Paula Svoboda from Triumph. Image supplied.
While most women wear a bra every and go through many bras in our lifetime, most of us could do with some advice when it comes to choosing the right bra and knowing if it fits well. This is why we chatted to Paula Svoboda, a professional bra fitter and bra stylist for Triumph lingerie who has professionally fitted over 50,000 women. She has offered some great tips on how to choose a bra and the easy mistakes to avoid so you end up with a bra that fits well and makes you feel good.
What’s the most common mistake women make when choosing a bra nowadays?
The most common mistake women make when choosing a bra is missing the crucial first step… A professional bra fitting!
The vast majority of women have never actually experienced a professional bra fitting. This means they are going by what they think feels like the right size, without being properly educated about what the perfect fit actually feels, or looks like. Finding the perfect fit means looking at everything from the underwire and underband, to the breast coverage, hooks and straps.
How do you tell if a bra fits well?
Here are the 7 top tips to getting the perfect fit!
The underwire should go around the entire contour of the breast and the front of the bra should sit flat against your chest. If you feel the wires are digging in or resting on breast tissue, that’s a big sign you are in the wrong size.
- Under band
80% of bust support comes from the under band so you need to ensure that remains firm, yet comfortable. If the shoulder straps are falling off then the bra is too big for your diaphragm, try going down a size in the band. Check that the back of the bra is sitting level with the front. If it is riding up or sliding around as you move, that means the band is too big and you need to wear a smaller band size.
If you have a larger bust, then finding a supportive bra is even more important. Go for styles with thicker straps and a wider band with more hooks. Three band hooks or more will help to keep your bust in line, and the thicker straps will provide increased leverage.
The straps should feel firm and comfortable and should not be digging in or sliding down the shoulders.
Look for good coverage at the side and top of the breast, and fabric should be firm over the bust. If your breasts are not filling the cup or there’s excess flesh spilling over the top and sides of the bra, you are wearing the wrong cup size.
Always remember that no two bras offer exactly the same level of support or will fit the same way – even if they have the same size on the tag. Sizes change between brands and even sometimes within a single brand’s different styles.
- Get fitted professionally!
Is there a right way to put on a bra? Is it important that the bra rest on your sternum between cups?
As you place the bra against your body, it’s important to ensure the underwire fits around the entire contour of the breast and the front of the bra should sit flat against your chest. The wires should not dig in or rest on the breast bone.
Also ensure that the back of the bra is sitting level with the front. If the back of the bra tends to rise up, this is an indication that you are wearing the wrong size.
How many hooks do you need on a bra closure and why are they important?
This totally depends on the size and shape of your breasts, and the best fitting bra for them. This can be easily determined with the help of a professional bra fitter, but a good general rule is the larger your bust, the more important support becomes. This support can be provided by thicker straps and a wider band with more hooks. A band with three hooks or more will help to keep your bust in line. This is important as it will ensure the ultimate support for your breasts, reducing the risk of discomfort.
Is there a bra style every woman should own?
We at Triumph believe there are several essential bras that every woman should own:
A good quality t-shirt bra — an oldie but goodie — will keep the lines under your T-shirt smooth while giving your bust support and a nice, soft shape. In basic colours, nude and black. Triumph’s best-selling t-shirt bra, Gorgeous Luxury (RRP $54.95) is famous for its superior fit and high level of support.
A good strapless is essential for pulling off the shoulder tops. Opt for Triumph’s Beautiful Silhouette (RRP $74.95) – this bra is super comfortable and stays in place all day!
For those romantic nights with your partner, you can’t go past some seductive lace! Made from a soft, stretch lace and available in wired, padded and wire-free options, Triumph’s iconic Amourette range will make you feel sexy and confident! Opt for a seasonal colour to brighten up your lingerie collection!
If you have a larger bust, a minimizer bra will be your best friend! There is a misconception that minimizer bras are made for older ladies who don’t want to flaunt their bust, but that’s certainly not true. They are like shapewear for your boobs. The minimisers of today are stylish and pretty and can do so much more!
When it comes to activewear, the rising trend towards HIIT style workouts mean you will want to opt for a bra with extreme bounce control. Triaction’s Extreme Lite N (RRP $69.95) is an ultra-lightweight feminine sports bra with no padding or underwire, meaning it naturally contours the body. Due to the dynamic design, high neckline and non-moulded cups, this innovation has an impressive 77% certified overall extreme bounce control test rating.
Increasingly, women are also adding a piece of sculpting lingerie whether that be a sculpting brief or dress for situations when they need a smooth, sleek silhouette under clothes.
What’s the difference between a sports bra and a regular bra?
The biggest difference is that sports bras are specifically designed to provide the ultimate support with anti-bounce and moisture management properties, so you are prepared no matter what physical activity you are doing. Triaction’s range of sports bras include Triaction’s Dynamic LITE® collection, suitable for cardio workouts and 77% bounce control.
You can also find great support in wire-free styles like Triaction’s Extreme Lite. The bra features 3D Powertech technology which is an innovative engineering process that glues together 3 types of fabrics, giving a 2-layer anti-bounce compression that perfectly adjusts to your curves.