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Friday Q&A: What Happens at a Bra Fitting?

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With as many as 80% of women wearing the wrong bra size – that’s 4 out of every 5 women! – it’s clear that we need to revisit our bra sizes, and for some of us, that may mean a bra fitting! You can fit yourself, but many women find it easier with someone to help them, and some people just feel better about getting a professional fitting so they know it’s done right and they’re getting the right bra size. For today’s Friday Q&A, we’re going to demystify the bra fitting and tell you exactly what happens!

Question from Aesha:

What happens when you go to get a bra fitting? I’m thinking of getting one done, im just nervous about being naked up top in front of another person.

Answer:
This is a question that tons of women ask in various ways! Women wonder whether they’ll have to get completely naked on top, or whether they can wear a bra or crop top during the fitting. Many women feel self-conscious about being topless and bra-less, and that prevents them from getting a fitting or asking a friend to help measure them. Well, if you’ve been contemplating getting a bra fitting, here’s what you need to know:

Wear Your Best-Fitting Bra
Bra fitting isn’t an exact science. Fit varies a bit from brand to brand, and it also varies depending on how your breast tissue is distributed, and based on the shape and the looseness of the breasts.

Most bra fitters will have you start by wearing your best-fitting bra. You’ll go into the dressing room with the fitter and take off your shirt. The fitter will then measure around your chest just below your bra (or above, depending on the brand) and will then measure around the widest point of your breasts. The difference between the two measurements becomes your cup size, and the measurement around your chest forms the basis for your bra band size.

For full instructions on how to do this yourself or with a friend, check out our page on Getting Measured for a Bra.

Refining the Size and Testing for Fit
Typically, the fitter will then leave the dressing room, and will bring you some bras to try in different sizes and styles. You may find that one band size down and one cup size up fits better than the initial measurements – it’s all about finding the right fit. If you feel self-conscious, the fitter can leave the dressing room while you try on the bras. To make sure the bras fit properly, though, you should have your fitter take a look at the bras once they’re on you, and after you’ve tried a few sizes and styles, you’ll have a good idea of your bra size and what style works best for your body.

Bra Size is NOT Absolute!
After you’ve found your bra size, it’s important to keep in mind that bra sizing is not absolute! Size and fit varies from brand to brand, and it also changes as our bodies change. It’s a good idea to get re-fitted (or measure yourself) every 6 months to a year.

Also, keep in mind that not all retail clerks are trained in how to properly fit a bra. At some retail stores, the clerks aren’t properly trained, or they may steer you to sizes that they carry in the store – commonly a cup size that’s too small and a band size that’s too big in order to compensate. It’s generally a good idea to measure yourself when you get home to confirm that the sizing is correct.

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