Bra intervention - have I got this right?

(1000 Posts)
Wenchelda Mon 06-May-13 14:02:29

Hi - I'm new, hope its ok to come straight on with a question....I Somehow stumbled across one of the bra intervention threads a couple of weeks ago and have been following them in amazement ever since.

I've always worn an A cup (32/34 pre pregnancy, currently 36A) - never been measured professionally but always done it myself based on the "add 4 or 5 inches" rule. I have pretty much constant back ache and neck pain but never ever imagined this could be caused by boobs as they really are so tiny!

But after reading your fascinating threads, I think I should be a 30/32D! My measurements are 31 under bust, 35 at fullest point when bending over to 90 degrees, and 34 above. Have I got that right? If so I am truly truly in shock that my almost-not-there boobs are a D!!


WIth your measurements I would suggest trying a 30D, 30DD, 32D and 32C to start with. You're more likely a 30 though - most people who measure an odd number get on better with the next number down unless they are very slender.

Wenchelda Mon 06-May-13 14:48:21

DD!!! I find it impossible to think i could be a D cup, never mind a DD faints in shock I don't actually fill the A cup i am currently wearing, so i would never have thought i needed a bigger cup. However i now realise this is probably because my band size is far too big ... i can easily pull it 6+ inches away from my body and can feel everything escaping underneath.

For the first time ever i am actually keen to go bra shopping!

That's exactly it - the 36A is designed for someone who measures (roughly) 37" around their chest. So it's too big for you there. If you have been wearing a 34A previously it is essentially for someone who measures 35" around (like you ) - but 34" below. Which is how the old +4 routine gets you in such a wrong size.

It's really common - I think in all the bra threads we have had over the last few months there has been one lady who was a "true" A-cup. Most who thought they were A's are actually C/D/DD/E

Featherbag Sat 18-May-13 23:32:16

Sorry to hijack but can't find another bra intervention discussion thread! I followed the guidelines today as I'm pregnant with expanding and very sore boobs, I was recently measured as a 40C in Mothercare but never felt comfortable in that size, plus really didn't understand how I could be a 40 back at a size 14! So I measured myself and went shopping armed with the new measurements. Turns out I'm actually a 34E! My boobs have never felt or looked so good!
I've had to get underwired as none of the shops I went to had non-underwired in anything over DD, but I understand from previous threads that's ok too?

SorrelForbes Sun 19-May-13 00:03:11

Welcome! Underwired is fine as long as the bra fits properly.

I bet you feel much more comfortable and supported in your new size? I t

SorrelForbes Sun 19-May-13 00:03:59

Oops! Stupid phone.

I took someone from a 38A to a 32FF the other evening grin

Featherbag Sun 19-May-13 11:42:01

I feel so much better, even though I bought cheapie 2 for a tenner bras, figured I'll need more in a month or 2 and money's tight.

Featherbag Sun 19-May-13 11:44:49

In fact, early pregnancy paranoia (I'm 11/40) has me poking my boobs every now and then to make sure I still have the normal pregnancy soreness as they were hurting constantly before and now not at all!

TheCatcherInTheRye Sun 19-May-13 12:04:35

Looking to benefit here from your wisdome. OP your thread has had me measuring for the first time and am likewise a little shocked.

Bragurus, I'm measuring a band size of 32, that's fine, I was buying 34 so not so shocking. I'm measuring 38 inches, loose, how snug should my second measurement be?????

SorrelForbes Sun 19-May-13 12:28:39

Keep the tape measure loose for the second measurement. It's often better to take it whilst les ing over at 90 degrees to the floor.

Oldraver Sun 19-May-13 12:58:12

How do you figure your cup size (I realise its the difference between the two measurements but what inches equals cup size ? I've seen a few bra threads but have never found this vital bit of info

TheCatcherInTheRye Sun 19-May-13 13:48:55

Thanks Sorrell, I measured in the 90 angle pose. 38 loose. To compare though I then measured while sitting up and was only 37 so not much different. Liek Old raver said, how then do I choose the cup size? I've seen "add an inch for every size up from A" and "subtract band from bust to get cup".

GibberTheMonkey Sun 19-May-13 13:53:46

Sorry to crash
I am currently wearing a size that is one of my suggested size and it fits.
I just ordered a couple online in that size online and they're a bit small,I get slight spillage. Am I right in thinking I should order the next cup size up?

SorrelForbes Sun 19-May-13 15:46:39

Gibber. Yep, sticks with the same band size but go up a cup (or more!)

sparkle12mar08 Sun 19-May-13 19:16:09

To work out cup size subtract the underbust measurement from the over bust measurement, and then it's one cup size per inch. UK sizes mostly go as follows:
1 = A
2 = B
3 = C
4 = D
5 = DD
6 = E
7 = F
8 = FF
9 = G
10 = GG

But the important thing to note is that this is a starting point only. A good bra fit depends on style and cut as well, and this is where brands vary enormously.

So I measure 31.5 underneath and 42 dangling over. That gives me a core size of 32GG - 42-32 = 10 = GG. However I'm squishy of torso and after large amounts of trial and error I know I am most comfortable in a 30 back, and I mostly wear a 30H, which is the same cup volume as a 32GG. When you go down a band size, you need to compensate by going up a cup size.

Very occasionally a particular brand might miss out FF (M&S I'm looking at you!), but it's pretty reliable overall.

HalfSpamHalfBrisket Sun 19-May-13 19:20:20

Oh how I laughed when I started reading these threads! How could so many people have the wrong size...
I have just returned from M&S with a 34F bra thats fits perfectly. Rather than my usual 36/38 DD ones that don't.

Thank you MN Bra Fairies!

glamstretchmarks Sun 19-May-13 19:48:39

A REAL challenge for you -

ok I am really gonna need help from you bra fairies... I have a flat rib cage so my tiny boobs are further apart than the cups for my band size IYSWIM? That also means that when I measure my loose boobs I am measuring the larger gap too!! What should I do?

sparkle12mar08 Sun 19-May-13 19:55:13

Put a call out for marriedinwhite - she knows tonnes about different styles - it sounds to me as if you need a style/brand with a very wide central gore (the bit between the cups). PM her if needs be, she's brilliant!

Marriednotdead is the poster you are after. Can you give us an indication of the size you think you need, roughly, so we can suggest bras? What do you measure?

I could do with help finding styles too please! I need either a 30C/30D depending on fit, but find I often have to buy a 32B/C as it's so hard to find 30 backs in shops. I have wide-set boobs, plunge and moulded cup bras never fit me properly. I need balconette bras, but ones where the straps start at the edges IYSWIM? Otherwise I end up with it hanging out under my armpits. I have a wide gap inbetween my boobs.

BreakOut have you tried any of the Bravissimo half cup styles? IME they run small in the cup so it would be worth trying the DD, but are relatively wide in the middle. They're terrible on my (very close set) boobs! this is an example

In general you may quite like Panache (and cleo, a sub brand) as they normally have quite a wide central gore. The Indina has been recommended recently and the cleo Juna is a favourite with lots of ladies here. These start at D cup

JaquelineHyde Sun 19-May-13 20:59:11

Right ladies I have missed all of these bra threads and now having read this one I think I had better do some measuring and work out what I should be wearing.

So can someone please give me a fool's step by step guide to measuring and working out my size and I shall crack on and report back once I have done it.

have a look here and then post your measurements.

leelteloo Sun 19-May-13 21:17:07

I just wanted to let the bra fairies know that I finally found a bra that doesn't rub or hurt. I am so happy and relieved as my bra mission has been going on for many months and involved many trips to m&s ("bra fitting service":joke of the century!) and several trips to Bravisimo (awesome fitters but bras were still not right). I am now in a 32dd minimiser from m&s and its like a glove and I have finally found bra peace smilesmile

Thanks to these bra threads I've gone from wearing the 36C that M&S measured me as, to a 32DD that actually fits.

Oh I am glad leelteloo (and akiss!)

It can be a challenge finding the right bra - especially when you know what a good one should look like! It's quite a revelation though.

glamstretchmarks Sun 19-May-13 21:31:32

Marriednotdead is the poster you are after. Can you give us an indication of the size you think you need, roughly, so we can suggest bras? What do you measure?

Hi, thanks. I measure at a 30C but to get cups wide enough apart (well nearly) I am wearing a 34AA but the for is terrible in every single way... like BreakOut, I have wide set boobs, VERY wide set...

glamstretchmarks Sun 19-May-13 21:32:05

the **fit not for

glamstretchmarks Sun 19-May-13 21:39:26

Hmm, actually I have just taken my measurements and measure

loose - 33 and
above chest -33 also blush ... I have broad shoulders which is why I have the whole wide set boobs issue.

littlestressy Sun 19-May-13 21:39:39

Wow. I don't know what a bra intervention is but wanted to share my bra 'lightbulb' moment....
I was wearing a 34B for years and years, I have very small boobs. Went to John Lewis, got measured and she pronounced I was a 36DD. I thought absolutley no way but yes, the bra fits, it feels great and makes my whole top half look better (think no waist to suddenly having a waist).
What is bra intervention?

Littlestressy - a lot of companies are putting women in bras which plain don't fit. The biggest issue is using an old fashioned fitting method where they add 4 or 5 " to your underbust measurement to get your band size. This results in a bra which is too big in the back and too small in the cup. Most ladies don't realise it's wrong because they have been fitted in stores which are big names and make themselves out to be experts.

Have a look at the information on the blog just to make sure your new bra is right. John Lewis are one of the better places but not infallible and it is a little unusual to hear of people going up in the back when properly fitted.

nobodysfool Sun 19-May-13 21:45:10

Evening ladies.
After reading how to measure I'm a bit worried I have misunderstood.Around my body measures 33" (snug) and the 90 degree bust measurement is 43" (without squishing my boobs). So am I right in thinking I need a 32 if I round down and a GG cup size?????? I have done it wrong havent I?

Nobodysfool you're roughly right. I would suggest trying a few sizes because you are in between. Start with a 32GG, 32H, 34GG and 34G. Have a look at the info on the blog link above which explains how to test whether the bra fits or not.

littlestressy Sun 19-May-13 21:48:04

Ok thanks, whenever I went into M&S they would put me in a B cup so I was very surprised to get a DD! But the lady explained that my boobs (although they look small 'out front' IYSWIM) go quite a way across my body. Bra feels good, but I will definately check

Stats- no, I haven't tried those, we don't have a Bravissimo nearby, so it would mean spending ££ online, when theres a good chance the DD will be too big. But if the cups are small fitting it might be OK. There's barely anywhere that does that style, which is the style that fits and is comfiest, in a C cup!

glamstretchmarks Sun 19-May-13 21:51:14

statisticallychallenged - am I right at thinking I should be in 30C?

The Panache ones largely start at a D so they may be worth a try too. I'm afraid my knowledge of ranges which start below a D is a little limited as I've had G+ boobs for about a decade!

Littlestressy - what size did M&S put you in (back size?) We're becoming quite adept at calculating true bra size based on M&S duff sizing!

Roughly glamstretchmarks - possibly a 30D. However - you mentioned being quite broad - would you say you have quite a skinny torso (i.e. not much padding?)

If this is the case you might need a 32 back instead (and to go down a cup)

littlestressy Sun 19-May-13 21:55:59

ooooh just done that, I measure almost 33inches under and 38 when bent over so I should try a 34DD? Or a 32DD? But also try 34D and 32DD?
One question, when you wear an underwired bra should you get any kind of 'digging in' from the underwire (like in your armpit area?) also, back fat spilling over the top, is this just normal cos I need to loose some weight?

littlestressy Sun 19-May-13 21:57:16

sorry statistically just saw your post, M&S used to put me in back size 32 or 34

nobodysfool Sun 19-May-13 22:01:16

Thanks StatisticallyChallenged have just read all that info so feel well armed now.I seem to have problem with the central gore sitting flat and sometime the wire comes up too high near my armpit and rubs- was told its beacuse I have a very full and wide bust.

larlemucker Sun 19-May-13 22:02:48

Shamelessly marking so I can come back tomorrow with my measurements!!

glamstretchmarks Sun 19-May-13 22:02:59

I think it is fair to say I have NO padding SC grin Yeah I am very skinny so a 32B/C?

I bought a 32B for a sports bra cos it obviously needed to be tighter than the 34 I have been wearing. I can pull the whole 34 band really far out which is a bit daft...

John Lewis have got it wrong I'm afraid. For once M&S were closer (on the back)

I would suggest you start with a 32E, 32DD, 34DD and 34D.

Back fat - that needs to be scooped in to the bra. If it can't be scooped in it's a sign the bra doesn't fit properly. I still get a little (not a skinny girl by any stretch!) but it is much much reduced. But scooping only works if the back of your bra is small enough otherwise it slides back out.

I know going down a back size sounds counterintuitive to solve backfat but have a look at this for proof!

