Avoiding the Bra Size Booby Trap

Here at Bravissimo, we want every big-boobed woman to feel supported and empowered. That’s why we’ve been helping women find their perfect fit for 25 years, offering a size range from 28D to 40L. The average bra size in the UK is a 36DD, and with up to 80% of women wearing bras that don’t fit them (70% wearing bras too small and 10% wearing bras too big), women all over the UK might be able to shop at Bravissimo without even knowing it!

In fact, we surveyed just under 1,000 big-boobed women and 92% said they were a different size to the one they previously thought after being fitted for a bra either instore or using our virtual fitting tool.

The two most common issues were that they had been wearing a bra that was either too big in the back or too small in the cup. Check out all the stats below for yourself!


Your questions answered!

You may be wondering, how do you know if the bra that you’re wearing right now is the right size? We asked our community of big-boobed women to send in their sizing questions that they’ve always wanted the answers to and we put our expert fitters to the test! Take a look below for the answers and for some handy tips on how to make sure you find your feel-good fit​.

"Why does my bra ride up and how can I stop it?"

If you find your back band riding up your back, it's usually because it's a little too loose and not supportive enough. Did you know that 80% of the support from your bra comes from the back band – not the straps?! That’s why we recommend that you want it to feel firm (but comfortable!) to give you lots of lift and support – and a brilliant shape as well. The best way to fix it is to try a tighter back band on. It might feel a little firm to begin with, but, actually, that firmness will lift and give you much more support - and a brilliant shape as well. We also suggest you fasten your bra on the loosest hook to begin with, as over time the back band will loosen, meaning you’ll get a longer life out of your bra as you can tighten when you need too – bonus!



"Why does my bra wrinkle around the cups?"

This can be for a few different reasons, but it most commonly depends on where you have fullness in your breast tissue. So, for instance, if you don't have fullness at the very top, you might find that the tops of your cups start to wrinkle a little bit. You may want to then try something made with stretch lace; something like Bravissimo's Millie or Envy by Panache, which is extra stretchy across the top, and will form to your shape.

"What does it mean when the fabric at the ribcage rolls up?"

This can mean one of two things. It can mean that either the back is too small and you might need to try a bigger back size, or you may need to try a new style (as every style fits slightly differently!) – it’s all about finding what works best for you.



"How do I know that I need to downsize my bra?"

It's time to downsize your bra when the band is stretching out two inches at the very most, your band isn't sitting level or if you're putting it at the tightest hook at the back instead of the loosest hook.

"I have one boob bigger than the other. How do I know which style to go for?"

Most of us have one boob bigger than the other, that's completely normal and nothing to worry about. All boobs are unique and every big-boobed women is different! We would recommend a stretch lace style. This is because the lace moulds to your shape, keeping both of your boobs supported and comfortable.



"Why is my underwire causing me pain and discomfort?"

There are a lot of reasons why the underwire could be causing you pain, but we find that the two most common reasons are:

  1. Your cups could be a little too small and are therefore causing the underwire to dig into the breast tissue either on the side or in the middle

  2. The band is too small, which could be causing the underwire to press into your torso. You can try sizing up in either the cup size or up in the band, and seeing if it helps.

A different size could change your life

Nearly half of the women we surveyed found that their cup size went up after a fitting. Many women may think that Bravissimo don’t carry their size, but with 70% of UK women wearing a bra that’s too small, there’s never been a better time to get fitted and find out! Going from the wrong size to the right size can change your confidence, your comfort and - if the words of the following Bravissimo customers are anything to go by - your life!


To say I was amazed is putting it mildly! I was speechless! I couldn’t believe I was wearing a 36C, my fitter put me in a 34E. It was perfect and fitted like a glove!

Sally, Bravissimo Girl


I visited your shop feeling a bit apprehensive as I’ve just breastfeeding and my whole body has changed shape. Everyone was so welcoming, and my fitter worked out what I needed (a 32D- I was in a 36C!) and found me the PERFECT bra. It has honestly revolutionised my life!

Caroline, Bravissimo Girl


I was measured for the first time at Bravissimo after wearing a 34B for 35 years. I’m actually a 30F! It’s changed my life!

Lisa, Bravissimo Girl

Share your story!

If you’d like to share your story, we’d love to hear it! Please email smile@bravissimo.com, or get in touch via social media. We never share anything without your permission, so if you don’t want it to go beyond us, it won’t.