, took it home, took the labels off, wore it a few times and found it was digging in on my back. Went back to the store, explained that it was clearly too small in the back and they re-fitted me and exchanged the bra completely hassle free!! Definitely take them back, it's a lot of money to waste on a bra than you can never wear! Hope you have some better luck next time
OK, if you scoop, vigorously, how does the bra look and feel? Don't try to tuck any quad boob back in - more trying to work out how much of it there is to get an idea of how many extra cups you need.
I went to Bravissimo at the weekend and the fitter said to come back if I had any concerns and they would refit me and take bras back. I heart Bravissimo.
Obvious stuff- have you tried playing around with the straps and are you wearing it on the loosest hook? It seems very odd if none of the three fit....
After the bra intervention threads I started buying on eBay.
Sell the ones you've got as unworn, and look for harmony lingerie. She sells new as will allow you to try them and return them if they are not right.
If you are careful unwrapping them you an just Sellotape the package back together and return post it free if charge.
She also does mental sizes. She's probably not the only one but I have dealt with her lots since and she has seen very patient about me returning items several times
I wouldn't say there's a HUGE amount of quad boob, but it's defo not a smooth line, and for that money I want to get it right this time. And some bulging under the arms.
Both main bras are Panache.
Also confused by the sports bra. I just bought the one that she fitted me in, since i had no idea how it should fit, and now found out it's actually 34f, which she didn't mention. Wore it for basketball last night, having never worn a sports bra before and found it felt less supportive feeling than all my old normal bras I usually wear. It just feels like the top of a swimming costume. It doesn't bother me that much, since I've never experienced discomfort in exercise, just felt like I should have one really.
Maybe ring the store and discuss the issues with a manager and see what they say. £90 is a lot to be out of pocket.
They may be happy to come to some sort of arrangement for exchange.
I wouldn't be put off by the sports bra being a bigger back size - that is par for the course as they are generally much smaller in the back. I always have to go up a size. I would expect it to be supportive though. Have you tried popping it on and bouncing in front of a mirror to see if it actually limits the bouncing? My Freya sports bra doesn't feel like it's doing much but there is a definite difference.
If you have both slight quad boob and underarm bulge it could be as much as 2 cup sizes you need to go up. IME, one cup size two small is relatively subtle - more of a slightly squished feeling and maybe a little bumping when breathing in.
TBH, it sounds like you've been unlucky and has a bad fitting. It does happen, even with the best shops but they are very good at sorting errors. Actually, come to think of it I recollect someone on the bra threads who had this issue and lived away from the store. She called the main office and I am pretty sure she spoke to a good fitter who sent her out a selection of the "best options" based on their conversation and she just sent the others back.
Ooh that sounds good!
Re the sports bra, I'm not sure, I don't really bounce much anyway. Even in a normal badly fitting bra. So I guess maybe that's why I don't notice a difference. I feel ridiculous having bought one, when I don't even need one, but I thought I prob did, since I seem to be a silly size bra, even though I don't look it. I can run around without a bra no prob.
The other night I needed something from the shop 15 mins before it shut, when I'd already taken my bra off. So put on a thick jumper so you couldn't tell and ran to the shop 10 mins away, and back without a bra. I don't get uncomfy at all, is that normal?
One reason I bought a sports bra, is because I'm fed up of washing my other ones all the time after doing sport in them and getting all sweaty. I thought the material might be batter, and I think it prob is.
Better, not batter! That would be a poor material for bras!
I spent a shit load of money getting to my nearest bravissimo last weekend and am really disappointed, I was expecting the holy grail!
Very envious of the lack of bouncing!
Can we help PinkStinks?
mmm I didn't really rate bravissimo tbh. Went to Brighton too as live nearby. Maybe I should give them another go but i'm not one for spending that much on bras. I only went as my friend wanted to go.
I self measured with the advice on here and after losing 4 stone and previously wearing a 38DD I am now wearing a 34G but i'm not 100% sure it's quite right still (i'm a student at the moment so on a budget).