Nobodysfool - gore not sitting flat is generally a sign the cup isnt big enough (although you do get the odd bra which will just never work)
You sound like a similar shape to me. I like Bravissimo bras (betsy bow, alana etc), some Freyas (Lyla, Eleanor) and some Ewa Michalaks.

Glam I would suggest trying the 30 and 32s - it is a little more trial and error at slightly smaller cups to get them positioned properly but on the plus side you should have quite a good selection available.

glamstretchmarks Sun 19-May-13 22:10:13

I have tried a few 30s before but they cups are practically in the middle of my chest and half my boobs either side!! I will try to search for wide sit boobs but i am think i may need to start adding fabric to the middle of the bra...

littlestressy Sun 19-May-13 22:10:34

oh no!!! I thought I'd found a good one for once, so all that armpit fat should be in the bra?

GibberTheMonkey Sun 19-May-13 22:10:35

Belated thanks smile

nobodysfool Sun 19-May-13 22:15:01

thanks you so much StatisticallyChallenged im off to browse online.

Fraid so littlestressy. Don't be scared to try a bigger cup size than I said too - the 36DD suggests you might be somebody who needs a slightly bigger cup than they "measure". It depends on the shape and firmness of your boobs. But I am afraid armpit spill means the bra doesn't fit properly

littlestressy Sun 19-May-13 22:21:05

thanks, gutted that they still didn't measure me right.....deep inside think I had an inkling cos the wire is sort of hurting in my armpit

larlemucker Sun 19-May-13 22:29:35

Sorry if hijacking but a quick question.

There's a lingerie shop where I live that is meant to be very good at measuring/fitting etc
I went a few years ago and spent quite a bit on two bras which fit in the shop but after wearing them for half an hour and walking round I would fall our if the top if them (they were both plunge bras). I went back to the shop and showed them and was told that they were the right size but my boobs don't suit that style of bra.

Now if I want to wear either if these bras I have to tape my self in.

Is this right? Can I only ever wear balcony bras??

Whilst some people can't wear certain shapes of bras, actually completely falling out suggests the size may well not have been right.

larlemucker Sun 19-May-13 22:34:32

I thought so. I fall out to the point my areola is showing above the cup! Everyone raves about this shop and there is some lovely stuff in there but I have never been back since.

Have DS asleep on me at mo so can't measure but first thing in the morn I will do. Currently wearing M&S nursing bras which are nearly up round my neck and have zero support, and my boobs need support!!!

That sounds like a significantly too small cup to me!

CelticPromise Sun 19-May-13 22:41:42

I have soft and bottom heavy boobs and I will fall out of a plunge eventually, no matter how well it fits!So yes there are definitely styles that suit different shapes, and balcony is a very versatile style smile

I'd definitely agree Celtic - but if we are getting nipple escapage that's either a terrible bra or a terrible fit.

CelticPromise Sun 19-May-13 23:29:22

For sure SC. I have fallen out of many a moulded plunge, probably when I was wedging my 30Hs in a 36DD.

Wenchelda Sun 19-May-13 23:29:37

Wow just saw this thread that I started a while ago and realised I'd forgotten to report back. So.. I tried 30D but couldn't even get the band to meet, never mind do up but a 32C seems a good fit. I am truly amazed ... And actually have some sort of cleavage for the first time ever!!

WhatDoesTheDogSay Mon 20-May-13 08:50:31

Glad you've had success with this OP! May I ask a question please (if not too late to this thread)? Never had a well-fitting bra since stopping b'feeding just under a year ago. M&S measured me as 30C (even though i was proper bulging out the cups of the bra the lady brought for me to try). She then agreed that the 30D I was wearing was a better fit and just advised to try more 30Ds (so not that helpful). Following the bra intervention advice, I have just measured as 28.5/34. So 28F? Or I am actually skinny pretty slim so would 30E be better? I have a couple of 28DDs that I don't wear as they feel too tight around my back, the wires dig into my ribs and I don't seem to fill the cups ...
Any advice would be gratefully received!

WhatDoesTheDogSay Mon 20-May-13 08:55:54

Ps I start off with quadraboob in a 30D, but as the day wears on it all seems to loosen off. Suspect this is because it's too big around the back?

try a 28e to start . the d may have felt too small due to lack of cup space

Oldraver Mon 20-May-13 09:53:06

Thank you sparkle.....looks like I need to move up to a GG blush. I had moved to an F but realised my boobies were still squished.

I have always had problems with boned cups irritating me so have stuck with Shock Absorber for everyday

WhatDoesTheDogSay Mon 20-May-13 10:33:27

Thanks, StatisticallyChallenged, will order a couple of 28Es to try smile.

CelticPromise Mon 20-May-13 11:17:15

OldRaver you might find wires more comfortable in the correct size. Worth a try! Also I believe Shock Absorbers come up small so you may need to go bigger. The numbers are only a guide especially with the cup so don't be afraid to experiment.

JaquelineHyde Mon 20-May-13 11:30:58

Righty ho I have my measurements...

46 up right band measurements and 56 loose 90 degree boob measurements.

I'm a little bit worried about doing this as I have just lost approximately 10stone in weight (and have a nearly 3 week old baby) so I have no idea what bra size I should be. The last bra I got (about 5 weeks ago) was a 48DD.

So tell me ladies what should I be wearing?

sparkle12mar08 Mon 20-May-13 11:41:30

Start with a 46GG. Be prepared to try 46G & GG and probably 44GG & H too. Thos of us who are particularly squishy of torso, myself included, often find we need to size down a bit in the band. Additionally if you're continuing to lose weight (and massive congratulations btw, that's a stunning loss!) try and go for the 44's if they fit well and consider using an extender for a little while if necessary. That way you'll get much more life out of them. Extenders are only about a pound or so, so are well worth it.

start with a 46gg . However, it is very common for ladies with a squishy torso to need to go down one or more back sizes to get adequate support so don't be scared to try say a 44h or hh and even a 42

JaquelineHyde Mon 20-May-13 11:53:38

shock shock

I just can't imagine needing a cup size that big, I feel a fraud in the DD as they sometimes feel a little gapey

Oh and I am very squishy in my torso and everywhere else on my body so I will make sure I try the 44 and bra extender if needed.

I will be bra shopping next week so I will report back as soon as I have been.

nobodysfool Mon 20-May-13 13:46:56

* StatisticallyChallenged * I think you should hire yourself out to help us ladies with our bras. Love the designs on Bravissamo but the nearest one is a couple of hours away and cant afford to buy a variety even if I do send the majority back. smile

If you lovely ladies are still helping out, I measured today and the results are
39 under bust measurement touching but not tight.
49 at the widest point at a 90 degree angle. (I waited till there was only me and the littlest in the house for this - she thought it was hilarious)
I stopped breastfeeding a year ago but am still wearing the bras as my old ones do not even touch together anymore.

SorrelForbes Mon 20-May-13 16:38:05

missnevermind OK, as you've said that you didn't take the underneath measurement tightly, I'd suggest starting with a 38H. However, as others have said further up the thread, some of us with squshy torsos can find that going down another band size works very well too. In your case this would be a 36. Remember to go up a cup too. So, try a 38H, 38GG, 36HH etc.

Omg an H!
I wanted to start with some cheap non underwire bras as it has been a long time since I wore a proper bra. That's not going to happen with an H!

Rolling on the floor at the thought of me being a 36 I - if their is such a thing. grin. ( . ) ( . )

To disturb you - there is no I, it goes straight to a J!

TBH, non-wired just won't offer the support for bigger cups really. I'd suggest trying Panache and bravissimo own brand as they have the sturdiest wires.

nobodysfool I wish - sounds much more fun than the day job! My credit card gets a bit of a work out every time I have to do a bra shop because I know so many will go back!

Yes I have snapped a wire or two in my time. And that was on E cups. I could be a real danger with H's.

They are less likely to snap when they fit properly - it's more of an issue if the cup is too small as the wire contorts and moves in a way it doesn't when it's a good fit.

Oldraver Tue 21-May-13 00:35:04

Celtic Yes I'm hoping being better sized would help, though some of my problems with bras come from me having very itchy skin and its very easily irritated. I had problems when manufacturers started to heat seal the clasp, though the Shock Absorber one seem ok. I also quite often go to tey on a bra and the fabric has itched me before I even turn it round

Right. off to M&S this morning armed with this thread. I will ensconce myself in the changing room with armfuls of bras till I am happy and comfortable.

CelticPromise Tue 21-May-13 07:59:53

missnevermind I wouldn't waste your time with M&S, I believe they only do up to about a G so are unlikely to have what you're looking for. Their bigger bras also seem to be a bit flimsy for the job.

If you aren't near a Bravissimo you have a Debenhams or similar? You might get something there but mail order is probably your best bet I'm afraid.

CelticPromise Tue 21-May-13 08:03:02

OldRaver if you get on better with certain fabrics there is a poster called marriednotdead who knows All The Bras and can point you in the right direction. Perhaps it would be possible to alter a decent bra to cover the clasp? I have done that with one that irritated me.

If you can put your bras on backwards and turn them around easily that's definitely a too big in the back sign!

SorrelForbes Tue 21-May-13 08:38:43

OldRaver. That sounds annoying. I don't have a problem with materials (although who likes itchy lace?!) but I am allergic to nickel. I have to coat many hooks, clasps, etc with a coat of clear nail varnish after each wash.

Well that was a waste of time. Shame I didn't see your warning Celtic.

I tried on quite a few. Decided the 38 G was comfortable and the best fit so bought 2.

They are going back as quickly as I can get back there!

I wore one round the house for a few hours and was ready to cut it off with a pair of scissors. The underwire was really digging into my side and got really painful.
I know some of it will be that I have not worn underwire for years now so need to get used to it, but I was in pain not just discomfort.


I suspect most of those may be the cup being too small - badly fitted underwires are damn painful. Ones that fit - not so much smile

But I agree with Celtic re M&S bras - I just don't think they scale them up properly for larger sizes.

Creamtea1 Tue 21-May-13 19:19:23

Hi, I've been pointed in this direction for bra advice! Just measured myself as per the bra guru blog - I'm 33 round the back and 41 on the boobs (bending over as per the guidelines). I'm 25 weeks pregnant. Pre preg I wore a 34B and size 8-10 clothes. at the mo in wearing 36C and size 10 mat clothes or 12 normal. so tell me how wrong I am as I think from reading the blog I should be trying a 32FF or something??

sparkle12mar08 Tue 21-May-13 20:13:22

Being mid-pregnancy complicates things a bit as your rib cage will still expand a bit more, but your current measurements suggest 32G as a starting point. So you might want to try that, plus 32GG, 34FF and 34G. You may have to use extenders for a bit or may need bigger cup sizes later on. Either way, 36C is at least three cup size volumes too small.

Creamtea1 Tue 21-May-13 21:05:44

Thank you sparkle - I think I need to go and try some on or see if I can order some good ones online. I can't believe I am that far off the mark!! I must admit that apart from sports bras I have never found one that I really find comfortable and makes me a nice shape.

cjbk1 Tue 21-May-13 21:06:22

to whom it may concern;
I have asked before but I stopped BF'ing about 3wk ago (baby not interested anymore hmm) it was a very gradual tailing off if relevant? boobs seemed to have stopped shrinking please God I'm wearing a 32a which seems to be trying to move upwards/boobs slipping downwards
I measure 30 under bust and 34 across nips while leaning forwards as advised so what size please? I'm quite excited about getting reacquainted with the figleaves site thanks x

Start with a 30D and work from there

Hi folks and bra gurus smile Sorry I've not been around much lately, RL has driven me nuts kept me busy.
Am probably about tomorrow if there's anything I can help with.

cjbk1 Tue 21-May-13 21:57:39

Thank you statisically I do appreciate the prompt,free help x

SorrelForbes Tue 21-May-13 22:10:28

Hi Married

Loving my Panache Idina

deeplybaffled Tue 21-May-13 23:10:45

Ok, I'm rather baffled. Have just done my best with a tape measure and mirror and appear to be 35-36 underneath and 40 over the chest at the prescribed 90 degree angle. Have been wearing 36b for most of my life, have broad shoulders and pitifully little by way of cleavage without serious padding. But if my 36 measurement was right, then that would mean I'm more than a b cup.....and recently, on t-shirt type bras in a 36b, the straps have been everyway which, but the cups gape sadly. So what am I doing wrong?! Or should I give up and go back to vests or something.......all advice appreciated!

A lot of women wear a slightly smaller back size than they measure - I am wondering if you should try a 34 back but with a bigger cup. The gaping isn't always due to excess cup but due to the back being too loose so they fall forward. I'd maybe try a 34DD/E to start with

Oh, and have you scooped?

deeplybaffled Tue 21-May-13 23:24:20

Not that I know clearly clueless at this kind of stuff! Do you mean sort of gathering it up forlornly and trying to tuck it into the cups?

