How to Measure for a Bra

The best method for how to measure for a bra is to enlist the help of a good friend or make an appointment for a professional fitting at specialty lingerie store.If you're measuring yourself for a bra, make sure to do it carefully to reduce the margin of potential error.

Wear a Bra
Always wear a non-padded bra when taking chest measurements. Without a bra, your chest is going to hang a little lower, and your numbers will be off. The bra you choose to wear while taking measurements is very significant. Pick a bra that gives you the exact lift and shape you want. This will let you know if a specific bra size will give you the look you want. Make sure to use a simple bra, though. Anything with lots of frills will get in the way of, or even increase, your measurements.

Take Measurements
You want to hold the measuring tape tight to the chest without cutting into the skin. It's important the measuring tape goes around your chest in an even loop, without rising or dipping in back. This is the part that makes measuring hard to do alone, especially if you're measuring for a full figure bra. Use a mirror to check that the measuring tape doesn't twist or move as you wrap it around your back.

  • The first measurement you take is around your ribcage, right above your bust. If the number is odd, round up to an even number. This is your band size.
  • The second measurement you take is around the fullest part of your bust. Round this number up if it falls on 1/2 or more. This is your bust measurement.

Determine Cup Size

To determine your cup size, you need to subtract your band measurement from your bust measurement. The resulting number correlates to your cup size. If you're bust measurement was 38 and your band measurement was 34, then you are a 4. A 4 means a D cup. Check the chart to see what number goes with what cup. The larger the cup, the more sizes there are, depending on the country the brand is created in.

  • 0 inches = AA cup
  • 1 inch = A cup
  • 2 inches = B cup
  • 3 inches = C cup
  • 4 inches = D cup
  • 5 inches = E cup or DD cup
  • 6 inches = F cup or DDD cup
  • 7 inches = G cup or F cup
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