You might think that once you hit your 20’s and know your bra size, you know it for life. You’d be wrong.
Most women will have an ill-fitting bra at some point in their lives. We’ve all been there with an unexpected weight gain or loss, or the joys (and body changes) of pregnancy and nursing. You might have bought the right bra only 6 months to a year ago, and find you have the wrong bra now.
So how do you keep from being one of the 80 per cent or so who wear the wrong-sized bra? Pay attention to the fit of your items! The fit alone can give you important clues to your correct size.
Here are the most common fit problems and how to fix them for your next purchase.
- Bra band rides up in back
Based on an informal survey in my local mall, this problem is number one. If this is happening to you, the band is either too loose or the cups are too small, or both. The solution is going up a cup size or down a band size. In many cases, it could be a combination of both. Keep in mind that women with larger busts need wider, closer-fitting bands to support the weight of the breasts.
- Straps won’t stay on shoulders for more than a short time
Your straps are either too loose or set too far apart for more narrow or sloping shoulders. In all likelihood, you can fix this by adjusting the straps. However, keep in mind that if you then end up with your bra band riding up in the back, you’ll have to consider going up a cup size or down a band size to fix the real problem!
If your straps are an ongoing adjustment issue, consider stitching the straps to stay in place. Another trick for future purchases can be to choose styles that place the straps closer together in the back, such as racerback bras.
- Straps dig into shoulders
If this happens, your straps are doing too much of the work! The same fix applies here as applies to our number one problem: you likely have a loose band or need a larger cup. Consider styles that have both a wider band on the body as well as padded straps (if you can’t seem to get less pressure on the straps while also having a comfortable band).
- You are spilling out of the cup of your bra
This one is pretty simple. If you look like you have 4 breasts instead of 2, it’s time to go up a cup size.
- Your cups have “dimples”
If your cups dimple, it’s time to go down a cup size. Remember that going up and down are common over the course of your lifetime, especially with weight gain and loss.
- You’ve got “back fat”
If you have the dreaded back fat, you probably think your bra is too tight. You’re wrong – your bra is actually too big! You need to go down a band size (or more) until you can wear your bra lower on your back and have the band stay level. This will generally eliminate or reduce any appearance of back fat.
- Your straps are falling down
If your strap falls down but the bra otherwise appears to fit, that means your bra band is riding up in the back. You should go down a band size.