Bra Fitting Guide

Everything you need to know about bra fit

You know the feeling. Your bra pinches, the straps are cutting into your shoulders, the fastener on the back is irritating, the cup is either sticking out or overflowing,... It's not enough just to know your size when shopping for a new bra with a perfect fit and great comfort – there is a lot more to it.

If you want to make sure that from now on you can buy bras that fit perfectly and feel comfortable, then you will want to read all about the tips and tricks we have for you.

 

The most common fitting problems

A too tight underbust band will leave marks on your skin and can cause back pain and result in tissue deformation.

Underbust band too tight

The hook & eye fastener allows you to somewhat adjust the width setting of the underbust band. Many women know the problem: You have put on a few unwanted pounds or you have washed your favourite bra too often and it has shrunk a little. Whatever the reason, the bra simply doesn't fit like it used to. In some cases, you can salvage the bra with a special underbust band extension.      

An underbust band that is too lose will keep riding up, which impacts on the overall hold of the bra and can lead to chafing under the shoulder blades.

Underbust band too wide

Have you already fastened the bra on the tightest setting and it is still too loose or keeps riding up your back?

Then the underbust band of that bra is definitely too large for you. The only remedy here will be a new bra with the correct underbust measurement. Our size calculator will help you to calculate your perfect bra size.

A bra strap that is too long and keeps slipping off the shoulder is not just annoying – it also impacts on the support your bra is supposed to provide.

Bra strap slipping

Every woman knows the annoyance of a bra strap that keeps slipping off the shoulder. In most cases, you'll just have to tighten it a little.

Don't forget to adjust the two straps individually if your shoulders are uneven. Bra straps can, however, also simply become looser over time and body heat can impact on the elasticity of the material.

Padded Basic bra with variable straps by Rosa Faia

Bra strap cutting in

Sometimes all you have to do is position the straps a little wider or – especially if you have large breasts – choose a model with wider straps. If that doesn't help, then the reason might be an ill-fitting underbust band.

It provides most of the support of a bra. If the underbust band is too loose, all the weight is shifted to the straps, which results in them cutting into your shoulders.

The bra should sit snugly but comfortably, so that it can't slip up over the breasts.

Bra rides up

Do you know the feeling? The slightest arm movement and the underwire presses against your chest. That is a sure sign of the underbust band being too loose.

This problem is easily solved by choosing a bra with the underbust measurement one size smaller and the cup one size bigger. That's how you make sure everything stays exactly where it is supposed to be.  

An incorrect bra size also creates unsightly bulges.

Skin bulges over the wings of the bra

Everyone knows about the dreaded "back bulge" – it will most likely be the result of an underbust band that is too tight.  But it could also be because the bra is too large. A loose-fitting underbust band that keeps riding up will also pull the tissue on the sides and back upward, which will result in unsightly rolls, where there really shouldn't be any. 

Bulges appearing at the side of the cup could also mean that the cup is too small or the armhole is too large. 

When buying a new bra, you should pay special attention to the correct placement of the underwire.

The bra underwire pinches

Ideally, the underwire should follow the shape of your breast and lie gently and snugly against the skin. One of the most frequent fit issues is pinching underwire. In most cases, the reason is very simply that the cup is too small.

A good idea would be to choose a larger cup, combined with a smaller underbust measurement. Are you a woman who values comfort? A luxurious soft bra is probably your best choice then!

Choosing a cup that is too small for you will result in your breast ‘overflowing’, which can look quite unattractive – especially under a tight-fitting T-shirt.

Breast ‘overflowing’ the cup

When your breast is flowing over the bra cup you can be pretty sure that you have chosen a cup that is too small for you. In the case of larger breasts it could also be that the cut you have chosen may simply be too low. 

If you feel that the underbust band is a good fit, then just choose one cup size larger or try a bra with a higher cut, like a T-shirt bra.

When a cup is too big, on the other hand, the bra will stick out from your breast, throw wrinkles and create a hollow space.

Bra cup sticks out 

Have you tried tightening the straps just a little? If that doesn't help to get rid of the gap or the wrinkles, then you might be better off trying a smaller cup size or a flatter bra design. 

The balconette or the push-up bra feature a much lower cleavage line.

 

 

 

 

Tips for buying the right bra & size checker

 

This is how lingerie shopping doesn't end up being a nightmare.

 

 

 

Checklist

  1. When trying on a bra, be sure to always fasten it on the tightest hook pair .
  2. Never buy a bra just before you are due your period, because the breast is often enlarged during that part of the menstrual cycle.
  3. When choosing a bra style, make sure it has the right function for your requirements.
  4. The underbust band should always sit perfectly – horizontal, and parallel to the ground.
  5. Make sure the underwire and bridge lie perfectly flat against your skin and encircle your breast exactly.
  6. The cups shouldn't look wrinkly or stick out from your body – but your breast should also not ‘overflow’ from the cups.
  7. Check how the bra looks underneath your clothes. 
  8. If in doubt, be sure to ask for advice and get someone to take your measurements

If the bra feels itchy or scratchy

The elastic tapes chafe, the bra fastener creates friction, the lace irritates the skin...

When it comes to underwear, high-quality, comfortable materials and a good overall finish are particularly important. We want your lingerie to feel like a second skin, and that is why we select our fabrics and other components with utmost care. Find out here about the materials and suppliers ANITA uses.

   

Our tip:

Sister sizes 

Always try a twin size or cross-over size bra if there are minor fit issues. An example of sister sizes would be 75B and 70C.

Choose one cup size larger if you have the feeling that the cup is just a little too small and at the same time choose the underbust band one size smaller.