Often the fit is different between makes.I usually have freya, and had trouble getting a good fit this time. Tried panache but half a cup bigger as heard the fit was different and bingo! I have a panache Andorra on if that helps.
This is one reason I'm so utterly baffled by the whole thing. My boobs don't look that big, they don't bounce and they mostly stay up on their own, despite thinking for years that they were saggy. So how the hell can they poss be a g/h cup?
And before anyone thinks about being jealous, I have an enormous wobbly belly and a face like the back of a bus.
Honestly, I'm a similar/slightly bigger size (roughly a 30HH/J) and most people would never guess they are that big. Mine do bounce sadly but I have lost and gained weight too many times I think
Since regular scooping these last few months I have gone up one full cup size. Now that nork tissue is in the right place I have lost that puffy roll just next to my armpits which used to remain there even when I took my bra off.
I think years of wearing the wrong size distorts everything & it has to be trained back into place
OP keep persevering. It's worth it in the end
My bras are all Debenhams.
I have been a terrible shape for about 15 years, i think maybe due to wearing bad bras. I have not worn a fitted top during that whole time due to lumpy extra bits around the bra area. I literally have always worn loose t-shirts, and even deliberately not gone for certain jobs that I would have to wear smart clothes for, because I just thought I was a fat blob.
It's the whole 4 boobs thing that has affected me most (maybe 6) which is why I'm annoyed that it still remains a little, although it's a lot better. You'd think I would have figured it before now, but to try and get a larger bra before i've just always gone up a back size, but of course when I was wearing 38s I just got back ache. I never got anything over a 'd' because I thought that was porn star boobs.
Unfortunately the press have a lot to answer for. There was a recent article describing Nicole Sherzinger as a 36C. I reckon she could put a 36 on, wrap it round her and fasten it at the front....
The lump bits do get better(although you do need a bigger cup too) as the wrong bra can cause the tissue to migrate and almost seem to separate from the rest of the breast especially under the arm. Scooping makes this better but you may find to begin with you have to do this more than once a day to retrain it.
Yes, that's what happened when I went into the 32f, but seem to have outgrown that by quite some now!
I'm having terrible issues with my bras ATM, where my boobs are pretty much just a D cup of skin (seriously there is nothing in them, it's all just skin) I can't find a bra that fits, if I move too vigorously or bend over they fall out and I get that awful 4 boob look. Any advice? Pathetic as it sounds it really gets me down
What are your measurements and what bras are you wearing just now FrenchRuby?
I measure 31" 35" I've tried so many sizes and nothing fits right. I've tried different brands and shops. I have the same problem, after a few hours of wearing I get the awful 4 boob
The 4 boob is in most cases down to a lack of cup space but it can also be that the shape of the bra doesn't suit your breast shape.
Do you know if your breasts are fuller on top or on the bottom? If you aren't sure try looking at them side on in a mirror when bending over, it makes it easier to determine.
From your description your boobs are also very soft so here are a few bra suggestions specifically for that aspect(with thanks to Married!)
Panache- Tango, Andorra, Porcelain balconette (or plunge if your boobs are not completely deflated), Melody (either style).
Cleo (part of Panache) Juna, Lucy.
Any padded Curvy Kate style if you don't mind jiggle at the top.
If your boobs are really soft, plunge styles tend to tilt them towards the centre, leaving gaps and wrinkling at the top of the cup. All the styles I've listed hold/push from underneath and have enough depth in the centre to avoid slipping out.
What are you wearing currently, as Statistically says? Your measurements suggest starting with a 30DD, so trying 30DD and possibly E, and 32D and DD, though I suspect they will be too big in the band. They should be firm on the loosest hook to start with.
Sorry that was to FrenchRuby
I wear a 34DD, 32 is way too tight, 36 too big, D cup is too small. And they're not fuller on any part, they are literally thin long flaps of skin (sorry for the gross visual) there is nothing in them, completely empty.
