1 mo

If you wear a bra, I urge you to read this myTake

Hi guys!

I'm sharing this myTake today, because I am extremely passionate about helping people understand how bra sizing works.

I have small boobs. 32A seemed to be the smallest size most shops carry, so I assumed for most of my life, up until about 2 years ago, that it must have been my size. Furthermore, Victoria's Secret sized me as a 30B but said I could fit into the sister size of 32A, and Ann Summers sized me as 30B. They're the experts, I thought.

How wrong I was, and how wrong they were. About 2 years ago, I found this amazing subreddit called abratthatfits. They have their own calculator. I put my measurements in, and it gave me the size 26E (26 in UK sizing, but in US sizing this would be 26DDD). It changed my life.

At first, I was in MAJOR disbelief, because - I have small boobs, aren't E cups for people with really big boobs? Nope. That's the first thing I learnt. Technically, it's wrong to even be talking about 'A cups', 'B cups' and 'E cups' because these on their own are not sizes. The letters mean nothing without the band size. There's a common societal misconception about bra sizing that A = tiny, B = small, C = average, D = large, DD = very large and DD+ = massive, but this is not true. The letters stand for a difference in inches between underbust and bust measurement. So, A = 1 inch difference, B = 2", C = 3" and so on. E, therefore, indicates a 6 inch difference (about 3" of projection per boob - so not as big as everybody thinks). This 6 inch difference will appear differently on different band sizes. For example, on someone with a small underbust measurement like me, 26E appears to be quite a small size. 32E, on the other hand, looks more like a small-average size (not large like a lot of people think). As the band size goes up, this 6 inch difference will appear larger because there is essentially more surface area to cover.

Now, I want to address the fact that of course, there will be many people reading this who actually are A and B cups, I am not denying the existence of A and B cups in the slightest. However, many people are wearing A and B cup bras due to being fitted incorrectly in stores (cough Victoria's Secret cough) and/or lacking in knowledge about bra sizing and therefore thinking that nothing over a B cup can be small. C, D, DD, E and F can be small too on a lot of band sizes - band size is so important. If you wear a 32A and your underbust measurement is 32" and bust measurement is 33", then you're most likely wearing the right size. Similarly, if you're a 34B and your underbust measurement is 34" and bust measurement is 36", then you're a 34B. Never add inches to your underbust measurement - even if the company's size guide tells you to! I'll address this in another paragraph.

Another thing that really confused me when the calculator gave me the size 26E, was that in my 32A and 30B bras, I used to have gaping in the cups, which made me think that the cups were too big for me. But, as I learnt, this is not always the case. There are many possible reasons for gaping cups - it doesn't always mean that you need a smaller cup size. Also, the band felt super tight on some of my 32A and 30B bras, so how the heck could a 26 band work for me? But, I learnt that, if the band feels tight it doesn't necessarily mean the band is too small. If the cups are too small for you, the band can FEEL tight, because your boobs put a strain on the band to try and accommodate more cup space, and this makes it feel tight. To check if you're wearing the right band size, you can do an independent band test. Put on your bra upsidedown, so with the cups facing down. Try to move the band around the circumference of your underbust. If you can easily move it, then it's too loose. If you can't move it at all, it's probably too tight. If it's snug but you can move it if you try, then it's probably the right band size.

The third thing that really confused me, was the idea of a 26 band. I had NEVER heard of a 26 band, nor seen any 26 band bras in shops. I thought 30 was small! But, the truth is, 26 bands aren't uncommon. Lots of women need band sizes that are below 32", but they don't realize this because bra stores use an incorrect measuring method called the +4 method. It tells people that they should measure their underbust and then add 4 inches. This is TOTALLY wrong and puts people in the wrong size completely. For example, I have a 26 underbust and 32 bust, which makes me a 26E. But, the +4 method puts me in a 30B (30 underbust, 32 bust), which is totally wrong for my proportions. Think about it, you wouldn't measure your waist and add 4 inches if you were buying pants, would you? So, why do stores do this? They do it to make more money. As long as they can keep fooling us and measuring us wrong, it means they get to keep their size ranges as narrow as possible and therefore, make more money. This needs to change, because so many women need bands smaller than 32 and because these aren't readily available, they have to settle for 32 bands which are not going to be supportive at all. The +4 method affects us all, whether we have big boobs or small. A lot of people with big boobs wear sizes like 34DD (because they think DD = large) when they actually need a G or H cup. For example, someone who is a 30G, would be put into a 34DD by the +4 method - this is so wrong, and will give them zero support.

