100 lb. Club - Bra shopping. Ugh.




View Full Version : Bra shopping. Ugh.


ubergirl
12-03-2009, 11:44 PM
There are moments when I really am thrilled by all my progress so far, and there are moments when I am forced to face how much farther I have to go.

Today, I faced the three-way mirrors and went bra shopping.

I had done research on-line about the correct way to measure: My band measurement+4" gives me a band size of 42" and my over-the-boob measurement of 47 makes me a D cup.

But trying on bras was just a disaster. Nothing seemed to fit. A 42 C fit pretty well, but a little snug, the exact same bra in a 42 D was too tight. 40D was okay... 42DD a little too tight, and etc.

I have so much fat on my back up under my arms... ugh.

I haven't bought new bras since I started losing and the ones I have are all stretched out and slide up in the back.

Should I just wait until I lose more to buy more bras?

I left the store with nothing.


heidiruth
12-04-2009, 12:16 AM
I am in the same position u are in. Its really hard to find a good comfortable bra these days!

AR4life
12-04-2009, 12:28 AM
Is there a lingerie store near you that has trained women who can size you properly? We have them here and I get a perfect fit every time. I was wearing the wrong size (normal I hear) which they changed.
Just a thought, even the dept stores have good people to help you. :)

Frustrating to walk away empty handed, Ubergirl. :(


Gekster
12-04-2009, 12:29 AM
If you can muster up the courage, specialty bra stores do actual fittings and I don't mean just the measurements that places like Lane Bryant do. It is a little uncomfortable, but totally worth it when you find the perfect bra.

sindurella
12-04-2009, 12:38 AM
I just went through this on Wed. Went to Macy's to get measured and the lady measured me (btw she measured a year and half ago for the bra I wore in to the store) and told me I had gone from a 40D (her measurement again) to a 38 DDD... WTF??? There is no way I went up that much in cup size after losing as much as I have. .. So I went to Nordstroms and Fredricks of Hollywood and both measured me at 38D. So if you are unsure of your measurements get a 2nd or 3rd opinion.

CLCSC145
12-04-2009, 12:45 AM
Larger band measurements are the pits (combined in my case with a small cup size and the situation is even worse). There just isn't much selection in that range, so it's even harder to find a bra that fits in a process that's a crap shoot in the first place. Argh! Hate bra shopping!

I have no suggestions for you, just offering commiseration...

Windchime
12-04-2009, 02:29 AM
I go to Nordstrom and have been fitted there a couple of times. It's totally worth the time (and slight embarassment) because those ladies are really familiar with how all the different styles fit.

The online size guidelines never work for me. That whole business of measuring around your rib cage and adding 5" to get your band size? That would put me in a 42" band, which would mean that my boobs would hang out underneath the band because it would be way too big.

Get fitted. You won't regret it (unless you get a fitter who doesn't know her business, like sindurella experienced) and you'll come out of it with the girls held high and proud. And no, I wouldn't wait--I'm always AMAZED at the difference that a properly-fitting bra makes in my appearance.

catherinef
12-04-2009, 04:07 AM
Chiming in to say, yes, go to a proper fitter. It makes all the difference in the world. The online bra calculators I used before were laughably wrong. I was nervous about it, but the lady who helped me find some decent bras was incredibly nice, understood my situation perfectly, and got me into some bras that were both flattering and not terribly expensive, since she knew I wouldn't be wearing them for long.

It's really tempting to not buy bras when you know they're going to have a short usable life, but the difference it made in my body image was immense. A good, properly supportive bra that FITS will knock weight off your appearance like crazy. I looked about ten pounds thinner once I got a good bra on.

Sonata
12-04-2009, 04:50 AM
Yeah, I did the online bra fitting, measured everything, and it said I needed a 48G! I almost died! Then I went to Lane Bryant and the gal measured me and gave me several different things to try on. It turns out I wear a 44DDD. Much better, haha.

Rosinante
12-04-2009, 05:01 AM
Another support for the professional bra fitters. I go to Marks and Spencers for mine. I dont' get fitted every time but every couple of stone or so. The first time it took a lot of retreating to a safe place inside me to do it but now it's easier: I just focus in my mind a) how much I've lost and b) that because I'm in this process I'm a winner.
The resultant bras are really worth it. It also kind of helps me be ok with the reality of the distance still to travel and to acknowlege it, rather than be horrified by it.

salsa chip
12-04-2009, 05:19 AM
I go to an independent lingerie store here and there the ladies always come in and take a look and give you suggestions. It's invaluable to me - I love www.bravissimo.com, but I won't order bras online.

