We won't be surprised if you asked, "why is it important to wear the right bra size?" A large percentage of women in our country are unaware of the importance of the right bra size. We often feel that since it’s innerwear, no one's looking, no one's judging, and it's okay to be casual about its size, but that’s not the case. A bra is not just a fashion accessory that helps you accentuate that pretty décolleté, it is also a piece of clothing that defines your bosom-shape, and its health in the long-term. A bra too small or too big not only puts the shape of your breasts at a risk but can also cause back pain, neck pain, and headaches. You can make peace with maybe one size smaller or one size larger in emergency cases but that won’t bode well in the long run. An ill-fitted bra has the capability to deform your breasts permanently, and we know, you don't wanna go down that road because every woman has freaked out about having uneven breasts at least once in her lifetime, which is normal BTW. The best way to measure your bra size is by using a bra cup size chart or a bra size calculator. Since the size is measured differently in European, American, and Asian countries, the size chart for each is different.
Also Read 5 Natural Ways To Keep Your Breasts Firm And Perky
Signs You Are Wearing the Wrong Bra
How do you know if the bra you are wearing right now is the right size for you? Well, apart from the fact that you’d actually be able to tell if your bra is too loose or too tight, here are a few other signs that will help you figure out if you’re wearing the wrong size.
If your bra cup is wrinkled, underwire pokes the sides of your breasts, your band rides up the back, your strap keeps tripping or twisting or your bra cups hike up when you stretch your arms, you’re probably wearing the wrong size. However, there’s a good chance that your breast size has recently changed due to weight loss, weight gain, pregnancy or a new exercise regimen, so keep that in mind before picking out your new bra size. But analyse for yourself.
If you feel that your skin is pinching in the back or you have to pull the band really hard to hook your bra then your bra is of a smaller size. Another way to check is to try the bend over technique. If your breasts pop out of your bra when you bend over, you need to buy a bra in a bigger cup size. On the other hand, if the band of your bra is loose enough to slip a fist through or store things in, then you need to go down a bra size.
Remember, you should always choose a cup size that supports your breasts, and if you feel that your breasts are hanging even after wearing a bra, opt for a more supportive piece of inner wear. There are also times when just changing your bra size won’t do any good, for example, if your bra strap is loose and it keeps slipping even when you’ve tried on a new bra. In that case, you need to change the style of the bra you are wearing. But, definitely change the cup size of your bra if you can feel the armpit bulge falling out of your bra otherwise it can cause rashes, deep lines, burns, and even cuts.
There are even women who feel awkward when they run on the treadmill because they’re conscious about how much their breasts bounce while they run. Sure, a lot of women with big breasts face this problem, but another reason for this is the wrong cup size. When you’re choosing a padded bra, make sure you pick a piece that covers your breasts fully, and not just halfway.
Also Read 8 Types Of Nipples In The World - Which One Do You Have?
Bra fitting guide
Once you’ve figured out if you’re wearing the wrong bra size or not, you can move on to picking the right size for yourself. So, here’s a bra fitting guide for you.
It’s tricky to find the right bra size and that’s because bra sizes are not perfectly standardised, which means that every time you choose a different bra style of the same size, you may observe a slight difference in its fitting. The fitting may also vary if you switch from one brand to the other.
When you’re looking at the fitting of a perfect bra, you need to keep in mind two main measurements - the band size and the cup size. The band size of your bra is basically the circumference of your underbust area. If you are a customer of an American company then your circumference will be measured in inches while if you prefer a European lingerie company, your band size will appear in centimetres. Now, the cup size of a bra is based on your bust size, which is the difference between the underbust circumference and the bust circumference. The chest circumference is measured from the top of the highest point of your breasts. Once you have the difference between your bust and underbust circumference, it’s then converted into the corresponding alphabetical letters such as cup size A, B, C, D.
Also Read What’s The *Right* Bra Cup Shape For Your Boobs?
Bra size calculator
Since bra sizes vary from brand to brand and continent to continent, it is best to calculate the your bra size on the lingerie site itself. To accurately calculate your bra size, measure under your bust line and use the general round off rule to round off to the exact size. For example, if the measurement is less than ½” you should round down, if it’s more than a ½” then round up. So if your measurement is 34 ¼”, take it as 34. Once you have your underbust measurement, measure over the top point of your bust line. It’s a looser measurement, but make sure the tape measure is straight. Add the numbers to the bra size calculator of the lingerie brand’s site and select calculate.
Bra size chart
To get an accurate measurement, you’ll need a measuring tape to take the measurement of your bust and underbust. It is advisable to note your sizes in both inches and centimetres since you’ll have to calculate your size according to the brand you’re purchasing from. For a U.S. brand, you’ll need measurements in inches, while a U.K. or Indian brand will ask you for measurements in centimetres. Once you have you have your measurements, you can refer to a generic size chart. The chart below represents an average fitting size, so keep in mind that the sizes vary from brand to brand and manufacturer to manufacturer.
