I've worked as a professional bra fitter for 7 years. I've seen about all there is to see concerning breasts. I've fit for women who have had breast augmentations, reductions and mastectomies. I have even fit men for bras. AmA

Edit: I hope my advice has helped the ones that need it. Bottom line is, take the time to find the right size! Find a foundations boutique in your area, if you can. DO NOT put your bra's in the washing machine. Handwash them with Ivory bar soap.

Edit 2: "fitted".... I know it isn't a word. Tequila + typing = cringe

Comments: 2622 • Responses: 37  • Date: 

enjoythenow1058 karma

I'm a male and only in here because it concerns breasts. After reading about 20 questions I realized that I don't belong here but am highly entertained.

I just want to see breasts now.

phampon796 karma

mstwizted771 karma

No question, just wanted to give you props. I wore the wrong size bra for 7 years after my son was born. The stupids girls at Victorias Secret and Gap Body all swore I was either a 38 or 40 C. Finally got fitted by this awesome old lady at Macy's... Turns out I am a 36DD. It was fucking MAGIC when I put that bra on.

phampon645 karma

It makes a HUGE difference when you have a bra that fits properly. Sadly, most chain stores don't actually train their employees to fit bras. They give them a chart and tell them to measure. That just isn't enough. Thank you for giving me props. I hope I can help several people.

SunriseThunderboy629 karma

A gal I knew had the same job. She told me "Thunderboy, I've seen so many boobs. Not the boobs anybody should ever see."

phampon903 karma

I can sympathize. I have seen breasts so large, deodorant is needed underneath them to keep from chafing.

ragged-claws274 karma

Hey now, I wear underboob deodorant to prevent sweat/heat rash and I'm a C-cup.

phampon606 karma

If you are only a C and need deodorant, please take no offense, but you need a new bra. If it a sports bra you need, I suggest Lunaire brand sports bras. They breathe, to help prevent chafing or heat rash, and wick away moisture.

thegreatgazoo428 karma

Does a 56KK come with an external crane? Balloons?

Why would a 28AA need a bra?

phampon617 karma

Sadly, a size that large only comes with back pain, indentations in shoulders and diabetes.

uguysmakemesick169 karma

I read somewhere that studies have shown that bras don't really do anything in the long-term to delay sagging. If this is true, then what benefits are there from wearing a bra? Is it just to cover up the nipple? Also, why do women wear thongs if it doesn't cover up much 'down there' anyhow? I figure panties serve a purpose, mainly to gather up all the miscellaneous vaginal secretions, but thongs wouldn't do that. Thanks!

phampon788 karma

From personal experience, gravity has a lot to do with sagging breasts. Bras help to fight the pulling of gravity, which loosens the skins elasticity. Thongs cover up the vaginal area. It is G-strings that serve no other purpose than to increase blood flow to male genitalia.

jandowland281 karma


phampon357 karma

I have had MANY women with this same issue. ALL women have one larger than the other, but with some of us the difference is drastic. I suggest trying a partial breast prosthesis or a push up pad. Buy bras to fit your larger breast and place either the pad or prosthesis underneath your smaller breast to compensate. The size of the pad or prosthesis you need depends on how much smaller that one breast is.

jandowland105 karma


phampon152 karma

Try a 32 DDD or E. Go up to a 32 F if the cup is still not deep enough.

jandowland70 karma


phampon72 karma

It's been my pleasure. I hope my suggestions help!

Mackinstyle234 karma

My girlfriend is a ~36D. Because she's in a wheelchair, she leans forward to reach for things a lot more than a typical person. They're always slipping out the top and I'm trying to convince her that maybe she's not got the right size figured out and should get a professional fit.

What advice might you have?

phampon288 karma

She needs a full coverage bra. Something that will cover her entire breast and fit flush in between her breasts. If breast tissue 'spills' out of the cup while sitting up, she needs a deeper cup. Try a DD. I know it sounds large, but it isn't as big as it seems.

