She should've got me a 32E shouldn't she, not a 34C...

(134 Posts)
gnocci Mon 12-Nov-12 10:45:41

So, first bra shopping trip since being out of maternity/nursing bras.

I try on a 34C, back too loose.
I try on a 32D, back great, cups too close together/too narrow so the outer wires on each side were encroaching onto breast tissue.

Now, having read the bra threads on here I am right that a 32E should've been the next option right??

But OH NO NO NO, I got the full on roll eyes, silly girl, youre not a E CUP from the M&S lady who insisted the back was too small and that 34C was the right size.

I swear, if I'd jumped up and down my boobies would've fallen out the bottom!!!

Grrrrr........ Didn't have time to prove my point with the 32E but I am going to go back and try on 32E and then get here to sell it to me. Meh.

M&S are shit at fitting. Their bra's are OK, but you need to fit yourself.
I would have gone for 32DD.

SavoyCabbage Mon 12-Nov-12 10:49:52

They don't like you to be an E cup in M&S. They would prefer if if you were a AA as there are millions of AA bras left in all colours and sizes.

If your arms were as long as an orangutan that would also help them clear done of their stock too.

Yup, all wrong. The fitters in m and s are, on the whole, incompetent!

Oh, and if they suggested a 34 experience on here suggests you should also try a 30 as they are often 2 or 3 back sizes out. They reckon I am a 36. I'm a 30!

YouHaveBeenOutbid Mon 12-Nov-12 11:26:13

Ah, you're bringing back memories...M&S tried to convince me I was a 38B. I lifted my arms and boobs did pop out the bottom! I'm a 32E. When I showed the woman she got all snotty and insisted it was the correct size. She then looked surprised when I bought nothing.

SorrelForbes Mon 12-Nov-12 13:32:02

gnocci what are your under bust (holding tape tightly) and across bust (hold tight more loosely) measurements?

putonyourredshoes Mon 12-Nov-12 14:04:55

M&S are hateful at bra fitting, they delight in being crap and offensive. And yet some of their bras are lovely. It is a dilemma, they don't deserve any custom due to their incompetent rudeness but the product is good.

How is it possible in a company priding itself on customer service and friendliness to have trained a whole parade of detestable bra merchants?

HazleNutt Mon 12-Nov-12 14:13:31

I can just imagine their advice about other items:
- but I can't get my foot into those size 5 shoes, what about a size 7?
- silly girl, no way are you a size 7, the tape measure says those shoes must fit, doesn't matter that you can't walk!

- but this skirt falls down over my hips
- no, tape measure says it's the correct size!

Ridiculous, no? That's the way their "bra fitting" works though..

BeauNeidel Mon 12-Nov-12 14:16:35

God, they are shit aren't they? I haven't been back since the horrible assistant was so rude to me when I went in for a nursing bra two weeks after having had twins. Yes you horrible nasty woman, I know my bra doesn't fit - THAT'S WHY I'M HERE FOR A NEW ONE!

Hopefully Mon 12-Nov-12 15:31:07

Are their bras actually good? I mean, compared to more expensive brands. I am perfectly capable of fitting myself, but have avoided M&S because I assumed the quality of their bras was awful.

Personally I am not a fan, they dont fit me now but when they technically stocked my size it always felt like the straps were in the wrong place for a narrow back. It was like they had decided straps should be positioned x inches from the centre of the bra regardless of back size. Which meant they rubbed around my arms very painfully.

I think for their prices you can get better quality shopping around online- brastop has a massive range at around £14 and amazon had panache bras for £7. Leia has some stunning fauve reduced to about £15.

All four of my bras are the same Limited Collection underwired style. I have found them to wear really well. I think it varies from style to style, as they are all made in different countries / factories / fabrics.

fridgepants Mon 12-Nov-12 16:03:45

"- but I can't get my foot into those size 5 shoes, what about a size 7? "

You laugh, but this is what happens when I ask for a size 9 in shops - they come back with a six and hold it out expecting me to try it.

M+S measured me as a 40C. I am a 34GG. They then suggested that, as they didn't have a 34, I should try on a 38.

OTheHugeManatee Mon 12-Nov-12 16:05:15

M&S would prefer you to be an AA cup, orangutan armed, fake sateen vomit pattern print lover. If you are none of these things it basically serves you right hmm

Blatherskite Mon 12-Nov-12 16:13:54

I ended up in tears maternity bra shopping when John Lewis and M&S both measured me and I ended up with answers that were 4 back sizes and 3 cup sizes different!!

I knew they didn't fit and I was tired from walking up and down the shopping centre between them and hot and hormonal and I just sobbed.

I ended up with whatever felt best in Mothercare.

I was so glad when Bravissimo opened a branch in our shopping centre before I got pregnant again and then even they cocked it up and I ended up in tears again but at least they had the decency to apologise and put things right - I've had proper arguments with M&S staff trying to put me in obviously non-fitting bras and swearing they're right!

These days I get fitted in Bravissimo and buy most of my bras from there too. If I need to go elsewhere, I'm at least confident of getting the right size too.

MrsSchadenfreude Mon 12-Nov-12 17:45:59

M & S told me I was a 42B. I went to Rigby and Peller and they told me to take the bra straight back. And fitted me as a 38F. Was in M & S with DD1, trying to fit her myself, but interfering lady kept telling me that DD needed a 38B rather than the 34E we were trying. Helpful lady in the next cubicle whispered "There's a Bravissimo down the street." We went there and they got DD1 into a 32G, which did wonders for her figure.