One big thing I'd like to say: YES, bras are worth it. Especially for us larger ladies. Our boobs and back need good support, irrespective of how much back fat might be hanging over the strap (been there, done that, got the extra-large t-shirt to hide it). Having a well-fitting bra is good for our health, posture, and mood. So do invest what you can in making sure you're well-fitted!

SwimGirl
12-04-2009, 08:44 AM
I also tried the online fitting - and it did NOT work for me! I also worked in a clothing store at one time (similar to Lane Bryant) and another girl measured me, and it did NOT fit! Every time I'd lift my arms above my waist my boobs would pop out the bottom. If you are shopping at Lane Bryant - don't forget that their bra's stretch out! Good luck, bra shopping is my MOST frustrating things!!

-Aimee

Eliana
12-04-2009, 09:13 AM
This all reminds me of something to add to my list things I'll be happy about when all the weight is gone.

No more bras that fit me like a dag-gone suit of armor! I long for the day when 2 hooks will get the job done instead of 4!

DixieAmazon
12-04-2009, 09:55 AM
I have always hated bra shopping fat or thin.

My question is why the manufacturers seem to assume that big women don't need smaller cup sizes? The cups are always too big for me.

Windchime
12-04-2009, 10:50 AM
No more bras that fit me like a dag-gone suit of armor! I long for the day when 2 hooks will get the job done instead of 4!

I don't know what size you wear, but I started out as a 38G and am now a 36F. All along the way, I've worn the 2-hook bra in this link. It gives great support, fits really well, and only 2 hooks! This is the one that the people at Nordstrom fitted me with. I used to wear the balcony style but this last time I went with a little more cup coverage and I really like it.

http://www.biggerbras.com/fantasie-of-england-big-cup-bras-swim/fantasie-of-england-molded-seamless-cup-t-shirt-bra-4500-foe-4500.shtml

ubergirl
12-04-2009, 10:54 AM
I am certainly willing to get sized in a lingerie store, but I'll have to find one. I was in Macy's where there were thousands of bras but no salesladies in sight. Maybe Nordstrom would be better?

Gekster
12-04-2009, 11:45 AM
I would try to search online for bra stores in your area. More cities have independent stores that deal specifically with lingerie and will be more knowledgeable than those in dept stores. Good luck!

JulieJ08
12-04-2009, 12:56 PM
The online size guidelines never work for me. That whole business of measuring around your rib cage and adding 5" to get your band size? That would put me in a 42" band, which would mean that my boobs would hang out underneath the band because it would be way too big.



I *so* agree. You'd think that a tighter band would *cause* back rolls, but I mostly find the opposite is true. When it's loose, the bans rides up into the rolls, accentuating them, but when it's snugger, it sits across or below them. Not to mention what actually having some lift in front (which a riding-up-band can't give you) does for your look.

I usually only add 1-2 inches to get the band size. Of course that will vary by brand. I actually saw at least one bra-fitting site that only recommended the 4-5 inches for torso measurements below 33 inches (I think, but it was something like that), otherwise only 3 inches.

Really, just try on smaller and smaller bands (any reasonable cup size) until it's snug and doesn't ride up at all. Then increase the cup until you fit in it. Then forget about the formulas. Most women will actually look best in a smaller band and bigger cup than any formula will tell them. Which, I think, is why we have a skewed idea of what constitutes a "big" cup, because we don't wear the right size.

dragonwoman64
12-04-2009, 01:44 PM
One big thing I'd like to say: YES, bras are worth it. Especially for us larger ladies. Our boobs and back need good support, irrespective of how much back fat might be hanging over the strap (been there, done that, got the extra-large t-shirt to hide it). Having a well-fitting bra is good for our health, posture, and mood. So do invest what you can in making sure you're well-fitted!


I totally agree with this.

not so long ago I went and tried on a bunch of what I thought looked like cute bras at Lane Bryant, EEEEKKKK! so yes, I get the down side of it! sometimes style makes a huge difference, the same size but a different style.

you can also read about how to measure yourself (I saw an Oprah show about it), and try on bras that way.

CLCSC145
12-04-2009, 02:03 PM
I have always hated bra shopping fat or thin.

My question is why the manufacturers seem to assume that big women don't need smaller cup sizes? The cups are always too big for me.

Me too! It's like even an A cup is GIGANTIC on a bra with a bigger band size. I'm broad, not stacked...

