Weirdly Shaped and Well Photographed

… a blog about clothing for curves, bras for giant boobs (and tiny backs!), and escaping the scourge of the dreaded BoobLoaf and ButtChest.

Victoria’s Secret: Crappy Fitting Techniques

| 69 Comments

Hi there, Gentle Readers!  Today I’d like to talk to you about something that here in the bra blogosphere is considered Serious Business: Victoria’s Secret.  For the record, I love their underwear and makeup.  Like seriously love it, wish I owned practically everything they make in those arenas love it.  The bras, however, are another matter.  So since we talk a lot in the bra fitting community about VS and why you shouldn’t get fitted there, recently several of us thought we should actually go in and get fitted and give some direct information about the process and what is problematic about it. I know they do not carry my size (they carry an incredibly small range of sizes), but that doesn’t mean they can’t use their fitting methods to determine what my size should be. To get a completely clean slate fitting (ie they don’t see the size of what I am wearing and go from there), I wore a Polish bra (Comexim) and then put on my best (read: not very good) vaguely Eastern European accent and went in, explaining that I did not know my US size but was looking for some bras, and that I was wearing a 65M (which is actually a band size bigger than I’d like, but worked for this purpose). She didn’t blink an eye at 65M, which surprised me, and then said, “okay, we’re going to take you into the back and we’ll measure you and find your size.” I agreed enthusiastically and went back. In the fitting area (but not in an actual fitting room) the fitter took a single measurement, over my clothes: from the middle of my back to the upper part of my bust. No underbust measurement, no measurement at the fullest point of my bust. Just one weird angled one. Like this:

This is from Boosaurus' great post about VS Fitting.  Make sure to check that out too!

This is from Boosaurus’ great post about VS Fitting. Make sure to check that out too!

She then announced that I was a 36D, or thereabouts, and that she’d get me one to start. Inwardly, I laughed and laughed and laughed, but outwardly I said “okay,” and took it in to try on. Here is the hilarious result:

VSCollage1 2

Note that the cup is just sitting on my boob in that top pic. AUGH.

As I have no shame whatsoever, I wandered out in the shop wearing the bra and gesticulating wildly in an attempt to find a fitting associate, and after a moment or two another woman came over to help. I mentioned (presumably unnecessarily) that the cups were much too small, and she agreed, re-measured me, looked a bit, and gave me a 34DD. I appreciated the smaller band, but was a little confused as to why the cup was just sister sized down. Result:

VS07 2

Alas, poor Boobrick! Yes, I know, the context makes no sense, but I really wanted to say “Boobrick.”

Seeing the ridiculousness above (and noting my horribly-accented objection: “the bowls, they are too small, yes?”), she brought me a stack of 34DDD’s in different styles. Here is a delightful collage of ill-fitting 34DDD bras for you.

NewVSCollage 2

Who knew they even made so many black bras? There are at least three different ones represented here; honestly, other than the lace-backed one, I had trouble keeping them straight.

At this point, the first fitter came back, and, seeing that the 34DDD’s weren’t working, brought me two 38DDD’s. These did not fit either, but I found that if I squished myself into one of them juuuuust right, my boobs looked awesome from like two angles. “This must be what it’s like to be a Victoria’s Secret Angel!” I thought, remembering many an image of them squished up in bras.  I’d put a picture of one here, but I’m not clear on how rights for those sorts of things work, and I don’t want to anger the Internet Powers That Be. Therefore, I’m linking to a picture of Alessandra Ambrosio, who I happen to think is stunningly gorgeous, but who of course wears much too small bras in VS ads because that’s what they put her in.  In addition to her beautiful face, body, etc., you might notice her very nice cleavage that is sadly accompanied by some armpit bulge because her breasts are being forced out by the smallness of the cups.

Linky linky!

So anyway, I kind of got into pretending I had smaller, more Victoria’s Secret-able boobs for a minute, and may or may not have pranced around the dressing room making pouty faces and taking silly pictures…

Okay, okay, so I definitely pranced around taking the silly pictures.  So sue me.  It’s not like I get to make my boobs look like this every day, you know.

Hence, here is a ridiculous and totally self-indulgent collage of me pretending to be a VS Angel:

VSCollage3-2

WHABAM, right?