I think their bras are fine, but really, do fit yourself and have some idea of your real size, not your M & S size, when you go in.

GetOutMyPub Mon 12-Nov-12 17:55:16

I think the reason that they tell you that you are a c cup or below is because only a handful of bras come in anything above a c cup.

I have given up looking in there, it is like looking for a needle in a haystack to find anything in my size (34f/g) that isn't one of those hideous full cup things in the boxes.

Also when I was pregnant with ds1, my pre pregnancy size was 32 e, the fitter convinced me I needed a maternity bra in a size 36f for growing room, stupidly I bought it and no, never actually got to that size, even when the milk came in!

GetOutMyPub Mon 12-Nov-12 17:56:11

Sorry it was a 36H not f!

chubbymomie2012 Mon 12-Nov-12 17:57:27

M and S told me I was a 40c and after a couple of months wearing that and finding i had to tuck my boobs in 2 or 3 times a day I decided tongetba second opinion in House of Fraser. my actual size is 36ff. i have been wearing this bra size now and will never go back to m and s. they are incompetant and Rude!

perceptionreality Mon 12-Nov-12 17:58:47

I would never go to M&S for bra fitting. Have you tried Bravissimo? They can tell what size you are by looking. No tape measure.

To be fair to M&S, they have that little diagram on the back of the box showing you what size the style comes in. You can see at a glance HOW SHIT M&S ARE

If you are a less than a 32 back, you don't exist. If you are a 32 back, then you better not have boobs bigger than a D cup.
If your back is a 38 or more, you better not have boobs smaller than a D cup.

SorrelForbes Mon 12-Nov-12 18:08:11

To be fair to M&S, they have that little diagram on the back of the box showing you what size the style comes in. You can see at a glance HOW SHIT M&S ARE

shattered - grin

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Mon 12-Nov-12 18:15:58

I don't need to repeat - stay away from M&S bras! - do I?

I now go to John Lewis, find them much better than Bravissimo, but obviously everyone's different.
The last M&S bras I bought, fitted them myself, looked lovely, but after a couple of hours' wearing I realised the cups were doung a weird gapey thing at the front.
Not worth bothering with at all - so what if they have some pretty designs?

Blatherskite Mon 12-Nov-12 18:32:31

I'm a 28FF so do not exist in M&S.

Surprised you like John Lewis shotgun, I found them just as bad as M&S!

SorrelForbes Mon 12-Nov-12 19:09:15

A new John Lewis opened last month in the next town. I visited last week and was so disappointed to only find 2 bras (Panache superbra and Freya Deco) in my size (30G). The rest of the size selection looked really poor too. I couldn't see many 32s either. Lots and lots of 34Bs, 36Bs, 38Bs, 36As etc. etc.

Blatherskite our John Lewis used to be utter shite - I had a terrible fitting experience with them when I was actually around a 28GG and they were trying to fit me in a 32E. However when Bravissimo came to town (and they are only about 200 yards away from John Lewis) both JL and Debenhams suddenly upped their game considerably.

Neither are as good as Bravissimo but they are a lot better than they used to be and Debenhams in particular carries a pretty good range of sizes which they didn't before.

Likewise I don't exist in M&S.

PurplePidjin Mon 12-Nov-12 19:16:34

For the Southerners, Bradbeers in Romsey. My mum's treating me to nursing bras for my birthday, can't wait - been in old lady style, unflattering, non-wired m+s shite all pregnancy! Well worth travelling smile

SorrelForbes Mon 12-Nov-12 19:18:02

Yes, our Debenhams is very good (apart from one fitter who tried to put my skinny 13 year old niece in a 32 back when she measures 27").

I think my size is available in M&S but I've never seen it on the shop floor.

Pseudonymity Mon 12-Nov-12 19:30:03

A girl in House of Fraser fitted me for a CK bra by sight. I was well impressed.

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Mon 12-Nov-12 23:33:51

Just shows, as I said, everyone's different and finds different things to suit them - apart from M&S, who clearly suit nobody.
I'm also a 30G, and JL always find bras to fit me - in fact, it was their fitter who first put me in that size ; Bravissimo had me as 32F, which was never quite right.
Likewise someone mentioned Debenhams; I've given up on them after leaving empty-handed several times - although I was once fitted perfectly by a great girl there, but never saw her again. The other times I've actually been told, 'I'm sorry, we can't fit you,' and left feeling an utter freak. This has happened to me in HoF as well, only then she brought in her colleague to assist, so I had them saying it in stereo hmm.

gnocci Tue 13-Nov-12 07:57:37

Well I just measured myself - 30 underbust and 35.5ish over (wasn't sure how tight to hold the tape measure for the overbust bit).

So I am thinking 30E maybe??!! Bluddy hell!!! How out can a 34C be?!!!

SorrelForbes Tue 13-Nov-12 08:21:38

I think a 30E would be a good starting point (the tape should be fairly loose for the across bust measurement). The cup is harder to get right than the band and you'll probably find you need a different size in some styles and makes.

brighthair Tue 13-Nov-12 14:42:03

I remember asking for a 34J in John Lewis and the assistant went "a J?!" like I had said I had 3 boobs or something. I felt shit after that sad and now I just order online from debenhams or bravissimo

GetOutMyPub Tue 13-Nov-12 18:22:43

The best bra fitters IMO never measure and just fit by sight.

I just ordered from amazon for the first time. I actually don't much like bravissimo, whilst accurate, their range is all very samey. Ie different brands but all same manufacturer.

