Don't buy a bra without reading this first.
Bras are a true wardrobe essential. They support the body and make you look better in your clothes. And while choosing the right bra can be a challenge, especially when shopping online, it doesn’t have to be. Here are the most common bra sizing mistakes almost everyone makes, as well as the best ways to remedy them. Skip these mistakes to find a comfortable bra that actually fits.
Related: How to Measure Your Bra Size at Home
Thinking Your Bra Size Stays the Same
According to bra expert Jené Luciani Sena, many people think their bra size stays consistent for their entire life, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. “You can fluctuate as much as every month. For example, if it’s that time of the month, or if you’ve lost or gained even as little as five pounds, it can change your bra size.”
So, if you’ve recently gained or lost weight, even if it feels like an insignificant number to you, you might need a new bra. Consider heading to your local bra shop or department store to get re-sized (or follow our online guide).
Assuming You Wear the Same Size in Every Brand
Sena tells me your bra size is never set in stone. You might be a 34C in one brand and a 32D in another. “Every manufacturer uses a different fit model. One is not like the next. Often times you could have many different size bras in your drawer.”
She also recommends utilizing the tools that the store or brand provides on its website as a guideline.
Still, it’s a good idea to go to a brick-and-mortar store if possible to be professionally measured for the best fit. While you can measure yourself at home, you’re better off having a professional do it. This will also prevent the inconvenience of needing to return or exchange your purchase.
Choosing the Bra Size That Looks Right
The other common mistake is having an idea in your head of what a certain bra size looks like. For example, explains Sena, many people think they can’t possibly be a DD. “Well, a 32DD looks very different than a 42DD.”
Not Understanding How Bra Sizes Work
Most of us think that bra and band sizes are independent of each other, but that isn’t true. “Volume and the band size work in conjunction with the cup size, not independently of one another.”
Buying Your Bras a Size Too Large
According to Sena, most women end up choosing a band size that’s too large because they think they’re bigger than they are. “The band is 90 percent of the bra’s support so it really needs to be fitting snuggly and properly. You should only be able to slip two fingers beneath it on the back of the band and it should go horizontally across your back and not be riding up. Think about gravity, if it’s riding up in the back, it’s coming down in the front, which [is] exactly the opposite of what we want our bra to do.”
Not Tightening Your Bra Straps
One way to make your bra fit better is to tighten the straps. Sena suggests bending over with your bra on, so all the breast tissue falls into the cup. Then stand up and adjust the straps for the best fit.
For more Real Simple news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!
Read the original article on Real Simple.