Saturday, July 27, 2013

You're Wearing the Wrong Bra Size, I Guarantee It! How to Determine Your Correct Bra Size

Hello all!  So I know the topic of this blog is generally hair and makeup related, but I have to tell you about my bra journey.  I recently figured out that I've been wearing the wrong size my whole life, and I went from a 36B to a 30F bra size.  I am willing to bet that every single one of you reading this is currently wearing the wrong bra size.  Do your shoulders hurt at the end of the day? Do your straps always fall down unless you tighten them so tight that they leave marks?  Does your band ride up in the back? Does the piece of plastic or metal in the middle of the two cups not touch your skin?  Do you "quadboob" (where tissue from your breast rolls up over your cups, creating an uneven surface)? These are all some (not all) of the signs that your bra is the wrong size.

First of all, let's dispel some myths:

Myth #1: I got sized at Victoria's Secret, so I already know what my correct size is.

Victoria's Secret and most department stores measure you using an outdated system of measurement, where they go around some part of your body (it varies widely) and then do some crazy math like adding 4 inches to get your band size.  When I was "fitted" at Victoria's Secret, they measured me over my shirt and over the bra I was wearing.  The thought occurred to me: "If you're just taking a measurement over my current bra, aren't you just going to tell me what size that bra is?"  Sure enough, that was usually the outcome.  Other times they would just seem to make up a random size, usually either 34B, 34C, 36B, or 36C.

The reason that they use this strange system of +4 inches is because bras used to be made with less elastic materials.  Since the bands and cups wouldn't stretch as much as they do today, they would just add inches.  Victoria's Secret likes to put women into band sizes that are too big, with cups that are too small. Sure, that gives some awesome looking cleavage. But it also hurts like heck.
None of these bras fit. Good job Victoria's Secret.
Also, it's a money game (what isn't these days?).  Stores like Victoria's Secret know that they simply cannot keep enough sizes and styles in stock to fit everyone properly.  So they have put millions and millions of dollars into advertising that every woman should be between a 32A and a 38DD.  Anyone else must be a freak.  This would be like a dress store saying, "Well, we don't have the capacity to store dress sizes 2-30 and it just isn't profitable to do so, so we're going to stock sizes 6-12 and tell everyone that they should be in that size range."

Myth #2: Most women fall within the A-C cup range, and D cup or larger is freakishly huge or implant size.

Do you know what a 32FF looks like? Probably like a porn star, right?

Properly fitted 32FF.  Image from

OK so that's not freakishly huge.  What about a 34G? That's gotta be like Courtney Stodden level implants, right?

A properly fitted 34G. Image from

Not exactly.

Alright so maybe now you're seeing that these "big" letters aren't actually freakish at all.  They look pretty normal.  Let's go the other way.

32C...that's like the Victoria's Secret Gold Standard, right? Cleavage everywhere!

Properly fitted 32C. Image from
Alright, what about a 34B? Heck, the odds are that's the size you're wearing right now, since Victoria's Secret thinks that's average! What does that look like?  Actually, has ZERO images of a properly fitting 34B.  When measured properly, it's an incredibly rare size.

Myth #3: There is a standard looking "B" cup or "C" cup or even "D" cup

Completely remove from your head the idea that there is such a thing as a "B" cup sized chest.  Cup size cannot be separated from band size.  They are intertwined.

Example: Here is a 28D:

Image from
Here is a 34D:

Image from

The band size affects the cup size.  This is why a 28D looks completely different than a 34D.  So stop looking at yourself as a "C" or a "D."  The letter cannot and should not define how you approach your breasts.

Myth #4: Bras are just uncomfortable, whether properly sized or not.

My shoulders used to hurt  By about 2:00pm.  Burning, aching pain.  I would rush home to take my bra off.  When I'd arrive home, screaming cats or need to use the restroom be damned! I needed to take the bra off before I did anything else.  And oh the relief! The sweet relief of taking off a bra.

Now that I've figured out my actual size, this is all a thing of the past.  No more "I'm home, now get this damn thing off of me."  I don't even notice that I'm wearing one.  I actually slept in one accidentally the other night.  That would have been unthinkable in my old bras.

How do I figure out my bra size?

I used the extremely helpful and well thought-out guides on in order to create this post.  I cannot overstate how helpful the ladies over there are, so I would definitely recommend that you make a free account! 

You've got to measure yourself!  The process seems daunting written out, but it takes all of about 5 minutes.

You'll need a soft tape measure.  If you don't have one, grab some ribbon or string that isn't stretchy and a hard measuring tape or a yardstick (you can lay the string against the measuring tape to get the numbers in inches).  You'll also want a piece of paper and pen to jot down your numbers.  It's best to do this in front of a mirror.

1) Remove your shirt and your bra.

2) Measure your snug underbust with the tape measure (or ribbon or string). You want the tape comfortably snug against your skin, being sure to keep it parallel to the ground (hence, the mirror).  Check out this picture if you aren't sure where to place the tape measure for this or any other measuring step.  Write down the number as your Snug Underbust.

3) Measure your underbust with the tape wrapped as tightly as possible.   Like you are trying to break the tape Incredible Hulk style. Be sure it's parallel to the floor.  Write down the number as your Tight Underbust.

4) Measure your bust while standing.  This means you are placing the tape measure comfortably around the largest part of your chest.  Be sure to keep the tape measure parallel to the floor.  Write down the number as your Standing Bust.

5) Measure your bust while leaning over.  Your face will be looking at the floor and your back should be parallel to the ground. Keep that tape measure straight! Write down the number as your Leaning Bust.

6) Measure your bust while lying down.  Lay down with your back on the floor.  Keep the tape measure straight, and write down the number as your Lying Bust.

Now that you've got your measurements, plug them into this calculator. 

The calculator will give you a good starting point, but now you need to go try bras on.  Don't be discouraged if you can't find the precise fit right away.  You may want to check out how to determine your breast shape, because shape definitely can affect fit! And of course, you need to know where you can go to buy a bra in your new size, because Victoria's Secret probably doesn't carry it!

Please let me know in the comments if you try this out! I would LOVE to hear stories from your gals about your bra journeys!  Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Midsummer Update!

Hi Curlies!

I'm sorry for the complete radio silence from me this summer. My internship takes up all of my free time it seems.  I'm also in the process of transferring schools, which brings a whole new set of adventures like apartment hunting and moving.  I promise though, I've always got DormRoomCurly in the back of my mind.

I've got a couple of posts planned for you all soon.  I've got a new dry shampoo that I am LOVING and want to tell you all about ASAP.  It isn't CG unfortunately, but I've gotta say, it is the first and only dry shampoo that doesn't make my hair feel gunky/dirtier after I use it. And the smell doesn't linger. Incredible!

Second, I want to talk to you guys about the importance of applying products to absolutely soaking wet hair.  I get a lot of questions along the lines of "What can I do to make my hair look better cheaply" and frankly this is the best tip I've got, since it is free!  I will show you guys the difference that applying to soaking wet hair makes on my hair firsthand.

And finally, I just discovered something that is truly life altering.  I've been wearing the wrong bra size.  Not just a little wrong. A lot wrong. So I'm planning a post that might be off topic for this blog, but I think it's a really important one than can make a dramatic difference for a lot of you, since odds are, you're also wearing the wrong size. 

So that's a quick update!  As the summer winds down, I'll be working on those posts and trying to catch up on some comments you all have left in the meantime.