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My Lady Lumps

Updated on August 25, 2014

Bra Fitting

The indigenous women of South America or Africa always seem to have smiles on their faces when you watch documentaries. Some people may say the smiles are because they understand that happiness does not involve material things. Which may be true but I also believe that they are also happy because they don’t have to worry about bras! I could be so wrong. When I say “your girls” I’m referring to your breast. Some of you might know them as your “money makers.” Whatever you call them every woman has breasts of many different shapes and sizes. The most difficult thing for us is finding the correct bra.

I like to look at history and discovery when everything was created, why and by whom. The first bra can be dated as far back as the Cretan time about 2600-1400 BC. In the Edwardian period they were called bust improvers and 1907 Vogue did the first report about the brassiere. There are many reasons why the brassiere was created. One having a woman’s breast appears fuller and firm was attractive. Having your breast in the right spot made garments fit and look great. And I’m pretty sure women were tired of tripping over their breast and getting them snagged and caught in drawers and doors. On a more serious note the “who” designed the bra is kind of a mystery. Many designers lay claim but the one who has the strongest claim may be Paul Poiret. Mary Phelps-Jacobs was the first, however, to patent the bra in 1914. Her model was simply two handkerchiefs tied together and ribbons for straps and it had a center front seam. In that era the bra’s main purpose was to flatten and push up a woman’s breast.

If a bra manufacturer today said “Hey buy these wonderful bras they will make your breast look flatter guarantee!” they would be out of business. In this era boobs are in and the bigger the better! They have become such a desire that women will put their health at risk just to get them. And that’s just sad. I know of some women who can’t afford the plastic surgery so they find the cheapest doctor (sometimes in other countries) who may not have enough experience or training and their breast get ruined or infected. I know some women who seem to be never satisfied with the size of their breast and go up in size till their skin is stretch thin and they appear abnormal or cartoonish. Young teen girls getting breast augmentations when they are not fully developed; everyone calm down and breathe. I believe every woman is beautiful in her own way. If you are unhappy with your breast it may not be their fault…the problem could just be the bra.

There are plenty of lingerie stores that offer a fitting, but, if you are like me and get a little intimated by having someone so close and slightly touchy with your girls there is another way. You can measure yourself, and there are some things you will need. The most important thing you will need is a soft measuring tape the kind tailors and seamstress use. A mirror, pen and paper are other items you will need.

Stand straight in the mirror, no sucking in please! Take the measuring tape and wrap it around above or beneath your breasts, if the measurement is even add four inches, if it is odd add five inches. If necessary round up to the next even number and that’s your band size so write it down. This second part is a little tricky because some say with an unpadded bra on, while others say no bra on. I guess do whichever is most comfortable to you, but, I prefer measuring with no bra on. Take the tape and wrap around the fullest part of your breast (slightly above or right across your nipples). Do not pull on the measuring tape; round that measurement to the nearest whole number. That is your bust size so write it down. You must subtract your bust size from your band size and that will give you your cup size.

0=AA, 1=A, 2=B, 3=C, 4=D, 5=DD, and 6=DDD

When you look in the mirror with just your lingerie on your breast should be midway between your shoulders and elbows. The bottom part of you bra should be level. You could be wearing the wrong size bras if these things are happening to you.

-If your breasts are falling out of the bra, your nipples are barely covered; I like to call this B.E.S (Boobs Everywhere Syndrome)

-If your bra dimples. It looks like it’s been in some type of accident…it’s not the washer you just need to go down a cup size.

-If you have the dreaded back fat. Ladies any time you are trying things on or putting together an outfit it is just as important to look at the back as well as the front. When you have back fat that actually could mean the bra is too big! To make that back fat disappear try wearing the bra lower on your back with a smaller band size.

-If your straps fall off your shoulder just simply go down a band size.

Here’s a little tip if you want a smaller band size get a larger cup size and if you want a larger band size get a smaller cup size.

The “proper” way of fitting a bra is fun and easy. Hook your bra at your waist and lift the front up. You want the back part of the band to stay low for support. You will put your hands behind your armpit and move/push your boob into the cup. Here’s the fun part for me I like to bend over and have gravity help. While doing that grab the front of bra and jiggle slightly. Straighten up and smooth everything out and let your breast settle into place. Remember the back band needs to stay low on the back; do not tighten straps so that it will put pressure on your shoulders. Use the first set of loops on the back band of bra. The loops are there to tighten the bra over time as it stretches. Never wear your bra two days or more in a row; this could cause wear and stretch out the bra sooner. Try to always hand wash your bras and then hang dry, but, in this world where everyone is on the go this may seem too time consuming. My rule is if your bra has wire or intricate design wash by hand or use the gentle cycle and wash only your bras. I like to lay my bras on a flat surface and let them dry.

