Wonder why? It is because most of us simply too lazy to measure the correct way or we do not know how to measure! We choose to go off of how the bra feels alone. While this is a great method because you want overall comfort, it is helpful to know your true bra size to help make your shopping trip easier and faster.
You will need:
- Measuring tape
- A friend (if you need some assistance)
- No bra or non-padded bra to wear during measurements
Step 1: Measuring Band Size
While braless or wearing a non-padded bra, measure around the bottom of the band, directly under your bust. The measuring tape should be level and very snug. Round to the nearest whole number. If the number is even, add four inches. If it’s odd, add five. Your band size is the sum of this calculation. (So if you measured 32 inches, your band size is 36. If you measured 33 inches, your band size is 38.)
Step 2: Measuring Cup Size
Wrap the measuring tape somewhat loosely around the fullest part of your chest (at nipple level). Round to the nearest whole number.
Step 3: Calculate Bra Size
Subtract your band size from your bust measurement and refer to chart. Example: 37 inches (bust) – 34 inches (band) = 3 inches. That’s a 34C.
So how can you tell if a particular style fits? Try these tips:
- Bend forward at the waist, then slip on the bra and hook it. This ensures your breasts are completely in the cups.
- Adjust the band. The back of the bra should be level with the front.
- Make sure the bra is not too loose. You should be able to slide only one finger underneath the band.
- Fix falling straps. First, tighten the band, then shorten the straps.
- Put on a close-fitting shirt over the bra. If the cups pucker or your breasts bulge, you're not wearing the correct size.
- Look at yourself sideways in a mirror. Your breasts should sit midway between your shoulders and elbows. If not, you need a more supportive and better-fitting bra.
- If you need to go down a cup size for fit, go up one band size, and vice versa. For example, if a 34C is too big for you, move to a 36B.
- Choose a bra that fits perfectly when secured on the outermost hook. As the bra loosens over time, make the band taut by moving toward the tightest hook.
Understanding Sister Sizes
When it comes to bra shopping, things can get a little confusing-even when you have calculated your true bra size. Depending on the brand and the style, there can be parts of a bra that just doesn’t seem to be fitting right. Instead of putting that specific style away, try a "sister size" out.
What are sister sizes?
Sister sizes are that surround your bra size. By knowing what those sizes are, you can easily try on different bras if the one you picked is not turning out to be true to size. For most bras, cup size increases when the band size decreases and vice versa. For example, if you are a 34B, you can either try a 32C or a 36A on to see if one or the other fits better.
See the chart below:
Photo source: Realsimple.com