I am so passionate about this because, if I hadn't found out about 'abrathatfits' I would still be wearing the wrong bra size, which is bad for your breast tissue, and not to mention super uncomfortable. Furthermore, it frustrates me knowing that so many people are wearing the wrong size and it's all because of bra companies measuring people wrong. Listen up ladies - you do not need to be fitted in store. Once you have a measuring tape and the abrathatfits calculator, you can measure your own bra size, and be way better guaranteed of its accuracy.

1) There is a general consensus that bras are uncomfortable, end of. This is simply not true. Whether your boobs are big or small, a good-fitting bra, will be comfortable. If you are uncomfortable while wearing a bra, there's a huge chance you're wearing the wrong size. My 32A and 30B bras used to be super uncomfortable. Since I found my actual size, bras feel like a second skin. I literally forget I'm wearing them.

2) Some people think that you should wear a bra on the tightest hook. You should actually wear it on the loosest hook. The other hooks are there so that when the bra loosens out after multiple wears and washes, you can move to the next hook and it should then feel as it did when you first bought it.

3) Have you ever heard of the scoop and swoop? If not, look it up. If you don't scoop and swoop, your bra isn't on right and it's not going to support your boobs correctly. Search it in the abrathatfits subreddit for a better explanation but it basically involves leaning over at a 90 degree angle when your bra is on, and scooping your breast tissue from the sides and underneath properly into each cup of the bra. I didn't realize how bad a fit my old 32A and 30B bras were until I did the scoop and swoop.

Feel free to comment, I would love to have discussions with you guys about this! Also, if you need any help with anything or have any questions, don't hesitate to ask. If I can help even one person, I'll be super happy.

Have a lovely day! #bras

If you wear a bra, I urge you to read this myTake
12
9

• Oh god I feel you! I discovered the subreddit a few months ago after being braless for over a year and a half! I was so sick of being shoehorned into a 32DD with obvious banding issues and no support at all!

Tried the bra calculator only to learn i'm actually a 28FF/G depending on the cup shape and style of the bra! The hardest thing about it was the initial sticker shock and the time it took for me to take the plunge and order a bra in the size recommended.

Day 1 of getting my bra and I was just... Blown away. My initial thoughts were "you mean to tell me, bras dont have to be uncomfortable?". Like holy-. Ever since i've just become passionate about sharing the news with everyone. It's like a whole new level of existence once you put the proper bra on.

Admittedly, it was hard telling those my proper size if the topic ever arose in conversation as i'd be met with the classic "There's no way you're 'x' size, because i'm 'y' and a lot larger!". It's been difficult compiling ways to convince others the correct way to measure and a lot harder when they meet you with condescension or 'attack' you :(. Almost like they dont understand we're not doing this for our own benefit, we're just trying to share 'feel good' moment we had when we tried on our first properly fitted bra...
Is this still revelant?
• Very well said! You remind me of a friend of mine who also wears a 32DD but I reckon she'd be way more comfortable in a 28FF/G. I'm not friendly enough with her to say "so, I think you're wearing the wrong size" LOL.

I was blown away the first time I tried 28D as well. The calculator gave me 26E so the sister size was 28DD but I was so skeptical of the whole 'DD' thing that I decided to try a 28D instead. So I ordered it online, and when it came I took it out of the package and looked at it - it looked MASSIVE. I was like 'okay, I had a feeling that calculator was wrong, and I was right, there's no way I'm going to fill those cups.' I put it on, scooped and swooped, and it was TOO SMALL. Quadboob central. I did not expect that. I got the same bra in 28DD and it was so much better.

Yes I'm passionate about sharing this with everyone too! It has almost become a hobby lol.

And yeah exactly, some people on here think I'm doing this to annoy people or to troll people but that's literally not it! There are 2 main things that drive me to do this and the first one is, because I genuinely want to help people and I want other people to find the right fit just like I did. Secondly, I think it's wrong that in this day and age 26 and 28 bands are so hard to find even though they're not rare at all. I'm lucky that I can at least buy things online, I know some people probably have sizes that are even harder than mine to get online, but god online shopping and returns can get exhausting after a while. I've had multiple bras in my 'basket' on websites lately and I never end up buying because I'm just like "ugh I'll probably have to return them anyway."

