Let’s just get this out of the way; bras are a necessary evil. I have yet to meet a woman who enjoys trapping her breasts in these cloth cages that we are expected to submit to. With so much on the line, one would expect that women, as a whole, would be more careful while choosing the right support system. The trick to making them work for you is knowing exactly what your body needs and making sure stop at nothing to get it. Unfortunately, that is not the case; a lot of women are guilty of making some basic mistakes while making their selection of bras. If you recognize any on this list that we’ve compiled, make sure to fix that right away! Your breasts will definitely thank you for it later.
12 Bra mistakes every girl makes. You’re probably guilty of committing the same. Let’s find out.
1. Not knowing your size
Start off with the basics. For those of you who think that this statement is a little ridiculous, you’d be surprised at how many women are guilty of this. Your breasts grow and change as the rest of your body does, through the course of your life. If a particular size has worked for you (or you seem to think that it has) it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t check to make sure that you’re buying the right size every couple of years. Furthermore, it’s also advisable to change styles according to what’s best for your shape and structure. Talk to the attendants in the store, ask for help if you’re not sure, but please! Make sure your girls are well-supported and taken good care of.
2. Wearing a smaller size
This is another doozy. Why would you willingly suffocate your breasts?! More often than not, women hold onto a bra even after it has served its purpose and those tucked away in the bottoms of drawers pop up more frequently than they should. Update your closet every once in awhile and get rid of the smaller ones. Another reason is that women don’t understand the system of measurement all too well, and there is a danger of miscalculating the cup size and the band size (a confusing and stressful endeavour no doubt) but spend some time getting to understand it, so that your breasts are where they need to be.
3. Wearing bras that don’t fit!
Refer to the above statement: a confusing and stressful endeavour. Ladies, just because something takes a while, doesn’t mean it’s not worth it. I’m guilty of this on multiple occasions when I simply don’t have the patience to find the right bra. As days go by however, you realise that a little more time spent in the store is a worthy investment. If you find a bra that kinda-maybe-sorta fits, keep looking. You’ll eventually find the one that fits exactly the way it’s supposed to.
4. Fancy lingerie is not always the best lingerie
International lingerie brands have slowly started trickling into the Indian market and the colourful lace is enough to make everyone go crazy. That being said, remember that these brands are likely to not have not incorporated the Indian woman’s fit into their selection and just cause they look pretty or because everyone is buying them isn’t a reason for you to do the same. Instead find a brand that suits your size and shape, and stay loyal!
5. Choosing the wrong fabric
They might be gorgeous and exciting, but undergarments made of synthetic material like nylon, lace or satin isn’t the best option for everyday wear. Of course you should make sure to include a couple of these pieces in your cupboard for those special occasions (where you don’t have to wear them for a prolonged period of time) but they are not ideal for regular use. For days when you’re at work, in college or when you have to keep a bra on for an extended period, opt for fabrics that allow your skin to breathe and that are lightweight. With the summer kicking in, cotton is definitely your best friend. Gone are the days when cotton equates to boring; you now have a range of colours and styles that you can choose from!
6. Choosing push-up bras over seamed bras
As girls, most of us, at some point, crave for a lingerie drawer filled with the likes of the beautiful bras from Victoria’s Secret and if given a choice, will still pick those over the seamed bras- the floppy cups that mold themselves to the shape of your breasts. Bad idea; this is advisable only if your breasts are firm and sit up straight even without the help of support. Most women have softer breasts that are not naturally perky and will sit at the bottom of the cup, leaving a gap on top. Trying to fit your breasts into a pre-defined shape is what eventually leads to spillage or a uni-boob, so you’re probably better off with seamed bras as they’re a better support system.
7. One bra for all occasions
You really can’t get away with this after a point. There is a thin line between being vulgar and being sexy and most of the people totally mess it up. Different outfits require a different kind of support to look a certain way, and not just that, experimenting with different styles will lead to increased levels of comfort. it is equally important to match the cup to the depth of the neckline of your outfit. If you are opting for a dress with a plunging neckline, better go for half-cup bras so that they do not show when you bend a little to pick up if you drop your wallet. Your dress has a deep back? Either go for a backless bra or one with a transparent back. If you’ve been putting this off, it’s time to go shopping!
8. Wearing a bra on consecutive days:
I’ve been there. I can’t be bothered to hunt down another bra when I have the one I wore the day before sitting right in front of me. However, this is not a good idea as the elasticity of the bra will be compromised with continuous usage and your bra can definitely do with a day of rest.
9. Know your shape:
Bras come in various shapes- round, triangular and conical- so it is important to know what shape yours is, in order to make your bra work for you. While one style might be more appealing, try on a few before deciding which one to buy. They should hug your breasts comfortably and not leave space in the cups. In addition, if the skin between your bra and armpit gets bunched up, know that this is not the size for you either. While choosing underwire bras especially, you have to be extra careful to get the ones that do not suffocate your breasts and that the ends of the underwire do not poke you (especially when you’re least expecting it.)
10. Fastening your bra on the tightest hook
When you try out a bra in the fitting room, it should fit snugly as per the outermost set of hooks, not the innermost. Typically, a bra stretches three inches during its lifetime and the only time you go to the next set of hooks is when you feel it getting a little loose.
11. Holding onto your bra for too long
This one is for all the women who have those trusted, 3-year old bras tucked away in the back of their drawer; stop doing that! When taken care of properly, the shelf-life of a bra is typically 8 to 9 months. Post this, the elastic of the band is going to get compromised and in all probability is not going to give you the support that you need. Rotating your bras ensure that they stay with you longer.
12. The dreaded washing machine
This is a big NO. Just no. The material and the shape of your bras are not made to withstand the turbulence of the washing machine and you’re sending them to an early death if you continue engaging in this practice. It might be slightly more cumbersome, but wouldn’t you rather your bras stay with you for as long as possible? Furthermore, invest in a mild detergent so that the material of your bra doesn’t get compromised.
Most women I know, myself included, are guilty of some of these crimes. But knowledge is power! If you identify with any of these problems, and you want to make sure you’re taking better care of your bras- and by extension, your breasts- you know what to do differently!