I like Anita bras and some Chantelle which are nigh on invisible on UK high street, though Chantelle is improving in JL. Guess what though, if you have a 32 back, you can't have boobs bigger than an E cup. Or they start at a 34 back.

They do make them in France y'know in proper sizes......

I do know what you mean about Bravissimo and being a bit samey. I think they try to stock ranges which have a wide range of sizes - they have a few that stop at G but most go higher. I suspect it's to try and limit the "sorry they don't make this in your size which busty women are so utterly sick of hearing. But it means they don't stock as many manufacturers.

I like them as a store because I know I can actually walk in there and buy a bra unlike many places where I can look at bras, but they won't fit. I think that's because I am a pretty large size and there are very few ranges which actually cater for me anyway. So between Bravissimo and Brastop I pretty much cover all my possible bases in 2 websites blush

I think they have also been fairly instrumental in increasing the range of bigger bras made - it's so much better now that in was a few years ago.

JollyJock Tue 13-Nov-12 20:12:34

statistically I've tried quite a few bras from a lot of shops that seem to have the straps too far apart. The other thing they sometimes have is a big space at the front between the boobs. There is not a gap of 1-1.5 inches between my boobs so I don't know why bras are trying to hold my boobs apart so much.

The straps too far apart is less of an issue for me since I started wearing a smaller back although I do find that balconettes or half cups are a mare for it - I have narrow and slopey shoulders and they do tend to either slide off or get bent over by my armpit. But I think every single bra in M&S did this.

And I seriously hear you about the huge gaps between the cups. I basically have no flat section between my boobs - one comes in and the other immediately goes out. After training myself I can wear normal bras but some are just too far apart.

Other than plunges (which were all I wore for years due to this until my boobs got bigger than a G and plunges became very hard to find) the brands I have found with the smallest gap seem to be KrisLine (brastop) and Bravissimo's own make.

JollyJock Tue 13-Nov-12 20:29:30

I'm so glad it's not just me! I bought a bravissimo one the other day bit have yet to wear it. It may be better. It's a less full cup than I'm used to so I'm slightly nervous about it. I will check out the other one you suggested.

I did consider designing/patenting a bra where the two wires join to become one wire in the middle. I thought that might help.

Straps too far apart is my issue too. I just figure I have narrow shoulders, but all bras are the same wide shape. Kills my armpits.

I think the lack of gap is relatively unusual - I didn't realise this until I saw my best friends boobs and she has well over an inch of completely flat space between them.

Especially when I was getting used to wearing higher bras (when I outgrew plunges!) I found that it was actually easier to wear bras with a very high central gore as at least the top of the wires didn't dig in. It was basically comfier to have something which went over most of them than cut in half way. so this would hurt like heck whereas this doesn't.

Have you tried the Freya Lauren plunge? I think it is a re-release of what used the be the Freya Retro Basic plunge, and it was a bra I wore daily for years as it is very low at the front .

Shattered I will check my excessive extensive collection and see which have the closest straps as I know some of mine are definitely much better than others.

JollyJock Tue 13-Nov-12 20:48:38

I'm not 100% sure I would fit in that one, statistically as my most recent two bras are a 32GG and a 32HH (two very different styles and makes hence the size differential).

I think I'll check out both Freya and brastop next time I'm underwear shopping. Both look like they could have good options. I tend to just to to bravissimo... Or buy very ugly nct BFing ones!

Gimblinginthewabe Tue 13-Nov-12 20:50:25

bravissimo is the best! Once when I was measured there the lady just looked at me then went and got a bra that was the right size and a great style for me. No measuring, no faffing, it was amazing!

Thanks SC. would appreciate that

TheLaineyWayIsEssex Tue 13-Nov-12 20:58:43

I have been fascinated by all these bra threads and will be digging out my tape measure soon, but have a slight hijack.
Does anyone else have problems eith bra straps being too short? I always have to adjust to longest they will go but on occassion they just aren't long enough. What is the likey cause? Am i too longmin the torso? Too fat? Wearing the wrng cup size? or just a freak?


I have just checked a few of mine (a lot seem to be in the wash!) and the easiest way to compare was to look at the distance between the end of the wire (under my arm) and where the strap set. So, ordered from closest to furthest (i.e. widest strap to narrowest)

Curvy Kate, Kris Line, Bravissimo, Fauve then Freya. Which feels about right as my curvy kate frequently snags under the arms, my Bravissimo Alana occasionally does (but I love it otherwise so I cope) and I am never aware of it with Freya.

Links to the freya and fauve

TheLaineyWayIsEssex, unless you are very tall I would hazard a guess at wrong size. Or a style of bra which isn't quite right. The opposite problem is much more common.

Can you post your current size and measurements?

sansucre Tue 13-Nov-12 21:16:43

Given how pretty much every bra thread on here ends up talking about how useless M&S is for bras and fitting them, why the flip they don't take any notice and do something about it. Surely some kind of campaign needs to be done?

I'm not even that big, M&S are convinced I'm a 32c, I'm not, I'm a 28e. Except M&S' 28e bras don't even fit like any of the others brands and nothing actually fits me right.

I've read that someone from Victoria's Secret has gone to M&S so I doubt things will change, I actually wish they'd go back to basics and examine how they can make better bras and give a better fitting service rather than make lacier and frillier smalls.

sansucre Tue 13-Nov-12 21:17:09

Apologies for thread hijack blush

TheLaineyWayIsEssex Tue 13-Nov-12 21:18:34

I'll have to locate a tape measure .... I am not that tall 5ft9 though all my height is tirso rather than legs. I am currently wearing 36d and straps pretty much as long as they'll go, though they do fall downsometimes.
Have just checked and the bra I have where the backonly comes to above my shiulder blades is a C cup so perhaps it is too small in the cup?
If I ever find a tape measure will report back with measurements.