I hope you get your money back from Bravissimo. I've always found them good in the past, esp for narrow back/large cup sizes. If you have a size/shape that is at all awkward then forget about knowing your size once & for all so you can order online, as there can be variation between brands & even between different styles in the same brand, & apparently even between different colours in the same style (due to dye's shrinking effect on fabric apparently, as I was once told by a fitter, but sounds a bit suss..). Different bra styles like full cup work on different boob-types - my norks go all pointy in full cup but ok in balconette, for example, something to do with variations in breast tissue, density, fat, summat like that anyway.
Are you in a region covered by a mobile fitter at all? Look on bras4mums.co.uk (they don't just do maternity).
A 32 definitely shouldn't be to tight - part of the issue will be the 34 back as it won't stay in place properly. Because of this the cups will be able to move more than they should - in your case this is leading to quad-boobing. The main reason for the "correct" back size feeling too tight is combining it with too small a cup (which basically steals the fabric from the back) or not scooping enough (all the soft tissue around the armpits or which escapes over the back/around the straps is breast tissue and needs to be forcably manhandled in to the cups)
But if I have a 32 I get back fat (blerugh)and its really uncomfortable.
Have a look here re back fat. I am a fellow sufferer
Iv had good fittings at ncl bravissimo, theu always make u.lean forward and jiggle to settle bumps in place lol. Depending on the style and make of bra Iv had to go up or down two cup sizes or back sizes.
Now I usually go to debenhams and just try on loads of bras until I get a fit im happy with
Definitely didn't ask me to lean forwards. She just used one finger to gently push me in, under the arms. I felt far too embarrassed to lean over and jiggle, or grab them like I do at home.
French Ruby, if the DD cup on your feels okay try a 32E or even F, and a 30F/FF then. Statistcally's right, there's no reason why on your underbust measurement that a 30 or 32 shouldn't fit, but it will only do so properly if we can get the cup size right for you
I need some help from you bra geniuses too please. I'm 5'6" and a size 10, have always worn 34B-C, D when bf. always get masses of back fat and 4boobs. Since finishing bf last year I feel really saggy and empty. I've followed the measuring guide and came out as 29" under, 37" at 90 degrees. I get that to be 30f. Surely that can't be right?! My bras have never seemed terribly badly fitting, and sometimes have looked quite good (in a dim light!). F seems enormous!
try a 28ff, 28g, 30ff and 30f. I know it seems huge but on a narrow back its really not. a 34c is also designed for someone measuring roughly 37 overbust -its the underbust that's different really
But cup size is a relative measurement, it's a ratio in effect, of breast tissue to back size. So an F cup on a 30 back is far smaller than an F on a 36 back, say. In fact it's equivalent to a 36D, a size most women would say was average, no? Ime, no one of a size 12 or below is ever above a 32 back.
The media have a lot to answer for imo in perpetuating the unspoken myth of larger cup size = loose morals, poor behaviour, not 'pure' etc. We have to smash this ignorance surrounding the new measuring system and social attitudes to bra sizes.
the media have a lot to answer for with bra sizing-it's a constant drip of utter bollocks
Could anyone please link to the correct way of measuring? I am not sure how to work out cup size.
ob phone but if you follow the link re back fat a few posts up its on that site. or post your measurements here and we'll tell you
As statistically says, bra shape and style can make a huge difference.
I can't wear a plunge or triangle shape bra. I just can't. Even in several cup sizes up I get 4-boob.
I can only wear balconette style, with a narrow and not too high cut middle section (the bit that goes between your boobs). No padding, unless you count double thickness cups. And even then 90% of bras in that exact style don't fit very well.
36 under 45 bust, what is that?
36G to start with Buzzardbird. So you might want to try 36G and GG and possibly 34GG and H.
