While I'm all for a bra that fits..

(56 Posts)
LadyMilfordHaven Sun 21-Jul-13 21:50:40

I'm not convinced that everyone is a 32 inch back. I'm worried there are back hamsters.

I know as a 32 back that the minute I head more to 15 than 12 my bra is too tight.

So ladies. Do check your rear view

sparkle12mar08 Sun 21-Jul-13 22:05:07


SorrelForbes Sun 21-Jul-13 22:18:07

Ummm, one of the biggest causes of back fat is too big a band!

What are back hamsters?

LizzyDay Sun 21-Jul-13 23:30:11

I'm also not convinced that a tight bra strap is healthy - or flattering from the back. Clothes should not have to be horribly tight in order to provide support.

I would have thought that back bulges are more caused by the narrowness of straps than being loose / tight though. It's fundamentally a crap design - trying to suspend everything from a band that's only an inch wide and cutting into your flesh.

If bra straps were 3 or 4 inches wide all the way round it would provide much better support. Oh and if they could do this without nasty hooks and scratchy bits that would be a vast improvement.

LizzyDay Sun 21-Jul-13 23:31:35

forgot to say the 'over the shoulder' straps don't need to be wide at all if the band is wide. Therefore the bra need not be frumpy looking.

SorrelForbes Sun 21-Jul-13 23:38:59

I take your points about hooks etc. but no one is saying that the band should be horribly tight.

I get back fat in a 36D but none at all in a 30GG.

I have checked my rear view-it's worse in a bra that is too big at the back or too small in the cup. a good broad band also helps and I prefer one with 3 clips

NotAQueef Mon 22-Jul-13 10:03:09

anyone else confused about this sentence " I know as a 32 back that the minute I head more to 15 than 12 my bra is too tight. ?

GobblersKnob Mon 22-Jul-13 10:07:32

Of course everyone isn't a 32 back confused

Back fat is caused by ill fitting bras, you need one that fits and then scoop it all into the cup. I have been wearing correctly fitting bras for about 2 years now and have gone up two cup sizes from putting migrated breast tissue back where it belongs. I don't really have any back fat now.

IWipeArses Mon 22-Jul-13 10:10:04

Surrealist style trolling.

LizzyDay Mon 22-Jul-13 10:23:11

I just can't wear anything even slightly tight round my chest, it's sore and itchy and makes me feel a bit panicky.

I appreciate that you don't want to be hanging the weight of your bust off your shoulders either. For me the only answer is a crop top, but I wish they made comfortable 'proper' bras in a similar style - ie with a very wide band, comfortable (or no) fastenings, but proper moulded 'cup' support at the front.

SorrelForbes Mon 22-Jul-13 10:24:45

But moulded cups aren't always that great for support as they don't mould to your shape and tend to cause a lot of gaping.

Surrealist style trolling grin

LizzyDay Mon 22-Jul-13 11:07:42

Sorrel - Hmm yes I know what you mean about the gaping, I suppose I don't mean rigid shaped cups. It's actually the seams I have a problem with - so something like thick elastic, shaped (rather than rigid moulded) cups - does that make sense? So more supportive and shaping than a crop top, but something along those lines.

SorrelForbes Mon 22-Jul-13 11:11:54

What size are you Lizzy? I'm sure that one of us can suggest some styles/shapes that might work for you, comfort wise.

LizzyDay Mon 22-Jul-13 11:38:12

Thanks Sorrell - that would be a challenge indeed! I think I'm a bit of a lost cause when it comes to conventional bras.

I'm 33 under and 39 over which I think makes me a 34E - ish?

Norks aren't large nor particularly droopy, but are wide. The fat attached to them (not breast tissue) goes right round under my arms.

Don't have a lot of back fat though (I think my breast tissue has migrated down to my thighs wink ).

I have very very sensitive skin. I have tried lots of bras in 34s and even 32s in all cup sizes from C to F - and yes I would say that some fit and look good - I just can't wear them because they make me start twitching within minutes of putting them on, and I don't think that constantly pulling straps away from my skin is a good look!

LadyMilfordHaven Mon 22-Jul-13 17:50:49

im not convinced about moulded cups either, although i have ONE i really like. It prevents nipple show

SorrelForbes Mon 22-Jul-13 19:49:13

Lady. The Cleo Juna is a very nice in moulded tshirt bra which is lightly padded. No nipple show!

GobblersKnob Mon 22-Jul-13 19:59:37

I am a big Juna fan, it's a lovely bra, gives a very round shape, but is super comfy to wear. Like lots of Cleos it comes up tight in the band but is otherwise very true to size. All my Cleos are 32 FF whereas I measure a 30G.

LadyMilfordHaven Mon 22-Jul-13 20:04:51

I used to have a fantasie one. Plain material not padded. Amazing shape. They don't make it any more

sparkle12mar08 Mon 22-Jul-13 20:05:29

See I find the Juna really inconsistent - I ordered nearly half a dozen in various sizes and some of the 30 backs were larger than the 32's when stretched, and not one of the three 30's I ordered was the same length (I just kept the one that fitted best). But I agree totally that the shape it gives is wonderful, it's fairly shallow on it's projection but gives a fab Marie Antoinette look. I just wish it had three hooks instead of two, on the larger cup sizes.