SorrelForbes Tue 13-Nov-12 21:25:24

sansucre I'm trying to locate an email address for the new designer at M&S (ex VS) so I can send her links to all these threads (as suggested by SC).

I am very scared that she'll bring some VS measuring 'expertise' with her and totally balls up any semblance of fit that M&S are hanging on to!

Ah shit, I'm wearing a bra fitted by M+S. How do I know if I'm wearing the correct size?

If you have a measuring tape then measure your underbust tightly in inches. That should match (within an inch or so) the number on your bra.

If not, here are some things to look at:

Firstly, when you but the bra on, lean forward then take your right hand and put it inside your left cup. Reach right round under your armpit/towards your back and hoik all the backfat/escapage forward in to the cup of the bra. Repeat at the other side.

If your bra is a good fit after doing this it should:
- Be worn on the loosest hook (when new). If you can fasten it on the tightest hook then try a back size lower.
- The band should be completely horizontal
- You should only be able to fit a couple of fingers under the front of the bra. If you can get more than that, or you can pull it more than an inch or so away from your body at the back, it is TOO BIG!
- If you raise your arms, the back should not really move - no riding up
- The wires should be entirely encasing your breast tissue - breast tissue goes suprisingly far back and a lot of people don't realise this. If you feel where the wire is sitting under your arm then it should be sitting on a fairly firm surface.
- The central gore (where the wires meet) should sit flat between your boobs. if it is being pushed away, then the cup is probably too small (and the back possibly too big as well)
- There should be absolutely no lumps over the top of the cup. Take a fitted t shirt with you to put over the top of the bra and stand side on to a mirror and watch as you breathe in. If you have a bit of a bulge only when you breathe in, you probably need to go up 1 cup. If it is visible when breathing out then IME it's probably more like two cups or more.
- The cup shouldn't gape. If it does, it may be too big or it may be the wrong shape of bra for you. Moulded cups are particularly bad for this as they don't adapt to your shape.
- The shoulder straps shouldn't be painful and digging in. Most of the support should come from the back. If you find that you can't get enough support without the straps being so short they hurt the bra isn't for you. Most likely it's too big in the back but it may also just be a bra that doesn't suit you.
- and on that note; not every brand works for every person. There are quite distinct differences in shape between brands which mean a particular brand may just not suit the shape of your breasts. I can't wear Panache, for example.

TheLaineyWay, what dress size are you?

cheesebaby Wed 14-Nov-12 00:56:06

Glad someone else has asked about short straps... I ventured into M&S (I know, I know) with my new found knowledge based in this and the other bra threads. Since forever I have been wearing a 36C - today I found an almost perfect fit in a 32DD, but the straps were too short even at their longest and were leaving red marks. I also had a bit of back fattage going on.

I tried to get the lady to help me re the straps but she (actually she couldn't even be bothered to come out from behind her desk, so I was hanging out of the changing room door to ask for help) told me "too short? Oh I think they're all pretty much the same" hmm

I wondered if anyone here knows, as back sizes go down does strap length go down also? I am not esp tall (5'6") but do have a long body and very straight shoulders.

I will be trying somewhere else when I get a chance - straps and backfat aside the experience was a revelation and not just because of the shit service.

I will also have a gander and see which of mine have long straps! I am wondering if the 32dd still isn't big enough in the cup so the cups are sitting too low. I'm also 5'6 and have a couple of bras where I can't get them short enough!

Boux avenue have a decent "small back size" range up to G, but be aware they still do the "add 4 or 5 inches" method when fitting, so my 29in back means a 34 bra.
I have had good and bad fittings there, but every time I go I seem to be a cup size bigger, if this keeps up I'll go beyond their bra selection, at a GG I have a limited choice there anyway.
My breasts meet in the middle with no gap, it can't be that unusual, and I have narrow shoulders. I find straps too long as I'm only 5' tall. Perhaps bra shops need petite and tall ranges too?

Inmysparetime, do you actually need a 34 or is it just that their fitters reside with most others in the dark ages- have you compared their 34 to anywhere elses?

We dont have one locally so I have never tried them!

Their 34 is tight around the chest, tape measure is 29in, it's odd, but it's how they do it.

RibenaFiend Wed 14-Nov-12 07:57:50

As a former fitter ( ahem John Lewis ahem grin) the most important thing to know about M&S bras is that M&S sizes REALLY do not translate into other brands. If you're a 36B in M&S you almost definitely will not be a 36B in any other brand in the universe...but of course if you've been fitted by them for that 36B chances are you're not that size anyway!!! Their bras are typically very generous.

I sadly had many a stubborn lady with her bra back up by her shoulder blades nipples to navel insisting that the flimsy loose material fitted because "Marks fitted this" and they would leave disgusted when they were fitted for a more firmly fitting, supportive and "boobs should not move" bra. So so sad sad

Ribenafiend I have heard many a convo like that in bravissimo too. I felt quite sorry for the fitter one day when the woman she was fitting was being really aggressive about the fact she wanted bigger back size as her existing bra had back fat. She actually needed taken down about 3 sizes!

SorrelForbes Wed 14-Nov-12 08:53:11

In my experience (albeit limited as I've only been once), the bras at Boux Ave follow the same sizing as other brands. I am a 30 back and needed a 30 back there too. However they did suggest a 36 when I said I measured 30.5 under bust!