But no, alas, as here is a picture in which I am not disguising the ill-fit of the bra:

VS23 2

BOOOOOOOO. Showing the fitter the problems, I mentioned that the back seemed loose and that it had ridden all the way up, and she did acknowledge that the band should be staying parallel, but instead of recommending a tighter band, she just loosened the straps a lot and pulled the band down  (STRAPGATE, ANYONE?). I didn’t take a picture of the result because my boobs would have mutinied. It was a sad state of affairs.  So to reiterate:

VS Fitting Timeline

  • Put on ridiculous Polish accent.
  • Explain that I am not sure of my American size, but am wearing 65M in a Polish bra.
  • Single measurement taken (around back and onto upper portion of bust).
  • Am told that the first size we should try is 36D.
  • LOL
  • Then given 34DD by another fitter.
  • Then 34DDD
  • Then original fitter comes back, gives me 38DDD. Boobs look super sexy from very specific angles. I narcissistically take a bunch of sexy pictures and pretend to be a VS model.
  • I point out that the back is very large and has ridden completely up but cups are too small. She loosens the straps a lot so that the band can sit parallel (which she does identify as a sign of proper fit). Boobs are no longer super sexy.
  • She agrees, does acknowledge that they don’t have larger cups and that the band is too large, and that the problem is that I am so tiny around. Says she can’t really recommend anywhere, but I can try Frederick’s. I ask her if women do not have large breasts like this in the US, and she says it’s very rare, but does return to back size as a problem.

So what’s the point of all this?  Well, there are a couple, really.  I’ma make a list here, because all the books and sites about How to Have a Successful Blog have told me that I should be making more lists in my posts, and since I haven’t been making any, I figure I’ll put two in here and make up for lost time.  Woot.

WHY THIS POST EXISTS AND I AM WILLING TO PUT HORRIBLE PICTURES OF MY BOOBS ON THE INTERNETS, A LIST:

  1. Whenever I look at well-written fitting posts, there are at least a few people in the comments who post dismissive, obnoxious, completely subjective rants about how OH MY GOD YOU ARE SO NOT A G CUP I AM A DD AND I AM WAY BIGGER THAN YOU AND YOU NEED TO GO TO VICTORIA’S SECRET WHERE THEY CAN FIT YOU PROPERLY.  The amount of these seems to go up with the cup size of the author.  As I have my own fitting guide posts in the works, this is a pre-emptive strike.  No, they can not fit me properly, and if you are are even moderately busty, they are probably not fitting you correctly either.  Give it up.
  2. Do not let anyone make you feel like bras in your size don’t exist and that you therefore have to buy something that doesn’t fit you out of necessity.  They might be hard to find (say, only made in Poland or something, NOT THAT I WOULD KNOW REST OF THE WORLD THAT DOESN’T MAKE BRAS FOR ME), but they are almost definitely there, and I am here to help you find them.
  3. I truly, sincerely want people to know that this is going on.  VS is considered by many women in the US to be the authority on all bra-related things, and that means that tons of ladies are wearing ill-fitting bras.  Not only can this impact confidence and cause migrated breast tissue and sagging, but in the case of BOUS, it can also result in very real physical problems, like chronic back pain.  Women are getting breast reductions because they think that pain is an inexorable part of having BOUS.  There is nothing wrong with getting breast reduction surgery, and I fully support any woman’s decision to do so, for whatever reason she has, but what I am not in support of is women feeling forced to have unnecessary surgery by pain that is avoidable.  Sizing women with large breasts wrongly has real, tangible, and in some cases extreme physical ramifications.  It is not inconsequential.
  4. The last bit, in the pink bra, illustrates a point (albeit a sort of caricature of that point) that I’m probably not going to make again for a while: sometimes wearing a too-small bra is super hot.  I wish my boobs looked like they do in that collage all the time.  Of course, they would need to not look the way they do from the side, but whatever.  The point is, there is nothing wrong with having a good time in a bra that’s too small, and I am not here to tell you you need to wear whatever given size.  The point has been made that proper fit is not the only consideration in the selection of bras and lingerie, and I would agree.  I do want people to know that for we well-endowed ladies, this should probably be left for short-term fun times and not everyday wear (see point number two), but if you can rock this without any pain… Do so extra for me, eh?  I want that kind of cleavage.  It bums me out that there is not a pink bra out there that would do that for me without all the problems.  Find your pink bra and love it, if you want.  I would suggest a single size down, though, and as close to your actual band size as possible.  I do this in Curvy Kate Showgirl bras and prance around my apartment more often than I should probably be admitting publicly.  So yes.  Buy a bra just to feel sexy!  For many women, Victoria’s Secret is a good place for this.  Just know what you’re getting into.