Relevant_Happiness206 karma

What do you believe to be the ideal number and types of bras that a woman should own at one time?

phampon452 karma

I think the ideal number of bras a woman should own at once is 5 'everyday' bras and 3 or 4 'fun' bras. An everyday bra is usually one with a molded cup to give shape and support as well as a smooth look under t-shirts or clingy tops. A fun bra is the lacier, less practical bra that could be paired with matching panties or a garter belt and stockings.

TheDude220171 karma

Favorite size. Go.

phampon285 karma

My personal favorite has to be a 36 C. They are a decent size without worry of too much sagging over time.

Most people have surgery to get a standard size D, either with augmentation or reduction.

FreshBakedTroll198 karma

My wife's a 36C. She will be happy to hear that. Actually I'm happy to hear that!

phampon138 karma

Great! Tell her not to worry about growing older. She'll be just fine...

CoItaine155 karma

Are men who come in for bras nervous or really awkward about it? Why would they come in for it anyway?

EDIT: Most bizarre experience in the industry?

phampon239 karma

Some men do have large-ish 'man-boobs'. Most of the men I've fit are in an A or B cup. They are usually pretty nervous. Some men have their wives to come in with them. I guess it helps them to feel less awkward or dirty. I have run in to my fair share of creeps. Typically the creeps will just call and fap while I answer their questions.

phampon218 karma

A gentleman (creep) comes into the shop one day asking for a shelf bra. I ask him what size his wife or girlfriend typically wears. He then pulls up his shirt, revealing his oh so nasty nipples, which had been split. I asked the manager to help with that one and took a smoke break.

spamlovingsuckmonkey109 karma

WTF are split nipples?

phampon221 karma

It looked as though he had his nipples pierced at one point, and then tore them out.

abeau70 karma

As someone who has sold swimsuits/managed a swimwear store for the last 5 years, I can attest to this. The phone calls are the worst

phampon135 karma

I have had so many creepy calls, I can tell almost as soon as I answer the phone if this call will be one of them. It usually starts out with, "This may be an odd question, but...."

homicidalkitteh129 karma

I noticed I tend to have extra space at the top of some cups but going down a cup size is too small (apparently my roomie has this problem too). What cup-style is best-suited for what I like to call "bottom-heavy" boobs?

phampon157 karma

I suggest a balconette bra. They give great support without too much fabric on the top, so no extra space. If that doesn't work for you, try a plunge.

MastaWack127 karma

Best person you've ever served.

phampon433 karma

A local News Anchor. I still brag that I got to see her boobs.

[deleted]116 karma


phampon167 karma

38 C

ChairmanWao89 karma

How long do bras last? How often should they be replaced?

phampon135 karma

It depends on how you care for them as well as how often you wear them. If you only have 2 bras, expect them to wear out within about 5 months. Don't put your bras in the washing machine! Even if you have a handwash cycle. I recommend handwashing them with Ivory bar soap. It removes the dirt and body oils without eating up the elastic. I recommend replacing a single bra, if worn in moderation, once a year.

Kristyyyyyyy78 karma

What would you say is the most common mistake made by women who don't have a professional fitting done? I read somewhere that 80% of women are wearing the wrong size bra... what is it that we're doing so wrong?

phampon157 karma

Most women wear a larger size around (36, 38 & so on) to compensate for the cup. Almost all of your support comes from your bra being snug around you. Find a bra that fits well around, then go up or down in your cup size until you find one that fits well. A 'D' cup is not at all as big as people think. For example, a 34 DD cup is an equivalent CUP SIZE as a 36 D as well as a 38 C, a 40 B... See what I did there?

mapellen75 karma

I've always had a slight problem with bras (just a little too small, cup doesn't hold properly, etc), but I'm way too shy to go to a boutique and get sized. What's the best piece of advice you can give if I want to do it myself?