I find that M&S bras follow the same sizing too. Although I've only ever tried one 30 in store, the back was right (the cups were another matter). The fitter really wanted to put me in a 36C grin

RamblingRosa Wed 14-Nov-12 09:12:20

I think some M&S bras are good. I particularly like the Limited Collection longline styles and some of the Autograph bras. They're not as sturdy and supportive as my Freya and Panache bras but they're not bad. And I find their sizing consistent with other brands.

It's the fitting that's shocking.

Surely M&S must know what everyone thinks of their fitting service? It comes up so regularly on here. All my friends agree that M&S are shit for fitting. Everyone knows it. So why don't they do something about it?!

Actually come to think of it Sorrel I did read a review on one of the bra blogs of BouxAvenue and it did seem to suggest that their sizes were roughly in line but that their fitting service was diabolical. I will see if I can find it.

I had the same experience with M&S - backs roughly the same, cup sizes on another planet. But I suspect that as RamblingRosa says they probably do have some nice bras if you know how to fit yourself.

ethelb Wed 14-Nov-12 09:32:13

you aren't allowed to have a large cup size. you are obviously showing off.

bet you think you are pretty too.

valiumredhead Wed 14-Nov-12 09:33:37

I really like M and S bras but can fit them myself.

gnocci Wed 14-Nov-12 09:47:18

What is with this add 4/5 inches to the back measurement method of fitting?

Why do so many companies still do this when everything I read on here says it is wrong.

For example the Simply Be website has a bra size calculator. I put my measurements in (30 back) and it comes out at 34! It seems that 90% of companies do this. I am utterly baffled? Is it totally wrong or just a different method that won't give you the best fit?

HabitualLurker Wed 14-Nov-12 09:49:32

RibenaFiend I was about to post asking the question that you've sort of answered. I've been reading the several threads that've been coming up about how bad the M&S sizing is, but wanted to ask whether their actual bras do follow the old 'add 4 inches to back size' method. Cos surely they know how their own bras fit, given that they actually make them? Surely hmm

I've always found it impossible to get bras to fit (I'm normally 29 inches under bust and 33 inches over) and was kind of a M&S 34A. That didn't fit too well and I used to try 32Bs too, but found them definitely tight in the band whilst 34A cups always cut in to me. Basically, M&S bras were crap on me! On the other hand according to the new system I'd be a 30C/28D (??) which I'm sure would in no way fit in M&S!!

So, is the conclusion that M&S bras don't follow either the old or the new system properly? confused

gnocci Wed 14-Nov-12 09:49:58

Here is M&S's method...

So my measurements are 30 under and 35 over. On this chart it comes out at 34C which is what the lady told me I was. However it was way to loose as I said in my OP. Am going into town later to try a 30DD/E.

gnocci Wed 14-Nov-12 09:52:37

This site gets it right I think:

HazleNutt Wed 14-Nov-12 09:56:03

Rambling, after a similar bra thread some time ago a poster actually emailed the link to M&S and wrote that they need to do something about the fitting. Unfortunately the reply she got back was a patronising form letter "Dear customer, your opinion is important to us, but we're not planning to change anything".

HazleNutt Wed 14-Nov-12 09:59:43

gnocci I tried that and it gave me some really funny results, sometimes adding 2 inces to back measurement, sometimes 4. No I don't think it's correct.

Whilst there might be a small discrepancy between M&S and other brands the bras they tell you to buy do NOT fit. They tell me I am a 36. I'm a 30. I tried their 36s and they were round my neck smile

Although they no longer go big enough in the cup for me, their 30 is about right in the back.

Gnocci unfortunately that calculator isn't quite right. It's adding 2 inches to the back size. It asks you to round down to the nearest even number so it might be ok if you measured say 31.5, put in 30 and got out 32, but if you are actually 30 and put in 30 that would probably be too big. It's better than most though.

The M&S chart is so illogical it is funny. They say a 28AA has a 5.5" difference between their under and overbust, yet a 38AA has only a half inch.

gnocci Wed 14-Nov-12 10:00:54

hazle ah that's strange!

Oh HabitualLurker, you may also need to try a 28DD.

Waves at hazle

HabitualLurker Wed 14-Nov-12 10:15:13

Good point statistically challenged. Even better, for a 46C the overbust measurement is less than the underbust! Huh??

What confuses me though is that ordinarily my breasts are seriously small (not right now since I'm breastfeeding), so if even I'm not an A cup then who is? Why does an A cup even exist if I should fit a C or D? A lot of the difference between my 29 and 33 inch measurement is muscle and my shoulder blades, not breast tissue!

HabitualLurker Wed 14-Nov-12 10:16:24

Is it actually possible to buy a 28DD? hmm

Ha ha thats brilliant - a 46c apparently measures 41.5 underneath and 41 over according to M&S wisdom. So that's a c cup who actually have inverted boobs? FFS!

It is possible to buy a 28DD - just not so easy in M&S! Freya, Panache, Bravissimo, Curvy Kate and a few others all start at a 28D/DD. I think the Debenhams Gorgeous range does too.

Blatherskite Wed 14-Nov-12 10:23:58

I'm wearing a 28F so I can't see why a 28DD would be impossible to find.

Ok I've just measured myself as 31 underbust and 37 midbust. M&S have put me in a 36c. I'm guessing I should be more like a 32D? My tits don't look big enough to be a D cup!

