A note to bra manufacturers: YOU CAUSE ME RAAAAAAGE

I am fat. (You may have already guessed this one, heh.) But I also have small boobs. Like, A/B Cup. It’s really annoying. As my friend Kylie put it, manufacturers automatically assume that as your band size goes up so must your boob size.

Note to bra makers: THIS ISN’T TRUE FOR EVERYONE.

They simply do not make cute bras in my size. They barely make ANY bras in my size. In fact, there is ONE store in Brisbane that carries a total of ONE bra that will actually fit me properly. And it’s $79, and both the straps broke within four months. And the order I made to the internet company that sells my size in bras has been delayed until September. SEPTEMBER. Sometimes I feel like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman, when they wont let her shop. I HAVE MONEY TO SPEND, WHY WONT YOU LET ME SPEND IT RETAILERS.

It is so infuriating, as I need just as much support as the next bra-wearing person. I mean, when I’m powerwalking on the treadmill I want some support. I want clothing that fits properly, and that doesn’t continually shift because i’m not wearing properly fitted undergarments. I am nearly in tears as I write this because all I fucking want is a bra that fits me properly.

I am in the process of writing a very strongly worded letter to Hestia (which supposedly Holds Every Size Tit In Australia), Berlei, Bonds, and any other bra manufacturer I can think of. This letter will ask them why they don’t cater to those who are larger, but with small boobs. Honestly though? I’m way too angrily passionate about this right now to word it coherently. I needed somewhere to gripe, and surely I’m not the only one here who has a large band size but smaller boobs! So if you can leave a comment that commiserates/sympathizes/tells me how to word these letters, I’d really appreciate it. Thanks.

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  • http://twitter.com/lilabris Kylie


    I absolutely loathe bra shopping. I decided last weekend that I was going to buy some new bras as I badly need them but ended up empty handed as I was so defeated by the whole ordeal. The bra size that would fit me best is a very rare breed and seems to only inhabit expensive stores and I really don’t appreciate paying $50/$60/$70 for underwear. I want something affordable that fits!

    I get the impression that as bra sizes are extended to include larger sizes, they think therefore they’re including more women. This is true to a point but they remain completely oblivious to those of us who don’t have large boobs. I have a fairly wide back so need a big band size but have small boobs. (haha, i accidently typed bobos) So what’s my solution? Wear ill-fitting bras? DNW.


  • Stroudsptr

    I can totally empathize with this. I am what I refer to as “ill-proportioned fat girl” My band is wide but I’m a b cup. And while I’ve lost a little weight and the possibilities are slightly more, try finding a 44B anywhere. ANYWHERE.

    And don’t get me started on tights. I’m short gal and they think that plus sized women apparently are 6’2 as well. I end up with extra baggage around my knees and ankles that make me look like I’m 4.

  • Fantine

    You are not the only one. By most measurement charts (where they compare your band measurement to your bust measurement), I am a C cup or a small D. But I have to buy B cup bras because manufacturers up the cup size with the band size. And sometimes the B cups are so hilariously huge that it makes me want to cry. It’s made even worse by the fact that NO clothing store, not even those dedicated to plus sizes, seems to carry a 46B, so I’m stuck ordering online and trying to remember which brands think all fat women have racks of doom.

  • http://living400lbs.wordpress.com/ living400lbs

    If you are looking online, Lady Grace is a US company that does ship internationally and carries a wide range of sizes.

  • maggiemunkee

    i am so with you. okay, i had a freakin’ breast reduction. i was wearing a US 48g/h/i depending on cut. not that i actually could afford to spend $75+ USD on a bra, so i wore a too-small stretchy 48ddd. so i had the surgery done, and when all was said and done, i wore a 48d. and not even lane effing bryant had cute bras in that size, just the ugly boring far-too-matronly-for-me-with-awful-bendy-side-”boning”. and then i ended up dropping a bunch of weight because my surgery freaked out my immune system, and pow!, lupus. i am now down to a 46d. still nothing.

    it’s crazy shit like this that keeps us wimmins distracted and not focused on tearing down the kyriarchy. :P

    now i’m all ranty and worked up and menstruating (the menstruating happened earlier this morning and is unrelated, but not helping). i need a cookie. :P

  • celia

    This makes me want to become a bra manufacturer so I can buy super cute and awesome fabrics and make sexy bras for you all! I don’t understand how manufacturers cannot do a simple survey of bust measurements in larger women and find that bigger band doesn’t always equal bigger cup, it seems logical to me…. I wish everyone hunting for the perfect bra luck because no one deserves to not have access to properly fitting bras, especially considering the damage an ill-fitting one can do.

  • Cgwenn

    No lingerie manufacturer anywhere seems to have a grip on what big women need and want in bras. I wear a 42D & am bloody sick unto DEATH of seeing bras with STRETCH CUPS & STRAPS. That may be fine for the A cup ladies, but not for anything larger than a VERY firm B. I can understand your frustration in trying to find something that fits, flatters & gives you your money’s worth. DON’T GIVE UP! It’s got to be out there somewhere!

