About RTÉ Television
The Afternoon Show
The Afternoon ShowRTÉ One, Weekdays, 4.00pm

Why Irish Women wear the wrong bra!

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Fact:- 80% of Irish women are wearing the wrong size bra. Many women are measured as teenagers, when first fitted for a bra and continue buying this size for years, regardless of the fact that their body size and shape has more than likely changed. Many women even revert to their old bras after pregnancy etc, even though their figures may have changed completely.

Bairbre Power- Bra-tastic!
Bairbre is editor of the Weekend Magazine with The Irish Independent. A dedicated follower of fashion, Bairbre has been a member of The Afternoon Show family since Season 1, giving style advice to the nation for many years!

The Consumer Watchdog 'Which?' conducted a survey of 'Professional Bra Fitters' in 2004 and found the following fitting failures:
. Wrong style or poor fit 77%
. Underwire wrong shape 66%
. Cup too small 53%
. Wrong back size 46%
. Cups too baggy 18%
Considering the health implications associated with wearing the wrong size bra including back, shoulder and neck pain, chaffing and soreness under the arms and breasts not to mention the effects on your posture, it is vital that you find your correct size.

*In most cases, women are wearing a band size too band and a cup size too small.
*How you put your bra on and wear it is crucial - you need to fall down into the cups
*Wearing an underwire bra incorrectly can damage your breast tissue -with health consequences-see article in additional info section.

Problem 1...."four boobs" (cup size wrong)
This is a common problem which some women do not realise they actually have - The cause of this problem is when a lady wears a bra that is much too small in the cup and therefore causes her boobs to spill!

Problem 2...."back boobs" (wrongly fitted band)
This is another common problem - this is caused by the back of the bra being too tight - A bra should be firm but comfortable around the back - but when a bra is too small for a lady this causes back boobs

Problem 3 ...."East & West Boob spread"
This problem usually occurs when you use a seamless style bra as there is no seam they tend not to give much support.

Problem 4.. "flat chest" (wearing a bra that doesn't maximise assets)

Problem 5...."Baby's bottom boobs" (bra that squeezes cleavage together instead of lifting & separating)

Problem 6.... "flattened boobs"

Advice and help for bra problems
Problem: Bra rides up on your back over your shoulder blades.
Solution: Adjust hook and eye closure to tighten or loosen straps or try a smaller band size. (36 to 34)

Problem: The band digs in.
Solution: Order one band size larger (e.g. 34 to 36), or opt for a bra with a wider band.

Problem: Sides bulge.
Solution: Buy one band size larger (e.g. 34 to 36), or choose a style with more cup coverage.

Problem: Breasts overflow the cups.
Solution: Get one cup size larger (e.g. C to D), or one band size larger (e.g. 34 to 36).

Problem: Sore shoulders.
Solution: Loosen straps or get a bra with wider or padded straps.

Problem: Bustline sagging
Solution: Shorten straps or choose a firmer support style with rigid straps. Avoid stretchy, elasticated type bra fabrics if you have this problem.

Problem: Underwire nips you or digs in too much.
Solution: Go up one cup size (e.g. C to D), or try a non-underwire soft cup style.

Problem: Straps slip.
Solution: Tighten the bra straps or get a bra with wider straps.

Problem: Bra makes you sweat and is too hot.
Solution: Choose cotton or cotton blends.

According to (developed by the Citizen's Information Board):-
"It is always advisable for your comfort and breast health to be measured and fitted by a trained bra fitter. Look in your local phone directory for your nearest specialist shop, or ask the lingerie department of your nearest department store.
Measure chest under bust for bra size.
Measure fullest part of bust for cup size.
If the cup size is:
. same as bra size you require an AA cup
. up to 1 inch larger you require an A cup
. up to 2 inches larger you require a B cup
. up to 3 inches larger you require a C cup
. up to 4 inches larger you require a D cup
. up to 5 inches larger you require a DD cup
. up to 6 inches larger you require an E cup.
For instance, if your underarm measurement is 38 inches and the fullest part of the bust 42 inches, you need size 38D. This enables you to know what size to look for when shopping, but not the style.
Only you can find out which is the most comfortable for you."

Bras from today's show were sourced from

Earlsfort Lodge
Earlsfort Terrace
Dublin 2
Phone: 01-6615186
Fax: 01-6615185

Problem 1 -"Four Boobs!"

'RETRO' by FREYA, €45, department stores nationwide

Problem 2 -"Back Boobs!"

'TANGO 2' by PANACHE, €37,

Problem 3 -"East & West Spread"

'RIMINI' by FANTASIE, €46, department stores nationwide

Problem 4 -"Flat Chested"

'Chantelle', €58, department stores nationwide

Problem 5 -"Over Exposed!"

'INFERNO' by PANACHE , €40, LA Lingerie

Problem 6 -"Sagging Boobs"


Bairbre Power