HazleNutt Wed 14-Nov-12 10:26:16

32DD or 30E. The latter will probably be even better fit.

HazleNutt Wed 14-Nov-12 10:27:20

PS, AKiss, 36C has the same size cup as 34D, 32DD or 30E, so it's not like your breasts need to get any bigger.

Thanks Hazlenutt, that makes sense. I thought I'd be laughed out of a place like bravisimo for not having big enough boobs, perhaps not.

From what I have seen/heard in places like Bravissimo they are very professional. I could hear them one day helping a girl who was slightly too small for their range but they still talked her through what a good bra feels like and helped her find the back size and suggested she try one cup size down etc etc.

However, with your measurements I would say you are firmly in their range - I would also say to try a 30F in addition to the sizes HazleNutt mentioned.

Diana2000 Wed 14-Nov-12 11:32:25

AKissIsNotAContract I'm a 32D and my boobs are tiny, what most people would assume were A-B cups. I think 'real' D cup boobs are actually small, we're just all accustomed to the outdated measuring system so think of D cups as busty even though they're anything but.

WildThong Wed 14-Nov-12 12:06:28

After taking the good advice on here I have bought Debenhams Georgeous t shirt bras in 34f. Previously 38 c or d from M&S. Much better although I find the top of the cups a little gapey. I wonder if this is more the style/shape not suiting me as the rest of the cup seems ok?

SorrelForbes Wed 14-Nov-12 12:12:27

WildThong I have a couple of the Gorgeous t-shirt bras and have found that they do gape a little in the cup. However, they are a slight plun ge style which I always have problems with!

WildThong Wed 14-Nov-12 12:27:57

thanks. I have a couple of M&S limited bras from their outlet blush coming today so Im hoping the different style will sort that out.

SorrelForbes Wed 14-Nov-12 13:32:42

I live in balconettes. They suit my fuller on the bottom boobs!

Have you seen these? Vair pricey alas.

WildThong Wed 14-Nov-12 16:45:57

Oh luuvely, but a little out of my budget

SorrelForbes Wed 14-Nov-12 16:55:35

Mine too!

TheLaineyWayIsEssex Thu 15-Nov-12 14:23:56

I am a size 16 and very broad of back.

SorrelForbes Thu 15-Nov-12 14:28:16

TheLainey Did you post your under and across bust measurements up thread?

JollyJock Thu 15-Nov-12 14:55:57

M&S would have me in a 36E or F. I'm actually a 32GG - HH depending on the style.

SorrelForbes Thu 15-Nov-12 15:00:49

It's so depressing. It annoys me so much that I'd happily offer to work for nothing in my local M&S just to try and get the fitters there to changes their ways grin.

SorrelForbes Thu 15-Nov-12 15:13:28

I especially love some of the pics on the M&S site:

What is this supposed to be achieving?


Room for breasts is obviously optional

Why do they insist on showing all the bras done up on the tightest hooks?!

Minimaxkids Thu 15-Nov-12 18:48:34

Because they don't make any bras in small back sizes for size 6-8 models with huge boobs who clearly have had surgical enhancement!

Very true

Although, what is figleaves excuse! (the back view)

SorrelForbes Thu 15-Nov-12 20:23:49

Oh my, that's dreadful. Such a great bra too!

Hmm, they appear to be repeat offenders..

exhibit a
exhibit b
exhibit c
exhibit d
exhibit E about 5 cups too small!
quad boob

Mumsnet jury....I think we must convict them of crimes against boobs!

SorrelForbes Thu 15-Nov-12 23:24:46

My eyes, my eyes.

TiredMule Fri 16-Nov-12 11:24:57

Hello again lovely Bra Guru ladies, Sorry to butt in!
I'm still yet to find a bra i'm completely happy with, mainly due to lack of decent shops and time. I made the mistake of popping into m&s yesterday 'just to see' and tried on a couple of bras, nothing fitted properly, when I tried my top on it looked like my breasts had almost dissapeared-there was nothing at the sides shock

A really stupid question, but upthread soemone wrote about overhearing Bravismo staff explaining what a properly fitted bra should feel like and look like. Please could someone explain that on here?!
I measure 31 under 35 over. I'm really struggling with this! My (better) rubbish fitting motherare nursing bra (the only ones I have) gives me a better size and shape than most of the bras i've tried.

The 2 bras I've bought so far (though not worn yet as i'm not sure if they are ok-or if I can find better) are a Freya deco-which is very comfy but is non wired and not sure if I should get a wired one? and a debenhams one in a 32D but it is V padded (megaboost lightweight).

Am now at the point where I think I should order online but not sure what to order and from where-I feel like i'd need to order each bra in about 4 different sizes at least! The plunge style normally fits me better and balcony never does, and ideally I want some padding-not too little or too much.
Please point me in the right direction! Now i've stopped breastfeeding I was very excited about getting new well fitting bras, but so far it's just been depressing!

TiredMule Fri 16-Nov-12 12:17:01

Shamefully bumping so I can (hopefully) order before the weekend! blush

brighthair Fri 16-Nov-12 12:37:46

The back band should be firm, and fastened on the loosest hooks to start. Should be able to slide finger under and it shouldn't ride up your back when you move around
The wire should encase all of your breast tissue so you should scoop your breasts into the bra. The centre gore should lie flat in between your breasts. If it sticks out you need a bigger cup size
The bra shouldn't give you 4 boob look, if it does, you need a bigger cup, it should lie smoothly
I would try a 30DD or 30E but it depends how the ones you are wearing fit at the moment
Hope this helps

brighthair Fri 16-Nov-12 12:39:08

Oops just seen about plunge and padding. Personally I love the bravissimo satine, I think you can search for plunge bras on their website. It has a bit of padding and a low centre gore and is the comfiest bra I've ever worn

SorrelForbes Fri 16-Nov-12 14:07:14

Here's SC's excellent post about what to look for in a good fitting bra:

Here are a few things to look for in a well fitting bra:

Firstly, when you but the bra on, lean forward then take your right hand and put it inside your left cup. Reach right round under your armpit/towards your back and hoik all the backfat/escapage forward in to the cup of the bra. Repeat at the other side.