  • Anonymous

    Ugh. I am with you, albeit on the other end of the spectrum. My bra size is currently 38H or J. Cup sizes that large are impossible to find in stores, and even in specialty bra shops I have been looked at like a freak EVEN THOUGH my boobs really don’t look that big. You wouldn’t look at me and go “wow, look at the bazooms on her.” You’d go, “she’s fat.” The sizes are a much narrower range than actual boobed people seem to need.

  • Kyani

    I am right there with you! Trying to find a bra that A) I can afford while living off of college loans, and B) actually fits my 44 almost B yet definitely bigger than A self, has led me to buying 38 B bras, adding an extender to the back to make the band bigger, and then putting silicone pads into the cups so that they’re small enough. Sadly, doctoring bras like that is the only way I’ve ever gotten one to fit right.

  • Stacy

    I am exactly in the same boat (46A approximately) – I recently stumbled across thepinkbra.com – which specializes in post-mastectomy bras – which apparently are the only kind made in my size.
    The cheapest comfortable bra I know is jms.com “Leading Lady Molded Leisure Bra” – which despite the word Molded is a nice light cotton.
    I have no idea if any of these ship to Australia – but between the 2 stores – I plunked down like $400 refreshing my collection last month.

  • Anonymous

    I consider myself very fortunate to be a 46DD/24DD – it’s a commonly carried size, in a moderate range of styles. I still have to buy online, but that’s more because I live in a very rural area with no shops!

  • Eggsofquail

    Yeah, I know what you mean. In my opinion, bras are totally useless. The only time I’ve ever worn one was all of last year. I finally came back to my senses and gave the damn things up. Maybe try going without one, at least part time? Just ’cause many people wear them doesn’t mean it’s logical or necessary. It might take some getting used to, but it’s totally worth it and you’d save lots of money. But that’s me. I’m kind of a hippie.

  • Anonymous

    Fantine, I recall reading that bra sizing is sort of relative to the band size. The band indicates cirumference below the boob, while the cup size indicates how many standard bra-measures the boobs are wider/stick out in comparison. So a 34B and a 40B won’t be the same thing at all, to pull some sizings outta my arse.

    I’m in the inbetweenie range right now. Bra hunting is really effing annoying, but at least I can go into stores and find a few things that I can try on. 40C is too big in the cups and band. 38C is too small in the band but just right in the cups and half the stores don’t go up that high and the plus stores don’t go down that low wah wah wah I shall cram my frustrations in my ear, because the situation could be a million times less workable.

  • Luna

    I have the same problem.
    I’m in between a A and a B, but my band size is 40.
    The lowest cup size I can find is a C, and it’s so irritating to have to buy the Cs and then use these “pad” inserts to make them somewhat fit.

  • Ali

    I am completely in the same boat!! and oftentimes feel like that only one. I’m a 40A and a woman at a shop that is supposedly supposed to specialize in hard-to-find bra sizes told me my size didn’t exist. I’ve resorted to going a couple of sizes down in the band and relying on band extenders from a fabric store, but this still leads to a horrible fit and my straps are constantly falling down.

    I hate that assumption that all big women have big boobs.

  • Emmy

    I can relate to this as well (42B). What really gets me is on the rare occasion I find a bra in my size it’s built as if designed for a much larger cup size. I don’t need 2″ thick straps or a half dozen hooks in the back – I’m a B cup!

  • Susan-june

    It is possible to have bras custom made. Do a bit of research and I am sure you will find somebody. Its not as expensive as you would imagine.

  • Wendy S.

    I think what you said here, is perfect for the companies, except maybe “The Pretty Woman” part b/c some of those dolts may not have seen the movie. But keep the frustration going, the “squeaky wheel gets greased faster” and they do the same thing with plus size women and those of us who have small waists. We all come in different sizes and shapes and once again, so many are too weight obsessed to realize this, grrrrrrr!

  • Pepperbeast

    Oh, I’m so with you there. I’m fat, but mostly I’m also kind of king-size– broad shoulders, large ribcage, etc. and I have what *I* think are perfect-sized and perfectly normal breasts– in a 20C/42C. I can find *some* bras in my size with resort to the internet, but buying one in a shop in New Zealand (or even in Aussie) is pretty well out of the question.

    Some manufacturers really peeve me– they practically fall all over themselves with congratulations on how they understand that women come in all shapes and sizes– why, look at us! We now make 8-10P *and* Q! But they’re fundamentally unwilling to even consider that a woman in a band size 18 or above could possibly wear a cup size smaller than D.

  • Gemma

    I went to a really bad bra fitting place in a department store once. The woman used the “measure and add 5 if it’s an odd number etc..” technique and told me I was a 40A. She then told me that that bra size doesn’t exist.
    I then went to a professional bra fitter who knows boobies so well that she could pretty much just look at you and tell your bra size. She said she guessed I was about a 38DD. We tried on some bras and the ones that fit best were 38DD and 38E. In my case, those online bra measuring guides are completely useless, and they still tell me I should be wearing 40A.. Maybe I have high and wide boobies that don’t stick out very far? Anyway I think it’s worth getting professionally measured by a specialist who knows what they are on about.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_J44I5HIM34QOTHWRQ5RGHICNTE Sandra

    Its kinda funny but as a size 14/16 with 40G cups i am always thinking the exact opposite. I can even count how many times i have been trying clothes in torrid, or forever 21 faith21, or macys and said “dont they realize that not only is my waist larger but so are my cups” or ” WTF, dont they make plus size for over a d-cup”, I never really thought about women who were smaller experiencing the opposite. Theonly bra issues i have solved is where to buy them, i have finally come to terms with pay 70 for a bra at nordstroms because i cant stands squeezing into one more ill fitting minimizer ( i hate them, who ever said i was ashamed of how large my breast are) everywhere else.