There is probably every bra imaginable for every situation and style. To make your bra shopping experience more joyful here are some ideas on what bra would look great on your body type. Your bra should balance your proportion making your shoulders appear the same width as your hips. Broad shoulders should focus on narrow straps with a plunge middle of the bra. Narrow shoulders should purchase bras with a more distinct band across torso. Short torso women need to purchase bras that plunge in the middle to make your torso appear longer.

I feel every woman should have several different styles of bras because we have several different styles of tops and dresses. Let’s go over the types of bra and when it’s a great time to wear them.

The full cup bra is for support and comes with underwire and covers the entire breast. Every woman should have a least one of these bra in her drawers. This bra is great for everyday work and running errands. If you are a big breast woman then you should have a lot of full cup bras! Demi cup bra covers only half of the breast. The upper parts of the breast are exposed so this is great to wear with a V neck top or something of that nature. The Demi bra is a supportive bra as well. Padded bras are a small breast woman’s friend. It is a bra that has padding inside the cups and add volumes to the breast and l like the (at times) tank tops that have the built in bras that way you don’t have to worry about bra straps showing. Underwire bra gives strong support and shape. A lot of women complain that these bras can be uncomfortable. The underwire bra is the one bra I highly recommend washing by hand. Ladies you know what happens when you wash your underwire bras in the machine, eventually the wire will get bent. And you spend a good part of your day trying to reshape that wire. Even worse than that is the wire will pop out of the seam and poke you in that sensitive part; you know that part where your boob and armpit meet. If that happens at work you will continually pull on your bra because it is uncomfortable, and some fine man comes walking by and sees you pulling at your breast…embarrassing. Strapless bra has no straps and is great to wear with halter and tube tops. Every woman should have at least one strapless bra. T-shirt bra is made without a raised seam so it can look invisible under you tees. Minimizer bra is for the big breast women. I have a feeling this are not huge sellers. It seems to me that every woman wants to at least appear she has big boobs, however, I’m a small breast woman so what do I know. This bra can make your breast appear two cups smaller. The sports bra is another bra every woman should have in her wardrobe. Its main purpose is to support the breast during heavy activity to reduce tissue damage. Every woman should have at least two because every woman should be active to keep you healthy and happy. Shelf bra only covers the lower part of the breast and the nipples are exposing. These bras offer no support but are great for your man when you are trying to spice up the relationship!

Let’s refresh if you are not happy with your bra or are thinking about upgrading your boobs try first to see if you are wearing the correct bra and size. Measure you breast, write it down and keep it. Follow the measurements above and then do some shopping! If you have a favorite brand of bras stick to it. The bra is one of the clothing items that you should try to get the most quality of product your money can buy. The bra goes through a lot of wear so the more expensive the better quality of material and make of the bra. I am a big Victoria Secret fan, they make great bras. And beautiful ones at that, but, save those lacey beautiful designed bras for your honey. When you were those wonderful bras they can cause lumps and bumps to show through your clothing and we want to limit and contain as many lumps as possible.

Bras every woman should have in her dresser drawer are the full support bra especially for my triple x, y and z ladies. An underwire bra, I know these bras can be uncomfortable but they are great to wear with V necks and slightly tight sweaters because they give the girls that perky look. Padded bras are also great especially in the winter time when you add more layers yet you still want to showcase the girls. Convertible bra, if you go out even just once a month you want a convertible bra. Evening/cocktail dresses are cut and designed in many different and fabulous ways; strapless, one shoulder, halter to plunging back and you don’t want to not wear a dress just because you don’t have the correct bra. And a sports bra because we need to be active to stay healthy; even if you are not working out, like moving or yard work, things of that nature you should wear a sports bra.

The color of the bra is just as important; and the must have colors are white, black and nude if you are a woman of color brown. I cannot count how many times I can see the design and color through a woman’s shirt. That is not cute and it does not make you look polish and fabulous as you should and want to be. There is only one you! And you were made unique so if you are thinking about getting implants or even a reduction make sure you are doing it for YOU! Remember; put the Fofo, frilly, design bras away for you and your partner to enjoy. Take care of your girls and they’ll take care of you!

Look in the mirror and LOVE ALL of you!


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