Tricks of the Bra

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Tricks of the Bra
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How to measure for a properly fitted bra.

Measure around your rib cage, underneath your breasts, where the band of your bra sits. Make sure to pull the tape snug and keep it flat against your back. Add 5 to this number (if you end up with an odd number, round up to the closest even number). This number is your bra size. Example: 29 inches +5 = size 34.

Measure around the fullest part of your breast, again keeping the tape snug, but not tight, and parallel to the rib-cage line. If this measurement is an odd number, round up to the next even number.  Example: 37 inches rounds up to 38.

To determine your cup size, subtract the first measurement from the second.

Example: 38 minus 34 = 4:
1-inch difference = A cup;
2-inch difference= B cup;
3-inch difference = C cup;
4-inch difference= D cup,
5-inch difference = DD cup.
6-inch difference = F cup.
7-inch difference = G cup.
8-inch difference = H cup.

So the examples result in a bra size of 34D, so this would be a good starting point to try to find the right bra for you. 

Too much of a good thing, 
or not enough?

If when you look at yourself in your bra you seem to "Flow" over the edges then get a cup size larger and Bra size smaller. The same is true if you don't fill the cup, reduce the cup size and go one bra size larger.

For example: Lets look at the 34D we did above. The proper bra could be a 32DD or 36C ---  all three bra's could fit the person we measured for a bra above,  except for how the cup is filled.

 That is why it is important to try a new bra on before you buy it.  It is worth going to a store where they have people trained to give you a proper fit, as a good Bra is critical, as what is under your clothes is what is projected though your clothes.  And if you want to look your best then make sure that your "Foundation" garments fit properly.  There is a reason that they are called "foundation" garments...

Tricks of getting a fuller look

Typically most women want to emphasis what they have, and for a model this is generally desirable. Without going for a "Super" Bra or a lift up Bra you can have comfort and still have emphasis if you:   

  • Fit the Bra properly to start with

  • When you put the bra on; bend over so your chest is parallel to the ground, pull the Bra away from your skin allowing the breast to fill the Bra's cup. 

Do this on both sides and when you stand back up you will find that you look fuller. If it causes you to have "too much of a good thing" then go back a step and try a different bra with a larger cup size. 

Remember your attitude is your best asset, and if you know you look good it will show in the photos.

Your bra is properly fitted When:

  • The fullest part of the bust / breast is found at  approximately the middle point between the  shoulder and elbow. 
  • The  horizontal seam on the bra's cup (if the bra  has one)  should be parallel to the shoulders. Adjust the straps, until they are firm but comfortable. If they are too tight the seam in the bra's cup will go in a upwards direction  from horizontal, and if too loose; the seam will go downward.
  • The main band of your bra that goes around your chest should ride comfortably tight across the middle of the back and pass under the shoulder blades. It should also be parallel to the shoulders. If the main band is too loose, it will ride up your back. A properly fitting bra will be supported mainly by the main/chest band, not just the shoulder straps. If the straps dig in, the bra size is probably wrong.
  • The bra cups should be the right size for what you have. With no double curves (very tacky looking), neither too much or to little. That is, If the breasts are bulging from their cups at the tops/sides or the under-wires are not touching your chest, the cup size is probably too small. You should have one smooth curve of your breast from bottom to top with nothing showing what is skin and what is bra except the faintest of lines at the bra's edge.
  • Under-wires should lie flat against your chest/rib cage and should not  rub together. Make sure that you have the right size as it is very important that the under-wire not place any pressure on the breast tissue.
  • The center clasp of the bra (if there is one), or band should lie flat against the chest between the breasts.
  • Adjust the bra's shoulder straps to give firm lift to the breast. Firm but comfortable, the bra's straps should not dig in to your shoulders.
  • The shoulder straps should be parallel to the body, front and back. If not check for the  wrong size or a poorly built bra. A well fitted bra should never have straps falling off the shoulder in normal use or cutting into your shoulders.
  • It is your body, being cheap with a bra does not make sense. Get a good bra, and make sure it fits properly. You will be glad that you spent the few extra dollars to take proper care of your breasts.

Questions? Write me...


To look your best you must wear a properly fitted Bra.

Ok, so she is wearing a bikini, 
at least you get the idea ;-)

As an alternative method: Measure just under the arms and round up to the next EVEN number, then subtract that from the fullest part, the cup table on the site is correct for this method as well.

When all else fails (as from the email that I have received no one method works for everyone) try this:

  • Measure your chest under your breasts (where the bottom band of a bra normally sits on your chest).
  • Measure your chest above your breasts and below your armpits.

If the difference between the two measurements is two inches or less, the under breast measurement plus 5 inches (even sizes only so round up if you need to) is your bra size. If the difference is over two inches, you may want to try one size larger. 

To determine the proper Cup Size, measure around the chest at the height of the fullest part of the breast. The measuring tape should be held horizontal, and your arms should be down. Find the difference between this measurement and your bra band size and use the chart to get your cup size.

Remember this is just a starting point. You have to try the bra on to make sure it is the right fit, and sizes do vary from manufacturer to manufacturer.

Note: If your bra seems to have a good fit, but the band is riding up in the back, try a larger cup size first, if that doesn’t seem to do the trick, try the next band size up.  

If gravity has worked its way with you, figure out your band size and just try on a few different cup sizes until you find the one that gives you one smooth curve with no spillage, that is go for comfort.


Note: Fitting is critical, a recent study from Australia linked a too constraining bra fit with breast cancer, with a link stronger than that of smoke to lung cancer. The suggestion was that you should massage the breast daily to restore fluid movement to keep the tissue healthy

Start with a two handed cupping action and compress the breast, (Gently) then kneed the breast tissue, like a loaf of bread, working over the entire breast, but not as hard. (again gently) End with stroking the tissue starting at the nipple and working outwards. Press about as hard as you would on your eyelid. And with small firm motions work outward from the nipple.  Try to wear a bra less than 12 hours a day. If your build will allow it, go without a bra, they noted that after about 30 days the breast would start to support itself, and it would not feel as "funny" as it does at the start of the 30 day period.  

If your nipples tend to show, and that worries you, there are new items on the market that basically cover just the nipple, so your "headlights" won't show.  Or the best solution is to just make sure that you pick the right bra for you, one that fits properly and reduce your wear time, coupled with a gentle nightly massage.