JulieJ08
12-04-2009, 02:19 PM
Me too! It's like even an A cup is GIGANTIC on a bra with a bigger band size. I'm broad, not stacked...

Unfortunately the same is true at the other end. Not so easy to find 32D. I think I'll end up with a 30 band, but have a feeling my chest will shrink more with the last few pounds :dizzy: ... but even a 30C can be hard. The lower band sizes are almost all A and B cups.

ubergirl
12-04-2009, 02:20 PM
Hmm. There is some good advice here.

My bras always ride up the back and the straps fall down, so I'm probably chronically wearing the wrong size. And my boobs usually look not that big but kind of saggy.

Windchime I like the looks of the bra on the link you posted, but I'm sort of scared to try ordering online

LitChick
12-04-2009, 03:47 PM
I am also to the point where I need to get a new bra, but the idea of going bra shopping is so overwhelming to me!

I am thinking about getting over my embarrassment and going to a bra fitting place in Atlanta called Intimacy. There are several locations in the US - has anyone been to one?

The Atlanta one is located in an upscale mall so I'm a little concerned that I'm going to be completely out of my element and shunned by the salespeople - think a much chubbier, less sexy Julia Roberts when she walks into that store in Pretty Woman and that's kind of what I'm envisioning, heh.

salsa chip
12-04-2009, 04:07 PM
My bras always ride up the back and the straps fall down, so I'm probably chronically wearing the wrong size. And my boobs usually look not that big but kind of saggy.


Hi ubergirl :) If your strap is riding up at the back, then your back size is too big. Shoulder straps are less of an issue as they're adjustable; in theory (sometimes I wonder if the "theory" was written by a chap whose wife had "small to medium" size boobs ;) ) the main gravity-defying work of a bra is done by the cups and the back strap, rather than the shoulder straps.

Whenever I go bra shopping these days, I actually hardly ever get measured with a tape measure or the like. The assistant and I find a bra in my "current" size (the style doesn't matter at that point) and, I try it on, and then we talk about the fit, is anything bulging where it shouldn't, etc. Once I've got an idea of the size I'm looking for, I'll ask after the things I'd like in terms of style, fabric, and so on (I hate lace on my bras, fwiw).

One tip a lady gave me: once you've tried on a bra you think you like, put your shirt on and see how it falls over your figure :)

Windchime
12-04-2009, 10:13 PM
Hmm. There is some good advice here.

My bras always ride up the back and the straps fall down, so I'm probably chronically wearing the wrong size. And my boobs usually look not that big but kind of saggy.

Windchime I like the looks of the bra on the link you posted, but I'm sort of scared to try ordering online

It does sound like you're wearing the wrong size. Do you have a Nordstrom within a reasonable distance? That's where I buy my bras. If your bra is riding up in the back, I can almost guarantee that your band size is too big for you.

Like someone else mentioned, I went to Macy's once but the only girls that were there were silly girls barely out of their teens who tried to shove me into a bra that didn't fit, simply because they didn't have my size.

Windchime
12-04-2009, 10:15 PM
One tip a lady gave me: once you've tried on a bra you think you like, put your shirt on and see how it falls over your figure :)

I do this, too. There is nothing worse than driving 120 miles home from Seattle and putting on my new bra, only to find that my boobs look like pointy cones or flattened melons under my shirt.

I also hate lace on my bras, or seams across the bust. I don't like seeing all those bumps and ridges through my shirt. It's seamless all the way for me, baby!

Goddess Jessica
12-05-2009, 03:38 AM
Ubergirl,

Are you in LA? San Diego has one of the best independent bra stores I have ever been to -- it's called Enchantress. I highly recommend it. They do NOT work on commission -- which means a lot to me.

After YEARS of being talked into whatever bra they had in stock (like at Lane Bryant), I found out that I was not a 44-46DD but a 38HH. My bras fit so well now, it's crazy. I look thinner and feel way more confident in my clothes. Good luck!

Gekster
12-05-2009, 03:43 AM
Ubergirl,

Are you in LA? San Diego has one of the best independent bra stores I have ever been to -- it's called Enchantress. I highly recommend it. They do NOT work on commission -- which means a lot to me.

After YEARS of being talked into whatever bra they had in stock (like at Lane Bryant), I found out that I was not a 44-46DD but a 38HH. My bras fit so well now, it's crazy. I look thinner and feel way more confident in my clothes. Good luck!