Scooping is a little more...vigorous smile

Basically - any "fat"/soft tissue which you have escaping under your armpits, around the back of your bra, beside the straps etc...that's actually breast tissue, and it belongs in the cup. so...

Lean forward, drop your breasts in to the cups and do the bra up at the back. Now, take your right hand, put it round inside the left cup, all the way round under your armpit, and scoop all the soft tissue and flesh in to the cup. You may have to be quite firm to get it forward. You might not know it, but all that soft tissue under your armpit is breast, and it needs to be in the cup. Now, repeat on the other side. The wire should totally encase your soft breast tissue, and you should have no overspill or wrinkling in the cups. The central gore should sit flat in between your boobs.

deeplybaffled Tue 21-May-13 23:54:05

I shall give this a go, but sounds one to try at home first before in a changing room;) another dumb question, but when you fasten the hooks, is it the middle set of the three that you should aim for? Or does it vary, depending on make?
Thanks so much!

SorrelForbes Wed 22-May-13 00:12:20

Always the loosest hooks for a new bra. After quite a lot of wear you may find that the bra has stretched and then you should move to the middle or tightest hooks.

DowntonTrout Wed 22-May-13 09:03:31

I've never really read these threads because I thought how hard is it, really, to know what size bra you should be wearing.


After wearing a 36D for years, I just did the measurement thingy. shock
It's 34 underneath, measured quite snug, and 41 bent over, measured looser. By my reckoning that makes me a 34G???

I did this because I was trying on bikinis recently and tried the scooping thing and it was clear that the cup sizes i was trying were too small. I have also had a problem with a bra, that I thought fitted, where the underwire was digging in to me at the side, this is because it was just sitting on breast tissue isn't it? My goodness, I'm going to go to Oxford Street today and TRY ON BRAS!

try a 34f-the dd counts as an inch too

DowntonTrout Wed 22-May-13 09:37:43

Oh ok. Will do. I thought it sounded big.

SorrelForbes Wed 22-May-13 09:56:55

Go to Bravissimo on Oxford St, it's their Flagship store.

DrinkFeckArseGirls Wed 22-May-13 11:02:11

I'm 29,5 underneath and 36 hangung down but in a bra. Do I need to let it all hang out braless? Also tge 32D/ DD I've BEEN WEARING PRE-pregnancy are too toght so I would've thought I need to wear a 34?!

measure again letting it all hang out. I suspect they feel tight due to inadequate cup space

Creamtea1 Wed 22-May-13 17:00:40

I have had a bra revelation!! I got a 32F today. Put it on and the cups seem to fit perfectly, the back strap does feel tight but I presume that's a) because its brand new and b) because I have become accustomed to wearing a 34 or 36 band which must have been too loose, ie what I feel is a normal band fit has actually been too loose.
I feel like there is a tiny amount of back fat at the back but maybe as the bra wears in and elastic loosens slightly that will go?

Have you tried scooping more? You might still have a little backfat (i'm a 30 back but quite big otherwise and I always have a little bit) but most can be scooped

Creamtea1 Wed 22-May-13 17:33:26

Thanks, I will try that - I'm so glad I found this thread smile I feel like my boobs are now now 'up' and there is a clear gap between them and the baby bump whereas before it just felt like they were resting on it!

DrinkFeckArseGirls Wed 22-May-13 20:43:03

Ok, so I'm 29,5 under the bust and 37,5 leaning. Not really a flattering position... hmm

Oh it's not sexy ;)

Start by trying a 30F/FF and work from there. Don't be scared to try a 28FF/G in some brands too

DrinkFeckArseGirls Wed 22-May-13 20:57:44

Thanks! What is this scooping you're talking about? I've noticed the current bra 32DD is cutting in at the back - 2 fat rolls (grim). so to avoid the back fat, what do I need to scoops> The front or the back?
<thick emoticon>

DrinkFeckArseGirls Wed 22-May-13 21:04:13

I looked at Bravissimo, very nice but they are all around £30 sad. What is abit more affordable? Moving soon so no spare dosh...

Brastop, Leia (outlet section), mycurvesandme, Clara Olivia, Amazon have some great deals, sometimes debenhams sale....

Scooping - yup that back fat you mention- it belongs in the cup. Basically - any "fat"/soft tissue which you have escaping under your armpits, around the back of your bra, beside the straps etc...that's actually breast tissue, and it belongs in the cup. so...

Lean forward, drop your breasts in to the cups and do the bra up at the back. Now, take your right hand, put it round inside the left cup, all the way round under your armpit, and scoop all the soft tissue and flesh in to the cup. You may have to be quite firm to get it forward. You might not know it, but all that soft tissue under your armpit is breast, and it needs to be in the cup. Now, repeat on the other side. The wire should totally encase your soft breast tissue, and you should have no overspill or wrinkling in the cups. The central gore should sit flat in between your boobs.

Chances are you will have some quadboob in your current bra after you do this, and because it's a 32 the fat won't stay forward as the back isn't small enough

Creamtea1 Wed 22-May-13 21:07:59

Could have a look on the outlet section of figleaves? There are some on there from about £9. I ordered a 32F to go with my new 32E bought today mainly for a try and also incase I need larger cuppage as pregnancy progresses.

DrinkFeckArseGirls Wed 22-May-13 21:27:21

Oooh, technical grin

chinup2011 Thu 23-May-13 12:10:24

Some help needed here please too:
I've established I'm a 32GG although I measure 33 under bust.
A 34 band seems more comfortable as I'm probably used to the baggy affairs that I have previously referred to as bras. My problem is the cups cut in badly at the front of my arms, I have narrow shoulders but the GG cup seams to be fine. I've tried a 34G , with the same effect. There is a bit of back fat too with a 32GG but I may not have scooped enough.
My feelings are a wider back and smaller cup size, am I right?

sparkle12mar08 Thu 23-May-13 12:20:11

It sounds more like a style issue than a size one tbh. If you say the cup volume seems to be fine (no quad boob on top? smooth cup line?) then back fat won't be solved by going up in the band, quite the contrary. Are you trying balconettes with wide settings? Many are too wide for me and I do have to put up with a little bit of digging and rubbing on the strap side of the cup, because I live the Marie Antionette cleavage they give me, but the sizing is actually fine. But there's are lots of styles and some very knowledgeable posters here, I'm sure they can make recommendations of brands and styles to try.

DoctorRobert Thu 23-May-13 12:33:18

Can I join in? I've measured myself to be 30" under bust, and 40" around the fullest part when bending over. Does that make me a 30GG? shock

If so it's no wonder my bras don't fit, I haven't measured myself for ages and am currently wearing a 34E!

sparkle12mar08 Thu 23-May-13 12:39:14

Yup, you got it! Welcome to the amazing world of properly fitting bras - you'll never look back!

chinup2011 Thu 23-May-13 13:10:31

Thank you

It was actually a M&S t- shirt bra, very basic in design, but it is the area where the straps join the cups that rub ( too much to put up with) if I had wider shoulders the straps could be pulled out wider iyswim.
Do balconette styles finish lower at the side of the cup?

sparkle12mar08 Thu 23-May-13 13:17:05

Lots do, but many are also quite widely set, so it's a lot of trial and error I'm afraid. Curvy Kate and Bravissimo are generally very wide set in their balcony/balconette styles for example, Cleo Juna a bit less so, yet there's something about the cut of the Bravissimo's I've tried that mean they seem to rub less despite being wide wired. It's a minefield I'm afraid! Lots of trying on, lots of returning, and do not cut labels out untill you've tried them for at least a couple of hours around the house. A five minute session in a changing room or your bedroom doesn't really cut it.

chinup2011 Thu 23-May-13 13:35:14

Thanks Sparkle, you're right it's a minefield, I'll do what you say but I can't wait to find something comfortable, I'm so sick of wobbling out of my current ones.

As a general rule, full cups and plunges are a bit narrow set than balconettes or half cups too. But definitely serious trial and error too

SorrelForbes Thu 23-May-13 15:59:24

I find that many t-shirt bras, especially the moulded type, rub under the arms.

DrinkFeckArseGirls Thu 23-May-13 21:44:18

hmm @ this link

I'm not 34C even by my own faulty measurements prior to coming to this thread.

DrinkFeckArseGirls Thu 23-May-13 21:44:49

GRRRRRRR this is the sort of crap info we're fighting!!!

DrinkFeckArseGirls Thu 23-May-13 21:53:09

They're all like this... Been trying to put my new boob hanging down measurements in a calculator and that's all I've been getting just now. 34C

Its because they almost all use +4/5 inches. There are a couple of sensible ones but they are generally limited to blogs/bra enthusiast websites. A sensible pair and the butterfly collection are two I can think of.

SorrelForbes Thu 23-May-13 22:27:15

That calculator puts me at a 34E. How, ummmm, wonderful confused (better than M&S's attempt though!)

littledolly Thu 23-May-13 22:54:52

Only just found this thread. As someone who has put on weight recently and stuck with the same bras because I can't be bothered changing, even though my fat is hanging out the sides, I really need help!
I seem to be a 37 and 42 when I am bent over. I'm currently wearing 36B, but that fitted me when I was over 2 stone lighter. Am I right in thinking I'm either 36D or 38D????

Try a 36E, 36DD, 38DD and 38D. Most likely the 36 back

Hey bra ladies. I need advice.

Pre-pregnancy, I was a 32B. After having my daughter, considerably more saggy of boob (I used to pass the pencil test... not anymore) I went to Rigby & Peller and was declared a 32D. Fast forward a year and I've finally lost some baby weight and my bra cups are distinctly roomy.

I hurriedly tried on a 32B and 32D in Debenhams this week (only one style in each size - 32s were thin on the ground) and both gave me the four boob effect.

So, I measured myself and I'm 31 around the rib cage, or 30 pulled tight. Bent over I measure 37. Surely to goodness I can't be a 30F? I consider myself pretty flat chested!

The only reason I measure 37 at a dangle is because my boobs, tragically, sag a bit. I do not have full breasts AT ALL.

Can you order a bunch of differently sized bras online and then return? My toddler is a tyrant and would not tolerate more than five minutes stuck in a changing room with me, so most shops are out.

*I tried on a 32B and 32C, I should have said.

SorrelForbes Thu 23-May-13 23:28:49

OK, if you're getting the dreaded quadra-boob in a 32C then you definitely need to size up in the cup. On your measurements, I'd say try a 30F. This is really only the same cup volume as a 32E which is 3 cups bigger than the 32C which didn't fit!

Try ordering from sites like BraStop, Bravissimo, Figleaves, My Curves and Me. I'd order a plunge and a balconnette in a 30F, 30E, and a 30DD.

HarleyQuinn Thu 23-May-13 23:59:13

Hi all you lovely bra fairies!

I thought I would try this,

I measure 30 under my ribcage
and 34 dangling, ( quite saggy, unfortunately after second child sigh)
I appear to be a D something would this be right?

SorrelForbes Fri 24-May-13 00:08:15


Try a 30D. However, be prepared to go bigger in the cup in some styles. My DSis measures 28, 33 and actually wears a 28F/FF!

HarleyQuinn Fri 24-May-13 00:12:06

30D! I have never thought I would ever be that big, Thank you I will try some tomorrow.

deeplybaffled Fri 24-May-13 00:33:45

Having just tried that calculator link, it declared me to be a 40 aasad
And that's with 35 or 36 bsnd size and a 40 boob measurement.

SorrelForbes Fri 24-May-13 00:37:21

Honestly, ignore nearly all on-line calculators. They are shit. I'd say you're more like a 34E.

chinup2011 Fri 24-May-13 08:05:40

This thread has revolutionised my life just about. My posture has changed since wearing a larger cup size, but here's the thing: it's all in the scoop. It seems vital that you really scoop properly. I've gone from dismissing a bra looking too big in the cup and too much back fat, the same bra- no back fat and quad boobs! but with a determined scoop and leaning forward into the bra. It's now comfortable too.
I've ordered several sizes from Brastop and CAN'T WAIT to get trying them on.
So ladies its the scoop that really is vital it seems.

sparkle12mar08 Fri 24-May-13 08:07:10

Indeed! I do a quick scoop every time I go to the loo these days. Which given my bladder is multiple, multiple times a day, sadly...

SorrelForbes Fri 24-May-13 08:16:31

I am always scooping (or as DH calls it, groping myself).

Theala Fri 24-May-13 10:51:43

deeplybaffled same! I am a 40A, apparently. I'm in France, so I've also done the Aubade calculator and that also declares me to be 40A. Which is what M&S said I was years and years ago.

Can anyone tell me if they're right? I'm 92cm/36.2" underneath and 103/40.5 around the boob leaning over. I've been wearing 38B most of my life, and that can sometimes be ok-ish, and sometimes lead to horrendous sideboob/backfat issues.

36d or dd needed-online calculators almost always add 4 inches.