Thanks sparkle was wearing a DD
This is really interesting reading. I've lost a lot of weight of the past couple of years and my boobs are not great looking out of the bra. I measured myself this morning and I'm a 32 underbust, didn't measure on top as I didn't know I was going to do this but the last reading was 37. I'm currently wearing a 36D.....which is obviously wrong!!
I am wearing a plunge style and there's nothing in the top at all, but feels fairly secure around the chest. Should I be wearing a 32D? Seems way to small
You really do need to measure your over bust again, preferably when bending over at the waist letting it fall freely (glamourous I know but worth it!). From what you've said above that would give a 32 DD/E, but given the weight loss I really think you need to remeasure the top too, otherwise it's simply not going to work.
Is the "over bust" measured at the fullest drop IYSWIM?
I thought a smaller band was needed than your measurement due to the add four inches thing!
I measure 36 band & was told to look for 32s!
Oh god diddl, really? Now I am confused <doesn't take much>
No you've misunderstood diddl, that's not how it works. You measure your underbust quite tightly, and that is your core band size, no additions/subtractions necessary. However some of us who are quishy of torso often do better in a size smaller gien the stretchyness of modern fabrics and designs and the squishy padding we have on our ribs.
If you've been measured in a shop using the old add four method eg M&S, then we might say as a starting point to look at two sizes smaller, but only because they've measured wrong, not because bras are labelled smaller iyswim?
OK-but what I haven't misunderstood is that I was told to look at 32s even though I measure 36!
Well, actually I'm in Germany & measure 80 & wear an 80 & was told to look at 70s!
Ah, that's different, continental bras are labelled differently, I think it's covered somewhere on the blog. In the UK manufacturers started labelling true to size but not on the continent or something like that, anyway.One of the gurus will know, I'm just good with UK sizings!
"Continental bras" mmmm, that make them out of chocolate? Yum!
Wouldn't mind if they came with a box of Thorntons, I must say!
Unfortunately I've got no UK bras to measure against.
But they are labelled as 80cm/36in.
So they're lying?
Pouffe - I wonder if your boobs change size/fullness depending on your periods. Mine always feel more firm/solid when I'm at my most hormonal.
I find it a bit odd that suddenly everyone has giant boobs (or think they do) after these "bra interventions". Everyone ends up being ridiculous letters, E, F, GG which, in the past, you had to be seriously large-busted to wear. Nobody's an A B or C anymore. Which, of course, people are flattered by and so keener than ever to buy new bras. It's vanity sizing.
I feel comfortable in a 34 band. But bra-measures always want me in a 30. After a couple of washes, I can't breathe and am sticking bra extenders in them. Plus, yes, I am booby but am no Jordan yet am advised to wear an F cup.
There's not a lot I can say to you really, Isthisagoodidea, not without sounding snippy. But it's a shame you don't
want to understand.
Eu sizing - basically when the UK went "add 4 inches to get your band size" the EU went "buy the number you measure in CM and we'll build in the flex. Which is why if you convert a CM measurement to inches it doesnt tally for bra sizes.
So if you need an EU bra - work out your UK size to get the cup. The back size will be roughly your CM measurement-10
Sparkle there are some times I would love a "like" feature on here ;)
Isthisagoodidea - An f cup on a 30 is not Jordan. Period. The media do not understand and grossly misreport bra sizes. Jordan is probably a 26 back and more like a JJ cup. Also, most people find their bras stretch after a few wears/washes...not shrink. It's fine if you think a 34 works for you but please don't come on being rude and declaring that we "think we have giant boobs" cos you just sound like a numpty. I have lost count of the number of times our response to size shock has been "no, that's really not huge"
Bra measurement has changed. We have Lycra now.
OK-that makes sense, thanks.
I think that someone did say that on the last thread
So are all UK manufacturers now making true to size?
I'm sure that quite a few people on the old thread were told to buy a smaller band-why would this be necessary if they are now making true to size?
