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A Fitting Issue



With the Debenhams ‘Bra Fit’ campaign launching in store today, Womenswear Editor Lizzie popped into the Oxford Street store to size up her assets…

When it comes to building great style, it’s vital to get the foundations just right. As a woman I admit that I love clothes – I love scouring fashion magazines, sourcing new looks and splurging my monthly salary on new items for my wardrobe.  As a clothing fanatic I wouldn’t dream of buying a dress too big or trousers too small. With this in mind, imagine my shock to have discovered today that I’ve been wearing the wrong sized bra for years.

How on earth did I manage to do that? Sure from time to time a bra may have pinched a little, the cups may have had room to store my mobile phone and once, or twice, a bra has been known to leave sore marks underneath my arms – but I’ve always worn 34B, for someone who is slim with not the biggest of breasts, but who certainly has breasts, what other size could I possibly be?

Well it turns out my, surprisingly not so modest, contribution to the world of breasts is in fact an offering of the 32C variety – according to Eleanor, the lovely lady who measured me this morning in honour of Debenhams current ‘Bra Fit’ initiative campaign.  Aimed at encouraging all women to re-think, and re-measure, their bra size, Debenhams is seeking to highlight that the majority of women actually wear the wrong sized bra, an issue that can lead to ill-fitting clothes, discomfort and a shapeless figure. Who wants that?

Whether I like it or not, in the past I’ve probably suffered from one, if not all three of these issues – without even realising. In Debenhams this morning I explained to Eleanor, prior to my measurements being taken, that I have been a 34B for as long as I can remember. Stripping off my top for the tape measure, it was pretty clear that in the case of my cups, there was definitely no case of ‘runneth over’. On the contrary the bra I’m wearing today is one of my favourites, all pretty and pink, yet also one of my most frustrating for the fact that I never quite seem to be able to fill the thing, no matter how much I re-adjust the straps and manoeuvre its contents.

Suddenly, I half expected to be told I required an A cup – not something I relished given that a ‘charming’ male friend had referred to body boosting bras the other day and quipped: “Well they wouldn’t do much for you”. Was he right, was I smaller than I thought? “You look like a C cup to me” Eleanor surprisingly suggested. Really? Interesting… How so?

Chatting further, Eleanor explained that my problem wasn’t that I was wearing a bra too big for my breasts, it was in fact too big for my back meaning that it would also push forward at the front. ‘Great, I’m 32B then’ I thought, making a quick mental note to congratulate the male model at yoga, who once guessed this to be my size after a quick glance, on his powers of observation. ‘I can live with that’.

Eleanor wasn’t convinced though. Ever thorough, she slipped me into a 32B and suddenly, I looked more buxom than I ever have in my life – but not in a good way. In fact, looking down it appeared as if I had four breasts – two in the bra, two trying to escape – never a good look.

Slipping on the 32C, I swear nothing has ever felt so right. ‘Who needs the perfect man when you have the perfect bra?’ is certainly now my motto in life. A 32C, for me, hugs where I want and in all the right places – do men ever come with that kind of guarantee?

In all seriousness, having been measured and found to be cup-size lacking, I can’t wait for pay day when, this month, I now plan to splurge on a whole new set of underwear – courtesy of Debenhams of course. For all those girls who think: ‘It feels ok-ish, I’m sure it’s fine’ – trust me, there’s a better fit for you out there.

I’m a girl who speaks from experience. The 34B I am wearing today has about an inch gap between those two little bits of underwiring that pop up at the cleavage point. In the 32C, they sat literally side by side. My 34B I have to pop onto the last hook just to get it to feel snug, the 32C I can easily wear on the first – apparently this is how it should be initially, for once a bra’s material has stretched over time it helps to have those two extra hooks. Finally the 34B has underwiring that stops about an inch away from underneath my arm, the 32C sat directly beneath.

These may sound like quite simple alterations but, if I’ve learnt one thing today it’s that, when it comes to our bra size, the smallest thing can make the biggest difference.

Oh and also that my ‘small things’ are quite a bit bigger after all…

Be sure to book a FREE ‘Bra Fit’ at Debenhams, claiming £5 off any bra when you spend £30 or more! *

Come back to comment and let us know if you had as ‘uplifting’ experience as our womenswear editor, Lizzie.

* Offer expires 14th May 2012.

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