That is the only place I buy my bras! I've been a customer of theirs for over 10 years.

ubergirl
12-05-2009, 10:18 AM
Ubergirl,

Are you in LA? San Diego has one of the best independent bra stores I have ever been to -- it's called Enchantress. I highly recommend it. They do NOT work on commission -- which means a lot to me.

After YEARS of being talked into whatever bra they had in stock (like at Lane Bryant), I found out that I was not a 44-46DD but a 38HH. My bras fit so well now, it's crazy. I look thinner and feel way more confident in my clothes. Good luck!

Alas, my residence in La-la land is only a state of mind not an actual physical location.

I was thinking Town Shop in NYC, but I read online comments to the effect that they are snobby toward the plus-sized lady.

rakel
12-05-2009, 03:05 PM
At my highest, you could just forget about bra shopping. I ended up sticking with my 46Cs that had stretched to the point that they fit even when I gained weight. I could not get in a 46C in the store... and I realize that they stretch (obviously) but you have to at least be able to wear it for that to happen! Even Lane Bryant never seems to have 48+. I've lost about 10lbs and went to get a bra again. I got one 48C and one 48D at the Avenue (or maybe I got 46? too lazy to get up and figure out)... the D cup is just too big. C fits perfectly, but it's still a tight so I'm using an extender until it's stretched out enough. I was going to take the D cup one back and get another C but of course, they don't have any.

I've tried online calculators before and they said I should be a DD... I don't understand how that's possible when I am swimming in a D. I really don't understand bra sizing, haha.

JulieJ08
12-05-2009, 05:15 PM
Rakel, the cup size totally depends on the band size. The B cup in a 46B is much larger than the D cup in a 34D.

There's a chart on this page that illustrates this well. WARNING - not work friendly - pictures of the, ah, subject material (plastic surgery site). It determines cup size by a combination of ribcage measurement and actual breast measurement (from side of breast, across to center chest).

OOPS, didn't actually post the link! Here you go:

size chart (http://www.justbreastimplants.com/size/)

caryesings
12-05-2009, 06:28 PM
What a timely message.

Just got back from unsuccessful bra shopping. I always special order mine from a company that I'd had worked with a bra fitter recommend and they are marvelous. However, right now my band size is dropping really quickly. The $85 bra I just got last month is already loose so I thought I'd try for a store brand for this replacement, knowing I'm only likely to be wearing it a few weeks. So I head to two big girl stores, their band sizes don't go down to 36. Each store recommends Victoria Secret.

I head to the mall (ack, during Christmas shopping season) and ask the very helpful, kind lady if they carry cup size GG. Nope. So I came home resigned to ordering another bra until I read this thread. I had totally forgotten there is a store here that specializes in bras and bra fittings. Will be heading there this week. Thanks all!

Mikayla
12-05-2009, 07:45 PM
Ok my problem with bra's is that I will find one that fits fine in the store. Nothing bulging out, everything is in place. Then I take it home and wear it or a few hours and my boobs are popping out usually they kinda smoosh together and create a 4 boob affect. Going up a band size does nothing and if i go up a cup size the cups are then WAY to big...UGH I hate bras :-(

LitChick
12-12-2009, 04:15 PM
So I bit the bullet and went to Intimacy yesterday to get fitted for a bra.

I walked in wearing a 42D ... and walked out wearing a 36G. :eek:

I would never have put myself in anything beginning with a 3, but it fits great and feels wonderful. Even my posture seems better!

I also bought myself a decent sports bra. The fact that my boobs bounced OUT of my old sports bra earlier that day while doing jumping jacks in a workout class clinched it. Much better support and holding the girls in place!

ubergirl
12-12-2009, 05:58 PM
Ladies...

Are there any issues with being plus-sized in a speciality store? I was reading reviews of a store in NYC and it said "plus-sized ladies beware..."

I went BACK to Macy's and tried on more bras. NONE of them fit.

JulieJ08
12-12-2009, 06:29 PM
Ok my problem with bra's is that I will find one that fits fine in the store. Nothing bulging out, everything is in place. Then I take it home and wear it or a few hours and my boobs are popping out usually they kinda smoosh together and create a 4 boob affect. Going up a band size does nothing and if i go up a cup size the cups are then WAY to big...UGH I hate bras :-(

This may not be applicable if your band is already very snug, but have you tried going down a band size and *then* up a cup size.

Also sounds like you might do better with models designed to separate. I personally need less separation and more support at the sides. But it sounds like you might be the opposite, and they do make models just for that.