Two reasons for smaller bands - the band gives the majority of the support so it needs to have quite a solid footing. If you are quite "squishy" then sometimes the band you measure won't actually be firm enough because it's sitting on soft flesh so needs to go a bit tighter so it grips. This also depends a bit on how much you pulled the measuring tape (i.e. if you squidged when you measured!)
The other reason is that as a bra band gets longer, it can literally stretch further. So a 30 band may measure say 26" unstretched and 30 or 30" unstretched, but a 40 band might be 36" unstretched but actually be able to stretch up to say 44 which would be too big.
UK manfacturers are all pretty much making this way now though.
diddl - I did a bra shop last Friday and found that i could only use my MN bra size as a starting point because I found there was a huge variation in the fit depending on manufacturer, style and materials.
According to MN, I'm a 40G - but my boobs are old and saggy so my gut feel is that I'm more of a 40F. In one shop I picked up 6 bras in sizes 40F - 44G in the same style bra and none of them fitted me at all - purely down to the weird shape and fabric. I ended up with a 42F from M&S which fits nicely (although I would have liked to have tried on a 40F, but there were none in stock and I was getting a bit frantic by that stage).
So I'm not sure what 'true to size' means but it doesn't seem to be happening reliably.
I'm really confused by this. Have all shops stopped doing the "add 4 / 5 inches to the under bust measurement" thing or just some.
I'm 39 weeks pregnant at the moment so about to go into nursing bras (which I've been measured for) but normally I'm a 34B or 36B (depending on the bra / how skinny I am at the time / whether I want to fasten it on the highest or lowest tightener).
Does that mean I'm now a 30B or 32B? I guess I just need to be re-measured when I finally get my body back again and stop feeding but it's very confusing!
diddl I think what might have been said is that if you measure 80cm then based on that, you would want to grab a bra that's labelled EUR80/UK36. However, 80 cm is not 36 inches - 80 cm is 31,4 inches and therefore, you should try bras that are labelled EUR70/UK32.
isThis people are all A,B and C because they are wearing too big back sizes. A true A-cup means that the person has just 1 inch difference between over-and underbust measurements. Try it with a tape measure, an inch is really not that much and honestly, most people have more than than.
And for example 36C cup size is exactly the same as 30E - no, the wearer did not grow gigantic boobs suddenly.
Thanks everyone for taking the time to explain to me!
I have changed from an 80 band to a 75.
Really don't think I could go lower than that!
mummy can you take the measurements and post? But if you have been measured as 36B by mothercare or M&S, you are more likely around 32D - you need to go up a cup size if you go down a band size to get the same volume.
MummytoKatie, the bras themselves are made to fit without adding inches but most retailers are still measuring that way so the bra doesn't fit right. If you've been "measured" at a 36B for example, then that suggests you measure somewhere around 31-32 (probably nearer the lower end as you sometimes wear a 34) and about 38 across. Which means in reality you are more like a 30FF, 30F, 32F or 32E.
Thats very reough - if you can measure yourself as per the info /blog links upthread we'll tell you where to start
Thanks, going to measure again and then try some different bras over the weekend!
Hi everyone, just to update.
Bravissimo have been fantastic and are accepting the bras back, and have advised 30gg, which they're going to send me. This sort of makes sense, under the sister size thing, 32ff would be the same as 30g, and then an extra size again would be 30gg. But, if you start from scratch then 32 band plus 8 inches would be 40 inches, and 30 band plus 10 inches is also 40 inches, but hey-ho, if that's what they say.
So I've posted them off, and am waiting for replacements. But today I was in a different town, and there was a house of fraser, so I thought I'd try some on, although I wasn't going to buy anything. They didn't have any 30gg at all, so I tried a 32g. OMG, it was absolutely colossal, I hardly touched the cup. So I tried 30g, which was also much too big.
The ones i'm waiting for from bravissimo are panache, and these were freya. Do the sizes vary that much? Which makes my whole bra size hunt pointless really. Anyway I now await the arrival of my bras with trepidation.
Iv always found freya bras to be a funny fit for me. I dont get in with them.
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