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Bras 101: A Guide to Buying the Perfect Bra

By Alina Fridman

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Black Bra with Tape Measure

Bras are one of the most important pieces of clothing a woman can own, yet they're also one of the most confusing. With so many different styles, shapes and sizes, it's no wonder so many women end up feeling frustrated when bra shopping. But it doesn't have to be that way! With a little bit of knowledge, you can find the perfect bra for your body and feel confident and beautiful.

There are three main things to consider when bra shopping: size, shape, and style.

Let's talk about how to figure out your size. This can be tricky because sizes vary so much between brands. The best way to find your size is to go to a store and get fitted by a professional. But if that's not possible, there are a few other ways to figure it out.

The most common way to measure your bra size is by using your band size and cup size. To measure your band size, wrap a measuring tape around your chest, just under your arms. Make sure the tape is snug but not too tight, and write down the number. To measure your cup size, put on a well-fitting bra and wrap the measuring tape around the fullest part of your bust. Again, make sure the tape is snug but not too tight, and write down the number.

Magenta Bra with Tape Measure

Once you have your measurements, you can use a size chart to find your bra size. If you're between sizes, it's usually best to go up a size.

The next step is to figure out your shape. This is important because different styles of bras are better suited for different body types. There are four main breast shapes: round, teardrop, asymmetrical, and petite.

Round breasts are fairly uniform in shape and size, with the nipple pointing straight ahead. Teardrop breasts are larger at the bottom than they are at the top, and the nipple points downward. Asymmetrical breasts are different sizes, and the nipple usually points to the larger side. Petite breasts are small in both width and height.

The most important thing to keep in mind is that comfort comes first. A bra should feel good on your body, not like a torture device! Here's how to find the perfect fit:

  • The band should be snug but not too tight. You should be able to fit two fingers underneath the band.

  • The straps should not be too loose or too tight. You should be able to adjust them so that they're comfortable but still provide some support.

  • The cups should cover the entire breast and provide support without being too tight.

  • The center of the bra should lie flat against your chest.

Now that you know your size and shape, it's time to figure out which style of bra is right for you. There are many different styles of bras, but some of the most popular are balconette, demi, full coverage, and strapless.

Balconette bras have cups that come up to cover about half of the breast, leaving the rest exposed. They often have wide-set straps and can be worn with a variety of different tops. One of my favorites is the Sheer Mesh Balconette Bra Bisquit. This gorgeous sheer mesh bra is inspired by colors found in nature. The soft cups are adorned with beautiful embroidery, while the vertical stitching provides support and shaping. The detachable straps make this bra versatile and perfect for any outfit, especially those with a deep neckline.

Demi bras have cups that come up to cover about three-quarters of the breast, leaving the top of the breast exposed. They tend to have narrower straps and can be worn with a variety of different tops. The Kinga Sunkiss Sensual Sheer Lace Demi Cup Bra is a favorite! This delicate bra is made with beautiful floral lace embroideries and unlined underwire cups that will provide gentle support and lift. The foam hidden in the lower part of the cup will give you an extra boost, while the adjustable shoulder straps ensure a comfortable, customized fit. Whether you're wearing it for a special occasion or just because, this bra is sure to make you feel confident and gorgeous.

Full coverage bras have cups that come up to cover the entire breast. They provide the most support and are often worn by women with larger breasts. The Sheer Mesh Embroidery Full Coverage Bra Gorteks Sierra is a perfect example of a full-coverage bra. This beautiful bra is made with soft, sheer mesh fabric and features embroidery accents for a touch of elegance. It also has side boning to prevent the band from folding up over itself, and a leotard back to keep the straps in place. Plus, the adjustable straps make it easy to find the perfect fit. The Sierra is sure to become your new favorite bra whether you're looking for everyday wear or something special for a night out.

Strapless bras are designed to be worn without straps. They provide support with silicone bands and often have boning to help keep them in place. I love the Strapless Seamless Bra Dominique Oceane Black. This beautiful black bra is made from smooth, seamless cups with hidden underwire support, giving you the lift and shape you need without any visible lines. The soft, seamless, individually molded foam cups are set into plush, cushioned underwires for maximum comfort, while the smooth, breathable microfiber ensures a clean, seamless finish. This bra does include straps, meaning you can wear it as a traditional strapless bra or go for a halter, crisscross back or front, or asymmetrical style – the choice is yours!

Now that you know the basics of bra shopping, it's time to hit the stores or shop online! Check out Lavinia Lingerie and get 10% off when you sign up for their newsletter.

I hope this guide was helpful in finding the perfect bra for you. Now go out there and feel confident and beautiful in whatever you choose to wear.



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