Okay, so that was kind of a long-winded list, but there you go.  We’ll talk about fitting more soon, eh?  In a series (honestly, it’s almost a manifesto at this point; the reason it isn’t posted is because NO ONE WANTS TO READ THAT MUCH ABOUT BRA FITTING) of posts coming up, I’ll be talking about how to look for a bra that fits you, and how it’s much more complicated than one (or even two or three) measurements can show.  I’ll be wrapping it up with a post specifically about the fitting issues those of us above a J-cup face (and yes, I do truly believe there are problems that simply don’t show up till this point; I call it the J-Cup Barrier), and along the way, hopefully we can all learn a thing or two.  I hope you’ll stick with me, because this is important stuff and you and your boobs deserve to be well-fitted.

But Miss Shapen, I have BOUS and I want to be sexy, too, and I don’t want to wear a bra that is many sizes away from what fits! 

Don’t worry, Gentle Readers.  There are (almost certainly) bras for you, and we can definitely be sexy with or without Victoria’s Secret.  Now, I don’t usually do this on the ol’ brog, as I prefer my lingerie pics to be a little less… Shall we say, mainstream?  But here are two that I’ve taken that show that you can be well-fit AND sexy (sorry for the blurred backrounds and such – I actually didn’t intend these for publication in the brog when taken).  Reviews of all items in question to come.  I love you all.  Rock your sexy selves.

Facetune 2

545215_769749967774_384998979_n-1

NB to Dudes Reading this Blog Not For the Articles.  I know you’re here, you know you’re here, and we both know you’re not here for bra fit advice.  That’s okay.  The intended audience of the blog is female, and it is intended for educational purposes.  To that end, I ask that you keep your enjoyment largely to yourselves, with one exception: I’d like to do more reviewing of bras and lingerie on the blog, as it’s hard to find in this size range and I’d like to help other ladies find things that work for them.  I also want to promote body positivity for women of all sizes and shapes, and specifically to show an example of a curvy woman in clothing traditionally modeled by women of a more specific “model-esque” bodytype.  You want me to do more lingerie reviews… Because you like the art that goes into lingerie, I’m sure.  Whatever the reason is, if you are digging the lingerie photos and want more, there are now two direct ways to facilitate that.  One is to drop a few dollars in my PayPal account, a link to which can be found in the sidebar.  All money received there will go to buying new things to review for the blog, unless a note is sent with it specifying otherwise (ie, “just go have a nice dinner and enjoy yourself!” not “send me a nudie pic” – all requests of that nature will be ignored and I will just buy myself a steak or a bra).  I also have a wishlist set up, so if you see something you’d like me to review, you can specifically have that sent to me, and I will give it the full brog treatment.  You can also leave a comment on a PayPal donation if you’d like the money to go towards a certain thing on the wishlist.

Lady readers: before writing the above off as creepy, please take a moment to reflect on my thinking here.  Bra pictures = wanking.  Hell, non-bra pictures = wanking.  Why should the blog not benefit from the presence of male admirers, as long as they don’t interfere with what we do here?  This blog has been and remains a resource for YOU.  That means I want as much content as possible, ideally of items that are current so you can go and buy them.  I simply can’t afford to buy a lot for the blog right now, and while I do have a queue of wonderful items lined up (some already photographed!), very little of it is in the lingerie department, and I really want to highlight some great options for BOUS bras and other undergarments.  I hope you understand and support why I’ve chosen to try this out.  Please feel free to comment or email me at MissShapen@weirdlyshaped.com with any concerns.  And of course you are welcome to drop a few dollars in the PayPal account, too, if you are so inclined, but I am happy to provide the best content I can for you for a long time to come nomatter what.  Not to be all sentimental or anything, but you mean a lot to me.

*****

For some more reading about Victoria’s Secret Fitting (and a few other issues), check out these posts from other bloggers:

Boosaurus, as linked above, and

continued here via Braless in Brasil

Braless in Brasil 1, Braless in Brasil 2

Bratabase

Bravolution

Invest in Your Chest

Fussy Busty

Sophisticated Pair

That Bra Does Not Fit Her

Thin and Curvy

Voluptuously Thin

And for a really interesting and important read on some problematic issues with Victoria’s Secret that don’t center on fitting, check out:

this post by The Lingerie Addict.

*****

Okay, Gentle Readers.  It’s time for me to sign off for now.

Until next time, may your boobs and spirits be lifted high.

