Previously we chatted about measuring for a bra with implants. Next is walking through the process of trying on a bra and assessing the fit. This will be a simple guide; not all inclusive, but it will give you a starting point for checking your fit as you purchase your new bras.
Your first fit point, and a very important one is the band of your bra. When you try on your bra you will hook it on the first set of hooks. Don’t put your breasts into the cups yet! I had to for this picture, Internet modesty. Once you have your brand hooked you will put two fingers between your back and the band, now pull away from your body. The recommendation for a firm fitting and supportive band is the 2’s, 2 fingers pulling away 2 inches. This will give enough breathing room for the average person.
Now, bodies are different, so you may need more room or less room. Women with more soft tissue over the ribs may prefer a wider band with a more firm fit. Women with less soft tissue or a muscular body structure may prefer a less firm fit. Different shapes to your body can be a factor as well, scoliosis, pectus (sternum) deformities, placement of your floating ribs.
Why do you not put your breasts in the cup? The band fit can change with your cup fit. If your cups are too small or if your projection is too much for the cup you may find that your band pulls tighter around your body. More on this in our fit problems post (coming soon!).
Next you’ll place your breasts into the cup. First start by reading putting your bra on properly by Bras and Body Image. She is going to teach you how to properly swoop and scoop and what a difference you may see.
Our second fit point is the cups. You want the cup shape to fully encase your breast, with out bulging over the top. AKA muffin boob. There are a few parts of the cup you want to look at besides just the cup edge, which will be addressed in the post about fit problems.
Fitting point three is the wire. You want the underwire to fully encase your breast, all the way back behind your sideboob. Ladies with implants can have a firmer, rounder sideboob shape. This can be a problem if the wire is not wide enough, it will sit in your implant and breast tissue. With augmented breasts the wire being too wide isn’t as much of a fit issue as it is for ladies with more natural breast tissue. So how much extra wire width is ok will depend on you and your breast shape.
The center gore is our forth fit point. You’ll see reference to the center gore tacking. What on earth does this mean? A center gore tacking means it sits flat on your sternum. How you want this to feel will depend on your preferences and your breast shape. We will talk extensively about the center gore in a future post, the different types of tacking, as well as the ways your own anatomy can change how your gore sits on your body.
The important thing to consider with your early bra fitting is that you want the gore to fit comfortably against your body and feel supporting to your breasts. You do not want it to be painful, to sit on your breast tissue or implants, or to be away from your body so you can fit fingers between it and your body.
Last, your straps. The straps on the bra should not provide much actual suport. The band should provide most of your support from under your breasts. The cups provide support in the form of shaping, how much shaping will depend on you and how much tissue you have over your implants. The straps provide the last bit of support but also help the cups shape to you. Some cup fit issues can be addressed by adjusting your straps. But your straps should not dig into your shoulders. Women with heavier breasts often have grooves left in their shoulders from weight pulling on the straps of the bra. We want to avoid that by providing as much lift from below.
Last fit notes-
Marks are ok! Bra marks left on your body are like other pressure marks from your clothing. Any type of clothing can cause these marks. They should not be painful, they should fade quickly.
The math and the fit points are just a start! There is so much to bra fitting, we are just getting started! I hope you’ll stick around a learn more about fitting your implants, because once you have this knowledge fitting yourself becomes almost automatic.
Comfort. Nothing else has a higher priority. It does not matter if your bra “fits” if you want to murder it with a steak knife when you take it off.
Surgeon approval- you need to have healed enough and have surgeon approval before wearing an underwire bra. Trust me, listen to the one you paid the big $$$ to!
Changes- things change through the first year post op. The earlier you are the more fit problems you are likely to encounter. Be prepared to refit yourself several times as your implants soften. Women’s natural breast tissue changes through their life, so you’ll fit yourself as you go through life.
See other posts in our bra fitting series: