Author Topic: Bra sizing debunked  (Read 4540 times)

Offline shy477

  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 4
Hi there everyone. I wanted to take a minute to dispel some incorrect understandings and hopefully promote some education that will help y'all out. I want to make sure that you understand that I'm not trying to bash anyone here, and that I simply want to help. If you have any questions, it's important to ask, too!


First off, let's talk about the numeric part of bra sizes. This is something that I've been reading a lot about through the Reddit "ABraThatFits" community and various other sites dedicated to bra sizing and information.


Back in the day, bra sizes were measured differently because of limited fabric options. These conditions led to the "add 5 inches" technique, which is still widely suggested today, but is no longer valid. All you need to do is measure around your chest, below your breasts, and record that measurement.


I bolded the "below" in the section above for a very specific reason. Many retailers are now taking the "above the breast" approach to determine the band size. As guys, we should all look at this with the suspicious eye it deserves. Do you size the tires on your car according to how many windows the car has? No, you size them according to the room that's available in the wheel wells. Why would you measure for a band that is supposed to sit under your breasts by measuring above them? Do the world a favor and help us bury this incorrect technique accordingly. Your band size is determined by measuring below your breasts, not above them.


Finally, odd numbers need to be rounded up to the nearest even number. If you measure as 39", you're looking at a 40 band.

On to the letters now: the cup size.


Many people are under the incorrect assumption that an "A cup" is universal. It's not. the cup size is determined by the difference between the band and the breast measurement. Using the tire analogy, think of it as the middle number, the aspect ratio. The height of the tire is determined by this, much like your cup size is determined by the difference between the breast and band sizes.


To get the cup size, measure across the fullest part of your breasts and all the way around your back. This measurement, minus the  band size will usually be a number less than 10. Don't limit that though, as there are cup sizes that span the entire alphabet. However, let's stick with the simple numbers to start.


Let's say you measure your breast (or bust) measurement and come up with 43". Subtracting the band size (40") from that, you get a difference of 3". Now let's find the letter of the alphabet at the respective position of 3: C. It gets a little tricky as you get into larger cup sizes though. A 5" difference in US measurements will give you a DD cup, while a 6" will give you a DDD. In European sizes this would follow the alphabet naturally though. UK sizes get a little off with going from D to DD and then to E, but don't fret: There are tools and charts that help you determine this all over the place. Just make sure that whatever site your on to find this information doesn't throw the measure-under-your-armpits-and-add-5-inches rule at you.


So now throw it all together. If you measure 39" under your breasts and 43" across the fullest part of them, you'll want to start off with a 40C bra. Why the emphasis on "start off"? Because all brands are different, you'll want to experiment with what works for you.
Another thing to mention is shape. Breasts come in all different sizes, as you know, but they also come in different shapes. I saw a thread on here talking about "shallow" bras, and a response suggesting that a smaller cup was needed. While that might seem logical, it's not exactly true.


Remember that the cup size is measured across the fullest part of the breast. Think of it like basketballs on a light pole. If you squash the basketballs out and measure, then let them return to their normal shape and measure, you're probably going to get a similar measurement. This is because the volume doesn't change, and cup sizes are also actually a volumetric measurement. If the breast has wider roots but doesn't have much projection, it could still be a 40C, but a different shape.


I'll use my own measurements as an example.
  • Under my breasts, I measure right at a 36".
  • Across the fullest part of my breasts, I measure 41"
Using the technique above, I would be a 36DD in US sizes. However, I don't have the projection that most bras are constructed with in this size, though the width of my breast is probably right around what a 36DD would be. Instead, I have been wearing a 36B, as this is the right amount of projection, but the width is too little.

I'll post a bit about myself in the stories section, so keep an eye out for that post. In it, I'll talk about the different sizes I've tried and how I've come to where I'm at today.

I want to encourage you to take a look at the various things on the Reddit community I mentioned. Maybe even start with the beginner's guide and see what they suggest. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to sign up over there and ask the community. They are quite welcoming and have a desire to see their community statement fulfilled: "Because everyone who wants one deserves A Bra That Fits!"

Hopefully this information helps you out. I encourage you to ask questions and discuss it though. Keep in mind that as guys, we're all shaped quite differently than the gals that bras were originally made for, so we might have to fudge things a bit. However, the information I aimed to share should be a good starting point at the very least!

Linkback: https://www.gynecomastia.org/forum/index.php?topic=31429.0

TomJones

  • Guest
Thank you for the post!
Tom

Offline Paa_Paw

  • Senior Moderator
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4782
I found the most reliable figure for Band size is actually above the breasts and immediately under the arms.  Cup size varies with makers.  Nothing beats a proper fitting.  
Grandpa Dan

Offline aboywithgirls

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 762
Great post. This will definitely help alot of guys get started on the path to finding a  bra that fits.
I've been wearing a bra for almost 30 years now  (since puberty hit!). As a teenager, I went for an initial fitting after 8 had out grown my sisters hand me down bras. My first bra that was fitted to me.was a 36C and it wasn't until about 10 years ago, I was professionally fitted again, going from a 42C to a 38DD (what a difference! ). I now have learned that the best way to get a bra that fits is to get professionally fitted now wearing a 36F/G in most of my bras . You may end up trying on 30 bras before you find one that really fits but it's well worth it when it's something that you are going to be wearing  for 16+ hours a day to make you comfortable. A bra should be something that you wear to be comfortable, not something that you can't wait to take off as soon as you get home.
Most stores,shops and boutiques are aware of us guys that need a well fitted bra as much as the girls that they normally sell to and are more than willing to get us the support that we need.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2015, 10:51:28 AM by aboywithgirls »
Bras aren't for women, they're for breasts.

Offline expedient-traveller

  • Silver Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 201
I cannot agree with the basic bra sizing as suggested here. I will use myself as a good example: I measure exactly 44 inches below my breasts and I measure, last time I measured, 49 inches across my breasts. According to the charts and logic, I should be a 44DD or a 44DDD. There is no way my boobs can fit into cups that large. I find myself fitting very comfortably into a 44B or a 44C depending on who makes the bra as well as what type of bra it is. Most gentlemen have a goodly amount of flesh under their arms which skews the bra measurement. We need, as previously suggested, a semi-standard for gentlemen to measure their breast size by. By the way, I am having a fit getting a well fitting bra since I outgrew half a dozen bras within the last 6 months.

Offline Bman41

  • Gold Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 407
I agree, I measure 40-42 band and usually 47-48 cup, but a 40C does me well.  

I think most of the measurements are based on someone with a tone body and no fat, so there is nothing to squish (say under the arms) which I feel is what really where the measurements get hosed up.

I cannot agree with the basic bra sizing as suggested here. I will use myself as a good example: I measure exactly 44 inches below my breasts and I measure, last time I measured, 49 inches across my breasts. According to the charts and logic, I should be a 44DD or a 44DDD. There is no way my boobs can fit into cups that large. I find myself fitting very comfortably into a 44B or a 44C depending on who makes the bra as well as what type of bra it is. Most gentlemen have a goodly amount of flesh under their arms which skews the bra measurement. We need, as previously suggested, a semi-standard for gentlemen to measure their breast size by. By the way, I am having a fit getting a well fitting bra since I outgrew half a dozen bras within the last 6 months.

Offline aboywithgirls

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 762
I ended up having  my breasts at a  young age (12 when I started wearing a bra ) my chest and breasts are very typical of what a well endowed woman would have. I'm 5'10 and 170 lbs and the last bra I bought was a 36G.  Men's chests are typically more broad. Because of my T deficiency growing up, I ended up having a more  feminine chest.

hammer

  • Guest
My sizing will work with most bras! I measure 46H and I will fit most cups that are 46G or 46H no problem!

I'm hoping with the weight I'm losing that 46 will be going down, 20 lbs so far!

Offline walt

  • Gold Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 267
hello all, I measure 48 underbust and 54" across the nips but I have side boobs, so I usually get sports bras with moulded cups. I currently wear a 4x JMS bra fits very well.

Offline Bman41

  • Gold Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 407
A comment on bra sizing.  When I was reading on one of the forums, typically smaller women with smaller band sizes, they would be say a 32D or 34D something, but when they were properly sized, it ended up being say a 28F or 28G.  Dawned on me that if you look at them from the side, the thickness of their torso is maybe only as thick as the projection of their breast.  So they might end up being 6 inches "thick", but the breast is the same.  So it makes sense to have some large cup size with a small band on these tiny ladies.  Proportionally, they have a large amount of breast tissue compared to their tiny frame.  
It is almost like there should be an additional measurement, body thickness, and how much the breast extends out from the chest wall gives a better idea on the actual size the cup projection would be.  I think in general, it is expected the cup is symmetrical all the way around.  
Maybe I am way off, but when I noticed the frame size to breast size it was "oh, I get it"

Offline aboywithgirls

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 762
Absolutely.  I have relatively narrow shoulders and chest with large breasts and wide hips. I accept it. It's just the way I was made. I measure 36 inches under my bust and 44 inches (standing) over the bust and I wear a 36G / 38F in most of my bras. 

Offline 46bboobs

  • Silver Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 106
There are 2 problems with bra sizing charts. Men have wider chests with less rounded boobs (usually) and every bra, even from the same mfg has been made in a different size.
A wonder bra #4523 in 40D, will not be the same size (generally) as a wonder bra #42134 in 40D. Sizing from brand to brand seems different, but they also cant seem to get it right from model to model.

Offline aboywithgirls

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 762
Elizabeth Dale of the Breast Life has a great blog  about your "bra zone ". This speaks to the fact that most people who wear a bra are not necessarily one bra size. We have to find a certain zone that we fit into. Some of your better boutiques already know this. One that I shop at quite a bit has there bras grouped by fit rather than size. When I go there, they will start buy fitting me into a couple of different sizing bras to figure my true size. Last time I was a 36G. Then they brought out between 30 and 40 bras for me to try on based on my true size and style and color I was looking for. I found that I was also a 34H and 38F as well as a 36G. Unfortunately, bra sizing is still more of an art than a science for both women and men. 

Offline TigerPaws

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 587
Elizabeth Dale of the Breast Life has a great blog  about your "bra zone ". This speaks to the fact that most people who wear a bra are not necessarily one bra size. We have to find a certain zone that we fit into. Some of your better boutiques already know this. One that I shop at quite a bit has there bras grouped by fit rather than size. When I go there, they will start buy fitting me into a couple of different sizing bras to figure my true size. Last time I was a 36G. Then they brought out between 30 and 40 bras for me to try on based on my true size and style and color I was looking for. I found that I was also a 34H and 38F as well as a 36G. Unfortunately, bra sizing is still more of an art than a science for both women and men.
Agreed! Sizing is as much about marketing as it is the actual garnments size. Take womens dress sizes, the higher the price tag and the more exclusive the shop and the smaller the dress size. Generally speaking as men we do not pay as muct attention to what size something is but what it looks and fells like. Then again I have a 40 year old 3 piect suit which is just as much in style now as it was then. Try telling that to a woman.

As the primary market for bras is women, the garnment is taylored to their preceived wants and needs. Color, shape, style and of course sizes are targeted towards various age groups and demographics.

When you think about it there should be no surprise that bra sizing is not consistant.


 

SMFPacks CMS 1.0.3 © 2020