*mwah*

 

  • Connie Wilson

    Thank you! I’ve had equally horrendous “fittings” at VS as you did. My mom and grandmas were were petite in the chest so coverage and support aren’t much of an issue. I didn’t know how a proper bra would fit. I’m so glad for full bust bloggers like you and the ones you’ve mentioned. Earlier this year I decided to finally take a leap of faith and order from Brastop. I’m so glad I did. Pretty, comfortable and supportive bras at a nice price, and without all that uncomfortable and hot thick padding that VS bras all feature. You might recall I once commented on your post on Facebook mentioning that I was unable to help a friend get into the right size, but she finally listened! She went to the gym one morning and upon getting ready to head to the office, she noticed that she didn’t pack a bra for work so she ended up buying one at a local store, and she had my voice in her head telling her to buy the right size. (Her correct size is commonly found in stores, 38D.) She later thanked me because it is the most comfortable bra she’s worn in a long time.

  • MissShapen

    I’m really happy to hear that my blog and others like it have been helpful to you. That’s why the brog exists, and it means so much to me to hear these things. I’m really glad you tried Brastop and found something that worked for you! Do you think it’s the perfect size, or just closer and you’re still on the journey? It took me a while to really get what I needed down when I was first doing proper sizing, but even something a lot closer made SO MUCH DIFFERENCE.

    Great to hear about your friend, too! We’re all in this together, saving boobs one pair at a time. Comfy, well-fitting bras for everyone!

    Thanks again for reading and commenting! And good luck with bra-purchases to come. :)

  • Connie Wilson

    I think I am much closer to finding the proper size now. When I bought the two bras from BraStop, I was being a little conservative and ordered them a cup size too small because I have a long history of shopping online and buying clothing much too big even though I ordered accordingly to size charts, and they were slightly too small in the cups but much better fitting then the previous bras. I’ve been working out and watching what I eat so I lost a little volume so the bras are fitting pretty good now, but I’ve noticed that the fat around my rib cage is getting thinner so I may have to readjust for the next order. I suppose finding the perfect fit is an ongoing process, but being closer to the proper size is more comfortable than wearing one way off. (I was wearing 38C at VS. The Curvy Kates I bought are 36E. I did buy more VS bras later, in 36DDD/F which the cups fit a lot better but the band is loose due to the fact that the particular style I purchased has a very stretchy band. A 34 band might be better, but the largest cups they offer may be too small.)

  • MissShapen

    Hi Connie! Glad to hear you are closer to finding the right size for you. I think sizing conservatively is something that a LOT of us do when we’re figuring out our sizes; it’s easy to think that something sounds like it will be huge on us and therefore unflattering. Especially when you are losing weight (I’ve been there, and hope you are enjoying your process with that), it can be really hard to gauge what size you are. I’ve sort of had the opposite problem since losing weight; until recently, I was ordering everything in too large sizes because I wasn’t used to being the size and shape I am now. It’s an ongoing process. :) Have you found anything you love since your last comment?

  • FussyBusty

    Amy also wrote a VS post on our blog :-)

  • MissShapen

    So sorry I missed it – don’t know how that happened! Its linked now. :) Thank you for letting me know!

  • MuscularHourglass

    You are fabulous and I have a (strictly non-sexual) girl crush on you because of how great you are.

  • MissShapen

    Thank you so much! You are also fabulous, and said girl crush is returned. I really want to do a triple joint review with you and Boosaurus! We all are so similar in measurements but things fit us in interestingly different ways. Up for an Urkye review or something sometime? <3

  • MuscularHourglass

    OF COURSE! <3

  • Jennifer Vance

    A 38DDD from VS doesn’t even fit me and I often need a 38 band!Sometimes a 34-36.Some of their bands run tighter,but the last ones I tried were so loose that they were too loose on the tightest hooks. :/ And too small of cups tend to flatten me out and give me oodles of side boob,though if it’s not too small I get some quadboob.

    I tried them out of curiosity.Wish I had known my proper size when I was younger as they would have fit well then!haha

  • MissShapen

    I wish I had known my proper size when I was young, too! I think I would have been sized out of VS by about 6th grade (in my proper band size, at least), but there are SO MANY amazing bras I would have rocked. My current obsession is Empreinte. *le sigh*

    Ah, sideboob and quadboob. We all know them so well. Alas. I assume you’ve got it covered, but let me know if you want any brand recommendations in your size range (whatever it is – you didn’t mention a cup size yet, but I’m assuming it’s a few above DDD?)! I know of some great brands and great bloggers around your band size and on the busty side, would be happy to share. :)

  • April

    I went to VS once in high school. When I told them what I thought my size was, both associates laughed (yes, out loud) and one said, “That doesn’t exist.” The size? 34G.

    I’ve since learned to size myself better and have grown in the bust, so I’m about a 30KK (nursing, so it’s hard to be sure). I wonder what those women would say to that? Then again, maybe I don’t want to know. Last time was humiliating enough.