  • Starr103

    Thank you! Thank You! Thank You!!! You are the first person I have ever seen mention this problem! I feel so much better. I have the worst time with dresses and tops because if your hips are big therefore your boobs must be large as well. It drives me insane!!! Thank you so much for the commiseration. Seriously, it feels so good not to be alone.

    Anyway, found this page from Offbeat Bride. It's wonderful :)

  • http://www.richardandjaney.com Janey

    Susan-june, yes we can have bras custom-made – but the fact that we HAVE to is the problem. It's the same way fat people can get their clothing custom made. This is a rights issue too.

  • http://www.richardandjaney.com Janey

    Hah, it's comforting to know you're not the only one, I must admit. Although it's still sad we need to be complaining about this! I highly recommend writing to bra manufacturers, like I did.

    Thanks for your comment!

  • Crispiness

    I just stumbled here from Offbeat Bride and had to let you know that I’m loving your blog, even if I’ve only read a half-dozen posts. I am also in this situation…big girl, small boobs. And of course it’s not just bras I have a problem with, in fact my boobs go braless most of the time, clothes also suffer from this fallacy of thinking that being fat equals huge tits. There are countless times where I’ve found some really cute top or dress that fits perfectly everywhere but the chest. Like I already don’t feel bad enough about myself for being fat, now I have to feel bad about not being the ‘right’ kind of fat? The kind of fat that doesn’t produce double D’s?

  • murkypon

    Trust me, tight-makers don't think plus-sized women are 6'2″. I'm a plus-sized 6'0″ woman (with long legs, but not monstrously long) who can't find a pair of tights that don't make my feet feel like they're being squeezed to death, while still having a crotch that sags. I'd love to have just one pair that actually fit properly. Honestly, I'd also love a pair of pants that didn't fit like they were slightly cropped. And a shirt that actually “hits at the lower hip”. Even if the tights don't quite fit you, at least you have the option of garters–there are things that can be done with too much length. There's not much you can do with too little.

    And I feel for the bra thing. I'm really something like a 42B, but I'm apparently borderline, so I can make a 42C work. I really feel for those who can't because it IS pretty much impossible to find them.

  • Ankrhe

    I have this same problem! It bugs the hell out of me when I find a nice shirt that sags around my breasts but is tight on my stomach.

  • Somethingspooky

    Here’s a link for you :-) http://www.evans.co.uk/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/TopCategoriesDisplay?storeId=12553&catalogId=33054 Hopefully it’ll be of some help. I am a 48B and these are the only people I know that have feminine bras in my size…grrrr…. *hugs*

  • Louloumakes

    i *deep breath*… STOPPED WEARING THEM! i cannot believe how much better i feel: my F cups on my short, dodgy-backed frame writhed and sloshed around in every bra i’ve ever bought (and had professionally fitted). they don’t fit me, and i suspect that they’re not supposed to (rather like stilettos, it’s not so much about my health or happiness as it is about the world around me’s sigh of relief as it ticks the “yep, this one’s female” box)

    my back hurts less; i don’t get bitten into by straps in delicate places; i feel much sexier; and have stopped wasting HUNDREDS of $$ every couple of months in search of a flimsy bit of fabric that could possibly contain or control my cream pies.

    seriously. try it for just one day.

  • Pingback: Evans and the IBTC – Axis of Fat

  • Aniyah

    what do you mean 46dd/24dd??? yur both??

  • Anonymous

    American size/Australian size

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WFISSFWFARUXXKYDX32V6IIOOA Alyssa Vance

    God I hate shopping for bras too. Ive always been very busty and american sizes never went past dd when I was in high school, at least in my town. I refused to buy them online since even if the bra is your size it doesn’t necessarily look right. The ones that were dd back then were minimizers, matronly or victoria secret bras that would make me spill out. Im now a ddd and have found a few stores (mainly lane bryant and torrid) carry my sizes in store but its only been recently maybe last three years or so. I always hated shopping for them because none of them every offered support. I don’t want my breasts down to my knees! I like them up high because it shows off my waist and makes me look thinner. When I was inbetween dd and ddd I had a family friend in england ship me bras because at the time I couldn’t find any that fit. What I always hated the most though were the horrible sales people. Even if their bras didn’t fit they would try to persuade me they did. I argued with one woman because she kept telling me that the cup too small bra I had on fit. No hun, if their spilling out every time I breath it don’t fit. Or they would direct me to the minimizers. There are women out there who paid thousands of dollars for breasts as big as mine and you want me to make them smaller? Eh no.

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