Theala Fri 24-May-13 11:00:25

for me, SC? If so, thank you! I shall go and try on expensive bras this evening! (And then decide I can't afford them, probably.) grin

yup for you. have a wee gander at the blog for what a good bra looks like and how to test the fit

Juneywoony Fri 24-May-13 11:05:09

Ok ladies need some help, when you measure the boobs leaning over do you measure around where the nipple is, my nipples are quite pokey (chapel hat pegs have been mentioned in the past)blush Can this distort the measurement?

Theala Fri 24-May-13 11:08:09

ok, will do, thank you!

Juneywoony Fri 24-May-13 11:21:13

My measurements are 29.5 if pulled really tight 30 if not and over boob squeezing nipples in 37 and slightly over 38 if not.

Was recently measured a 32 f at debenhams

don't worry about the nipples -the cup sizet measure is only ever approximate so you will probably want to try sizes either side anyway

June try a 30ff and g

Creamtea1 Fri 24-May-13 19:11:49

Just reporting on day 3 of my new bra - was wearing 36c, measured as per advice here and then got 32F. Am now used to tighter band and have adjusted strap length slightly until have found it just right. Today bra was comfy, firm and boobs look good! No lumps, bumps etc. am awaiting delivery of another 2, all being well will then throw out the 34B, 34c and 36c's that are in my drawers! Bra revolution grin

DrinkFeckArseGirls Fri 24-May-13 20:17:48

How do you calculate that 30 inches and 37 are 30F/ FF. how can I work it out myself if I change shape when the online calculators are crap?

It's 1" difference=1 cup size. Cup sizes in most UK brands go A,B,C,D,DD,E,F,FF,G,GG,H,HH,J,JJ,K,KK,L,LL

If you measure an even number underneath, then that is your band and the difference gives you cup. So a 30/37 would be around a 30F

If you measure an odd number then you will want to consider bands either size, and it;s debatable whether it's the difference between your measurements, or your top measurment and the actual band. So, if you measured 31/37 you would try:

30F (7" difference so overbust-lower band size)
30E (6" difference i.e. difference between your measurements)
32E (as above but on higher band
32DD (5" difference, overbust-top band size)

chinup2011 Sat 25-May-13 11:14:21

Hi again, received this morning a delivery of a few bras!
I'm measuring a 34GG but the majority of them sit fine around the band but I could pinch about 1inch worth of looseness from the strap to the centre front, would I go down a cup size but keep the band the same and do you think this would help with the cutting in at the front of the arms. Looking at my boobs I think a balconette style could probably work best as it is the upper part of the boob which is missing, they are seriously droopy! But I read up post that the straps are wide set so may cut in at side of arms.
Any help appreciated.

CajaDeLaMemoria Sat 25-May-13 12:13:20

I woke up wearing a 34C.

Im now wearing a 32E, which is oh-so-comfortable. Although the band feels like it's suffocating me! I'm not used to being able to feel it.

Thank you all so, so much.

EricNorthmansFangBanger Sat 25-May-13 18:13:34

Ok I'm confused. I've just done the measurements and I'm measuring a 45 round the bottom bit and then a 58 around the chest. Does that mean a 44J? I'm currently wearing a 44G cup but my boobs spill out a bit - granted I am breastfeeding at the moment. How tight should I have pulled around to measure the back size? After 3 pregnancies my boobs are uneven so I took the 58 measurement in keeping with the bigger boob - is that correct?

EricNorthmansFangBanger Sat 25-May-13 18:18:27

Sorry make that a 42 around the back

PinkMangoSays Sat 25-May-13 18:44:45

under 29.75
boobs 33.5
I've been wearing a 32B but it's always riding up/straps falling off

I don't have a clue how to get my size from those measurements?! could I have some help? do I round up/down etc (as i'm so small I think those half inches really count!)

sparkle12mar08 Sat 25-May-13 19:46:19

Try a 30D and sizes surrounding, so 30D and 28DD. You might need to try 30C and 28D too.

Eric - start with a 42KK to start (based on 42/58). I'm afraid you are going to find the selection is a bit pathetic though. Because you are slightly larger you may actually find you need a smaller back size than you measure - it's to do with both torso squishiness and the amount of stretch a larger bra may have so you might also want to try a 40 back. The Bravissimo Alana only goes to a 40 back but comes in a KK and L so maybe try those as a starter?

PinkMangoSays - start with a 30C and 30D. Both the issues you mention are normally symptoms of the back being too big.

bumblebeebag Sat 25-May-13 20:05:30

I have been lurking for many days now and I'm tentatively ready to step into the bra changing room.....
I've never done the adding 4 or 5 thing because I'm 38 band, and all the shops in my budget never seemed to do above that in small cup sizes. Only now, I'm not so sure I'm a small cup size.

Currently wearing 38B. The band rolls up a bit and if I even mildly scoop I get quadroboobs.
I measure 38 and 43. So is that a 38DD? But they just look enormous. Is it going to be possible to find a seamless/ Tshirt one that doesn't give me a false-boob-at-the-top-effect? I'm wondering what sort of shape to look for to prevent that, I do have a very ill advised maternity bra that always made me look like I had balloons up my top because the cups were so round all the way, and I just didn't fill them right the way up!

Sadly, my budget is very much Tesco/ Asda/ M&S end.

I know I'm last in a long line of requesters, but if anyone has any thoughts, please let me know!

Size wise yes, a 38DD. There are quite a lot of seamless/t-shirt bras available and if you shop online you can probably get a really decent bra for M&S type prices - brastop, mycurvesandme, amazon are all great for bargains.

Can you explain what you mean by the "false boob at the top" effect? Is it that your boobs are quite bottom heavy so you fill the bottom of the bra, but not the top?

Moulded/tshirt bras are actually the hardest to fit simply because the moulding gives them a very specific shape. If that shape matches your breast shape you're fine but otherwise you end up with gaping. I'm wondering if you might like something like the Cleo Juna or the Panache Idina which are balconettes so not as high at the top - so wouldn't have the emptiness issue.

bumblebeebag Sun 26-May-13 11:19:45

Bottom heavy boobs- that was exactly what I meant! Thank god someone else knows how to use actual real phrases.....
Thank you for the tips, once I've got rid of the kids for a bit I'll get started on looking. And I'll let you know how it goes!

chinup2011 Sun 26-May-13 11:54:55

Yes! That's it Bumble, I've the same make boobs- bottom heavy, I'm after a t-shirt bra but the top bit is empty. Im sure going round in circles with this fitting thing. I think t- shirt bras are now not going to be any good, I've never found a successful one yet.

Good tshirt bras, even for softer boobs, are not impossible, but how well they work is dependent on breast shape. The one important point with lack of volume is that the centre gore needs to have some depth otherwise the breast tissue will slide towards/out of the centre and leave gaps at the top where the strap joins the cup.

I'd recommend trying the following styles

Fantasie (all run a cup large so may need to size down)- Rebecca, smoothing (code FL4510), and their other smoothing which has no foam (better on rounder, not too soft, shaped boobs)

Cleo- Juna (fits to size) and Maddie (really small/tight so need to go up a band and/or cup but a great shape)

Panache- Porcelain balconette (go up a cup)

Debenhams- comfort cup tshirt bra. Most Debenhams styles are a little tight/small so be prepared to size up.

Oops, I forgot.

Elomi do a couple of tshirt styles, they start at a 34 band. Great if you are fleshy and find other styles squish out underarm or are too pointy.

bumblebeebag Mon 27-May-13 08:39:11

Woooo- bottom heavy boob club!
Kind of getting excited about having nice bras. Also imagining total figure transformation, which may be less realistic.

ThingummyBob Mon 27-May-13 09:23:27

I've just read this thread in wide-eyed fascination smile

I was measured in m&s just after xmas and told I needed a 36 or 38D.
The bras I bought that day have never been comfy though.

I've just measured myself and I'm a snug 35" underneath and 44" with boobs hanging at 90 degree angle.

I am shock that I have been wearing the wrong size it seems. No wonder I get over spill from the cups!

If I've understood the thread I should be trying a 34F to start with should I?

Yup, and be prepared to go up in the cup. Being between band sizes often means going down, but if you feel mad enough compelled to return to M&S bear in mind that many if their styles are quite tight, and they skip some letters hmm so you could be bigger in both band AND cup.

Actually, not F, more like G/GG.

ThingummyBob Mon 27-May-13 09:50:11

Thanks Married, and Oh god no, I won't be returning M&S! I have a bravissimo in town so I'll start with one or two from there!

ThingummyBob Mon 27-May-13 09:51:41

Aargh G/GG ?!

I have spent years trying to get bra's that fit properly... no wonder they never really have!

Joycey29 Mon 27-May-13 11:54:21

Ok - I ve been an advocate of wearing the correct bra size for years and have an extensive underwear range to prove it. Basically, I feel if I'm properly dressed underneath then all is good.
So in light of your amazing blog i thought i would remeasure to check.
I think I'm a 34c, all seems right from the way my bras fit, no bulges, no movement, good shape under clothes etc.
Anyway, I measured with your rule (I measure 33 and 37)and so I reckon it comes out as 32DD. I was amazed but duly sent DH out to buy one to see. Bless him he bought 30DD but to be honest in every contortion possible I had a 4 inch gap between the ends.
Am taking bra back to exchange tomorrow, will try on a couple but can't see a 32 getting round me??

I remember my first proper fitting about 7/8 years ago where I was taken up a cup from E to F. It had never occurred to me that anything beyond E existed, it had taken that long to find an E <peers wistfully down at G cups>

There are many variances of sizing and shape between brands and styles so the 34Cs you have could well be ok. Out of interest, try a 34D and 32DD in the same style and see how that goes. If there's not enough cup room, the bra band won't be able to get close enough to your body to fasten comfortably.

I see many women who think their size is right because they are not bulging over, but they often have a wide flesh filled gap between the outer edge of the cups and the side seams of the bra. If it's firm it won't bulge but it's still breast and should be in the cup.

As married says, the cup on a 30DD will be distorting things too as it's really designed for someone who measures around 35" across the bust. Even if I try to put something in the right band size, but too small in the cup, then I will often seriously struggle to do it up.

I had a similar size change, went from a 32F/FF to a 30G (years ago!) and I had thought my 32FFs were fine but going down that single back size actually made a huge difference. There was nothing obviously bad about the 32s until I compared them.

Awks Mon 27-May-13 14:45:59

Hi just measured and am 33 under and 42 hanging loose. So maybe a 34 g? As oposed to the 38dd I am currently falling out of all over the place. No wonder i look like I have about 8 breasts on each side. Kinell am going to Debenhams. Right. Now.

Try a 32G, 32GG, 34G and 34FF to start with - you will probably be somewhere around those sizes!

Your description of 8 breasts made me giggle - one of my friends was like that, a 30GG in a 36D. She had one in the cup, one over the top, one in the armpit, one escaping underneath the wires and at least one at the back too.

RollerCola Mon 27-May-13 15:31:08

Does anyone know if Curvy Kate bras are any good for bottom heavy boobs? Their prices seem quite good on bra stop. Also any idea if they're true to size?

which ones roller? their showgirl range especially the tease and thrill me, and fleurty might be good. I would say they run a cup small maybe a little more and those ones have very stretchy backs too. I'd order a few to try

RollerCola Mon 27-May-13 16:15:23

Yes the tease me/thrill me & also the Gia are all less than £20. I think they're all balconette styles - are these the style I need to be looking at if I'm bottom heavy? What about the times when I need a bit of ooomph though? I always thought a plunge style was better for cleavage? (I'm a 30e so not massive)

Awks Mon 27-May-13 16:16:42

OMFG I have bought a 32GG. It was either a 34G on the tightest hook or a 32GG on the loosest one that fit best out of the 27 bras I tried on and it feels snug but I only have one boob now. How can I have got it SO wrong, though saying that I was fitted for a 36dd in M & S about 6 months ago. Thank you SO much

sparkle12mar08 Mon 27-May-13 16:20:40

I've a few CKs and Statistically is right, there's a lot of stretch in the padded Showgirl range, I measure 31.5 under but wear a 28 in Tease Me and Thrill Me! And yes they are small in the cup, I normally wear a 30H but need a 28J (ie. 30HH) in these. Yet the unpadded normal lace ones are fairly true to size (Angel, Emily, Portia etc) and I wear a 30GG or H in those.

As to shape, the Showgirls are very open on top so can look stunning with full all over boobs - think very Marie Antoinette! But the support is mostly around the bottom half of the cup. They are quite wide set wires and a relatively shallow forwards projection, think in and up as opposed to forwards and up.

RollerCola Mon 27-May-13 17:21:12

Thanks sparkle, so if I measure 29.5 and 36 and currently wear 30E would you suggest I go for 28FF in the tease me/thrill me range? Don't think they go any lower than 28.

