I recently had the chance to get professionally fitted for a bra at the Saks near my house by a woman whose job involves traveling around the country and training saleswomen in how to fit women for the right bra size.
I had an aha moment when I realized that even a bra more expensive than my usual cheapie style was a relatively small investment of money — and paid off in a HUGE difference in how I looked. It was also super-interesting. So for both those reasons, I wanted to share what I learned.
Take a look in the mirror at yourself wearing what you consider a bra that fits well. If you stand perpendicular to the mirror with your arm bent 90 degrees at the elbow, are the girls at the half-way point? Any lower and you need to give them a lift.
Now, facing the mirror: Does the center of your bra, the part between the cups, lay flat against your chest? It should — or, in a bra-fitter’s terms, it should “tack.”
Does part of your breast “fluff” out under your arm? (That’s the fitter’s admittedly goofy terminology.) It should not — that’s a sign the cup size is too small. Does the back strap ride up? It should not — that’s a sign it is too big. In fact, the strap should be fairly low on your torso and parallel to the floor.
A couple last points: Bend over to put on your bra, so the girls are really in the cup. Once you’ve fastened it, put your hands in the cup at the outer edge of the opposite breast, then gently nudge the “fluff” under your arm in toward your cleavage, so it is fully in the cup. Voila!
A new bra should fasten on the loosest hook, because it is as tight was it will ever be. And your should give your bras a day off between wearings to allow the elastic to recuperate.
I got three new Elomi bras at the end of the fitting, but these fitting tips work for women of every size.
When was the last time YOU got fitted for a new bra? Have you ever had a real bra fitting? And what tips do you use to make sure you get the right fit? Leave a comment and let us know!
(Ketura Persellin is a writer and image consultant in Washington, DC, and surrounding suburbs. Planning a trip? Email her for a free packing worksheet. Or visit her blog to sign up for her complimentary newsletter.)