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breast shapes

By now you likely (hopefully) know how important your bra size is. How else are you going to ensure you buy a flawlessly fitting bra? But did you know that it’s also super crucial to know your breast shape?

Before we get into why, let’s quickly review the breast shapes that exist. While no two sets of boobs are the same, and thus shape is pretty nuanced, there are a plethora of common shapes that you likely fall under. Those include round, teardrop, close-set, wide set, asymmetric, athletic, slender, and outward facing. Each of these shapes has unique qualities in terms of where the breasts are full or shallow (where they have the most tissue), which direction the nipples face, etc. Reading our guide to breast shapes should help you to figure out which you are. And keep in mind that it’s certainly possible to be two shapes (such as round and asymmetrical, or athletic and wide set).

Once you know your breast shape, shopping for bras will never be the same. In this guide, we’ll discuss all the reasons why this knowledge is entirely invaluable.

Knowing your breast shape can help you solve certain fit issues.

If you struggle with the same fit issues over and over with bras — despite wearing the correct size — it may be because you’re wearing the wrong style for your breast shape. Of course, certain problems — like slipping straps or a band that rides up, may be indicators that you’re wearing the wrong size.

However, if the center gore tends to dig into your cleavage, that might mean that you have close-set breasts, and need to consider a different style to accommodate your shape (such as a plunge bra). Or, if you frequently deal with gaping cups and you know for sure you’re wearing the right size, that may simply mean that you have shallow or tear-drop shape breasts. These breast shapes are shallower on top, meaning they may not fill out the tops of the cups on certain bra styles. Demi-cup bras and balconette bras can help to resolve this fit issue because they have less coverage.

Knowing your breast shape can help you find bras that work best for you.

Just as being aware of your shape allows you to avoid the fit problems that come with certain styles, it can also help you to make smarter shopping choices and buy the right styles. Different breast shapes lend themselves to different types of bras — for example, molded bras and padded bras are ideal for asymmetric breasts, as they can help to visually even out the uneven size and give the bust a uniform look. A push-up bra, meanwhile, works nicely for outward facing and slender breasts, as it offers plenty of lift and gathers the breast tissue inward and upward.

Related: How To Choose A Bra

Knowing your breast shape can help you identify any abnormalities.

Another crucial reason why you’ll want to know your shape is that it will make it a lot easier to notice when something is “off.” Once you familiarize yourself with how your breasts look and feel, you’ll be far better prepared to identify sudden changes in shape. To be clear: A woman’s breasts can change in size or shape over the course of her life for a variety of reasons. Still, it’s worth taking note of any shifts in your breast shape and bringing them up to your doctor just to be safe.

The National Breast Cancer Foundation recommends all women perform breast self-exams at least once a month. But in addition to feeling them out, you should also be looking at them in a mirror. Certain changes, like if one seems to be getting larger than the other, are worth getting checked out by your doctor. That said, factors like weight fluctuations, menopause, and pregnancy can also impact your breast shape, so don’t stress too much if you observe any subtle shifts.

Final considerations

Clearly, being aware of your breast shape is pretty important. Not only does it help you to avoid certain bra fit issues, but it also helps to guide you toward the kinds of bra styles that will make you look and feel most fabulous. Not to mention, knowing your breast shape means being more aware of any changes that may or may not be cause for concern.

Related: 4 Ways To Make Bra Shopping More Fun

We Highly Recommend

Whether you’re shopping for new everyday bras or lingerie for your wedding day, it’s always a good idea to seek out a second opinion. We know how hard it is to find bras that fit well and feel good, especially when you’re doing it on your own. If you’ve ever felt unsure about your bra size or you just don’t know where to go to find good bras, it’s time to let a bra fitter help.

Many specialty lingerie boutiques offer bra fittings. Their expert bra fitters will take the pain and frustration out of bra shopping and do all the work for you. Even better, their product knowledge can save you time and money. Plus, they know where all of the best bras are hiding.

If you’ve struggled with finding bras in the right size, it’s time to make a change. Visit our specialty store locator to find a store near you and schedule an appointment.

Happy bra shopping!

Featured image lingerie:
Amour Cross Plunge Padded Bra A1471 | Amour Bikini A1473 in Black
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Published by

Rebecca Strong

Rebecca is a Boston-based freelance writer who focuses on style, fitness, food, and travel. She has contributed to such publications as HuffPost, Elite Daily and U.S. News & World Report. When she's not writing, she can be found at home or in the studio working on the songs for her upcoming album. Her favorite bra is a black demi-cup style with all-over-lace — timeless and feminine.

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