The question ‘what bra size am I?’ is something that we hear often in the fitting room, so it might surprise you that you won’t find tape measures at Bravissimo! Our boobs are wonderful 3D things and we all have a unique shape – would you measure a pint of milk with a ruler?! For this reason, we don’t find using tape measures much use to measure your bra size. We’re all so much more than a measurement!
Working out what bra size you are is more than being told which numbers and letters to wear; it’s about feeling amazing and being empowered to work out the size and styles that put a (well supported!) spring in your step.
This guide arms you with knowledge of how your bra should fit, but you don’t need to go it alone, we’re always here to help! We’ve been helping women work out what bra size to try for over 25 years and are passionate about making sure it’s an uplifting experience.
You can get advice from our friendly fitters 7 days a week, over the phone, via Live Chat, via email or by booking a virtual fitting. Or pop into one of our shops for a bra fitting any time – no need to book. We’d love to help you to work out if your bra is fitting you well and if it’s not, offer bra fitting advice and suggest styles that we hope you’ll feel confident and amazing in!
Your back band should be firm (but comfortable). It should be horizontal around your body without riding up or digging in. We recommend fastening a new bra on its loosest hooks so that you can tighten it if it stretches over time as you wash and wear it.
The underwires in your bra should sit flat on your ribcage (not your boob!) all the way round to your armpits. The wires between your boobs should lie flat against your chest without digging in, rubbing or poking out.
When your bra cups fit well, your boobs should be fully enclosed in the cups – there should be a smooth line, with no ridge or bulging, where the top and the side of the cups end. If you’re bulging out of your bra or bra cups are wrinkling, it’s likely you need a different cup size.
If your bra is riding up your back, the back size is probably too big! Try going down a back size and up a cup size (or two… or three!) until the back band is firm and your boobs are fully enclosed in the cups.
If your boobs are coming out at the bottom of your bra it’s a sign that your back band is too big. Your back band should be firm – so no room for under-spillage! Try a smaller back size and bigger cup size.
The underwire in your bra can hurt if it’s sitting on your breast tissue or armpit rather than your ribcage. If the underwire is sitting on your breast tissue, try a bigger cup size so that all your breast tissue is enclosed in the cups and if the wire is poking into your armpit try a smaller back size (but remember to go up a cup size to keep the volume in the cup size the same!).
If the centre of your bra doesn’t lay flat against your chest, it could be because the back band is too big (and not firm enough) or because the cups are too small, and your boobs are pushing the centre out. Try a bigger cup size and smaller back size.
The wires aren’t flat to your ribcage as there’s too much room in the back. Try a smaller back size.
REMEMBER this will change the cup size. Please see below…
If your boobs are spilling out of your bra, you need a bigger cup size. There should be a smooth line where the cups end with no bulging – even in a plunge style! You may need to try a smaller back size to keep the back band firm.
If your bra cups are wrinkling, this is a sign that there is too much room in the cups, so try a smaller cup size. This can also happen if you put your bras in the washing machine – so remember to hand wash your lingerie!
If you have gaps when your bra doesn’t sit flush on your boobs, the cups might be too big, so try a cup size smaller. If it’s a moulded style (T-shirt bra) you’re wearing then the shape might not be quite right for you, so it might be worth trying a different style or a stretch lace style which will mould to your shape.
It’s not just about the letters and numbers written in your bra labels that dictate whether your bra fits you well. A big part of finding bras that fit you well is working out which shapes suit you best as each will do something different for you depending on your own individual shape. Check out our style guide for more information. We also have a range of bra accessories which can help to tweak the fit of your bra to give the perfect fit.
Sometimes your bras straps fall down simply because they’re too loose! (obvious, but true!), so try tightening the straps. You could also try a full cup style with more centred straps or a back converter which will turn your regular bra into a racer back to prevent straps from slipping off your shoulders.
Bra straps digging into shoulders can be a sign that your shoulders are taking the strain as the back band isn’t giving you enough support. Try a smaller back size or why not try bra strap pads which add a comfy layer and help to distribute the weight.
So now you’re armed with the knowledge of how to work out if your bra is the perfect fit, but if you have any questions about how your bra should fit or would like any bra fitting advice, please get in touch as we love to help! You reach our friendly fitters on the phone, chat to us on our website, email us or visit one shops for a bra fitting any time – there’s no need to book!