Have you found The One yet? You know—the bra that doesn’t insist on digging into your sides midday while you give that big presentation. Or better yet, the bra that doesn’t make you want to cancel all your plans the minute you get home and slip straight into sweats. What we’re trying to say is, what’s a girl got to do to find the perfect bra with the perfect fit?
To start our quest, we went straight to the bra fairies themselves (aka the experts at Victoria’s Secret), who promised to make all our lingerie-related dreams come true. We sent five women to the brand’s Fifth Avenue store in New York City to share their various fit issues, and with a bit of proper measuring, the store’s pros found a solution for each bra dilemma they were presented with. Here’s how it all went down…
One of the most difficult lingerie-related tasks? Finding a bra that actually works under your clothes. It shouldn’t be this complicated, but somehow it is. Linh Niller, an NYC-based content creator who has mastered that whole effortless-dressing thing, tells us she’s been on the lookout for the perfect everyday bra for what feels like forever.
What she thought her bra size was: 32B
What it actually is: 32B (right on the money!)
The bra issue: “I want a bra that just disappears under my tops. I normally wear plain white tees and I can’t find a bra that just works.”
The expert advice: “Go for a bra in a soft fabric,” says Victoria’s Secret Fifth Avenue’s lead bra expert. “The Body by Victoria collection has been a customer favorite for years—its soft-brushed fabric is as comfortable as your favorite tee, plus it’s also nearly invisible underneath it.”
Katie Muirhead, an Australian model, had long struggled to find a bra that sits correctly against her body. Tired of styles that needed constant adjustment and dealing with top-boob spillage, Muirhead was looking for a bra that actually felt comfortable.
What she thought her bra size was: 32DD
What it actually is: 34DDD
The bra issue: “I hate it when the center of the bra between the cups lifts from my chest—it means I’m constantly wriggling around trying to get it to feel right! If it doesn’t sit properly, it doesn’t support.”
The expert advice: Get measured. “Katie was likely experiencing frustration with her bras because they were the wrong size,” the expert bra fitter explains. “Once we measured her correctly, we were able to find bras that fit her perfectly. For a customer like Katie who is feeling discomfort between her cups, a lower-cut demi style (like this one from Body By Victoria) will be the most ideal and versatile option. It not only offers support, it will also work under any top she wants to wear!”
Okay, now we get to the issue a lot of us experience: that pesky underwire that keeps rubbing us the wrong way. Stylist Kalysse Anthony knows this issue well, and she was on a mission to figure out why this happens—and how to prevent it once and for all.
What she thought her bra size was: 34A
What it actually is: 32B
The bra issue: “This underwire that keeps rubbing against my skin!”
The expert advice: If you’re experiencing this, it may be that you’re wearing a bra with a band size that’s too big. “Kalysse had been wearing a 34A but ended up being a 32B,” says the Victoria’s Secret fit expert. “Her strife with the underwire came from wearing a band that was causing too much movement; therefore the underwire was likely causing discomfort due to rubbing. The best way to solve a troubling underwire is by wearing the correct size. We always recommend being fitted by our bra fit experts every six months."
Carter Fish, a Florida–based photographer and blogger, had been hunting for a bra that works for her wider shoulders. The answer, as it turns out? Find an alternative strap option.
What she thought her bra size was: 34C
What it actually is: 34D
The bra issue: “Finding a silhouette that works for my wider shoulders.”
The expert advice: “Anything that has a decorative racerback would be ideal to flatter a wider shoulder,” says the expert bra fitter. “The look of a racerback, especially anything featuring lace, offers an instantly feminine look. For her sizing, the C underwire was cutting in a bit too much on her breast, but by going up just one more cup, we were able to support all the tissue.”
Finally, we have Erica Lavelanet, who wanted to find a bra with minimal lining that feels as natural as possible while still supporting her. The NYC-based blogger goes bra-free most of the time, but for the days she needs a little lift, she’s had a hard time finding a bra that isn’t overly padded.
What she thought her bra size was: 32B
What it actually is: 32B (ding, ding, ding!)
The bra issue: “Finding a bra that isn’t overly lined.”
The expert advice: “When it comes to lightly lined bras, nothing needs to change as it pertains to sizing; it’s just a matter of finding the frame that works best for you,” the Victoria’s Secret expert told us. “Body By Victoria features a lightly-lined demi that provides subtle shape and feels lightweight and comfortable—it’s a go-to for our customers who don’t like a lot of padding but still want support.”