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Bra Size Hacks: Fitting Accessories
Bra Size and Fit Fixes
Bras can be a real pain in the boobs. Many women have a hard time finding a supportive, comfortable and flattering bra that fits properly. Straps dig in or slip down; wires poke and pinch. When the cup size is right, the band is too tight... or too loose.
Hacks are fixes, so I use the term "bra size hacks" for accessories that can help you adjust your bras to fit better. Bra accessories include band extenders, strap clips, silicone inserts, foam cup pads, cleavage enhancers, and nipple concealers.
Bra Extenders - For a looser fit in the band.
Bra extenders are soft strips with hooks that attach in back. They require no sewing; just hook them on, and add up to 3 inches to your band size in seconds. I recommend these for women with broad backs and small breasts. For example, let's say you need a 38A or AA. This is not a common size, so you've probably had a hard time finding the proper fit. There are many more options in bra size 36A, which you can wear comfortably with an extension of 1.5 or 2 inches.
Choose an individual extender with 2, 3 or 4 rows of hooks to use with one bra, or buy them in packs if you need to adjust everything in your underwear drawer. Fashion Forms extenders come in sets of three: white, beige and black. These basic colors will go with many bras, even if they aren't an exact match.
If you own lots of different bras -- some with two rows of hooks, and others with three or four -- you can buy bra size extenders individually. Assemble your own variety pack of fit fixers to loosen the bands on all your favorite over-the-shoulder boulder holders.
These get high marks for comfort. A good choice if most of your bras have the standard 3-hook back closure. The 6-pack includes two of each color.
Breast enhancer pads -- also called bra inserts, breast forms, chicken fillets, and cleavage cupcakes -- come in many shapes, sizes and materials. The most realistic enhancers are usually made of silicone gel; when worn inside a bra or swimsuit, these look and feel similar to real breast tissue.
Chicken fillets are silicone push-up pads that can be positioned at the base of the bra cup for uplift, or angled in the outer sides to enhance cleavage. They provide a boost and can balance slightly uneven breasts, but usually won't make you look busty if you've got itty bitty boobs.
Add 1-2 Bra Sizes
For a substantial size increase of 1-2 cups, you'll need a larger form that covers more of the breast. For small A and B busts, I recommend breast enhancers by Sassybax or Original Looks. They work best with a full-coverage underwire bra; make sure you have one that is one full cup larger than your regular size.
The best option if you want breast enhancers that look and feel like the real thing. They are heavier than Sassybax, but will add more fullness.
I will occasionally buy secondhand lingerie, if it is an expensive brand I love. But I don't think it's such a good idea to go for used bra accessories. You can often find new strap converter kits, foam shapers, nipple concealers, and adhesive uplift bras at very low prices.
If you want the best quality, though, you may need to spend a bit more. This is especially true of silicone breast enhancers that add one or two cup sizes.
Would you buy previously owned bras and/or bra accessories?
Ew... no way.
Bra Strap Holders and Clips - Join straps in back for a better fit.
There are several reasons why you might want use a hook, clip or silicone attachable strip to link your bra straps together in back:
- For uplift and improved fit in the cups.
- To conceal bra straps under tops and dresses that have less coverage in back.
- As a way to keep straps from slipping off your shoulders.