Continuing with the fitting 101 series, today we’re going to talk about whether you may want to add inches to your under bust measurement or not to get your best fit.
If you do some research, there are many conflicting opinions about whether you should add inches to your raw under bust measurement or not. The following information represents my knowledge and my honest opinion about when you may want to add inches and maybe when you will want to subtract inches. Ultimately, the most important thing is that your bra fits (meeting the proper fit criteria), and that it is comfortable.
When to add inches
In some situations, it is necessary to add inches to your raw under bust measurement. Here are some scenarios in which adding inches is common:
- If you have little to no body fat around your ribcage, you may want to add 2-4 inches to your raw under bust measurement for comfort
- If your breasts are smaller and are set further into your chest (not wide set), you may want to add inches so that you do not have a lot of empty cup on the side. In this instance, you need more band than you need cup. Adding 2-4 inches would be ideal
- If you prefer a looser band, add 2 inches (adding 4 may make the band too loose and unstable, depending on your build, body fat percentage, and weight of your breasts)
When to add NO inches
The general advice I give is to start with your raw under bust measurement, adding no inches to your measurement. Here are some scenarios for when this is useful:
- When finding a starting size if you have a very poorly fitting bra; a raw under bust measurement can point you in the right direction for a proper band size
- If you have some padding, moderately sized breasts (think DD+) and want a comfortable level of support
When to subtract inches
In some instances, subtracting inches from your under bust measurement will help you to get the most support and comfort out of your bras. Here are some common scenarios for subtracting inches:
- If you have a lot of body fat around your ribcage and are quite squishy, subtracting inches from your raw under bust measurement may help your band better tack to your body. I would recommend only subtracting 2 inches at the most (going down one band size from what you measure).
- If your breasts are at the upper end of the size range (think HH+); having a snugger band can help to carry more of the weight of your breasts, putting less stress on your back and shoulders. I would recommend only going down to the next band size
- If you prefer a snugger band, for whatever reason. I would only suggest going down 2 inches from your raw under bust measurement
As mentioned, these suggestions are based on my knowledge, experience, and in some cases, personal preferences. However, only you can decide what feels comfortable and what will work best for you.
As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to comment below 🙂