phampon84 karma

First of all, you have to find the right size around. Most women get a larger size around than they need to try and fit the cup. Your bra needs to be snug around. That is where almost all of your support is. Once you find your width, start going up or down CUP sizes.

phampon72 karma

Also, depending on the size of your breasts, you may need a full cup. Full cups hold the breasts better. Not all women can wear demi cut or plunge bras.

mapellen25 karma

Thank you for answering! Hopefully I can find some good fitting bras now.

phampon29 karma

Good luck!

greaterwing70 karma

Alright I'm a 32F who lived in several kinds of worlds of denial about how big my boobs were, for 2 years I insisted that I was a 32D before finally getting properly fitted 6 months ago. Can you recommend any brands with 'cute' bras for boobs that big? Or any bra that can make them looks smaller? I've mastered dressing in a way so that people don't realize that (to me, it's a bit of a self conscious thing I suppose) my boobs are as big as they are.

Thanks :3

phampon66 karma

I recommend Freya brand for sexier bra's. Le Mystere and Goddess brands have some really awesome minimizers. You may have to order online. Most stores don't carry the size you'll need.

doomcake15 karma

:( are there any bras in this size that don't cost more than half my weekly paycheck?

phampon11 karma

Sadly, there aren't many. Look for styles that have been discontinued. Usually they'll be discounted.

Purpleprinter70 karma

How on earth can I find a professional bra fitter? Is there a web site, a directory, or key words I can Google? The closest thing I've ever been able to find was for mastectomy fashions.

phampon29 karma

I don't know of any directories. Try a google search for a foundations boutique in your area.

Geoffbot69 karma

How hard is it fitting a woman who has had a breast removed I really hope that isn't in terrible taste.

phampon97 karma

Not at all. It's a legitimate question. Women who have had mastectomies and have NOT had an implant need a breast prosthesis. It can be fairly difficult to fit a breast prosthesis depending on how much tissue and muscle had to be removed. Fitting the mastectomy bra is the easy part. Women who have had reconstructive surgery are fairly easy, but since the implant won't have the natural weight or 'drop' to it, you need to make sure you bring the natural breast up to meet it.

alexisplexis59 karma

Serious question- my sister is a... large lady. She is about a 52-54 but is only and A or maybe a B cup. it is almost impossible to find a bra that fits her even with the use of extenders (because then they don't fit on the shoulders the way they should) I know there is the option of a custom order bra, but they are pricey and that is out of the picture. Do you know of any places or brands that might have her size?

phampon73 karma

I recommend Goddess brand bras. You can find them online and in some foundations boutiques. They usually run about $35-$50 and are available up to a size 56. Here is a link to a trusted site with a style that I recommend. I hope I helped! http://www.biggerbras.com/goddess-full-figure-plus-size-bras/goddess-keira-soft-cup-bra-6093.shtml

rainboupanda40 karma

Exactly what kind of business do you work at? I could use a fitting but I have no idea where to go. And what is the typical price range?

phampon64 karma

I work at a Lingerie and Foundations boutique. A locally owned boutique is usually your best choice. They are more willing to take the time with you to find what fits your breast and body shape best. The price range can be anywhere between $30 all the way up to $100. Typically the pricier bras are the prettier, lacier bras that aren't good for everyday wear. Try Le Mystere molded cup bras. They are awesome for under t-shirts or tight fitting tops.

speakstupor34 karma

I am too nervous to go get fitted, so I've been trying to figure out my correct size on my own. I simply assumed I was a 32a because I am a very tiny girl with small boobs and 32a is the typical smallest size. I finally realized this is wrong.

I tried 32b because I was told I wasn't as small as I thought. 32b's were hit or miss but as usual, the band was way too big. I figured out that bands go smaller than 32! I ordered a 30a and a 30b online and I like them both but I wear them on the tightest hooks and the bands are still too loose.

