A correctly sized back band will allow you to comfortably run two fingers underneath it, and should be parallel to the front of the bra; following a straight horizontal line around your body. As band tends to stretch with ware, we recommend that when you first purchase a bra, you make sure that the hook is fastened on the widest setting, this will give you room to adjust it tighter over time.Note: An ill-fitted back band will transfer all the support to your shoulder straps, which can lead to headaches, neck and back pain. Signs of a back band being too small: - You feel restricted and short of breath. - There are red marks on your body when you remove the bra. Signs of a back band being too big: - The back band rides up and is no longer parallel with the front. To resolve this, simply fasten the hooks on a tighter placement. If you are on the firmest setting, it is time for a new bra!
The shoulder straps should be firm but allow you to comfortably run one finger under the strap. The role of the shoulder straps is to support the structure of the bra and hold it in its correct place. They are the bra's secondary form of support and should not be holding up the entire weight of your bust.
- The straps dig in to your shoulders creating indents and red marks.
- The cup is dropping forward and your breasts droop down.
- The straps fall off your shoulders.
3. The cup
A correctly fitted cup will have a smooth transition from the cup to your breast. Always remember to check that your breast is inside the cup and not caught under the bottom or side of the wire; to do this just hold the underwire in place and lift each breast up and inside the cup.
Signs of a cup being too small:
- Your bust is popping out the side of the cup (near your armpit), or out the top of the cup and creating a second bump; hence breaking the smooth transition from the cup to your breast.
Signs of a cup being too big:
- The cup is gaping forward and there is a gap between your breast and the cup. - The fabric of the cup is gathering and is not completely filled out.
4. The centre front panel
The centre front panel of the bra should sit flat against your ribcage.
Signs of an ill fitting bra:
- The centre panel is coming forward and is against the breast tissue, or it is too tight against the rib cage. This can often be a sign that the cup of the bra is too small and you need to go up a cup size.
- The centre of the band comes up too high. This it could mean the cup is too large, but please check for other signs to confirm this! If the cup isn’t to large, then we recommend selecting a different style of bra for your shape.
5. The underwire
A correctly fitting underwire should follow the shape of your bust from the centre to under the armpit and sit flat against your ribcage.
Signs of the underwire being too small:
- The underwire finishes short and digs into the side of the bust
– this is a very clear sign that cup is too small and that you need to go up a cup size.
Signs that the underwire is too big:
- The underwire of the bra comes up high just below the armpit, digging into the soft tissue below your armpit. This is a very clear indicator that the cup size is too big. This may occur even when the cup sizes is correct, particularly with larger cup sizes, and simply means that you should select a different bra style.
- The underwire of the bra are not sitting directly underneath your bust line and are sitting further down on your waist. This indicates that the band of your bra may be too small.
Final notes: Voilà, you have just become your own personal bra fitter!
Now that you understand the signs of an ill-fitting bra, you can ensure that you never go another day wearing the wrong size! While you should be proud of your bra-fitter status, we recommend popping in for a fitting once a year for an objective opinion. Don’t forget, the size of your cup or back strap can change over time, especially if you experience any weight loss or gain, so we recommend judging your bra size on new lingerie, not your trusty staple.