  • MissShapen

    I’m so sorry to hear you had a humiliating experience at VS when you were young. It is hard enough to be comfortable in your body at that age (and at any age, really) without things like that making it worse. When I was in HS, I just wore the wrong size and didn’t know enough to say otherwise. It generally isn’t worth trying unless you can find the humor in it and use it to make a ridiculous blog post. :)

    30KK is a difficult size to find. I’d love to hear (here or in an email, if that’s more comfortable) what bra brands you are wearing. I know of very few outside of Poland that make that size. No pressure, of course, but if you’re comfortable sharing I’d love to discuss! I think I’m right around a 26KK now, and am trying a custom-sized bra in Comexim soon (55O) that I’m hoping will work. Aside from Comexim, it’s 60L Ewa Michalak (they don’t do 55LL) and not much else. A sad state of affairs. Still really excited about Edwards and Millers! Hoping for some sort of holy grail experience there.

  • April

    Well, I haven’t been this size for very long… it’s a result of having two kids. The older just turned 2 years last month and the younger is 3 months (as of today!), so I’ve been suffering through ill-fitted nursing bras (cups one too small, band one too big, but it’s the closest thing I can find).

    Between the last nursing season and the second pregnancy, though, I was a 30K and wore Bravissimo bras. They weren’t perfect, but they were all I could find and fit well enough. Since then I’ve read about Polish bras, so when this nursing season is over, I intend to look into that.

    I’m much farther behind on my bra-discover journey than you are!

  • MissShapen

    Hi again! I was just getting to some comments that I should have answered ages ago, and refound yours and thought I’d check in. How goes the bra-discovery journey?

  • Shoshana Blant

    I’m LOLing hardly. Next time you should do a video about trolling in VS. It would be hilarious.

  • MissShapen

    I’ve thought about doing some videos! It’s a whole different endeavor, but it would be fun to have a YouTube channel, maybe… I wonder what the rest of the readers think, and what all I would put on it? Maybe I’ll make a poll. I do love my polls. :)

    Anyway, thanks so much, glad I could provide a laugh!

  • Pingback: My Visit to Victoria’s Secret | Fussy Busty()

  • Paulina Angelika Kulik

    Oh, thanks for the point 4 of the list. I bought a swimsuit at Calzedonia (italian version of VS, really), size 90B, they call it 5. Why? Because they have just one cup (B) and 5 sizes of bands. Why I bought it, while I am 30GG? Because the swimsuit was cute and had available price for me. And I felt guilty for that purchase until I read the point 4. Thank you!

  • MissShapen

    Sorry for the late response, but yes! Definitely don’t feel guilty! If you love it and it makes you happy, then you should go for it. I’m a hedonist, and no one is taking that philosophy away from me. :) I think everyone should be give enough information on fitting to have the option of buying something that they know will work for them both physically and in appearance, but once the knowledge is there, it can be acted on or thrown out the window as is called for by the circumstances and the whim of the person buying. I hope you’ve had a great time wearing your suit, and I’m sure you look fabulous in it!

  • Pello B

    I always thought VS was made and marketed towards A: The surgically enhanced and B: Just for looking at on date night. They only make a very few sizes, pretty to look at but not much else.

  • don108

    My wife had the same problem. We eventually had to go to a specialist store about 50 miles from where we live. They showed her how, often, different brands have slightly (or grossly) different ideas for the same size. Eventually, she found some bras from Europe, and had to actually order them in order to get a good fit.

  • April

    That is a way more common story than you might realize. Most of us busty gals have similar history (nothing local, had to import from Europe).

  • MissShapen

    Yep, I wish this weren’t so common, but right now it’s the only way for a lot of us in the United States. It can be really discouraging, but I’m hoping that eventually it won’t be so hard. We all just have to speak up when we can!

  • Wheel Heung

    And I thought getting them *off* was complicated

  • Claire

    Thank you for this VS guide. I find it so difficult to be measured correctly. Could you show how you think a big bust should be measured. Be really beneficial to us busty girls.

  • MissShapen

    Hi Claire! I’m so very sorry for the late response. I am working on a series of fitting posts, several of which will be specifically tailored to the larger end of the cup size spectrum. I’m sorry they aren’t up yet, but I hope you’ll check in again soon! I’ll make sure to come back and link here when the first post is up. In the meantime, many of the blogs on my blogroll (which is relatively new) in the sidebar here have great posts on fitting that will be really helpful, if you’re interested. Thanks so much, and have a lovely day!

  • Claire

    Thank you for your reply. I cannot wait to see how your big bust is measured (front and back shots if possible). I will take a look at the blogs you mentioned which hopefully will help me with my cup size.

