You are wearing the wrong bra size. No really, you are.

Yes, this is a bra that comes in sizes 28DD – 38HH. Yes, it is £30…

I’m a little embarrassed to post this, but I need to. I have a love/hate relationship with bras. I would LOVE to find one in my size that was cute, pretty and comfortable. I hate that I can barely buy any bras that fit, and just buying a bra off the shelf in a store?!  Hah!  Dreams from long ago that I have forgotten.

Anyways, I’ve recently joined reddit since D is on it all the time – I finally just caved and joined. Well, surprise surprise with my love/hate relationship with bras, I made it onto the bra threads, specifically a bra that fits.  Don’t click on that link unless you are prepared to realize that your bras don’t fit (at all.  even though you thought they did.  you realized you were one of the 80% of women wearing the wrong size!).  Honestly, I really thought I was wearing the right size.  I remember back when I was in college and I was wearing a VS 38D.  They I was down to 36DD.  Then I once had a bra fitting and was a 34DD.  Then I moved to NZ, went into a bra store here once and was told I was an E or F cup (I laughed/gasped in shock and immediately walked out).  Then I lost 30 lbs and suddenly ended up a 32E.  I’ve been going with 34DD (rarely)/32E for some time now – maybe 3 years or so.  I know.  Everyone is in shock because my boobs don’t really look that big.

Well, I haven’t purchased a new bra in a year now.  Last time I went home to the USA I tried a 30E.  Yeah – that didn’t fit at all (um, if you go down a band size, you need to go up a cup size – Silly  me!), I could barely do the back up.  So just kept on with 32E.

Then I made the (mistake?) of reading reddit a bra that fits.  I finally cave and measure myself.  According to the site, I should be wearing a 30G in US sizes.  *sigh*  I try on my old 32Es and yes, it’s true, they are too big in the back!  How can this be?!  Apparently I have the ribcage the size of a small child (29″).  So I caved and ordered a bunch of bras to try from Brastop in size 30F (converting to UK sizes, my friends).  Of course, not only am I a weird size but my boobs are a weird shape and I decide that I liked two.  Well, after wearing 1 for several days – I’m already on the middle set of hooks!  So now I’m thinking I need to drop down to a 28FF (I don’t even know what this size translates into in NZ sizes.  Honestly bras here are like $80+ each and if they do come in my size, I wouldn’t be caught dead in them.  So why bother?!).  The back might be too small then, but I still need to give it a try as, like I said, ribcage of a small child.  I will possibly post an update later on to see if I really have migrated into such a freakishly weird sounding size.

To sum up:  Cup size means nothing – it’s all about ribcage to bust ratio (which mine, for most US bra manufacturers, apparently is nearly impossible).  It’s also about putting your bra on.  Are you scooping and swooping?  If your bra back is riding up even the tiniest bit – guess what?  It’s too big (yes, throw those old stretched out bras OUT).  I suspect this is where most women go wrong.  However, there are about a dozen other ways your bra could not be fitting, so please just go to reddit/abrathatfits, it will be much easier than me trying to repeat everything here.  You don’t want to spend $50 USD+ on a bra?  If you’re DD+, that is just too bad.  You will look like a million dollars once you are wearing a well fitting bra.  It may even disguise the fact you are wearing a $10 t-shirt.

Literally, when was the last time I bought a bra in a store? At least 2 years ago. Guess how often I wore them (because no one carried my size and I probably squeezed myself into an inappropriately small cup size and large band size). Yeah… I’m going to have an enormous trademe clear out in about 1 week.

It’s true, I shall never ever be able to buy a bra instore ever again and I just need to accept that Victoria’s Secret will never ever fit me (38 D – for reals!  Yes, I was that silly).  It’s only UK sites from now on, folks!  Thank goodness for Brastop, Bravissimo and Figleaves.

