The different sizes, shapes, symmetries, spacing and positioning, density and slump of female breasts make it elusive for the manufacturers to make a perfectly fitting bra for each and every woman. In fact, there is wide evidence that up to 85% of women across the world never get to wear their correct size of brassiere.
Bra size measurement
Bra measurement has been practiced for over a century and since the 1930s, a bra size consists of the band length and the cup size. The band length is the length of your underbust, measured directly below the breasts, while you are standing as upright as possible. The cup size, on the other hand, is a proportionate estimation of the breast volume based on the difference between the overbust (over the nipples) length and the underbust length. This is because it is not possible to practically measure the volume of a breast. The S. H. Camp and Company (1908-1997) pioneered the use of the letters of the alphabet A, B, C and D to represent the varying cup sizes, starting with the smallest.
The average female breast sizes vary across continents and thus different countries such as the UK, USA, Australia, and Japan have with time developed their own unique bra size standards. In the US, the band length is measured in inches (typically 30- 48 inches) and rounded off to the nearest even number. The cup sizes for a specific band length typically vary from A to H, in increasing order. Below is a list of the most common US bra sizes;
30 32 34 36 38 40 42 44 48
30B 32A 34AA
30C 32B 34A
30D 32C 34B 36A
32C1/2 34B1/2 36A1/2
30E 32D 34C 36B 38A
32D1/2 34C1/2 36B1/2 38A1/2
30F 32E 34D 36C 38B
30G 32F 34E 36D 38C 40B
32G 34F 36E 38D 40C
32H 34G 36F 38E 40D 42C 44B
34H 36G 38F 40E 42D 44C 46B
36H 38G 40F 42E 44D 46C
38H 40G 42F 44E 46D 48C
42G 44F 46E 48D
Without due diligence in discovering their size of bra before they shop, most women end up with either entirely the wrong size of bra or a mismatch between the cup size and the band size. The mismatch implies either snuggly fitting cups and a small band length or the vice versa. Plus size and full bust women seeking to wear stylish brassieres such as large breast strapless bras seen at sweetskinliners.com are the most affected, due to the heavier weight of their breasts, which requires a bra with a closely fitting band, but which at times comes at the cost of too small a cup.
- The cups don’t wrinkle or fold, meaning they are not too large
- The cups fully cover your breasts and breast tissue does not overflow from the sides and at the top of the breast cups.
- The straps fit you snuggly and they don’t dig into your shoulders or slip off
- The underwire and the band snuggly lie against the breastbone and lining the inframammary fold, without poking your breast underside or the chest.
- The band (and not the shoulder straps) provides the primary support to your breasts, without sliding.
- The band at the back is parallel to the ground and does not ride up, even when you lift your arms up.
- The bra fits comfortably when you close the outermost hook(s) and tee arrangement. The band loosens with time and thus with such a bra, you will be able to shift to the inner hook(s) and tees.
How to know if a bra is your right fit
Aside from the lack of commitment to finding the right bra size, several women can’t tell whether a certain bra fits and feels good for them. Below is a guide on how to know your right bra.
A bra is the perfect size for you if;
What to do if you can’t find your right size of bra
An oversize bra needs you to ashamedly keep on lifting it up as it slides downwards under the weight of your swinging breasts. On the other hand, an undersized bra may irritate or chafe you leading to sores, and it’s also embarrassing to have the edges of your breasts popping out of the tiny cups.
When it comes to several types of strapless bras, if you cannot find your bra size or you only get a mismatch between the band and cup sizes, experts advocate for sizing down in the band and sizing up in the cups. The major purpose of a bra is to support the breasts, thus if you take one (sister) size down in the band length and one (sister) size up in the cups, a bra for big boobs with a closely fitting band will be firmer but still comfortable. For instance, if you are roughly size 34B but it cannot fit you, you can use bra size 32C.