  • Ari

    While I’ve never been to a VS store, giving myself a fitting using their methods is quite hillarious, as the size ends up being a 38A, despite the fact that my measurements indicate a US 28J. I’m pretty glad looking at this that VS isn’t overly common here in Australia – I know some girls who are very busty, and getting measured at VS wouldn’t help their cause.

  • MissShapen

    Ugh 38A?! That is outrageous! Do you have some good stores in Australia for the bustier among us?

    Thanks for the comment and sorry about the late response. :)

  • Ari

    Strangely enough yes, even for VS that’s pretty crazy. I’m almost tempted to go in for a fitting just to see if that would actually be how they’d measure me… almost :P

    Well I’m not overly familiar with a large number of stores here, as I’m new to the whole +0 method, and have a rather limited budget, but Brava Lingerie has a very good size range online at least, from a UK 28-44, D-K, plus their fitters do know what they’re talking about from my experience. Only problem for me is, their nearest store in Melbourne is a good four hour drive away… But I still would recommend them.

    And don’t worry about the late response – you are running an awesome brog after all, plus you do have a life to live too :) Plus your posts are well worth the wait – the photography is beautiful and your quirky style of writing and lovely stories that accompany them occasionally a delight to read.

  • http://sagaofthehat.blogspot.com/ bystandling

    VS tried to put me in a 30AA when I walked in telling them I’d been wearing a 32A. She measured me around the armpits and got 29″ …. must be a 30 band. Around the boobs 32″ … equal to the 32 band… must be AA? I currently have several 30C’s but I would probably be much better in 28D … another that “doesn’t exist” or gets the reaction “you can’t be a D!”

  • MissShapen

    *I* totally believe that 28D is your size, and I’m sorry so few others do. I don’t know if you’ve found things that work well for you, but if not, the brands from Poland that I love so much for having my size also have yours! Comexim is my favorite bra company at the moment, and they make 28 bands that start at a B cup. Their sizing is different, but they have a size chart on their website and are happy to help by email. Ewa Michalak also carries 28 bands and starts at AA, and they have a cut of bra specifically for petite-busted women (called 3D in moulded cups and 3DM in non-moulded). Sadly, there is a bit of an extra charge for anything smaller than a 30 band, but I pay it anyway to have things that fit. Brastop.com also has a number of bras available in 28D. Forgive me if you know all this, but I thought I would throw it out there just in case. I’m no expert on smaller cup sizes, and I’m sure there are more great places out there, so let me know if you are interested in more info and I’ll get my smaller-bust bloggers on the case!

  • jean-baptiste

    there´s an old joke about a guy that goes to the doctor complaining his testicles hurt, after several visits he decides to have them removed after which he discovers the cause was ill fitting underwear…. in light of this post it doesn´t seem so funny anymore.

  • MissShapen

    Indeed not. Poor fella’.

  • Olivia Coles

    What size of bra do you normally wear? Iam guessing around a 28J-JJ . Just curious

  • MissShapen

    Approximately 28K in UK sizing. Probably closer to 26KK, but without bras in that size to try, it’s hard to say for sure.

  • AdalynLeigh

    Have you considered commissioning a bra specific to your size?

  • MissShapen

    If I had the money, I would love to!

  • Pingback: Reader Questions Answered: Victoria’s Secret vs. Walmart | Filling A Niche()

  • http://tsanewsblog.com/214/news/history-repeats-itself-with-tsas-strip-search-tactics/ Lisa Simeone

    Victoria’s Secret people have no idea what they’re doing. Plus I think their bras are cheesy.

    I wrote about a bra-fitting experience there (in contrast to that at the superb Intimacy in Atlanta) for Style Magazine here in Charm City about 10 years ago (sorry, no link; article in hard copy of mag only). I also did a similar story for NPR back in 2001, link here:

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=1075271

  • Jillian Johns

    One of the last times I was in vs, my friends decided they wanted to hit the sales so I quietly stood off to the side knowing I didn’t fit anything but the undies. A sales Rep came over and suggested that I be fitted. I said no thank you. She insisted that I was wearing the wrong size and could save myself back ache if I let myself be fitted. I told her no thank you, I know I’m wearing the wrong size. She proceeded to give me a lecture of which I started to walk away from her. Then I told her point blank “I grew out of this store when I was 10. At age 17, I think I know where I shouldn’t shop”. She told me to get out since I wasn’t buying anything. The next day I called their corporate office and told them of what she said and did. I’ve never stepped foot on the lingerie side of vs since. Not even for a gift card. I’m 30 now.