So I ordered a 28c. The band felt like it fit really well and snug but the cups were... weird. They gave me like armpit fat kind of out the sides and if it is possible for tits to have muffin tops, that's what that bra gave me. I liked it for the cleavage though lol but shirtless, I looked pretty ridiculous. Then after a few minutes I felt very restricted and uncomfortable and tight and ripped the thing off of me.

Sorry that was so long but, I was wondering what the next logical step it? 28d (does that exist?) or just go back to 30b and deal with it? I'm asking for advice because the bras simply do not exist in stores for me to go try them on and online they are like fifty bucks and figuring this out on my own is expensive.

phampon51 karma

Given the details, I would try a 28 D. If you are wanting cleavage, I would suggest a push up bra. Also, when ordering, try to find a bra with a thicker band. That will help with the little mushies coming out. Unfortunately, without seeing you I can't fit you properly.

lindowasfuck29 karma

When I wear low cut shirts, I lack cleavage. Are there pushup bras with padding on the side, so they push the breast together? I'm a 32C by the way.

phampon17 karma

There are many really great push up bras. You can also buy push up pad inserts and place them underneath your breasts to give you a little more cleavage.

malaia22 karma

I am a 34H, and I have a problem with them bouncing when I run. I have a full coverage bra, so I don't fall out, but they hurt when they bounce. On the other-hand, if I wear a sports bra over my regular bra, they are too compressed and feel like I can't breath. And I cant find a sports bra to wear without a regular bra because I dont get enough support. What would you suggest so I can stop taking breaks in my workout because of my boobs.

phampon42 karma

I suggest Lunaire Maximum Control COOLMAX Underwire Sports Bra. I have fit MANY sports bras over the years and this is the absolute BEST one I've found. No more double-braing. Fair warning, they run small around. So you may want to go with a 36 G.

[deleted]22 karma


phampon16 karma

To start, measure underneath your bust. Add about 2 inches and you should have your number. If you need to, go up or down. Find something comfortable. Because each style/brand bra runs differently, you won't always wear the same size in every bra you see. You always need to try them on! Look at the cup and compare it to your bust. Then, try it on. Go up or down a cup size as needed. With a balconette bra, you want the center to fit flush against your chest in between your breasts. Keep in mind though, balconettes don't work for everyone. Try a demi or a plunge. You may like it.

woahhhface11 karma

Not that I want to take your job or anything, but can you explain a bit how to size breasts? I've read a couple articles in women's magazines and online explaining how you can size yourself, but it seems too simple. Is it really as easy as a measurement around your ribcage and then around the fullest part, or is it more complicated than that?

phampon23 karma

It's a bit more complicated than that considering each style and brand's sizes run differently. You may wear a 36 C in a plunge bra, but a 38 B in a full cup bra. Measuring is a good place to start. If your ribcage measurement is 34 inches, start with a size 36 around. If that is too tight, go to a 38 and so on. With the cup size, I typically eye ball it. You know your breasts, so you should be able to look at the cup of a bra and determine, for the most part, if it is too deep or shallow. Bra shopping can be a time consuming and tedious process. You won't find the winner with the first bra you try on.

heartgoesbang11 karma

I have a problem with breaking my bras. I'm a 40-42 DD (depending) and I've noticed that whenever I buy a bra, the thing gets destroyed. the straps break, or the piece between the two cups gets stretched out. I've tried to use more reinforcing bras, but they don't fit my body right because i have broad shoulders and the straps don't adjust. I do tend to buy my bras at Target, but even my victoria's secret bra got pulverised by my girls. Anywhere you know that sells decently priced bras that might help a girl like me?

phampon20 karma

Try Lane Bryant. They have decent bras. Part of your problem may be how you wash them. DO NOT put your bras in the washing machine. Hand wash them with Ivory bar soap. It removes the dirt and body oils without eating at the elastics and fabric. Also, with you being a 40-42 DD, don't EVER buy a bra from Victoria's Secret again. Their bra's aren't made to hold breasts as heavy as yours.