It Arrived!

It arrived! The Panache (Cleo) Sasha, that is.

Good Lord, that band runs tight. I can barely put it on. My underbust measures 31 inches. This is a 32 band… which fits like a tight 30 or 28. Unstretched, the band is 3 inches shorter than my Freya Deco. This is a bra for which I can safely say that you should add at least two (maybe even 4) inches to your measurement… unless you want it to hurt. So yeah, if you’ve got a 30 inch underbust, go for a 32 or 34.

However, it will stretch and I will (hopefully) shrink. Worst case scenario, I get an extender.

But even though it’s leaving angry red marks, it’s surprisingly comfortable. I’ve never worn a soft cup bra before and I am amazed at how much support it offers… and how cute it is. The shape is great (no bullet-boob) and it’s quite supportive. After wearing it for an hour, my back already started to feel better.

I’ll post a picture once I can convince a friend to photograph me. :)

New Size!

So I was fitted yesterday… at Nordstrom (they do a great job- I’ve only had one bad experience).

Freya Deco- 32FF (might be able to do a 30G)

Panache Lucy- 32G

Panache Sasha- 32FF/32G

Panache Rosa-32FF/32G

(Nota Bene: Panache bands run TIGHT. Which I love. Also, the Freya Deco is known for having a looser band and large cups.)

I am a little nervous to invest in new bras, since my size keeps changing. But I think I should at least get one that fits.

Now I just need to figure out which one to buy.
As much as I love the Deco, it’s always around… so I can wait to see if my size changes again. The Sasha is on sale, which means that it will probably not be around for much longer. Rosa is still full price at most places, so I can probably wait on it (but it’s lovely!)… and I Lucy is plain looking, so I can live without it.

So… Sasha?
And do I get a 32G or a 32FF? I plan on losing weight… but I may also start taking birth control for my PCOS, which, as I have heard, will make my breasts grow.

Freya Deco

Let me wax poetic about a bra that doesn’t even fit me: the Freya Deco.

I have had the Freya Deco in both a 34E (too big?) and a 32E (wayyyyy too small). I have no idea what size I am in this bra, but I think the 34E fit me for a little while… if I still had it, it might even be too small at this point. The cups are known to run HUGE and I think the band runs a bit looser than other bras. Another weird quirk is that I and almost everyone I’ve talked to has experienced wrinkling at the bottom of the cups… even when they are too small. So… I have no idea what size I’d need.

It is an AMAZING bra and I want one that fits me so badly. Why? Because it gives the most gorgeous rounded, perky, cleaveage-y shape without padding. Other bras may be prettier to look at, but I have never seen another bra give the shape that the Deco does.

This bra can do no wrong… except fit really, really strangely.

Inventory

I currently own:

-1 34E (DDD) Fatasie Elodie [cups too small and band way too big]
-1 32E (DDD) Freya Deco [does not fit whatsoever]
-1 34F (DDD) Chantelle Icone t-shirt bra [band too big, cups to small… and very pointy]
-2 34F (DDD) Chantelle Rive Gauch “push up” bras [I need to take in the bands and the cups are a tiny bit tight now]
-1 36DD Chantelle Icone “push up” bra [same style as rive gauche push up, and same issues]
-1 36DD Aerie Ella bra in sash green [heavily altered it- I added lace, changed the cup shape, took in the band… it’s pretty!]

… I need a bra that fits. I have this bad habit of buying things that are pretty, in hopes that I will actually take the time to alter them. Also, I am still convinced that my breasts are smaller than they are. What I really need is a 32FF (UK)/ 32H (US).

And I should have a Panache Masquerade Rhea bra in 32FF (UK) arriving soon! It’s absolutely gorgeous.

Finding the Right Fit

Determining your correct bra size is a difficult task… for a handful of reasons:

I. There is no such thing as a correct bra size… at least not one single size that every bra will fit you in. I may be a 32F (UK) in one bra and a 30G (UK) in another.

II. Beyond DD, US and UK sizing is different. I honestly figure it out by counting up from DD on the size chart for each bra. :/

III. None of the methods of measurement work for everyone. People have differently shaped breasts.

IV. Breasts grow and shrink with hormonal and weight changes. If your bras don’t fit right anymore… it’s time for a new one.