GobblersKnob Mon 22-Jul-13 20:10:15

That's interesting, are they newer ones? I have older designs (tend to buy cheap dicontinued bras) a Poppy and erm another pattern.

I fancied a plain back, but I wonder if the sizing is different?

timidviper Mon 22-Jul-13 20:20:15

Sorry to gatecrash but can somebody tell me again how to measure properly. I have had some disastrous bras from M&S and Evans (I am a larger lady) but my one and only trip to Bravissimo was almost as bad. It got me a bra that looked great from the front but dug in so badly at the back I looked as though I had bigger boobs on my back, even worse I only realised how bad it was when I saw myself on photos! blush

SorrelForbes Mon 22-Jul-13 20:25:30

I have two Cleo Junas, a Meg and a Melissa and they all seem to fit the same size wise tbh.

GobblersKnob Mon 22-Jul-13 20:29:17

I tried on the Meg in five different sizes (the bird print one, so pretty) and then gave up, it did dreadful things to my boobs.

It always amazes me just how indivdual bra fitting is. I think my very favourite Cleo is a toss up between the Marcie and the Sasha.

timidviper - what size is the Bravissimo bra? Have you tried scooping in it?

Scooping - basically all the armpit and back fat needs to be manhandled in to the cups of the bra. Put your bra on, stand side on to a mirror. Lean forward, put your left hand in side your right cup, reach right round, and pull EVERYTHING forward in to the cups. Repeat on other side. Then repeat again for good measure!

To measure yourself - measure tightly under your bust in inches then, bra off, bend forward to as close to 90 degrees as possible and measure around the widest part..

Pop your measurements and the info about the Bravissimo bra on here and we'll go from there

timidviper Tue 23-Jul-13 00:43:44

I'm afraid I don't have it any more as i put it in the charity bag in disgust so can't be certain, but think it was a 40F. I am currently wearing M&S Special Collection moulded cup bras which look to me to fit well, they are 42E but I have to use an extender in the back when I first get them until they loosen slightly (42 is the largest size they make in this bra)

I measure 42 around under boobs and 51 leaning forward but they are like spaniels ears and really do hang since I've lost some weight blush

MyChildDoesntNeedSleep Tue 23-Jul-13 03:22:38

I've always thought it was measure under the bust and add 4" if it's even and 5" if it's odd, eg 28" ribcage becomes 32". Then you measure the bust. If that is the same as the last figure (ie 32") then you're an A cup. An inch bigger and you're a B, and so on....

When did it all change, because people I wouldn't in a million years have thought were a 32" rib cage are claiming they are confused

it changed quite a long time ago as fabrics improved and got stretchy. bravissimo have been fitting, albeit by eye, in this way for at least 10 years.

For those who are interested, there is information here on what a bad bra looks like, instructions on how to measure (to get a starting point) and then test fit (to get it perfect) here


timidviper, based on those measurements I would start with a 42G (M&S don't do FF so you would want a GG there although their quality is...meh!) That said, those of us who are slightly more padded sometimes find that they need a smaller back than they measure to get sufficient support. There is an article here which explains why.

Now, can you pop the extender off your existing bra and try scooping in it. I'd expect you to have quad boob in the 42E. All of the back and armpit overspill needs to be manhandled in to the cup. Because the cup is currently too small after scooping you'll find it coming out the front instead but it will confirm our thinking.

I suspect that the reason the Bravissimo one didn't work is that it was too small in the cup, rather than the back. If the cup is too small, all the stuff that should be scooped in and held by the cup just, well, escapes! A 40F is probably about 3 cup sizes smaller than you needed. Bravissimo are generally good but they don't always emphasize the scooping IME - some fitters are a bit timid about saying " grab your armpit and back fit and manhandle it forward" but it makes a huge difference.

LadyMilfordHaven Tue 23-Jul-13 07:42:24

I would say if you're scooping it doesn't ft

SorrelForbes Tue 23-Jul-13 07:46:18

Not at all. Everyone needs to scoop every time they put their bra on to ensure that everything is in the right place.

That's bollocks LadyMilfordHaven. Scooping is part of putting your bra in properly

CelticPromise Tue 23-Jul-13 08:22:46

Lizzy sizewise I'd start with a 32F. I don't know loads about styles but if your boobs are wide set balconettes are a good place to start. I wonder if a seamless bra would work? There are probably styles that others can recommend but I know that Anita make underwired nursing bras without seams, worth a look? I'd say at an E/F you probably need wires, but you have to be comfy of course.

LizzyDay, have you tried anything from Curvy Kate at all? Their showgirl range (tease me, entice, fleurty etc) has very very soft bands and they are quite wide cups too so they might be worth a try. They run both big in the band and small in the cup, so I would suggest you try a 32F and 32FF to start with. I haven't tried it personally but I believe the Curvy Kate Smoothie is also very soft.

