Bra – the ultimate sizing issue

Approximately 75% of women are wearing the wrong size bra. While this figure may seem outstanding, it becomes plausible when you consider the complexity of each women’s shape and the variations in bra shape from style to style and manufacturer to manufacturer. Furthermore, provided the continuing change in a woman’s shape due to water retention, dieting, exercise and the natural aging process, a bra that once fit properly will likely continue being worn beyond its proper fit.

A properly fitted bra is comfortable to wear and, ultimately, will feel as if you are not wearing a bra. A woman should visit her favorite lingerie store at least twice a year and, ideally, each quarter to ensure her bra fits properly.

While the guidelines below will help a woman achieve a general idea of her bra size, the actual bra size purchased may vary because of the lack of true standardization among bra manufacturers. For this reason, a woman should always be willing to focus more on fit and comfort than her historical or projected bra size based upon measurements with a tape measure.

Follow these four steps to achieve your bra size:

1) Measurement 1. Measure under your bust line. Put on your best-fitting, unpadded, under wire bra. Measure underneath the bust line and make sure to measure tightly. Be sure the tape measure is straight across your back.

The general rule of thumb for all measuring is: less than 1/2″, round DOWN, more than a 1/2″, round UP. So if your measurement is 32 1/4, call it 32.

2) Calculate your band size. If measurement 1 is UNDER 33 inches, add 5 inches. If this number is odd, round up to the next EVEN number. If measurement 1 is OVER 33 inches, add 3 inches. If this number is odd, round up to the next EVEN number. Write this EVEN number down.

3) Measurement 2. Measure over the largest point of your bust line. Make sure the tape measure is straight.

4) Calculate you cup size. First subtract measurement number 1 from measurement number 2. Then consult the following chart to find your cup size.

If measurement 2 is: Your cup size is:

0″ larger than measurement 1 AA
1″ larger than measurement 1 A
2″ larger than measurement 1 B
3″ larger than measurement 1 C
4″ larger than measurement 1 D
5″ larger than measurement 1 DD/E
6″ larger than measurement 1 F