 

Speaking of not fitting correctly, here are some signs that you are in the wrong size:

  • straps are cutting into your skin (band too large)
  • band slides up your back (band too large)
  • band is curved or otherwise not horizontal (band too large)
  • band crushes your ribs (band too small) [a little back fat is fine, but if it hurts…]
  • underwires are actually on your breast tissue (cup too small)
  • underwires are not in contact with your ribcage (cup too small)
  • centre gore does not lie flat against sternum (cup too small)
  • underwires poke you in the side/arms (cup too small)
  • you have the dreaded quadraboob (cup too small)
  • you have sideboob (cup too small)
  • you have “armpit fat”- it’s actually breast tissue! (cup too small)
  • cup wrinkles at the top (cup too large) [bottom wrinkles can happen even if the cup is too small]
  • cups are not filled-out (cup too large)

If you find yourself between sizes in a bra, it’s easier to get the larger size and wear it with a “cookie”… better than quadraboob.

How to find your size:

There are lots of techniques… most don’t work for me. I’ve actually had great success fitting people using the bra that they are currently wearing. Ex: Sally is wearing a 34C. Her band is riding up and the cups seem a bit too small. She should try a 32DD. If the band still rides up, try a 30DDD.  If the cup is too small, try a 32DDD. Etc…

Don’t be shocked if you find yourself comfortable in a 30K. We are so used to seeing thin women told that they are 32Bs, when, in reality, they are probably 26DDs or even 26DDDs. A DD is much smaller than we think it is.

If you’d like to go and get fitted, I would enthusiastically suggest going to Nordstrom. The fitters there are obviously not perfect, but they are used to working with D-K cups and will get you into a comfortably fitted bra.

Introductions

Hi there!

Up until September of 2010, I was wearing a 34C.  I have and have always had large breasts. Not frighteningly large, but definitely more than two handfulls.

(I have a hunch that the “fitters” at VS tell everyone that they are a 34C.)

At some point, I realized that my 34C bras were containing less than half of my breast tissue. The underwires sat ON my breasts and the volume of the tissue that “quadraboobed” was greater than the volume of the tissue within the cup. The VS fitter told me I looked more like a 34D, but that still contained less than half my tissue. By September, I had “graduated” to a 34DD, but even that didn’t quite contain me.

I later decided that I must be a 34DDD. Then my breasts grew… so I tried a 34G (US)/34F (UK) and the cups fit mostly fine… but my bands kept sliding up my back, as my breasts dragged the front of the bra down with them. That seems to counteract the purpose of a bra. Back in my 34C days, I once asked a VS fitter why my bands always slid up my back. She replied that I needed a “low fitting band”.Now that I am comfortably in a 32H (US)/32FF(UK) (and a 30 in certain bras), I can say that no one should need to look for a “low fitting band”, just a “correctly fitting band”. My ribcage measures 30.5 inches, so a 30 or 32 band should be just right.

But every once in a while I think: “my breasts aren’t THAT big. I look like a DD… and, you know, I can see a back roll when I wear a 32… so maybe I’m really a 36DD… (or a 38DD, if I don’t want it to show under a shirt).” And so every once in a while I actually buy a 36DD… and my breasts pop out, and the back slides up, and the front slides down. And I am not supported. [According to the “add 4 or 5 inches” rule, I AM a 36DD… except for the fact that I’m not.]

So I can choose to either buy bras in a frighteningly large size that FIT and feel fabulous or buy bras in a size that I think I am and look and feel terrible. (I can also buy cheap 36DD/38DDs and alter them to fit!)

I am writing this blog because I have found blogs to be immensely helpful in my personal search for the “perfect bra” and always consult reviews of bras before I make my purchases. I am still searching for the perfect fit, but I hope this blog can be helpful to other people who are confused about their bra size.

Nota bene: the “add 4 of 5 inches rule” isn’t a noticeable problem for someone 34C or under, since the weight of  the breasts doesn’t usually manage to drag the front of the bra down. However, once your back band starts migrating up the back, it’s time to go down a band size (or three). When going down a band size, always make sure to go up a cup size, since a 34C and a 32D have the exact same cup-volume.