You may also want to try on a T-shirt or sweater over a bra you're thinking of buying to get the finished effect. If they are too high under your arms, they may rub resulting in discomfort. If your breast tissue is evenly spread over a wider area, with less projection, you probably have a shallow shape.
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You should be able to slide only one finger underneath the band. First, tighten the band, then shorten the straps. Put on a close-fitting shirt over the bra. If the cups pucker or your breasts bulge, you're not wearing the correct size. Look at yourself sideways in a mirror. Your breasts should sit midway between your shoulders and elbows. If not, you need a more supportive and better-fitting bra.
If you need to go down a cup size for fit, go up one band size, and vice versa. For example, if a 34C is too big for you, move to a 36B. Choose a bra that fits perfectly when secured on the outermost hook. As the bra loosens over time, make the band taut by moving toward the tightest hook. Now that you've found your correct bra size, it's time to go shopping! Below are some of our favorite places to pick up a pretty bra, in person and online. Real Simple may receive compensation when you click through and purchase from links contained on this website.
Close View all gallery. Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission. Are You Wearing the Right Size? Determine Your Band Size While braless or wearing a non-padded bra, measure around the bottom of the band, directly under your bust.
Take Your Bust Measurement Wrap the measuring tape somewhat loosely around the fullest part of your chest at nipple level. Calculate Your Cup Size Subtract your band size from your bust measurement and refer to chart. By Rachel Shelasky and Julee A. This time, when you run the tape measure around your body, you're going to take the measurement across the fullest part of your breasts. Write down this number. Now subtract your chest measurement.
If the difference between the two numbers is less than 1 inch, your cup size is AA. If it's 1 inch, your cup size is A; 2 inches, you're a B; 3 inches you're a C, and so on. So you've taken your measurements and you're in the fitting room trying a bra in what's supposed to be your size — but it doesn't seem to fit. Different brands and styles of bras will fit differently. So bring several options with you into the dressing room to start.
And before you pile on all your clothes just to go out and look for a different size, experiment by making some adjustments to the bra. If the bra has an adjustable closure, extend or shorten the band slightly by moving the hooks to a different spot or adjusting the velcro if the bra has a velcro closing. The bottom band of a properly fitting bra should ride across the middle of your back and pass under your shoulder blades to provide the right support.
A bra's straps allow you to modify how the cups fit and support your breasts. When the straps are the right length, a bra lifts the breasts comfortably and the back of the bra will run straight across your back if a bra is pulling upward in the back, it may be a sign that the straps are too tight. You should be able to get one finger under the straps to prevent them from digging into your shoulders. In general, girls who are petite will need to wear their bra straps shorter than girls who are tall.
If you've made the straps looser and they are still digging into your shoulders, the cup size might be too small for you. The cups also might be too small if you notice your breasts bulging out the sides, top, or bottom of the bra. If you notice that the cups are puckering or that there is a gap between your breasts and the bra, the cups are too big.
In addition to fit, there are some other things you might want to take into account when choosing a bra. A girl's breasts can grow and change rapidly during the teen years, which means that until you stop developing, you might have to change your bra size several times. If your breasts are still growing, consider buying fewer bras and measure yourself frequently to double-check your size.
Because growth can make a girl's breasts sensitive, you might find certain styles or fabrics work better for you. For example, some girls like seamless cups because they don't irritate the nipples; others choose styles that minimize jiggle to ease the occasional aches of breast development.
Some girls' breasts change size or shape at different times in their menstrual cycles. Many girls find they like to wear different styles of bras at different times in their cycle. Most girls' breasts grow at different rates — and many girls find themselves with one boob that's bigger than its partner. This is so common that bra manufacturers design their products so they can be adjusted to accommodate asymmetrical breasts.
Start by moving the strap adjusters on a bra to different lengths to see if this helps. Some girls also use the trick of buying a bra that has removable padding and then taking the extra padding out of the cup for the larger breast. Push-up bras can work well for this because they often come with an easily removable padded section called a "cookie" that sits under the breast. Hooks, wires, and other hazards. Take a look at the bra you're about to buy and imagine how it might survive a full day of wear.
If the front closure pops open too easily, could this bra let you down in front of your entire drama class? The bra's straps may feel fine in the fitting room, but if the adjusters are sitting right on your shoulder or collarbone, how will that feel under your backpack? Test to see if the bra band is too loose by lifting your arms in the air and putting them back down by your sides a couple of times. If the bra rides up across your breasts, the band is too loose.
If you're looking for a sports bra, jump up and down in the fitting room a couple of times to evaluate the bra's bounce control.
You may also want to try on a T-shirt or sweater over a bra you're thinking of buying to get the finished effect. That pink rose on the front may look cute on the bra itself, but does it make you look as if you've sprouted a third breast once your T-shirt's on?
Bra sizes can fluctuate, and many of us aren’t wearing the right size. Measure yourself accurately with our bra size calculator and find your perfect fit. Wrap the tape measure firmly around your underbust. Tip: Always measure in inches. Pull it so that it feels comfortable, but not so tight that it causes discomfort. If it looks like your measurement is in-between sizes, round down to the nearest number. Bra Size Calculator. This calculator estimates bra size based on bust size and frame size (band size). To ensure accuracy, measure to the nearest ¼ inch or ½ cm. This calculator provides results for the United States, the United Kingdom, European Union, Australia, and New Zealand. Bust Size.