MsCellophane Mon 27-May-13 18:57:23

I don't have a tape measure but last time I did, I ended up buying 44A

I think I remember under boob measuring 39 - so working backwards, any have any idea of what cup I should try (thinking I need to try 38 & 40 band)

I'm guessing you measure 45 across - that was probably taken standing up so may be slightly on the low side. On the basis you are 39 under (and probably not measured hugely tightly) you are probably closer to a 38F/FF ish

sparkle12mar08 Mon 27-May-13 19:23:13

RollerCola - def the 28 from my experiences, the degree of stretch is considerable and the 30 would go to about 36" at full stretch. Order the F and FF and possibly even a G just to check. They are very open so for me the even larger cup provides just a little bit more security!

sparkle12mar08 Mon 27-May-13 19:25:53

My big issue with the non padded CKs though is the slightly odd shape I feel they have - it's a very pointy east-west sort of thing, even in my correct size. I much prefer the rounded shape of the Showgirl range - they may not be smooth t-shirt bras but with a cardi on or in the winter, hell, who doesn't need the thrill of knowing you've got shit hot underwear on?! I wear mine at least a couple of times a week grin

I'm like you sparkle - I don't care if people can see seams. T-shirts bras aren't great on me and frankly it's pretty damn obvious I am wearing a bra anyway!

sparkle12mar08 Mon 27-May-13 20:09:40

Too right! These puppies are not going free range anytime soon!

HazleNutt Mon 27-May-13 20:23:50

Awks I would take photos, send them to M&S and complain. It's just appalling - they are responsible for thousands of four-boobs and aching backs.

Awks - Sadly this is M&S's standard operating model - shove women in shit bras. They tried to put me (30HH/J) in a 36F, Sorrel (30G/GG) in a 38d and several others equally grim. There are some reviews of their fitting service (we mystery shopped them!) on the blog and we harrassed them a fair old bit on social media too. But they don't care

This is amazing! If I measure 31 below bust and 36 loose at widest part, have I calculated correctly 30E? My boobs are quite small, sounds an odd size - I wear 32B

MustafaCake Mon 27-May-13 21:19:21

Thank you ladies, I stumbled on this thread browsing MN and I am now wearing THE MOST COMFY BRA EVER.

Was measured as a 38C at M&S recently but using your method am now in a much more comfy 34F.


make - try a 30dd, 30e, 32dd and 32d. but the 30e is the most likel

mustafa - oh, look, M&S get it wrong.....again!!

Lambzig Tue 28-May-13 10:39:37

Could I ask about bikinis please?

You have already helped me from an MandS 36C recently measured, to a 30FF in Freya. Obviously, I look so much better, but I have also noticed that my creepy cleavage has gone, obviously not being squashed wrongly means the wrinkles have gone too.

Obviously, I will throw out my 34D bikini tops, but I also have several dress sized 12 bikini tops which still look ok. Is it worth getting bra sized swimwear and do you know if i would get the same size? Does anyone have advice about brands?

HazleNutt Tue 28-May-13 10:45:48

yes, it's absolutely worth to get bra sized bikinis - first time I got them, I was amazed - "Look! I can actually walk around without falling out of the top!!"

The same brands that have been recommended for bras do nice bikinis as well - Freya, Panache, Fantasie etc.

Autumn12 Tue 28-May-13 11:52:20

I need some more help from you bra experts!

We worked out on a couple of previous threads that I should be in a 32D or DD. I'm wearing a 32D bra today and it's getting really uncomfortable! The band is really tight and digging in. If I wasn't at work I would be taking the bra off it's that uncomfortable! My around body measurement was 31.5. Should I try sizing up to a 34 band?

it's unlikely that you would need a 34. are you certain that you have adequate cup space? sometimes bras can look ok to begin with but then your boobs settle in to them and change the comfort level.

Autumn12 Tue 28-May-13 12:14:43

How do I tell if the cup space is not enough? It's not gaping at all (a problem I used to have).

The band is very tight (leaves red marks) and the last set of hooks are only just doing up.

HazleNutt Tue 28-May-13 12:16:26

could also depend on the brand, some are significantly smaller than the others.

Did you scoop? Put a tight t-shirt on, breathe in - is there any spillage over the edge of the bra?

Autumn12 Tue 28-May-13 12:23:07

I'm pregnanat so all of my T-shirts are tight wink.

Its a Mothercare Maternity Bra if that makes any difference. No spillage out of the cups, but my boob does sort of sit ever so slightly over the band if that makes sense? Almost like the straps need to be tightened to hoik my boobs up a bit but if they are any tighter they start to hurt at the top of the cup.

the stuff that is sitting over the band needs hauled in to the cup. also if it is a new bra it should be on the loosest hook

HazleNutt Tue 28-May-13 12:49:54

It's a non-wired bra? Those never fit as well and underwired ones unfortunately. So try both bigger back and bigger cup and see which one is better.
(am also pregnant and not giving up my normal bras)

I was like you hazle, no giving up on wires here either

Autumn12 Tue 28-May-13 13:08:40

The stuff that is sitting over the band is inside the cup already. It seems to be the bra that is focring the boob into this shape as they don't sit like this usually. i.e. naked I couldn't hokld a pencil under my breast but I almost could with this bra on.

It's also on the loosest hook, not a chance of it even meeting on any of the other hooks, and I think that on the loosest it's struggling.

It is an unwired bra. I haven't seen any wired maternity bra's and my usual bra's were really not working for me anymore (36A's). I've really struggled to find any maternity bra's in a 32 band, and I don't really want to spend lots on them as I will hopefully only be wearing them for another 10 weeks.

that sounds like a dreadful bra tbh. personally I did not wear maternity bras at all-I just wore normal ones. If you are planning to breast feed then you will want to buy proper feeding bras nearer the time or after baby arrives but during pregnancy you might be as well buying a couple of normal bras to tide you over

Autumn12 Tue 28-May-13 13:21:17

Thanks. I so wish you cuold come and take a look at it!

Autumn12 Tue 28-May-13 13:42:20

Out of interest where do you find underwired feeding bra's?

HazleNutt Tue 28-May-13 13:46:23

Nursing bras here:

Like SC, I just bought regular bras in a bigger size instead of maternity bras.

Autumn12 Tue 28-May-13 13:50:33

Thanks I'll take a look. I've found a shortage of 32 back in normal bra's too for some reason.

HazleNutt Tue 28-May-13 13:58:10

Figleaves should have enough normal ones in 32, also ebay. But yes, thanks to the "Katie Price is 34DD" and similar myths, shops often only stock huge back sizes with anything over D-cup.

cjbk1 Tue 28-May-13 17:19:25

dear all esp. statically I have mixed news; I agree with the 30D Measurement I went to Debenhams on Saturday and tried on a load (i was pleased that they even had some) however none gave any cleavage whatsoever the strapless nude wonderbra looked like a big plaster there were two girls working who seemed to know what they were doing (but busy with others) but as I was with the baby I came back today without her, a different lady was working she only measured me under bust and tried to give me 30a and 32a again (saying a newer bra wld fit better) none of which were flattering at all and gave me fat under the armpits I'm really disheartened now not sure what to do someone has suggested M&S but they were no good to me before as I've mentioned on here some time ago.... I don't know whether to just order some more 30D online or what to do? just feels like one more bad small boob experience hmm not blaming anyone x

ThingummyBob Tue 28-May-13 17:57:49

Thanks to this thread I've been bra shopping today and I'm now very comfy in a 34F after wearing 36/38D for ages!

Got three from Debenhams, not sure on the range but it was definitely one aimed at 'bigger busts' (should be 'perfectly normal bust' size, so it seems!) and then two from primark. These are both a 34G though as they seemed to come up smaller. For a fiver each though I'm not complaining wink Tbh I was surprised they had any. Went in La senza and there were hardly any styles in F/G cups hmm

I'll wait now and get a couple more in bravissimo next month, but thanks again married and statistically et al grin

ThingummyBob Tue 28-May-13 17:59:55

cjbk1 I'm no expert, but how on earth can they even give a size by taking only 1 measurement? Seems bonkers.

I'd be inclined to go with the MN advice if I were you which I was

Autumn12 Tue 28-May-13 19:32:00

I've come home and taken my uncomfortable new bra off to find deep red welts that are really sore! So I decided to measure myself and my measurements are 34 and then 38 around the nipple.

No wonder the 32D has been so uncomfortable! Is it possible to have gained those extra inches around the under chest area during pregnancy ( I've not ballooned or anything but my bump is big now) or did I somehow manage to measure myself completely wrong to begin with?

HazleNutt Tue 28-May-13 19:34:08

I went from 32 to 36 in matter of weeks quite early in my pregnancy, totally normal to have your rib cage expanding.

Autumn12 Tue 28-May-13 19:45:38

For some reason it never occurred to me. I thought only the actual boobs would expand. Well it will certainly be a lot easier finding 34C/D bras.

MyFabulousBoys Tue 28-May-13 19:53:38

Can you help me please?

33.5 around strap line. 40 at fullest part at 90 degree bend. Have been told I am 38B or 36C. Neither fits. My boobs are wide spaced and fullness def at sides so plunge with a space between the cups is definitely the best. Balcony never suits my shape. I prefer push up bras as I have full hips (fat bottom grin) and like to even up my shape.

Please help! I am down to one ill fitting bra!

HazleNutt Tue 28-May-13 19:55:25

I would try around 34E

sparkle12mar08 Tue 28-May-13 20:02:38

Your ribcage expands because the bump shoves all your other organs (stomach, lungs, etc) upwards to find space for itself. All your ligaments are looser too, and hence things go outwards. Pregnancy is a bugger sometimes! You could always try an extender though if your cup volume hasn't gone up yet - they're only about a pound or so in most places and could give you weeks more wear for very little cost. My local Waitrose has these on the haberdashery stand in store, for example.

Rib cage expansion = normal! I think it tends to be worse in women who are short as there is less space for the bump!

I only went up one back size in preg strangely (despite epic weight gain which is mostly still here!)

MyFabulousBoys Tue 28-May-13 20:07:53

Really? shock I've always thought I have smallish boobs! How exciting to be an E cup!!

Autumn12 Tue 28-May-13 22:11:58

Thanks for the help. I will go and buy some new bras tomorrow I think as im so fed up with being uncomfortable.

My cup volume expanded in the first trimester but has sort of tailed off now. I've still got 10 weeks to go though so they could grow again I suppose.

MrsKoala Wed 29-May-13 13:37:04

Can i jump in and ask a general boob question? How long does it take after stopping bfing for your boobs to return to 'normal' size?

<narrows eyes and wills everyone to say over 3 weeks>

They might well never be their pre pregnancy size I'm afraid

MrsKoala Wed 29-May-13 16:07:00

I was afraid you may say that. i started a thread in chat about it sad

Do you have any bra suggestions if you have one boob much bigger than the other?

Beamae Wed 29-May-13 16:16:26

I have decided to stop putting off the inevitable and need to buy a pregnancy bra. I'm 23 weeks now and bursting out of my old bras. My measurements are 34.5 inches under and 42.5 over. I'm thinking that is a 34FF? But I'm looking on John Lewis, M&S and Figleaves and that size doesn't seem to exist. Apologies if this has been covered before, but am I then looking to go up a band size and down a cup size, or down a band size and up a cup size? I really want to shop online but I'm finding even the lack of available sizes online quite difficult to negotiate!

Yup 34FF/G. Forget M&S their larger bras are rubbish. Figleaves and JL both do a 34FF, but for choice try debenhams, bravissimo, brastop, mycurvesandme, amazon...

Beamae Wed 29-May-13 20:05:11

Thanks. Will give it a whirl.

I've just posted the following on your thread too.

Fellow bra gurus Would a version of this be any good for the blog?

An update of something I posted before.

A few words about differing cup sizes and how to manage them

You do not always necessarily have to pad the smaller cup to balance the bra out. I'm about a cup and a half different and never use fillets. The trick is to choose styles that can disguise it. The hardest style tends to be soft, balconettes that slope rather than sit almost horizontally across the top of the cup IME, as they wrinkle and bag at the top where the strap joins.

To balance the smaller side, hoick the smaller breast diagonally towards the top and centre of the cup, as if trying to pull it towards a pendant on your necklace, whilst simultaneously pulling the bottom of the cup in the opposite direction. Try to push any excess fabric towards your body with your fingertips while you are holding your breast on your chin out of the way. In many cases, the material at the bottom of the cup will gather/pucker allowing the breast to sit on it when you let go, thus filling the top of the cup like the fuller side. The empty part of the cup is now at the bottom and so will not show once you are dressed.

Cleo Juna and many slightly padded half cup styles are often good for such disguise. They're also great for loss of volume post weight loss/breastfeeding. Pull the smaller breast forward as before, but in a more horizontal direction away from the armpit.

Tshirt styles that work include Freya Deco, Bravissimo Purity and the Panache Porcelain. These styles are not all so good at gathering under the cup because of the foam, but look fine once dressed.