If your bra is a good fit after doing this it should:
- Be worn on the loosest hook (when new). If you can fasten it on the tightest hook then try a back size lower.
- The band should be completely horizontal
- You should only be able to fit a couple of fingers under the front of the bra. If you can get more than that, or you can pull it more than an inch or so away from your body at the back, it is TOO BIG!
- If you raise your arms, the back should not really move - no riding up
- The wires should be entirely encasing your breast tissue - breast tissue goes suprisingly far back and a lot of people don't realise this. If you feel where the wire is sitting under your arm then it should be sitting on a fairly firm surface.
- The central gore (where the wires meet) should sit flat between your boobs. if it is being pushed away, then the cup is probably too small (and the back possibly too big as well)
- There should be absolutely no lumps over the top of the cup. Take a fitted t shirt with you to put over the top of the bra and stand side on to a mirror and watch as you breathe in. If you have a bit of a bulge only when you breathe in, you probably need to go up 1 cup. If it is visible when breathing out then IME it's probably more like two cups or more.
- The cup shouldn't gape. If it does, it may be too big or it may be the wrong shape of bra for you. Moulded cups are particularly bad for this as they don't adapt to your shape.
- The shoulder straps shouldn't be painful and digging in. Most of the support should come from the back. If you find that you can't get enough support without the straps being so short they hurt the bra isn't for you. Most likely it's too big in the back but it may also just be a bra that doesn't suit you.
- and on that note; not every brand works for every person. There are quite distinct differences in shape between brands which mean a particular brand may just not suit the shape of your breasts.

Hi Tiredmule

What back size is the Freya Deco wireless? I'd say best guess size for you is a 30DD but if you want to get it right (and have a credit card!) then I would suggest trying a 30D,DD,E and if you feel the 32 may be better (the debenhams gorgeous bras are quite small in the back) then I would try a D.

The freya deco wired is very popular for people who like a little padding. A newish one to try is the Freya Lauren Plunge - this is based on an oldie called the Retro Basic Plunge which I adored. I also love the Bravissimo Satine

Over on Brastop there are quite a few Curvy Kates which are very plunging - I have the Tempt Me and it gives amazing cleavage. There is also a new moulded called the Smoothie which I haven't tried.

Another old favourite for me was the Wonderbra d-g T-shirt bra.

In general the (wired) freya deco comes up slightly big in the cup, the Curvy Kate plunges are small in the cup and the wonderbra is about right.

Let me know if you need more help. There is a ridiculously long post from me over on the "small boobs" thread where I list everything to look for when you are trying a bra on .

HAHAHA! Ok, don't bother looking over on the other thread cos Sorrel posted it above! Cheers sorrel!

TiredMule Mon 19-Nov-12 15:10:30

Thank you for getting back me to, ended up with an ill dd so haven't got around to ordering yet!

The debenhams one is a 32d and the Freya is a 30e.
I've worn the debenhams one at the weekend and it's very comfy-will be a great one more for going out (due to all the padding)
I think maybe I should return the deco and swap for a wired deco? I think it was on here or a review someone said that the unwired deco came up smaller, so maybe I'd need to order the 30dd in the wired?

I haven't tried the unwired deco but the deco wired is big in the cup as a rule. So the 30dd is prob a good start.

TiredMule Mon 19-Nov-12 16:23:25

Thank you statistically-I've just made an order with brastop-a couple of deco's, a couple of tempt me's (reduced to £13!!!!) and a couple of other ones so hopefully i'll be sorted!

I've been so excited by these bra threads-I really want to get my mum sorted-she is 100% in the wrong bra, but she is very big of norkage so think it may be interesting! How is it best to measure her....not sure how to put this but hers are quite ...pendulus (is that even a word?!) so no idea how you'd begin to do it without a bra on! Is it ok to measure over a bra? I think it would TOTALLY transform her!

SorrelForbes Mon 19-Nov-12 16:27:27

Either measure her when she's wearing her best fitting bra or if her bras are really squashing her ask her to take her bra off and lean forward so that her boobs are hanging down towards the floor (this is a very attractive look) and then measue loosely around the fullest part.

gnocci Mon 19-Nov-12 19:58:07

Right I posted above that I measured 30 under and 35 over. Went to Debenhams and took a handful of 30 bras to the changing room. Errr no way hosay were they even coming close to being done up.....?!

Tried a 32 - okish but still tight on the loosest hook. Asked the girl to have a look and she said no too tight, it will rub and hurt you. I thought hmmm BUT when I took it off she was right, I had already got a red rub mark under my arm just from shifting about in the changing room

Tried on a 34, loosest hook ok but middle hook perfect. Still on the very tight side but a supportive tightness IYKWIM.

The one that fit the best was 34D.

This doesnt fit in with anything said on here. I am so bloomin confused. I amd definitely 30 underbust but a 30 bra wouldnt even do up.

