Bra shopping can be annoying and exhausting. This is because many women do not know what they should look for when shopping for a bra, from the shape to the size, colour, and quality.
A survey by Dr Jenny Burbage, a sports bio-mechanist at the University of Portsmouth, revealed that “traditional methods of bra fitting were inadequate, especially for larger-breasted women”. Previous studies found that “70% to 100% of women are wearing the wrong-size bra,” which is not supposed to be.
Wearing a bra that fits appropriately is particularly important. Apart from the fact that bras support your breast, wearing a perfect-sized bra can change your perception of your body and boost your self-esteem. “Boobs can affect you mentally and physically, especially if you have a negative relationship with them,” says expert bra-fitter Katie Weir, who specializes in fuller-bust underwear at lingerie shop Curvy Kate.
Although bra shopping may seem daunting, it isn’t. Here are some tips experts recommend to help you purchase the best-fitting bra.
- Visit a professional for a bra fitting
Seeing a professional bra fitter is necessary if you must get a perfect-fit bra. Virtual bra fittings are also available if you’re anxious about visiting a shop in person. Curvy Kate’s own online bra whisperer service skyrocketed over lockdown, fitting over 1,000 women at virtual fittings.
Virtual bra fitting sessions usually last for 10 minutes. Katie doesn’t use a measuring tape or calculations: “It is essentially based on the bra style that you are wearing, your underwear size and height,” she says.
- Invest in quality lingerie
“A good quality bra will not only last longer, but it will also fit better and offer the best support,” says Katie.
“Look for bras with power mesh that hug and hold your band for the best support,” says Katie. “We also have some bras with laminated cups to offer further support and a beautifully rounded shape. Bra straps should also be firm, so they don’t over-stretch. Finally, stretch lace works wonders for fuller-bust bras, and a stretch lace top cup accommodates bust fluctuations perfectly.”
- Choose comfort over trendy
It’s easy to get carried away by the latest trends or the cutest colours and prints, but remember that a bra is, first and foremost, a piece of clothing meant to support your breasts. This implies that comfort and fit should be your topmost priorities when choosing a new bra.
“If a bra is uncomfortable or doesn’t fit well, it’s not going to do its job properly no matter how good it looks.”
So take the time to find a style that suits you and provides the support you need, and you’ll be much happier in the long run.
- Get fitted often
It’s worth it to take the extra time to get fitted because an ill-fitting bra can be very uncomfortable and even cause health issues; plus, women hardly remain in the same bra size her entire life. “Our bodies fluctuate, and life’s journey means that we lose or gain fullness to our boobs,” says Katie.
From time to time, our weight might fluctuate. “This is why we always advise having a bra fitting every six months,” Katie explains.
With so many different shapes, sizes, and styles of bras available, it can be tough to know where to begin. Nevertheless, by keeping a few important factors in mind, you can narrow down the options and find the perfect bra size for you.