An Expert on How to Find Your Perfect Bra

A fact I’m not proud of: I have no idea what my bra size is. Sure, I could work off the guidance the lingerie in my dresser suggests, but I’d be guessing anywhere in the range of 32A to 34C. Yikes. Personally, I’ve been walking around in my day-to-day simply believing that bras are one of the inevitable discomforts that I, as a woman, am destined to face. Alongside my monthly period that I simply can’t find it within me to be grateful for (sorry, but the cramps and mood swings make me a monster), bras have a way of making me feel that I’m simply not doing my femininity “right.” And while comparing breast size examples may provide others with answers, I become all the more confused. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you, but finding the right bra? It’s a whirlwind, y’all.

Image by Michelle Nash

Breast Size Examples: An Expert on How to Find the Perfect Bra

So, as with everything I’m unsure of or self-conscious about, I went to an expert for answers. Cami Raymond, Senior Design Director for the women’s intimate brand, Ruby Ribbon, equipped me with jaw-dropping insights that completely shifted how I think about bra sizing.

First off? This should have been more obvious to me, but to readers: our breasts change over time—not just through puberty. Our weight fluctuates or we may become pregnant—there are plenty of factors at play! As a result, according to Raymond, we should be doing regular bra fittings every 6-12 months. And guess what? You’re probably holding onto a few bras that should have been thrown out a long time ago.

It’s time to clear things up—for you and for me. Below, Raymond answers all of my questions from how often we should switch out our bras to the perfect styles for tricky situations. (That backless dress you’re planning on wearing to your cousin’s wedding? Don’t worry she has the answers.)

Image by Kristen Kilpatrick

So few women actually know their bra size. Where would you recommend they start?

You can certainly start by measuring yourself, but I recommend going to a proper or expert bra fitter to get a more accurate measurement. Also, think about what type of fabric you like, the cups you prefer (demi or full coverage), or if you want it to be convertible as you want something like a bra that you’ll potentially be wearing all day to be as comfortable as possible.

How often should we be sized for bras? Or is it a one-and-done scenario?

Getting sized and fitted should happen every six months to a year. Breast size and shape fluctuate continuously throughout our life. Even our bodies change for many reasons such as pregnancy or weight change. Plus, after a lot of wear your bras also lose their shape, so it’s always best to check on your correct size.

Image by Teal Thomsen

How many bras should we ideally have in our closet?

Ideally, you should have seven. Four for every day and three for specialty uses like working out date nights, or ones for specific tops and dresses. Ultimately, you want bras that fit your lifestyle, but that still provide the support and lift you need.

When is it time to throw away a bra?

In general, bras last anywhere from 6-9 months. If you’re seeing the fabric get too stretched out, the straps get loose, or the cups lose their shape, those are signs that it’s time to throw the bra out.

Image by Teal Thomsen

Finding the right bra for different events can be tricky, particularly in summer. What are your favorite styles for those tougher outfits?

During the hot months of summer, we recommend Ruby Ribbon’s Original Cami. It has a built-in shelf bra, no underwire, and is made with antimicrobial and moisture-wicking materials. It’s great for t-shirts that are clinging to you or wear it alone as a tank top. Either way, it smooths and supports you all day.

If you’re dealing with tricky tops or dresses, our Convertible Cami has adjustable straps so it can be made strapless if needed and act as shapewear. If you have any outfits that have a V-neck or a racer-back, our Lace Cami is a great option and also tones the stomach and back areas.

Lastly, if you’re wearing something backless but still need coverage our Posies are reusable adhesive nipple covers for smooth, seamless coverage. They also are made of premium matte silicone that has a smooth & buttery second skin-like finish that does not reflect light through clothes.

I’ve been noticing a lot of comfort-focused designs—wire-free bras that are designed to support without any discomfort. On the other hand, both bras with fun and bright colors and neutral colors will be strong this year so customers can have more to choose from. Fabrics with a sheer mesh texture and lace detailing are also gaining a lot of popularity.