Which brand were you trying? It is odd that you had to go to a 34, and buying a bra on the middle hook normally isn't a great idea as they stretch quite quickly.

I think the 32 sounds like it probably was actually right and I'm wondering if that was possibly Debenhams Gorgeous range which anecdotally comes up small in the back.

SchroSawMummyRidingSantaClaus Mon 19-Nov-12 20:25:41

Could I ask a question on here please, if anyone knows?

I bought a bra from bravissimo a couple of weeks ago, it's a 34GG. I have lost a bit of weight since then and now it feels too loose and has to be worn on the tightest clasp but the top of the cups are now seeming very lose on me and the bone between the breasts isn't sitting flush anymore.

Any ideas what size I should be wearing now?

It sounds like you need to go down to a 32 back. I could start off with a 32H (which should be roughly the same cup as the 34GG) and work from there.

It may be that in a smaller back the cup no longer gapes. But if it goes try going down to a 32GG.

SchroSawMummyRidingSantaClaus Mon 19-Nov-12 20:34:43

But since it's a new bra and has barely been worn would the smallest clasp not be a 32 anyway? Even on the tightest I can pull it out a good 2 inches at least. sad

I think maybe now this bra isn't going to suit my shape.

Bra business is so very confusing! Thanks. grin

Ah I didn't realise it was that big! Hmm, you might actually be looking at a 30 then. In which case to keep the cup the same start around a 30HH. Get the back right first then the cup becomes a lot easier.

Which bra is it - can you link please?

(btw, this happens to me when I lose weight - my back gets smaller but my over measurement stays the same so I go up in the cup. Bonkers smile )

SchroSawMummyRidingSantaClaus Mon 19-Nov-12 20:40:44

But the cup seems loose, not too tight. confused

This is the bra Thank you again btw. smile

Theas18 Mon 19-Nov-12 20:43:03

Dd is a"but nobody has that size chest" bra size (28 FF/G)

When she was but a 28 Dd at 11 -12 yrs the assistant looked at her and said"well you really shouldn't be wearing wires at you're age, not till you've been in a bra for at least a couple of years :-(

How I didn't strangle her for crass insensitivity I dint know!

Not only could you not get a bra in DDS size that wasn't wired, she had been wearing a bra for more than 2 yrs!

Ooh I have that one - beautiful BUT it never ever fitted me quite right - it was either slightly tight, or it gaped.

I'm not suggesting the cup is too tight - basically I was suggesting you deal with one thing at a time - so try on a 32H and a 30HH to find out which bag you need. This keeps the cup roughly consistent. Then when you have established which back feels right, turn your attention to the cup. It's far easier to get the cup right once the back fits.

It's also possible that the gaping isn't actually caused by the cup being too big but by the back - if the back is loose the cups aren't pulled upright properly which leads to gaping.

(And I meant that because of "sister sizing" if you are someone who loses weight from under your bust then you can have the bizarre thing of your boobs "appearing" to get bigger as your cup letter gets higher due to your back getting smaller. )

SchroSawMummyRidingSantaClaus Mon 19-Nov-12 20:46:33

Theas That was me. sad I was fitted for a 26/28 EE-F when I was in first year just turning 12. sad Luckily I got someone who managed to fit the correct size but all they could give me was a wonderbra. blush

It is really horrible, I totally feel for your DD. It makes me rage on here as well when loads of posters say 9/10/11 year olds should never be wearing bras as they don't need them. If only they knew...

SchroSawMummyRidingSantaClaus Mon 19-Nov-12 20:48:51

Statistically That makes a lot of sense now, thank you so much. smile I know what you mean as well about losing weight from under the bust as that's the first place that goes. I could have a huge belly and hips but able to see my ribs at the back... It's very confusing.

SorrelForbes Mon 19-Nov-12 20:55:30

gnocci When you tried the 30s and 32s did you just do them up around your body or did you put the shoulder straps up and your boobs into the cups too?

gnocci Mon 19-Nov-12 21:41:22

I couldnt do the 30 up!!! No way!!!

The 32 I put on properly.

gnocci Mon 19-Nov-12 21:42:28

The 32 was 32DD. The cups fitted well but the back left sore red marks. 30 was ridiculously too small.

I honestly think it might just be a brand/specific bra issue unless you tried loads. The fact that you ended up with a 34D suggests the sizing of the bra you bought is seriously off compared to normal as that should be miles away from fitting you - it should be about 3" too big for your overbust measurement too.

SorrelForbes Mon 19-Nov-12 21:59:32

That's very very odd. I measure 30.5 underneath and have never found a 30 that I can't even do up. Debenhams Gorgeous do come up quite small I know (I have a couple of their balconettes) but I still had to buy a 30 as the 32 were too loose.

The thing is, I'm a 30G but if I tried to put a 30DD/E/F on I just wouldn't be able to do them up either.

I would definitely recommend trying a 30 or a 32 in some other brands before settling for a 34.

I think I have only had it twice Sorrel - once with a Gorgeous (but I bought a 30 of theirs in a different style the same day), and once with the Freya sports bra. But that thing is just on a different sizing planet (unless I got a duff one) as even the 32 is tight.

SorrelForbes Mon 19-Nov-12 22:27:38

I agree SC, the Freya SPorts bra must be off as I'm still wearing my old 34DD (I know, I know) and it's actually pretty tight on the second hooks! I think I will treat myself to a 33FF in the new year though!

JollyJock Tue 20-Nov-12 06:58:02

My impact free sports bra is a 32 same as my other bras but is much more difficult to fasten. I did consider a 34.

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