Fuller cup styles are good, particularly Panache Andorra and Melody full cup. Fantasie side support styles such as Elodie, and non padded Cleo styles such as Meg and Marcie sit particularly well if you need a deeper cup.
Newer Panache styles that are performing spectacularly are the Jasmine and Idina, as they have some stretch lace on the upper part of the cup.

One I'd forgotten until recently is the Charnos Cherub full cup. It's light stretchy lace and the sizing's a bit off but it can perform miracles, even if your breasts are very soft! Go up a band and down two cups e.g. if you are a 32F try a 34DD.

Overall, aim to start off fitting the larger side as closely as possible without any overflow, then fine tune. Firmness in the band is essential to avoid slipping about within the cups..

Nearly every woman I fit has an obvious size difference but in 5 years, I can count on one hand how many times I've needed to suggest adding a filler of any kind.

definitely married-I will add it in the next day or two

SoulCakeDuck Thu 30-May-13 09:42:36

Hello, this is my first foray into the world of bra intervention. Have been living in very unsexy (probably unfitting) mothercare nursing bras for months but my DD is just coming up for 10 months and I would like to treat myself to some new fitting/flattering underwear.

Have taken my measurements as 31 under and 37 over bust, so does 30E sound like a good starting point? As most of it will be done online (live in the middle of nowhere) I would like to at least have a good first guess. Have been in 36C for as long as I can remember so quite a change I'm sure! I've seen brastop mentioned a few times, will probably have a look there.

Thank you.

SorrelForbes Thu 30-May-13 09:56:46

Great user name!

Try a 30E and a 30F and possibly a 32E. Happy shopping.

I must recommend My Curves and Me.

After my disastrous outing to Marks the other week I spent ages online trying to find cheap 38H/HH.
I went through the sale section online and ordered 10 bras, blushexpecting to have to take them all back.
I found about 3/4 different styles most of the Panache I think.

The parcel arrived yesterday. Miles of lace and suspension bridge engineering.
I have tried 3 on so far all reduced to £7 each and loved them. Had one on for 5 hours with no discomfort at all. The other 2 for a couple of hours each as they are identical just different colours.

Something I didn't expect though, they really helped my back and my posture, made it so much easier to stand up straight.

I have the rest to try on this week and for a change I am looking forward to it rather than dreading it.

Thanks my Boobie Friends
( . )( . )

I must recommend My Curves and Me.

After my disastrous outing to Marks the other week I spent ages online trying to find cheap 38H/HH.
I went through the sale section online and ordered 10 bras, blushexpecting to have to take them all back.
I found about 3/4 different styles most of the Panache I think.

The parcel arrived yesterday. Miles of lace and suspension bridge engineering.
I have tried 3 on so far all reduced to £7 each and loved them. Had one on for 5 hours with no discomfort at all. The other 2 for a couple of hours each as they are identical just different colours.

Something I didn't expect though, they really helped my back and my posture, made it so much easier to stand up straight.

I have the rest to try on this week and for a change I am looking forward to it rather than dreading it.

Thanks my Boobie Friends
( . )( . )

Gannetgob Thu 30-May-13 11:14:46

Hi all, I have just come across this topic, and I think I need your help.

I don't think I have ever worn the right size bra and just feel crap every time I go to be measured. In m&s they once tried to put me in a 42something or other which was completely ridiculous.

I'm 11 weeks pregnant and I am currently wearing a 36C. I haven't been measured since becoming pregnant, but I don't think they have changed all that much anyway.

I have done the measurements and I am just under 36 under bust and 42 when doing the sexy bending over measurement! This would suggest a 34/36E?

My problem is that I have rubbish boobs. I have no fullness at the top of my breasts. This makes it seem as though a C is too big because it can gape at the top of the cup if you get what I mean. I therefore can't see how an E would be any good for me!

I desperately want to be proved wrong and find a bra that is perfect! I'm hoping to go shopping this afternoon or tomorrow, so any advice on styles to go for would be fantastic!

Thanks :D

SorrelForbes Thu 30-May-13 11:29:28

Hmmm, I would start with a 34 band (make sure you try it on back to front first to gauge the fit without it being skewed by the cups).

Try some balconette styles in a 34FF, 34F and sizes around that. Make sure you scoop!

Gannetgob Thu 30-May-13 11:34:16

Thanks. I'll let you know how I get on! grin

SoulCakeDuck Thu 30-May-13 12:19:09

Great, thank you. Have had a look at My Curves and Me and have filled my shopping basket with some things to try. Does anyone have a discount code for them?

Also is there delivery quite quick? We are moving next Friday so not sure whether to have them delivered to there or a relatives house?

I ordered Friday night and they came Wednesday morning. So that was a weekend and a Bank holiday in between. I would imagine that usually they would be quicker!

I'm currently really happy with my bra fitting, but I think you could help my SIL. She complains constantly about her bras, she's gained weight in recent years and I think she's still clinging onto ones which are much too small, she's definitely working the 4 boob look. She had a fitting in M&S but no joy, am hoping mn can help.

I've just asked her to do the measuring in the way suggested and she's apparently 39" under the bust (if tape measure is pulled tightish) and 52 if you do the bending over measurement (which was so funny trying to explain how to do by text!!!). She tried a 38DD and it wasn't right.

I've also noticed she seems to be either always pulling up or getting marks from her bra straps. Am hoping you can advise as she really complains about back pain and it might stop her whipping her bra off at mine nearly every evening! grin

OK - suggest she starts with a 38j/JJ and works from there.

Wow a J, I will let her know.

Don't think I've ever even seen a bra that size.

Thanks thanks

Gannetgob Thu 30-May-13 14:53:28

I bought a 34E. The F felt a bit big so the E was better and I'm really happy with it. grin

Thanks for your help. I'm going to tell everybody I know about this!

PenfoldRocks Thu 30-May-13 15:30:23

I have measured and gone from 32D to 30F - my problem is the underarm thing - in my old bras I had underarm boobage, but when I try bigger, the wire/strap seems to dig in under my arm and rub. Any ideas?

PinkMangoSays Thu 30-May-13 16:47:44

M and s were completely rubbish! They said that a Bra that I could pull out rally far was the right band size...

SorrelForbes Thu 30-May-13 16:52:31

M&S fitted me (a few months ago) as a 36/38 D. I'm a 30GG. Shocking.

That's great gannetgob - the cup measurememnt is always rougher, it gives you an idea of the area you should be in but can easily be a size or two either way from there.

Penfold - which bras have you tried? This can be a fit issue, it can be a "getting used to it" issue as it's a place the fabric won't have sat before, but it is also commonly a style issue.

PinkMangoSays Thu 30-May-13 17:24:32

They were so snooty and insistent they were right as well... In the end I gave up and walked out. I'm about to try boux avenue

The boux fitting service came in for some major flak on another bra blog...will try to find. It might have been invest in your chest

CamelBalls Thu 30-May-13 20:08:34

I need help!

I have a bra which clearly doesn't for bit I don't know how to find one that does blushes currently wearing a 34 GG and within 10 mins my boobs are spilling out of the top - let alone if I run!

I work with kids and need some decent supportive bra and sports bra I don't get back ache but I want my clothes to fit nicely! I have lost 1.5 stone since buying a bra and now I'm complety lost!

Any help would be greatly received and needed!!

OK, measure yourself as follows:

Bra off, standing up, measure under your bust very firmly.
Then - bend forward at the waist so your boobs are dangling down away from your body. Measure round the widest part - this shouldn't be a tight measure

Post em up here and we'll help

PinkMangoSays Thu 30-May-13 20:14:23

ok successfully got a bra from boux and instead of just measuring she checked the band straps and how the cups fit. I thought it was very good and much better than m&s and i've come out witha comfy bra!

MrsDesperado Thu 30-May-13 20:45:35

Delurking to mention to Baemae that I have two x 34G (one white one black) nursing bras and 2 x 34FF pregnancy bras (also one white one black) by Miriam Stoppard "Nurture" from Debenhams. I don't think I ever wore them (though 3 have been washed, one still has its label on it). They're yours if you want them?

Also wanted a bit of help. Am 31 under, 36 over, 32DD fits best BUT really struggling to find a suitable bra. The ones that fit tend to make me too pointy or if theyre not pointy there are baggy bits in the nipple area or on top of the cup if its a full cup bra. I have found near perfection with the Triumph Amourette 300 Underwired Bra however if I could make the straps adjustable all the way over (not just up to my back) and preferably have it in a smooth fabric (lace can be a bit bumpy) it would be perfect.

Does such a thing exits?

(Fwiw, I don't really usually get on with moulded bras, I don't like the indent you get between bra and boob where they join iykwim, however they are good at smoothing down my enormous large nipples. The Triumph amourette is great as it has a fabric bit that smooths over the moulded but, thus solving my problem)

SorrelForbes Thu 30-May-13 21:22:27

I like the Cleo Juna and married has introduced me to the Panache Idina. Both very simple but comfortable ad give great lift.

MrsDesperado Thu 30-May-13 21:44:48

Thanks Sorrell have ordered both, the Juna in particular looks great.

Figleaves have got 20% off at mo too so other suggestions are most welcome!

MrsKoala Thu 30-May-13 22:43:45

ooooh thanks marriednotdead.

I've just measured myself and i'm 37 under and 41 on top. What size does that make me?

MrsKoala Thu 30-May-13 22:52:34

Sorry, distracted by the magnificent 7 blush i meant to add:

I think i may try a 36 d. Does that sound right to you experts?

I do like balcony styles best as i have wide apart boobs, but after reading the one bigger boob bit, does that mean i should try a different style?

Thanks for all the help smile

try a dd too

Half cups/balcony styles sound ideal, remember to scoop horizontally towards the centre smile

MrsKoala Thu 30-May-13 23:01:11

okay will do. I still think i may need some extra padding on lefty tho. it's defo about 3 cup sizes difference. sad

Cross that bridge if you get to it.

MrsKoala Thu 30-May-13 23:04:16

Also there isn't enough boob on the left to 'cleavage' even if i scrape it and put a fillet underneath. Does that mean i have to have a fuller cup to cover it all?

Not necessarily. Something stretchy like an Idina balconette could be good but TBH, in the size range you're looking at, there are many cheaper high street or supermarket options worth a shot.

If you've got time, and a few shops, try on whatever you can find. The more straight across, the better.

That Triumph one MrsDesperado linked to might be worth a shot too.

MrsKoala Thu 30-May-13 23:24:29

oh well that's positive Married - the straight across ones are my fave smile (i feel not quite so shit about myself now)

MrsKoala Fri 31-May-13 07:52:14

Right - i haven't been up looking at bras all night really - but would i be way off the mark with a style like this? bra

I'm utterly clueless really, i've always hated my boobs and have been wearing a 40a for years. It's a joke in my family how you always find my bras dotted about the place because i get so uncomfortable i just take them off wherever i am blush

I think i also need wide underarm bands as i have a lot of back fat/boob seepage.

Only issue with that one MrsKoala - I've actually tried it in a different shape, and the fabric is a bit useless IMO. Give it a try anyway as it may be better in that cut, but the one I tried the fabric was just too darn soft and floppy to give enough support. It looks a good shape though

There are quite a few potentials in your size on brastop and in the outlet bit of leia. They're not cheap generally but you can sometime get very good deals on the Fauve hald cups which I have heard very good things about.

There are also some nice reduced balconettes over on mycurves and me
[[ rihanna]

MrsKoala Fri 31-May-13 08:43:07

oooooo i'm loving all of those, especially the juna. so if i order them should i order both a d and a dd then send some back? are you allowed to do that with bras?

Oh gosh yes, I am always ordering hoards of bras and sending them back. TBH, sometimes a quick try on in a shop isn't enough to tell if a bra is comfy so trying them on at home can be good as you can give it a bit longer to see if it works.

If you want wider backs for squish management then you'd be better in some of the Curvy Kate Showgirl range- Flerty is my personal favourite. Juna is not so wide, band wise and only ever has two hooks.

The Freya padded half cups are a much better fit than their non padded balconettes in the same range. The Lauren balconette is particularly crap on most people, although it can sometimes be rescued by going down a band and up a cup.

MrsKoala Fri 31-May-13 09:11:54

great thanks, i like that flerty one too.

so if i'm 37 back, and hate being uncomfortable, should i stick with a 36 or should i also order 38s?

Sorry to bombard you with questions. i have little time (emigrating in a month), can't drive (so no access to shops), and have an 8mo attached to me constantly. So i'm going to try to get a decent fitting bra via internet orders - which may not be entirely successful confused

The Curvy Kate Showgirls are, IMO, very stretchy so I would definitely go with a 36 in those. I haven't tried the Juna myself.

StrangeGlue Fri 31-May-13 09:37:22

Hello bra people, I'm hoping you can sort me out. Pre DD I wore at 32 A or B depending on the shop. I'm currently wearing a 34 or 36 B but one feels a bit tight and the other a bit loose.

I took my measurements and they were: under bust 33: fullest part bending at 90 degrees 39 and above bust 36. What size do you think I am?

