EXPERIENCE | Getting fitted for a bra

When it comes to bras, I am really not fussed about the leading lingerie names. I’m sorry to say, but I don’t own anything by Victorias Secrets, nor Ann Summers or Boux Avene. If I wouldn’t spend £40 on a dress (at full price), why would I do the same on something that to be honest, only I will see?

My favourite bras are from Primark and I am a sucker for their matching sets, the only downfall however is that they do not offer a bra fitting service. I’m 22 now and off the pill, so my body changed again as it settled back down to natural hormones, my bras were getting a little snug and I needed to be re-fitted.

Since I was 13 my bra size was a guestimate based on “if it fits, I must be this size”, this went on for YEARS after puberty. I had a vast collection of bras ranging from B, C and D in various band sizes. I never understood what a poorly fitted bra looked like aside from the obvious, if it cuts in to you like a cheese wire then it must be too tight.

As far as bra fitting was concerned, I had had previous experience with online calculators, which weren’t great – the recommended bra sizes were either too big or too small. Enough was enough and I needed to be fitted by a professional. I went to three stores to get my size checked – John Lewis, Debenhams and M&S, to make sure they were relatively the same and I made sure to wear the same bra to each one for consistency.

Bare in mind that the bra fitting service is a flat service and it is the staff who make or break the experience, so while I may not have been impressed with one store that doesn’t mean to say that their service sucks, it is just their staff. This is the common ground in all the changing rooms:

  • All three fitters could measure me over the top of a thin top or with my top off but keep my existing bra on.
  • They all took a measurement under my existing bra and just looked at my cups before giving their verdict – I didn’t have to expose myself to them.
  • All of them offered a free service with no obligation to make a purchase.

Debenhams (Slough store visted) offer a free bra fitting service in-store and now depending where you live you can book your fitting, I just walked in to my local store to get measured. The staff member was friendly and helpful but she wasn’t very discreet – my friend was stood out on the shop floor and could hear the member of staff proclaiming my bra size from the changing room as she was about to walk out to get me some bras to try on. The size however was spot on and it would be harsh of me to say I wouldn’t recommend Debenhams because of one loud staff member so giving them the benefit of the doubt I would go back again if needed, being Debenhams they also had a lot of variety to choose from.

John Lewis (Reading store visted) also offer a free bra fitting service, the changing room was nice and private with staff who were discreet and respectful – maybe this is because it is more of a luxurious shopping experience being John Lewis? They had a lot of variety again, introducing brands such as Calvin Klein but unfortunately this is where the good experience ended. I was measured to a 32F – two cups off my true size! I went off to try some bras on, but they were big enough to make my handbag redundant – there was so much space in the cups. In the end what was meant to be a relaxing and womanly experience ended up in being a right laugh at the ridiculous sizing of my supposed bra.

M&S (Reading store visted) offer a free bra fitting service which you can book in advance, this was the best experience out of all the fittings. I can’t remember the name of the lady who measured me but she took the time to explain the signs of a poorly fitting bra, she instantly told me as soon as I removed my top that my current bra was not fitting in three different ways and that it was too small. She brought out several bras for me to try on, they were so trendy and just what I would wear (not bad considering I was wearing a plain white bra). She advised me of the same size as Debenhams which was/is a perfect fit and I would definitely go back if I felt that I needed to be remeasured.

I am so glad that I got measured so I can no longer guestimate and I will make sure to keep getting measured as age/babies/weight takes its toll on me!

Love and (high)light✌

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