    At 17, I was 5’1″, roughly a UK 36HH/I and had yet to discover Bravissimo, Ewa Michalak or any brand that truly catered to us BOUS. Thank you for documenting your experience. Hopefully this will save some younger girls from this horror.

  • MissShapen

    I’m very sorry for the delay in commenting, Jillian. What an absolutely horrible story. I’m so, so sorry that happened to you and so, so glad that you stood up for yourself, called the corporate office, and never looked back. What awfulness. Ugh. The fitting stuff isn’t surprising but the lecture followed by *ordering you out of the store*?! That is absolute insanity.

    I really hope that this does save some younger girls from the kinds of experiences you’re rescribing, and also that it perhaps helps some women our age and older to discover things that fit better. We have a long way to go before well-fitting bras are the norm. Writing things like this is the only way I know to speed up the process, or at least try to.

    Thanks so much for commenting and sharing your experience.

  • atheologist

    I’m long done with VS, but remember going in there in college because I was curious about how they fit me. At the time, I wore a 32FF. The “fitter” did something similar to what you described, except she held the measuring tape inches away from my body and then declared that I wore a 36 band…or maybe a 38…with this disgusted look on her face as though the size was huge and gross to her. I agreed to try on a couple bras in those sizes, just to see. When I walked out and handed them to her, saying the band didn’t fit, she smirked and said “too small?” No…the band was too big. Much too big.

  • MissShapen

    That fitter sounds… Unpleasant. Well, considerably more than unpleasant, but I’ll leave the more colorful words I’m thinking of to your imagination. I don’t understand how anyone can either not know or not care how dehumanizing and hurtful an experience like that can be. It just disgusts me. I remember once buying a dress at Forever 21 and having the checkout person look at the dress, look at me, and then say with a look of mixed disbelief and disdain, “Um, did you try this on first?” How can anyone think those kind of comments are acceptable. It’s beyond me.

    Thanks so much for sharing your experience. I hope you have better stores available today, or have found things that work that you can order online without the awfulness of people like that.

  • atheologist

    Thank you. I live in New York and if I need to be refitted or want something immediately, I usually go to Town Shop on the Upper West Side, which is pretty great. Otherwise, I generally know my size and have done well on ebay. Much easier to avoid some of those salespeople. I have no idea why they think those comments are acceptable!

  • Kails

    What does BOUS stand for?

  • MissShapen

    Breasts of Unusual Size. It’s a take on a thing from The Princess Bride. :) I really need to make a lexicon guide soon!

  • Sharon

    lol. I was wondering what it stood for, too, and I definitely get the reference to The Princess Bride.

  • kojirotakenashi

    I was just linked to this in a discussion about bra shopping that turned into bra fitting because I had brought it up.

    I once I showered a lady friend of mine in bras because she didn’t have anything that fit properly (she had recently increase in size) and was about to leave for the entire summer to do mountain rock climbing, trail hiking, horseback riding, etc with NO BRAS that fit.

    Regular bras, some fancy bras, sleep bras, and of course sports bras all over the place. The most hilarious part was the whole sister-size thing. This was horrible for me because I have a learning disability against math, and so it was all very difficult for me to calculate on my own. Also that aspect of bra sizing is legit identical to amperage and voltage when shopping for fuses no joke.

    Needless to say, it was an amazing adventure. The bras almost all turned out perfectly btw, so I guess that makes me super great?

    She’s a G cup now, though. Just keeps increasing. Also every sizing she’s ever been to has been totally accurate, but I think that’s because she goes to places like JC Penny where you can go in to buy a suit and some super old old-fashioned person will measure you all over.

    Also that last post makes me feel weird. I’m a super legs, face, and lower torso person and all your breasts made me think was “hmm…huh. Yeah no that does look funny. Oh that one angle looks good!” and I can’t tell if I’m just well adjusted, or if I really am a mutant for not being much affected by breasts at all.
    =_= Hmmmm…

  • Pandar511

    So, surprisingly, my boyfriend linked me to your site. He said it was something that he had been trying to bring up but didn’t know quite how. Apparently my 38DD’s from VS had me SPILLING out and I was blatantly ignoringit….measured myself today and I am a 38..wait for it..L…an L! I have been smushing my boobies for YEARS! Thank you to you ( and to him for being him :) ) for this blog. I will be looking at some of the sites you mentioned to find some better fitting things ( I think the bf deserves them lol)

  • MissShapen

    Yay!!!! I’m so happy to hear you are finding your best-fitting size! Please do remember that measurements just give you a starting point and all bras fit differently, so you may need to size up or down a bit in the band or cut or try different brands before you really find the best one for you. But when you do… HEAVEN. I hope you find something you absolutely adore!

