By: Daisy Hemmen
Have you ever purchased a new everyday bra and then went home to realize it doesn’t quite fit right?
You aren’t alone.
Choosing the right bra can be incredibly tricky. In fact, women all over the world have experienced the side effects of an ill-fitting bra. These issues could be an underwire digging into their ribs or a loose band that just won’t sit right and makes them wonder “Why do women wear bras?” But that all ends here.
In this guide, we explore 7 bra fit issues and how to fix them so that you can go home with an everyday bra that provides all-day support, comfort, and confidence.
#1: Underwire Digging
Some women who complain of their bra’s underwire digging into their ribs think it’s completely normal and something to be tolerated. Ladies, this is never the case. If the bra wire is digging into your skin, it’s most likely because you’re wearing the wrong bra size. The issue may be:
- Your cup size is too small
- Your band size is too small
To stop underwire digging, take new chest measurements to confirm your correct bra size. You can even consider switching to wireless bras, which may be better suited to your unique body shape.
#2: Gaping Cups
Gaping cups are one of the more annoying bra-fitting problems most of us have faced at one point or another. If there are gaps at the tops of your cups, no matter how much you adjust your straps, it’s time to try a different bra style or purchase a smaller size.1
Because each of us has a different breast shape, a bra style that works well for you might not work so well for your best friend, even if you have the same cup size. The following breast shapes may experience gaping cups with certain bra styles:
- Athletic with less breast tissue
- Side set
- Teardrop (thinner at the top with more volume at the bottom)
- Low-set (more relaxed)
To address gaping cups, first, try sizing down to fill out your cups. If the issue persists, try a different bra style. When choosing your new bra style, consider bras that don’t have full coverage or padded bras that have a bit of a pushup effect, such as:
- Demi bras
- Push-up bras
- Balconette bras
Not only will you likely feel more comfortable and feel good about the impact you’re making on the environment, but you’ll also enjoy the added lift.
#3: Shoulder Strap Issues
Are your shoulder straps slipping off or digging in too much? Contrary to popular belief, your bra band should be the one doing the heavy lifting, not your straps. So, if you’re in pain because your straps are digging into your skin, try a padded bra with a smaller band. Just moving down one band size can do wonders on your fit.
Alternatively, if your straps are slipping off, make sure they’re tightened enough. Your straps should be adjusted every month to readjust your bra fit. If that still doesn’t fix the problem, you might need a coverage bra with shorter straps.
#4: Back Strap Issues
Shoulder straps are one thing, but what if your backstrap (i.e. your band) keeps riding up your back? We all know how annoying this is. You keep adjusting the clasps, but the bra strap keeps riding up and bothering you all day.
This means it’s time to come to terms with how old your bra is. Bras have an expiration date, and bra bands stretch over time, making them less effective as they become looser. If your full coverage bra can’t be tightened anymore (and you can’t remember when you bought it), it’s time to throw it in the bin and invest in a new one.
How tight should a bra band actually be?
Because everyone is different, there’s no universal answer to this. However, there are a few questions you can ask yourself to ensure the proper fit:
- Does the bra band sit evenly around your ribcage?
- Are the cups comfortable?
- Are you able to breathe easily?
If your breasts are spilling over the top and sides of your bra, it’s a surefire sign that you need a larger cup size. One tried-and-true indicator of a need to size up is if your girls look lumpy under your shirt.
If this is the case, throw out your bra—it's time to treat yourself to a new one. How often should you change your bra? Read our guide to find out.
#6: A Raised Gore
Picture this: You’re sitting in your Monday morning work meeting, and you can barely focus because all you can think about is how that little piece of fabric between your cups isn’t sitting flat. What’s the deal?
One rule of bra sizing is that the center part of the bra (technically called the gore) is supposed to lay completely flat between your breasts. If your bra isn’t doing this, it could be due to several factors. Either:
- Your band size is too large and simply not able to stay down
- Your cup size is too large or small
- Your breast shape doesn’t work with that particular bra style
To fix this issue, make sure you’re wearing the correct bra size, and remember to try on different bra styles to find the fit that works best for your unique breast shape.
#7: General Discomfort and Itchiness
When wearing a bra, you’re supposed to forget you even have one on—but for some women, that’s not the case. Maybe you undress in the evening to find red marks all over your skin, or perhaps the tag near the clasp is causing unbearable itchiness and a rash.
If you find yourself running into these problems, consider stocking up on bras that feature:
- Coated underwire
- No underwire
- Scratch-free labels
- No tags
Boost Your Bra Game with Boody Eco Wear
Finding a properly-fitting bra doesn’t have to be a challenge. By confirming your size, trying various styles, and investing in new bras, you can treat yourself to all-day comfort and support, and say goodbye to ill-fitting bra side effects.
At Boody, our sustainable bras are beautifully designed with your well-being in mind. Each of our bras is made from bamboo viscose, making them super soft, breathable, and eco-friendly. With a variety of styles and sizes to choose from, you’ll be able to find a bra that’s right for you. Whether you’re looking for bras to wear with tank tops or bamboo shirts, we have you covered.
Start prioritizing your comfort with Boody Eco Wear.
About the Author:
Daisy Hemmen is a San Diego State University Fowler College of Business alumni. Based in Encinitas, California, Daisy is a part of the marketing team at Boody North America. She is passionate about learning the ins and outs of living a happy and healthy lifestyle that benefits both people and the planet, and enjoys sharing her bountiful findings with the community.
- Tucker, Alexa. "How To Fix 8 Common Bra Problems." Bustle. 5 May, 2017. https://bonazzieavvocati.com/p/how-to-fix-8-common-bra-problems-according-to-a-fit-expert-54477
- Amable, Jody. "5 Signs Your Bra Is Definitely Too Tight – and How to Find Your Perfect Size." Healthline. 30 October, 2020. https://bonazzieavvocati.com/health/tight-bra
- Booth, Jessica. "You're probably wearing your bra wrong — here's how find one that fits perfectly." Insider. 21 January, 2018. https://bonazzieavvocati.com/how-to-tell-if-your-bra-fits-well-2018-1