Also, what style would you recommend? The weight of my boobs is to the size and bottom iykwim so even when they were huge when I was pregnant I didn't have much cleavage. I generally go for a plunge and never seem to be able to fill a balconette.


Start by trying a 32E/F and a 34E/DD

It sounds like something relatively plunging might still work for you but I would suggest trying a few styles once you have your size sorted as this will probably make things that didn't work before, work.

You're between band sizes so try 32 or 34 E and F. If plunges work for you then go for it.

Some of the Bravissimo own brand ones such as Satine and Dixie are really comfortable. Satine comes up a little small in the cup so don't be afraid to go past F if need be!

StrangeGlue Fri 31-May-13 10:25:21

E/F! What! Right, well if you say so I'm off bra shopping this weekend!

MrsKoala Fri 31-May-13 16:15:07

Oh bra ladies, Can i ask one more question - What are agent provocateur and myla like for bras? DH likes their stuff and up to now hasn't been able to buy me any bras to match the pants/corsets/waspies (because they don't do 40a's confused ). But now if i tell him i'm a 36d he will be able to.

So are they any good as actual bras, or are they just for decorating the bedroom floor? wink I'd like to get some wear out of them if so. If not are there any other sexy brands which are also practical?

Not tried them myself (way out of their sizing range!)

For good but still sexy - Fauve have some lovely things, there is a website called cocosa which does designer sales and quite often has agent provoc, myla, mimi holliday is another one. If 36D is the correct size you are going to have a wonderful choice available to you as most brands go up to at least a D, and all the D+ brands will cover it too.

MrsKoala Fri 31-May-13 16:30:07

Thanks Stat i'll have a look - I really hope i am that size, it will make up for 20 years of bra pugatory and ugly mismatching underpinnings.

I will pop into Debenhams next week and try some sizes on just to see if it's close or way off. If they generally fit i can start internet searching.

I'm so excited grin

I am soooo envy

DH bought me undies once, armed with a list detailing brand, style and size, and with his then teen DD with him cos he didn't want to look like a perv by shopping alone!

I have DH trained MND - the Bravissimo wish list feature and the Amazon wish list come in very handy!

Not that simple these days.

The only styles guaranteed to have any chance of both being comfortable and making my boobs look fab whilst not rubbing my armpit on my smaller side raw are the Freya Deco and Fantasie Nicola. Even my Elodie has to have a back extender on. And Deco slips off of my shoulders sometimes.

Every day I literally handle hundreds of bras and get comments like 'ooh, I bet you have dozens of bra styles'. I have two.

Ignorance was a lot easier!

You have my sympathies sad I seem to wear about 2 or 3 bras in rotation for comfort/awkward boob reasons too. A drawer full but many rarely worn

SorrelForbes Sat 01-Jun-13 01:05:05

Yep same here, living in my Junas, Idina and EMs at the moment.

CamelBalls Sat 01-Jun-13 20:12:51

Ok I followed statistically challenged advice
And under bust tightly I'm about 33
And on my boobs I'm 45 - surely that can't be right?!!!

Start by trying a 32HH, 32J, 34HH, 34H

CamelBalls Sat 01-Jun-13 20:57:22

Thank you!
Will go and try on bras - tomorrow am actually liking forward to it for once!

Out of curiosity - how mnay cup sizes are there?

Bravissimo goes up to a L I think but i cold see that being extended in future

CamelBalls Sat 01-Jun-13 21:21:03

Sorry for terrible spelling mistakes - watching a film at the same time!

larlemucker Sun 02-Jun-13 10:16:12


Just measured myself as 37 inches under bust and 45 inches over bust at 90 degrees. Currently wearing 42D, does this make me a 36 or 38 G???

Start by trying a 36FF, 36G, 38FF and 38F. Most likely one of the 36s

larlemucker Sun 02-Jun-13 10:26:26

Thank you

LexingtonBear Sun 02-Jun-13 21:44:11

Hello. Have heard great things about this thread! Am 34 in below bust and 40 at 90 degrees - any suggestions? Thanks so much!

Start with a 36E LexingtonBear

sparkle12mar08 Sun 02-Jun-13 22:05:24

Um, did you mean 34E Statistically?

Yes I did, thanks Sparkle! Thats what I get for typing whilst on painkillers lol!

sparkle12mar08 Sun 02-Jun-13 22:23:35

Oh no, hope you're okay?

Some horrible dentist removed two wisdom teeth the other day sad so me, mr paracetamol and mr ibuprofen are having a pity party!

sparkle12mar08 Sun 02-Jun-13 22:40:09

Bleeeeeee! The dentist is so not my favourite place to be. Got anything stonger? Stiff vodka, perhaps?!

Annoyingly not - I had codeine on the go but couldn't sleep a wink on Friday for manically scratching my nose...guess it didn't agree with me.

I'm dental phobic so it was done under sedation at the dental hospital - except the sedation wore off half way through angry and they only wound up taking out 2 instead of al 4 so I have to go back again...

NOT happy!

SorrelForbes Sun 02-Jun-13 23:18:02

Grim! I had two wisdom teeth out in the chair and two out under GA. I am a compete dental wimp despite having had major jaw surgery and braces!

Beamae Mon 03-Jun-13 14:51:53

Can I just check how to fit a soft cup maternity bra? I am trying some on from Debenhams and measured a 34FF, but was also recommended to try 34G. On both sizes I'm getting quite a hefty cleavage and the centre bit of the bra isn't flat against my breastbone. Should it be? Or is that only with underwire? I'm getting a proper cleavage line and the centre of the bra is hovering in between. Is that right? The 34FF is very comfy but I look like someone who is about to breastfeed a dozen babies!

HazleNutt Mon 03-Jun-13 15:15:14

You won't get the same fit and support with soft cups, no. Sure you even need one? I'm 37 weeks and have been wearing underwire without any problems.

Hi there
I have been through various sizes of non wire and wired bras over the past few years! After surgery I had to wear non wire and I agree with Hazlenutt, you never get the same fit and support with soft cups.
I am bit late coming in on this thread but I can't emphasise enough, a good professional fit is essential.
I though I had a fantastic fitting after implants but then went to Rigby and Peller, another league!! Ok so I had to spend some money but what a service! Do it, you wont regret it

After surgery non-wire is essential I agree - but otherwise I am just not a fan!

A good professional fit is ideal but unfortunately they're not actually that easy to get - so many places still doing it wrong.

MrsKoala Mon 03-Jun-13 16:34:36

Hi All - Me again! Hope you are feeling better Stat and your Hampsteads aren't giving you too much jip smile

Right - so i went to Debenhams and armed myself with lots of 36d bras. The plunge and t-shirt ones were awful. The balcony (or is it balconette? is there a difference?) styles fit best. The cups were fine - even my smaller boob sat right after a lot of hoiking. BBBUUUUUUT the back fat was awful. Some i could hardly breath in. I know i have got used to massive backs but I refuse to go out with such hideous back lumps. I looked like some old meat you'd see tied up in the butchers. I'd rather go bra-less than look so pudgy.

I am a little overweight (about 8lbs) and am a 14-16, but i'm 5ft 10, so not massively out of proportion. I admit i carry the pudge on my back and arms, so even when a size 12 i have back blubber.

Is this it? Nice boobs and fat back? or bad boobs and nice back? is that my choice forever <wails>

Did you try scooping the back fat like a demented possessed lady? This is normally the solution (have a look at the blog for proof!)

Don't get me wrong, I still have a little back fat but it's worse in a too big bra.

Oh..hang on...Debenhams...were the bad ones from the "gorgeous" range by any chance?

MrsKoala Mon 03-Jun-13 17:01:09

i did scoop, but the majority of the fat is right round the back so i can't scoop that far! Not sure on the ranges, i picked them up up all over the place. the tightest one was a Freya tho, i couldn't breath in it sad

OK, try going up to a 38, but I would also suggest trying a 36DD. Quite often when you aren't able to scoop more in it's because you've run out of cup room. It also makes the back fat worse - if the cup is a little neat (and it's not always immediately obvious) then it borrows fabric from the back making it feel tighter than it is.

MrsKoala Mon 03-Jun-13 17:16:12

if i go up to a 38 should i go down to a c? The d cups were still quite roomy even with all the scraping. I just can't see how it is possible to get fat from right round my back into my bra cup confused

What is the blog you mentioned? maybe i'm not doing it right.

Observe the scary backfat here

Scooping - the way I do it is:

Put the bra on by slipping my arms through the straps, leaning forward, dropping breasts in to the cups and then fastening at the back. Then:
Lean right forward. Take right hand, put it inside left cup and reach round as far as you can. Quite forcefully grab all soft tissue/fat that is hanging around both below and above the strap and drag it forward in to the cups. I do this standing side on to a mirror as it makes sure I get it all. Do the same with the other cup. You might need to do it again (as doing the second side dislodges the first a little) just to get any that slips back out.

MrsKoala Mon 03-Jun-13 17:34:51

Yes that's the way i scoop. i have looked at the backfat pics - wow. But my fat was between the straps too. The bras i wear atm are more like crop tops which fasten. so i think the wideness of the band holds it all in.


That is going to feel quite different. What about a longline bra? Would that help possibly? for example

Something to bare in mind is that most bras stretch quite a bit when new. However, it might be worth considering something like the curvy kate Showgirls (particularly tease me, thrill me, entice and fleurty) which are available at brastop. They have particularly soft stretchy backs and are balconettes so may suit you

MrsKoala Mon 03-Jun-13 17:48:50

I know sad i love feeling as tho i'm not even wearing a bra. But now i've stopped bfing and want to wear nicer clothes the front is far too high for all my tops.

I think i'm destined to be uncomfortable forever sad

I'll have a look at those you recommended, thanks for your patience.

The switch is going to feel very odd and take a while to get used to. We have had quite a few ladies who have gone through an intermediate size as the change from old size to new was too much for them to do in one go. If you think they might well be right in future then the other thing to consider is getting an extender (couple of pounds on ebay) to wear while the bras loosen off and you get used to it

MrsKoala Mon 03-Jun-13 17:58:02

thanks, yes i have loads of them and i wear them on my 38 & 40s blush . i'm such a baby, i can't do wearing shoes in either!

StatisticallyChallenged I think I love you. grin

Bra extenders! I have new bras and they are comfortable.

MyFabulousBoys Tue 04-Jun-13 07:54:59

I didn't believe you at first - sorry sad. 34E dies fit not the 38B I was told by m&s. however, an E cup in m&s means a granny bra. shock

I want a nude plunge push-up. Not hugely expensive please. My boobs are very wide-set and balcony a never fit

Can anyone suggest a bra please?

MyFabulousBoys Tue 04-Jun-13 08:09:55

Sorry for my garbled message. Was posting and making breakfast for kids. I am 34E as you all said. I am not 38B as m&s said.

M&S bras really aren't great for larger cups TBH.

are you after a T-shirt/smooth bra? If so, you could try the Freya Deco, the Wonderbra t-shirt bra (also called Wonderbra everyday), the Curvy Kate smoothie, Fantasie Rebecca or the Curvy Kate Daily Boost.

Not a smooth cup and more of an ivory but the Bravissimo Satine is a lovely bra.

These are a little more than an M&S bra - I think the Satine is £29 for example and only available from Bravissimo, but the others are sold in lots of places so you might be able to get them a little cheaper. Figleaves has 20% off everything just now which makes the Deco £24 for eg. so not much in it and there is a huge difference in quality

HazleNutt Tue 04-Jun-13 08:22:37

Gurus, are any of you also on the Reddit ABraThatFits?

The measuring system is more complicated, but the idea is the same. Thousands of women discovering there as well that they are, in fact, not 36AA like Victoria's Secret told them.

HazleNutt Tue 04-Jun-13 08:28:06

Oh and an interesting link here, if it has not been posted yet:

To counter all those "but that cup is huuuuge! I can't possibly be that cup!"

I'm over there occasionally - from what I have seen the multiple measurements doesn't seem to get them much closer and confuses people a wee bit but I could be wrong. I think the basic idea is the same though. I feel so sorry for the women on it trying to find big cup sizes in the US.

If you ever need to sell bras then the reddit braswap site pretty much chews your hand off

pinkbear82 Tue 04-Jun-13 10:59:03

I'm hoping you lovely Wise ladies can help me out.

I'm looking to get some nursing bras that look ok - I'm due tomorrow (yikes) and have measured today.
35 inches under and 43 over the boobs when leaning forward.

can I use the size to buy some nice bras for now? beforw pregnancy I was wearing 36c/d current maternity bras are 38Dd.

I have some nursing bras of the stretchy variety, kinda one fits all iyswim - but would like a couple that actually look nice! esp with it being summer(!)

