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Fit Yourself at Home: A Bra Primer

Posted by Bras NYC on 12/6/2014

Bras can be tricky. Underwire or soft, demi or full cup, convertible or long-line strapless, and every one is slightly different in fit. It can feel like playing Russian roulette to order a bra from an online retailer, but we’re here to rescue you from the confusion and help you find the right fit.

You’ll only need a couple of supplies: a soft (cloth) measuring tape, and your body. If you want to write everything down, jot down the numbers and location as you go.

Take off your bra first. Then, place the tape around your torso, under your breasts where the base of the bra band would normally rest. Do not hold your tummy in when you do so. Measure. This is your around torso measurement—the 34, 36, 38, in your bra sizing.

Now bend at the waist (a 90 degree angle). Your breasts may be dangling, and that’s exactly as it should be. Measure around your breasts, at approximately the nipple. This measurement may be a lot bigger than the torso measurement, and that’s OK. This measurement is to determine your cup size.

Subtract the smaller torso number from the breast measurement (ie. 47”-38”= 9”). That number corresponds to a cup size (ie. 9” equals a U.S. size I). There are a number of handy charts available online to assist you in decoding the number. We like the one at Brittany Herself’s blog, among others.

Some factors to consider when ordering your bras after discovering your measurement: Make sure if the bra you’re looking at is in U.S. or U.K. sizing. They are very different. That same size 38 I in U.S. is a G in the U.K. Consider the “smush factor” when ordering. Are your breasts firm or a bit “smushy?” This will impact the fit somewhat—a smushy breast may need a slightly smaller cup, especially in a full-cup bra. Be sure to review our return policy—we happily accept returns and exchanges—so you can be assured the perfect bra with the perfect fit.

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