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How to Measure Your Bra Size

A comfortable, well-fitted bra can be the difference between an okay day and a great one. If your clothing is comfortable, you're likely to feel better about yourself and have a more positive attitude. Of course, when it comes to bras, it's more than just comfort. The wrong type of bra or bra size can be painful if it squeezes, pinches or doesn't offer enough support.

Many women are currently wearing the wrong bra size. Whether you've never been measured or you haven't been measured in a while, there's no better time than the present to find out what bra size you should be wearing. You can use a bra calculator to determine your size, or you can calculate the measurements yourself with the easy steps below.

What you'll need:

  • Tape measure

Step 1: Remove your current bra.

It's best to measure breasts in their natural shape, without a bra or shirt on, for the most accurate bra size.

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Step 2:Measure your rib cage.

Wrap the tape measure from the back to the front, around your rib cage, just underneath your breasts. Hold each end of the measuring tape flush against your skin and parallel to the floor. Make sure the tape measure is also taut against your body to ensure the most precise dimension.

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Step 3: Determine your band size.

Round the rib cage measurement up or down to the nearest whole number. If the measurement is an even number, you don't need to do anything else. This is your band size. If the rib cage measurement is an odd number, add 1 to get your band size. For example, if your rib cage measures 40 inches, your band size will be 40. For a rib cage that measures 31 inches, your band size will be 32.Of course, if your rib cage measurement is on the lower side of 31, your band size could be closer to 30. When your rib cage measurement is in the middle, it's best to try both sizes to find a bra that is comfortable and supportive.

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Step 4: Measure your bust.

Now wrap the tape measure under your arms, around the fullest part of your chest, from the back to the front, ensuring the tape measure remains parallel to the floor. Hold the tape measure loosely, but tight enough to stay in place without falling at the back or side.

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Step 5: Determine your cup size.

Round your bust measurement up or down to the nearest whole number. Subtract the number of your band size from the number of your bust measurement. The number of inches difference between the band and the bust will establish your cup size. For each inch of difference the cup size would go up a letter, starting with A. If the difference between the two is less than one inch, the cup size is AA. For example, if your rib cage is 34 inches and your bust is 37 inches, your cup size is C.

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Step 6: For larger cup sizes, learn the size standards.

Cup sizes larger than D can have several different size standards, as some bra designers label the size bigger than a D a DD while others refer to it as an F.

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Step 7: Try on bras.

Before you buy a slew of bras in a particular size, try on several styles. If the bras don't fit comfortably or offer enough support, try a different size to ensure that you truly are wearing the right size bra.

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