I await your amazing knowledge

You could order some bras now but it depends hugely on how your boobs behave once your milk comes in. Some people don't grow all that much, some (me!) expand massively and have boobs like footballs grin

If you don't mind a bit of cash outlay (or using a credit card) I would be tempted to order some in a variety of sizes so they are ready and waiting. As long as you order from somewhere with a decent returns policy you can then send em back once you know how things land. Alternatively you can get next day delivery from most places so you could just do an order once milk comes in.

Now, first up. You were probably never a 36c/d. The ribcage expands towards the end of pregnancy as everything gets shoved up to make space for bump. If you are measuring at 35" now - chances are you were more like 32" pre pregnancy. Fitted at M&S by any chance?

Your current measurements would put you at a 34G/34FF/36FF/36F. Because of the rib issue I wouldn't be too inclined towards the 36s as you will loose rib size very quickly (it's not like losing pregnancy weight, it's just plain old baby!) If you were going to order anything just now I'd maybe order a 34G, GG and possibly an H in a soft cup maternity bra as they are stretchy and flexible and hopefully one of them will work to tide you over until your boobs settle down to whatever their breast feeding size actually is. Lots of people like the Panache Sophie and it's not monstrously ugly either!

Once things calm down you might want to consider an underwired maternity bra - the anita has a good reputation. Watch the sizing - they don't make a DD or a FF according to that list. Normally UK sizes go A,B,C,D,DD,E,F,FF,G,GG, a 9" difference would give you a UK size of roughly a G. In a brand which doesn't do double letters it would make you an I or J (most UK don't do I but Anita do)

It is perfectly safe to wear underwires when breast feeding so long as you ensure they fit well - the danger comes from wearing a wire which is too small and therefore sits on the breast tissue and can cause blockages. Have a look at the fitting info on so you know what a good underwired bra should look like. Most of the guidance is true for non-wired too but you won't get the central gore to sit flush on a non wired

pinkbear82 Tue 04-Jun-13 11:53:44

Wow - thank you! I knew you would have the information I needed. thanks

I shall have a look around online and see what I can find - with the comfy/stretchy ones I have atm they should tide me over for trying on and sending back new ones.

Finally feel a bit excited about bras again smile tuvm

BTW - the images of that Anita bra are awful and are a demonstration of how a bra shouldn't fit!

Throw your old 36s away though - unless you have shrunk during pregnancy they were never right!

There's a fairly new nursing style out by Royce called Blossom
I've tried it myself for research purposes and it's really impressive. It covers a triple cup size.

Ruched down it fits it's smallest size so as a 32G I tried 32G-H. Loosening the ruching turns it into a very spacious crop top and it seems to hold its shape well.

That looks good especially for those early stages when your boob size is all over the place.

If I ever wind up BF-ing then I would probably be tempted by one like that for the "what are these boulders" stage and while things calmed down and I waited for my custom order wired ones from Ewa!

pinkbear82 Tue 04-Jun-13 14:37:36

Ladies I really can't thank you enough thanksthanks

HazleNutt Tue 04-Jun-13 14:43:01

Oh thanks, I like the look of that Royce bra for early days (almost due with DC1 and no idea what those already G-cups will do).

HazleNutt Tue 04-Jun-13 14:44:36

..and I live in France so need to order in advance. The biggest nursing bra I've seen in shops here is a D, and that of course starting from 38 back size. hmm

You could tie it in a bow Hazle ;)

Right I've just ordered a couple of bras on bravissimo at 30e and 30dd and will report back from how I get on....currently in a saggy 34d nursing bra!

Picoo Tue 04-Jun-13 21:18:46

I am 32 under boobs and 41 over boobs. I tried on some Triumph bras with 32 band but found them very tight. should I assume they'll become more comfy over time or try another brand?

What cup size did you try in the Triumph?

HazleNutt Tue 04-Jun-13 21:21:39

Picoo, what cup size did you try? If the cup is too small, band will feel too tight, even if it's otherwise your size.

MrsKoala Tue 04-Jun-13 21:45:15

Hi all. I tried a 38 and it was all wrong, the wires really dug in the side of my boobs and the cups were massive - even in a b cup sad

So i've made an app for a fitting at Rigby and Peller next week. i think i need professional eyes on the problem norks to have any hope of rescuing them.

Thank you all for your wise words smile

Picoo Tue 04-Jun-13 21:46:14

I tried a 32G

I'm going to guess you do need the 36 then MrsK but worth getting pro eyes. The gups feeling too big even in a B could be because the lack of back support lets it tip forward.

Picoo - the 32G would be about right. It could be that it feels odd because of the change, it could be that the triumphs run a little small in the back or it could be that you need a little more cup space (the cup measurement is rough)

I'd maybe try a few different brands

MrsKoala Tue 04-Jun-13 21:53:31

yes i think so Stat, and also oddly the cups felt far too close together, with gaping in the middle but breast tissue bulging with wire digging in at the sides/armpits.

Picoo Tue 04-Jun-13 21:54:31

thanks very much SG. I will do that and report back

MrsKoala Tue 04-Jun-13 21:56:06

oh and the underwire wasn't stretched round under the arm, but still sitting at the front of my chest - if that makes sense confused

I suspect it's just going to be a huge change that will feel weird MrsK - hopefully a second pair of eyes will give you the confidence that the smaller back is right for you..

(posted that before I saw your last post - if the back isn't small enough it wont hold the wires in the right place)

MrsKoala Tue 04-Jun-13 22:01:31

i know you are right SC but i just feel such an uncomfortable lumpy blob in the 36s sad i will need to diet i think.

<Un MN Hugs> just remember the far better range of lush undies you'll have


Don't give up just yet!

There's a new range in Bravissimo called Tutti Rouge. They've only got a couple of styles out so far, but they are very wide of wire and shallow of cup which should work better for you.

Alternatively, their Mademoiselle and Roccoco Charm are quite wide set too.

YoniBottsBumgina Mon 10-Jun-13 10:57:23

Hello, it's me again from one of the other threads (ciuldnt work out which was most current)

I'm having a bit of trouble. Finally got around to actuallyttrying on a bra and none of them fit sad

Originally measured 28/31, so went looking for a 28C. M&S apparently have them in their teen range so went there. Couldn't find the teen range and was too embarrassed to ask so started looking on the shelf to find no 28s at all (I'm sure they always used to sell them) and in the end decided to try a 30B and 30C.

Well, the 30B would barely do up and on the loosest hook I was afraid to breathe because I could feel the material overstretchijg IYSWIM. Tried the 30C and that was better - it still felt very tight and I felt very "aware" of my breathing. When u turned it forwards the straps were very tight and my back/ribs were uncomfortable wearing it. Plus the cups seemed slightly too big even with scooping and it just didn't seem to give me much shape at all compared with my H&M 34B. Which to be fair is a push up.

So tried a 32 just to see what the band size was like and this was more comfy but it seemed to stretch too easily when I breathed and so I think the 30 probably fitted better but only with the C cup. The 32 only came in a C and that was just laughable - think marbles in a tea cup!

I got frustrated then and went to buy a proper tape measure. My measurements are 27.5-28 (apparently I breathe weirdly) and 32. There's no way I will fit into a 28 if I couldn't do the 30 up. I have no padding at all though. So should I try other brands in a 30B? I was looking in other shops and they all seem to start at 32!

m and s sizing is inconsistent verging into useless so I would not set much store by them. based on your new measurements you would be better with a 28d I think. I would suggest ordering a few different ones online maybe some curvy Kate showgirl from brastop

Could I ask for some help please?

Had a baby 9 weeks ago, body currently shrinking, but not as fast as I like! Always had a small back/full bust, usually a 32G pre pregnancy.

Prefer a fuller cup, plain
bras because I spend most of my time in T shirts. Don't like flounce or frills, like to be very well supported cos they're wobbly! confused

Underbust 33 inches, around boobs 43 inches. So 34 GG/H right? I'm a single Mum and still getting my hang around baby stuff (as in how to look after one!) so any pointers would be greatly appreciated. At the moment I'm spending lots of time browsing Bravissimo and Figleaves but not getting anywhere!

Hoping they'll shrink over the next few months, so don't want to spend loads. Usually go with Fantasie, but can't find anything I like at the moment.

Thank you in advance. thanks

Not nursing bras. Thanks! smile

try a 32gg 32h 34gg and 34g. yiu will probably find the 32 better for lift and support.

YoniBottsBumgina Mon 10-Jun-13 15:38:45

I'm very reluctant to order online as I have a memory like a sieve and would almost definitely not get around to returning stuff in time for a refund if it didn't fit. We have no othe bra shops here though other than bravissimo (don't cater for flat chested people like me), Ann summers (yuk, and they start at 32) and places liketopshop, h&m, who have them as an afterthought.

Could potentially travel to a john lewis or debenhams, but it won't be for a while.

MrsKoala Mon 10-Jun-13 18:33:53

Thanks Marriednotdead - i'll give them a try too...but...

Today i got fitted at Rigby and Peller and am now the proud owner of the next best thing to having new boobs - 5 bras (4 36d and 1 36dd) which actually fit me! Hurrah! I feel great. I then bought 8 new tops/t-shirts to go with the 'good as new' knockers.

I wore one bra out of the shop, so i could shop with my new silhouette. And DH noticed a difference as soon as i walked thru the front door (and it wasn't just my beaming smile wink )

I do still need to diet tho, the back fat is horrid. But all in all very successful - so thanks for all your lovely help.

I must be very odd shaped as loads of bras didn't fit - i must have tried on over 50 in various shops and only 5 fit. The 2 styles which fit from R&P are Marie Jo.

sparkle12mar08 Mon 10-Jun-13 18:44:49

You're not odd at all MrsKoala - my bra enlightenment cost me around £800, 40+ bras of which a grand total of 6 fitted properly! I did return all the others - I don't have £800 worth of bras hanging around...

I'm glad you managed to get sorted MrsKoala. Do you have any idea from that what sort of shape your boobs are - might help you find alternatives.

MissRenataFlitworth Mon 10-Jun-13 22:33:26

I've been looking at the bra threads for weeks trying to pluck up the courage to ask, so here goes. I'm 66 and have never worn an underwired bra in my life but it seems that underwires are what I need. I'm 42 under and 57 over. All my bras are too big in the band (44s and 46s) and the biggest cups I could find but they ride up at the back. Is there anything which would fit me properly? Money is an issue I'm afraid but I don't care what the scaffolding looks like as long as it is comfortable and gives support. And perhaps helps with the backache?

MrsKoala Mon 10-Jun-13 22:51:28

Sadly no SC, i have no idea what 'shape' i am. I seem to have a lot of boob 'up top' and the bras seem to cut across me, but they seem to be empty and cave in below the boob. If that makes sense. They seem to be shallow and wide, rather than ever teardrop, or make a 'handful'. Even my bras which 'fit', don't really fit , there are still gaps in the cup underneath and above the nipple (i have a kind of ski jump/arrow shape boob) and parts across the top where the cup creates a dent into my breast tissue.

Based solely on the measurements you would be looking at around a 42J. However it's extremely common for larger ladies to actually need a band size or two smaller than they measure in order to get enough support. This is for a couple of reasons - if your torso is squishy (mine is!) then the back needs to be tighter to get a firm enough grip to lift. Also, the longer length of the band means it can stretch more (in absolute terms)

So, you could probably also want to try say a 40JJ/K and maybe a 38KK/L too

Now - you can guess the punchline is that once you are in to K/Ls the sizes become harder to come by so here are a few of the options

For the 38L (and any cup sizes below)
Bravissimo Alana

40K (and everything below]]
bravissimo have lots
brastop have a few


Your measurements put you at around a 42K, although you may find that you need a tighter band.

Not the easiest size to find, and there are many brands that skip cup sizes so that they are smaller than their tag suggests.

Wires are helpful but not for everyone. I'd suggest starting with an Elomi Caitlyn in a 42K and seeing how that works.

MissRenataFlitworth Mon 10-Jun-13 23:47:04

A 38! Goodness me. Thank you. The Alana looks lovely - far prettier than I was expecting. There is a Bravissimo in my city so I think I shall have to go. I've never been fitted before - too ashamed.

The lovely women who did my mammogram and ultrasound a few years ago were horrified for me and said I should ask for a reduction but I don't think I'd get one without losing a lot of weight first, and I can't exercise because my back hurts all the time. Sorry - whingeing won't help. But it does make one feel miserable.

If you have a bravissimo it is definitely worth a look. They only have up to 40s on the website (not sure if it is the same in store) but they will be able to try a pretty good range and if you turn out to need the full 42 (rather than a smaller back) then at least you will know that.

It does become a bit trickier by measurements at larger sizes - there is another lady on these threads who has had huge back/pain issues as a result of bad bras. She "measures" as a 40 back but actually wears a 36 and it's made a huge difference to her. I think her measurements are not that far away from yours.

MissRenataFlitworth Tue 11-Jun-13 00:05:11

Sorry, married, I hadn't seen your advice. Thank you. Do you mean the wired Caitlyn or the soft cup one?