IWipeArses Tue 23-Jul-13 08:48:42

How do you tell how much of the back fat is from needing to scoop and how much is actual fat? Because if you're fat, lots of it will be actual fat won't it.

Yes, some of it will be actual fat - I think you would be aiming to scoop the bulges if that makes sense. So around the armpits and the sort of section at the back between the edge of the strap, the band and the outside of your back. But basically I would scoop what you can, you will quickly get a feel for what goes and what doesn't! It'll still look a darn site better in a good bra post scoopage.

My back looks loads worse in a bra that is too big at the back.

IWipeArses Tue 23-Jul-13 08:58:36

Which bras have wide sides? The ones I'm using really dig in.

What size are you after again? (memory not that good!)

IWipeArses Tue 23-Jul-13 09:48:09

That's ok, don't think I've said! grin 40(ish)H+ possibly as high as J

Is that the size you are wearing just now - reason I ask is that most brands change their bra construction considerably above a GG so if you are wearing a smaller cup that would affect things

IWipeArses Tue 23-Jul-13 09:57:03

I'm probably a 40 band, last one I bought that feels nearly right is a 40H and def need bigger cup. Wouldn't need to lose much to be in a 38 band though. I'm very squishy. blush

Ok. As a rule, Freya are a bit of a disaster for very big/heavy boobs. The wires just aren't up to it. Fantasie is kind of similar. Panache and Bravissimo are both much better, and I believe Elomi are also great for the squishier amongst us.

I was wearing this bra yesterday and found it very generous/wide at the side and back (I have it in a 32HH so same cup construction). It's sold out in your sizes but quite a few of the new styles are basically the same bra - I think Cherry Fling and Candy Bliss are to name but a few. I generally think the Bravissimo own brand bras are good

IWipeArses Tue 23-Jul-13 10:16:08

Thank you. I think I'll plan a trip out to the nearest Bravissimo store actually, not sure I can bear ordering loads and sending them back etc.

goodasitgets Tue 23-Jul-13 11:56:44

I have wide boobs (don't seem to project but are wide across)
Bras that work
Bravissimo - darling heart, cherry fling, laurel
Panache - elsa and jasmine

Interesting goodasitgets - I would say I have quite wide boobs (but close set, just to be annoying)

I don't have those yet but have Betsy Bow, which I think is the same as cherry fling and darling heart. I love it.

goodasitgets Tue 23-Jul-13 12:01:26

Psst I'm under a NC (because I keep forgetting to change back) grin

SorrelForbes Tue 23-Jul-13 15:36:22

That confirms for me that my boobs are (as described by married), deep and narrow set. The Jasmine and the Bravissimo half cups (eg Rococco Charm) just don't work for me at all. The gore won't lie flat no matter what size I try. They really flatten my boobs too.

LizzyDay Thu 25-Jul-13 19:37:05

Thank you for the suggestions CelticPromise and StatisticallyChallenged smile Sorry I missed your replies before.

No I haven't tried Curvy Kate, though they do look a bit too much like a 'standard' bra for me if that makes sense, with lacy bits and underwiring etc. I'll have a look at the nursing bras - I did have a few when I was BFing and they were ok, but not really much more supportive than the crop tops I'm wearing now, with added clasps, hooks etc. I think I'm a bit of a lost cause tbh, it's not about the fit, it's about the general scratchiness and constrictiveness. I'm just weird... grin

mercury7 Fri 26-Jul-13 15:03:11

Lizzie, I can relate to what you say about bra's, I seem to be hypersensitive to any clothing touching my skin, and tight clothing anywhere makes me feel anxious, I find waistbands very difficult, as well as bra's.
It really is a pain!

FoxMulder Fri 26-Jul-13 15:22:27

That thing about adding 4" never did ring true to me. I mean, say your boobs are 4" bigger than you chest. Then what?

I should get back on with this bra thing one day, I never did find a good un despite the wonderful help of the bra gurus.

LizzyDay Fri 26-Jul-13 19:23:00

Mercury - I know, it is a pain. If only someone would invent something comfy (hook-free, underwire-free, scratch-free) with a bit of uplift it would be great. I only have to look at photos of underwired bras to feel itchy! I also hate it when you lean back against a chair and can feel the hooks digging into your back.

lljkk Fri 26-Jul-13 19:28:27

I can't help but think that people with back fat are merely fat. confused Like 60% of the population.

sparkle12mar08 Fri 26-Jul-13 19:37:05

You keep going on about this lljkk, and you're simply not listening to the replies you get. So why not just stop asking, you're obviously not going to be convinced.

lljkk Fri 26-Jul-13 19:38:00

I shall hide these threads forever hence.

SorrelForbes Fri 26-Jul-13 20:24:23

I'm a size 10/12 and definitely not fat! I get back fat in a 34DD and none at all in a 30GG.

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