So, are you wearing a victoria’s secret bra right now?  If you answered yes, you are almost certainly wearing the wrong size.  Always thought you were a measly A, B or C cup?  You might not be (there’s hope!  well, if you want to be a bigger size, that is)!  Are all of your bras over 1-2 years old?  Time to replace them.  Have you lost or gained weight recently?  Yep, sorry, your bras no longer fit.  And if you’re already in the DD+ range, definitely go to reddit/abrathatfits.  It will change your life.  Yes, you will almost certainly be poorer and incredibly depressed about having to get rid of an entire drawer full of expensive, un-worn, ill-fitting bras.  But just get over it and get a bra that fits, already!


13 thoughts on “You are wearing the wrong bra size. No really, you are.

  1. Ha, every day this week as I’ve been getting dressed I’ve thought about the conversation we had on Saturday night about this issue. I probably have literally about $500 worth of bras that don’t quite fit sitting in my drawer…depressing.

    • I know (and totally the same. I’m going to try and sell them on trademe)! Bras are such an expensive pain! Again, here is where reddit comes in – I think they are starting to do more bra swapping on there – which definitely helps with expense. I’m still going to try trademe first as many of mine are barely worn!

  2. Haha I remember talking about this the other night. Gotta say I was surprised how many people hadn’t heard of the scooping and swooping.
    Probably about time I measure up again….but I have already brought so many bras since I started exercising I really don’t want to buy any more until I am pretty sure size isn’t going to change again.

    • Apparently I also have the rib cage of a small child. Converting band size from UK to NZ apparently sizing I should be size 8. Do size 8 bands even exist in stores here or am I doomed to having to by things online? Also measuring did not magically increase my cup size from what I was expecting 😦

      • I don’t know that size 8 exists here… Well, at least not with my cup size. According to reddit the band should be pretty tight. A size 8 is equivalent to a size 30, I think. But since some of my 32s are still quite big on the smallest hook, I may try a 28 as well (there is all this crazy stuff on reddit about measuring your ribcage, and then measuring it again as tight as possible – to be honest I’m a little confused)… Of course, it totally depends on the brand/sizing and how stretchy the fabric is! Aargh! So trying bras on is probably the way to accurately determine size?

      • That’s why I don’t like the idea of buying online, big differences in sizes between brands and different fabrics.
        Haha I had a look in stores today and the only things which seemed to go as small as 8 were bras designed for teens. Think I can probably still get away with 10s as long as it is a stiffer fabric which isn’t going to stretch too much.

  3. Wow, I couldn’t even follow all those sizes you have tried. I can’t even really figure out what a 28FF sized bra would look like!! 😛 No scooping and swooping for me. Since having a baby and breastfeeding, my already small boobs have gotten even smaller and acquired a deflated look to them… so I probably need to stock up on some bras with significant amounts of padding!


      You can see different sizes on real women there. I found it really helpful!

      Aw, poor you! But support becomes even more important now, right? Hence a nice supportive bra. 😀

      And yes I absolutely dread the changes induced by having a baby! They’re going to balloon out to be even bigger, then either stay ginormous (and give me back problems) or deflate down to look like to saggy empty plastic bags. 😦

  4. I freaking hate being in boob jail. I went for a professional fitting about a year and a half ago. I am a 30B…most places don’t carry smaller than a 32. But even with the “right” fit, I still loathe them with every breath in my body.

  5. I’ve come across the UK sites and have even bought some bras from them — getting close to my size, but not quite. Though, for lack of funds, I’ve stopped trying bras and I couldn’t rely on my ever changing measurements. I didn’t even know about “ABraThatFits”. I’ll go check it out and hopefully it helps. Luckily the bras I have now aren’t expensive.

    Have you checked out She seems to know what she’s talking about, and best of all she doesn’t add the 4 or 5 to band measurement.

    • Glad to introduce someone else to reddit/ABraThatFits! I’ve just had a look at the butterfly collection site. It’s a good site, but in my size there was a pretty limited offering, especially for colours other than black and nude.

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