The Truth About Bras


When I sit down with a female client at the start of a Personal Styling Session, I will always ask when they were last professionally fitted for a bra. More often than not, the answer is never, and most of the others haven't been properly fitted in years… We often underestimate the importance of a well-fitted bra and how dramatically it can change not only our visual shape and proportions, but also our posture and how we feel.

Many of my clients will complain about the discomfort their bra may cause them, or I, or they will note how their bra is actually doing very little to support them, so they might as well not be wearing it! Others go for the crop top styles like ah bras etc, as they are more 'comfortable, however they do very little to support or shape the breast which in turn affects the look and fit of their clothes.

One particular client had not worn an underwire bra for over two years because she had been informed by what should have been a reliable source, that underwire bras cause breast cancer. I myself am not qualified to pass judgement on this, however, to date, scientific studies have shown no link between breast cancer and underwire bras. I can though categorically state that an ill fitting bra can cause discomfort, pain and swelling when the wire digs into the breast tissue. This is more common than some would think as the majority of women wear a cup size which is too small for them, as they are not always well versed in how a bra should fit.

In this lady's situation, having previously battled another type of cancer, she wanted to do everything possible to avoid further cancers, so she instead wore wireless, old, ill fitting bras, which were actually doing her body damage.

As a women over 60 with a large bust, her ill fitting and old bra was pulling down on her shoulders, as the back was over-stretched and riding up, giving her no support through the torso, causing pain in her shoulders and back. This affected her posture, as the weight of her bust and the pull on her shoulders was causing her to slump forward, which had the potential to lead to further back issues down the track.

Needless to say, I immediately fitted her into the correct underwire bra for her shape. Not only did it fit properly, but her bust looked better as she was lifted and brought in on the sides, which defined her waist and created a leaner silhouette through her sides. Her back pain gradually subsided and her posture improved dramatically as the pressure was taken off her shoulders by the correctly fitted and supportive back, which actually pulled her body up into a better position.

When she observed herself in the mirror, with her top over the new bra, she was pleasantly surprised by the visual weight loss she saw. She couldn’t believe how much smaller and more balanced her bust looked and the fact that she actually had a waist! She had thought it was long gone…

She was also surprised by how comfortable she was and how much better it felt than the one she had been previously wearing. She did comment that the firmness around the back was something she would need to get used to, but didn’t find it uncomfortable, just different.

Of course, no two people are the same, however I am yet to find a client that hasn’t benefited long term from getting properly fitted in a bra, whether it be an underwire style or not.

I share this story with you in the hope that you can take away from this the importance of a properly fitted bra, not just for the way you look, but for the way you feel.

Generally, I will take personal styling clients to Bras n Things. I recommend this brand as they offer a free fitting service with qualified fitters in store, and have a wide range of styles and sizes that will suit most ladies and their requirements, including maternity bras. Their prices are very reasonable and have stores located all around Australia and will ship from the store to your door if they don't have the size you need in stock. Most importantly they offer a fitting guarantee. This means if you decide your bra is uncomfortable or the wrong fit for you, they will refund it.

My top tips for getting the right bra are;

  1. Always get professionally fitted by a trained bra fitter.
  2. Always put your top back on to see if it looks right.
  3. Think about what you want the bra to do for you and your shape.

It doesn’t matter how old you are or what size you are, the right bra can completely change your proportions and shape, giving you a more balanced figure and as many of my clients say ‘change you life!’