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Do You Know Your Bra Sister?

Have you ever gone into a shop, picked up a top in your size, but found that while it fits in most places, you can’t fit your boobs into it? It’s a struggle many women go through but not many actually talk about. Our experience has been that the majority of high street clothes tend to be made to fit a B cup bust – which is great if that’s what you are. But if you wear a D cup, you may find that your actual clothes size, let’s say a 14, fits around most of you perfectly but doesn’t fit around your chest. This means you end up having to buy a size 16 or even 18 just to make sure it will fit across your chest, often sacrificing a good fit everywhere else. 

Struggles of Women with Larger Breasts

Last year this fantastic article explored the struggles women with larger breasts encounter when clothes shopping. It turns out that the fashion industry deems the ‘average size’ as a B cup, with anything above a C classed as abnormal. This flies in the face of the facts, which reveal that the average bra size for UK women at the moment is 36D. Since that article was published, the fashion industry has started to take notice and create clothing tailored to the real average women, not their idealized one. But they’re moving very slowly, reluctant to embrace the bigger busted woman on the high street and clinging to the super skinny models’ unrealistic forms instead. It’s sad. So, bigger ladies, for the moment the struggle continues – but there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Big Sister, Little Sister

We all know the struggle it can be to find a bra that fits. If you choose the exact same size from 3 different shops, those 3 bras could fit completely differently, making it a bra laden minefield – especially if you’re shopping online! But did you know that every bra size has at least 1 ‘sister size’? Bra sister sizing is a hidden secret to many women, but knowing your size sisters can make shopping for underwear a lot easier.

You see, a C up is not just a C cup. Cup size (or cup volume) is relative to the band size of your bra. You might have noticed that when you go up a band size, you might need to go down a cup size to find a good fit, despite your breast not having changed cup size. This is because when the band size increases (i.e, from a 34 to a 36) the cup volume actually gets larger as well. So even though 2 bras are both labelled as a C cup, you might find that while the 34C fits snugly around the cup, the 36C gapes. To combat this issue, you can try your ‘sister size’. If we take the example above, the sister size for a 34C would be a 36B, as these both have the same cup volume. It sounds very complicated, but essentially all it means is that you can actually fit more than 1 bra size. There’s a wonderful chart you can find here that helps you work out which sizes have the same cup volume, so you can find your own sister sizes and make bra shopping easier.

At Elle Courbee, we believe that every woman should be able to buy with confidence and wear in comfort. That’s why we offer a comprehensive size guide, and a no quibble returns policy if something isn’t quite right. So you never have to worry about losing out by buying your bras online. For more information, get in touch with us or browse our collection for your perfect shapewear.

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