FINDING a bra that fits can seem like a herculean task, especially when you have larger breasts.
One bra expert shared her secrets for finding the right fit and avoiding back, chest, and shoulder pain in the future.
Katie, a bra fitter from the brand Curvy Kate, has a special title when she's working with clients: "bra whisperer."
She specializes in D- to K-cup boobs, and is often seen on the brand's TikTok sharing fit tips to 54.5k followers.
Katie revealed that a poor fit doesn't always seem obvious, and demonstrated how to judge bra fit with the help of a model, Blaze.
"We're going to walk through why this bra is badly fitting," Katie said. "First off, let's start with the cups."
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The bra Blaze wore left her breasts spilling over the edges of the cup. Most bra-wearers know this as "double boob" or "quad boob."
Whatever you call it, Katie said, "It always means your breast tissue is coming out of the bra cup. We want it inside, encapsulated."
When you shop for a bra, look for a fit that will contain all of your breast tissue within the cup, rather than squeezing it out and over the edge.
Next, Katie turned to band size.
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"With a new bra, you always want to wear your bra on the loosest hook," she explained. "This bra is on the tightest, suggesting that Blaze needs to go down a band size."
Along with the hook placement, there's another way to test your bra band and see if it's too snug. Look at the back band and make sure it goes straight across your body, not twisting or pinching due to strain.
"Your back band should always sit at a right angle," Katie said. Slide two fingers underneath to check how tight the band is. "We want that two-finger tension," she noted.
If you can pull it out too far – more than an inch – your bra is too loose. If you can barely fit two fingers underneath the band, it's too tight.
Use a similar method to check the fit on the shoulder straps.
Examine the straps, which should sit squarely on the shoulder. Your "sliders" or adjusters should be in line with the top of your armpit, on the back of the bra, not resting up where you can see them.
Give the shoulder strap a tug, again with two fingers, Katie instructed. You should be able to pull it about one inch.
"On this bra, I can nearly pull it up to Blaze's ears," Katie said, showing how loose the straps were.
Finally, check your bra's underwires. You might've already guessed that if the wire is digging into your breast tissue, the cup size is too small.
You also need to inspect the place where the underwires meet – right in the center of your chest.
This part of the bra should rest comfortably against your skin. There shouldn't be a gap there, and it shouldn't squeeze, either.
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"You should be able to pull it away from your body," Katie explained. "It should sit back between your boobs as close as possible."
If a bra doesn't quite fit in any of these ways, or a combination of several, it might be time to visit a lingerie store and do some shopping for new, improved, and comfortable undergarments.
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