Bra band size chart
Bra cup size chart
|UK BAND SIZE ||INCHES ||CENTIMETRES|
|UK CUP SIZE ||INCHES||CENTIMETRES|
How to get the right plus size bra measurements?
Finding the perfect bra is like finding the perfect dress, you’ll feel sexy in it every time you wear it. But, finding just the right size for bigger breasts requires some hard work. And sure, the process can be frustrating, but don’t worry, we’re here to help.
To put it more accurately, there’s no such thing as a fail-proof bra size calculator. But identifying the right size starts with taking measurements, like we mentioned above. Yes, a few trials and errors are involved, but the perks of wearing the right bra will be worth all that. For example, the right bra can make you look taller and slimmer. It also relieves your back and shoulder of any pain, and ensures your clothes fit better.
If you’ve got bigger breasts, make sure that while taking measurements you’re not squeezing yourself. Keep the bust measurement loose (not too loose though). Once you have your measurement, use the basic size chart to get your bra size, and then use the International conversion chart below to get the right size of your bra as per your brand’s measurement system.
International Conversion Chart for Bra Sizes
|International Band Size|
|International Cup Size|
How to measure bra size in India?
Identifying your bra size in India is not very different than the rest of the world, if you follow the UK centimetre chart since most Indian brands adhere to UK measuring standards. So to get your bra size right,
1. Measure your underbust size in centimetres.
2. Then lightly measure your bust size from the tip of your breasts in centimetres.
3. For cup size, subtract the underbust measurement from the bust measurement.
4. Now refer to the UK bra size chart.
How to measure bra size without measuring tape?
If you are out shopping, chances are you probably won’t be carrying a measuring tape. But that doesn’t mean you can’t measure yourself to identify your correct bra size. It’s not difficult to measure your size without a measuring tape.
1. Just take a string or a cord instead of a measuring tape.
2. Wrap the string around the under bust line and at the top of the bust line to note the length.
3. Make the correct markings on the string or the cord using a pen and then measure the numbers using a straight scale or foldable ruler.
How to measure bra size videos?
Here are some videos that’ll give you a detailed insight into how you can identify the right size, and the right type, of bra for yourself. The video teaches you some bra rules and tactics that you should remember while purchasing your next bra, and once you have your perfect size, these exciting videos also share some tips on how you can make sure your bra fits perfectly.
Types of bras
Now that you know your bra size, it’s time to know more about bra styles. Wrong sizes aren’t the only reasons why you might be uncomfortable throughout the day. Your breasts might also be asking you to change your bra style. For instance, not everyone faces the need to wear a padded, wired bra all the time, but if you do, it might become an issue for your breasts. Each bra has a different purpose, and is designed for a specific body type. Here are the different types of bra styles currently available in the market.
A thin bra, usually in lace, that doesn’t have padding, molded cups or underwire.
Demi is a bra type designed to support, and cover, the lower half of your breasts with its half-shaped cups. It fits perfectly over most breast shapes but women with heavier breasts should look for something more supportive than a demi bra.
This style is basically a low-cut demi bra that shows the upper half of your breasts. However, instead of pushing the breasts towards the centre, this style is designed to push them upwards. It’s a perfect option to wear with low-cut dresses and tops. This is the kind of bra you would like to show off.
4. Full Cup
A full cup bra guarantees full protection, and coverage, for your breasts.
T-Shirt bras have a subtle structure. They’re designed for when you’re wearing a snug t-shirt. It’s a comfortable bra style, and its structure is similar to the full cup bra and demi bra.
It’s a tube-like bra style, made out of stretchable fabric to flatten the shape of breasts.
This bra style offers detachable straps allowing the wearer to wear the inner wear in different ways with different types of clothing. It’s one of the most versatile bra types.
The centre of a plunge bra is cut very low forming a U-shape, and is usually worn to compliment a deep neck dress. This bra style has extra padding that helps push the breasts upwards, and in turn makes them look fuller.
It has a demi cup-like cut, but comes with an additional padding at the bottom of its cups. This style too makes the breasts look fuller in appearance.
Specifically designed for strapless dresses, this bra style provides support to the breasts without any straps.
11. Sports Bra
Sports bras are designed for women who are often engaged in physical activity. These bras provide a lot of support, and prevent your breasts from moving around too much.
12. Nursing Bra
Specially designed for lactating mothers, nursing bras not only provide extra support and comfort, but they’re equipped with flaps and openings for easy breastfeeding.
These are full cup bras that have the ability to reduce large bust sizes in appearance. Simply speaking, these bras evenly distribute the breast tissue which gives the illusion of a smaller bust size.
Now that you know exactly how you can identify your perfect bra size and shape, relax and wear your underwear with pride. And remember, you’re beautiful on the inside, and out.
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