• Great Mytake
Is this still revelant?
• Thank you so much!

Scroll Down to Read Other Opinions

What Girls & Guys Said

712
• Sizes are not consistent across manufacturers, a global standardised system would help, by the way all men should have to wear a bra one day a week so we understand more about how they can be uncomfortable,,,
• Bras that fit aren't uncomfortable.

• I have always worn a 34 DD because that is just what I think I wear. Is there a benefit then to a professional fitter? I have heard it said that many of us wear the wrong size.
• I think I used to wear a 34D in high school, when I should’ve probably been in something like a 26F. I wish I could’ve gone back and helped teenage me find a better bra.

Thank you for sharing, I enjoyed reading it!
• I know, I wish I could've gone back and helped teenage me too!

You're very welcome, thank you for your comment ❤️

• Are English bras measured in inches or centimeters?

• What did the bra say to the hat?

You go on ahead. I'm going to give these two a lift.

Interesting take.
• Yah, I have a 26 inch rib cage and 35 inch bust, so I wear a size 26H/28G/30F (US) and I can only ever get that online- thanks for the MyTake!
• You're welcome! Exactly, a 26 underbust and 35 inch bust is a 26H but the +4 method would put you in a 30DD, or worse, its sister size 32D, which would be so wrong for your proportions. I'm glad you've found the right fit! 💗

• Having 4daughters going to town for a fitting, your take brings it all back. Sitting out side the fitting room waiting for my daughters to come out.
The one thing I told them was make sure it fits properly...
• Thanks for your response! Yep, it is so important to get the right fit! I sure hope the fitters put them in the right size. To the untrained eye, a bad fit can be difficult to spot, so that's why I always recommend that people check with the abrathatfits calculator just to be 100% sure.

• Thing is as they grew their sizes changed..
I'm very close to all of them not having a mother but there are some things I had to get some one else to make sure...

• A lot of good info here, thanks... It will change the way people thing about bra sizes, especially the guy who ask a girl with the right fitted bra, what size are you boobs and she says 26E... ;)
• You're welcome! Exactly, most people think E is a large size but in a lot of instances it's not. It depends on how wide the person's frame is, on wider frames E will look bigger.

I understand the single Cup sizes... A, B, C, D, E...

What is the difference between a Double D versus a single D or E?
• Hey I like reading this. Have any tips on men that wear bras
• Look It may sound funny, but there are many men out there that need to wear a bra. Take my 25 year son. he has a bad case of man boobs.(takes to messed up meds the doctor put him on) anyways. Any help would be helpful for men that need to wear a bra,

• Change this: takes to messed up meds
To this: Thanks to messed up meds

• I didn't read it all but i got the jist. I worked in modeling for years. Most girls dont know their bra sizes at all. Its ridiculous.
• all I know is I wear a c cup my tits have room and aren't squashed around.
• Since I don't wear bras, am I urged to read it for women in my life?
• Well you can share it with women in your life if you wish

• I wear 34B demi bras from VS.
• Ok! Be sure to double check your size using the abrathatfits calculator, because VS measure people wrong all the time - as do many other stores! Thanks for your comment :)

• To many, bras are completely unnecessary.
• 👍👍 I'm a guy but ok do whatever you want
• May I ask, why did you comment

• Didn't know what to say , I know nothing the issues about bras with women

If it's a problem for them , I support them for not wearing jr

• "It"

• Thank you so much
• Thank you for addressing this! I was sized as a 30c/32b which I thought was pretty big for a 13 year old (my age at the time). But then I did research and figured out of wasn't that bad.
• You're welcome! Be sure to check the abrathatfits calculator to make sure you were sized right! Stores size people wrong all the time! 💗

• Well my bras fit comfortably so I think I'm good for now.

• Sometimes bras can be comfortable even if they're not a good fit. Do you scoop and swoop?

• But don't sister sizes work? I own a minimizer bra which is 1 size smaller than my actual measurements and it's super comfortable.
I feel it can be really hard to accept that you're not actually the size you thought you were, because of all the body shaming and objectification of female bodies
• Yeah sister sizes work! I'm a 26E but I can't buy that size anywhere so I buy 28DD instead, that's the sister size. You shouldn't sister size up twice though. So like I can buy 28DD, but I couldn't buy 30D, it's too much of a jump.

And yeah definitely, it can be tough at the start to accept. I definitely experienced that! But the more I learnt, the more I came to understand and accept it.