  • Pingback: I Took Someone for a Bra Fitting! | Under the Unders()

  • Pingback: 8 Signs You’re Wearing The Wrong Bra Size | GossipViews.com()

  • Pingback: 8 Signs You’re Wearing The Wrong Bra Size - Avidmav()

  • Pingback: 8 Signs You're Wearing The Wrong Bra Size | buzzia()

  • Pingback: 8 Signs You're Wearing The Wrong Bra Size | Cherry Wired()

  • Rachel

    I am a sales associate at VS and have been trained in the ways they want us to do fittings (at least now I don’t know if they changed it) but it sounds like your experience and many of the others I have read are not they way its supposed to be done so I’m sorry to hear that! We definitely carry a very small range of sizes and there are a lot of bras I personally don’t fit in either but I always try to make sure that if we don’t carry the bra I will recommend somewhere that does. I know we do our best to make sure no woman walks away with an ill fitting bra and if I went to check on a customer that was having your fit issues I would not suggest those sizes worked! The measurements themselves, and I try to tell all of our customers this when I fit them, are not 100% accurate as I’m sure you all have experienced lol but its more of a starting point, a middle point for a range per say. Once we get the fitting (which should be comprised of two different measurement of your bust not one) we have customers try on the Body by Victoria Demi bra because it is the most true to fit. Then we check out how it looks (bubbling, gapping, band, etc) and change the size accordingly. Sounds like some associates at these stores you ladies have visited were not doing that but hopefully this kind of gives perspective on where we are coming from and give you some insight to the process! I hope you all have luck finding awesome bras in the future regardless if they are from VS or not! It was a great article and great perspective and I always enjoy reading what people have to say about VS so that I can help better those experiences for many more woman and girls to come.

  • CityPanda

    I love love this post! My bras always end up hurting me and poking me on the side, or just don’t feel like it should. I tried changing the band and or cup size and something else will not feel right. All the bras I do find “fitting” okay have so much padding its ridiculous and I hate that, 34-36/B-C. (What I think I am…) The ones with less padding are in 34-40/C-DDD. So I may find my size but I can’t get over how overly padded they are. I even came across a tag that said “Enlarge your bust, enlarge your confidence” on one than I almost bought. O_o I have walked past a couple of lingerie boutiques and thought VS would have done a better sizing. What was I thinking.
    Any good online sites for small bust that are not ridiculously padded?
    Thank you so much!

  • Kay

    Have you tried the Freya deco bras? I don’t know if they come in hot pink but there’s definitely some purple ones. They have a deep plunge, provide amazing lift and they give spectacular cleavage.

  • MissShapen

    Hi! One of my fondest wishes is that Freya would make Decos in larger cup sizes, because I am OBSESSED with them. I managed to sister size up to about a 38GG or something like that and then pin the back drastically once for a shoot, and it was amazeballs. Sadly, it was not a solution that worked for proper alteration. :(

  • kp

    I’ma be really real here and admit something: I worked at VS for 2 years and I had no idea how to correctly fit a bra that entire time. Literally ever. We got trained on it ONCE for an hour and then we were off to the wolves! Bear in mind that half the people measuring you are 18 years old… So most of us were just like… Yes. 36 DD. That is exactly right may I please go take my break now thank you.
    We had a gal at my store who was a bra-fitting magician, though. She did it entirely differently, and homegirl could find you the right bra like THAT. She was amazing. Sometimes, among the 18-20 year olds just trying to make gas money, you’ll find a real gem!
    I was always very sure to say that it wasn’t an exact science. At all. Cause math was never my thing.

    Anyway, my point is, this post made me laugh because it is true. And I promise, anyone who I miss-measured, it wasn’t on purpose or to hurt you, I really just had no idea what I was doing! And now I have a crazy huge weird shaped awesome rack of my own for VS associates to miss-measure! (I was a 34B when I worked there. Adorable. I was a late bloomer.)

  • http://Theroamingkat.com Kaitlin Gerety

    So happy my friend linked me to this. It’s helped me really go and get fitted correctly as VS was completely wrong and when I just simply asked if I could be resized or have another employee measure me/their input, I was told to either buy the bra (in that size they fitted me to which was too small/tight/couldn’t breathe basically) or leave. I bought the bra in defeat.. I mean.. it covered me so.. it had to be right, right? Well, after moving to London, I went to a little lingerie boutique and was properly sized to a 34DD. It can just be so intimidating, especially when you’re young. Seriously, VS, ya need to sort yourselves out… oy vey.

  • Pingback: Measuring system! - Breast Augmentation, Breast Implants, and Plastic Surgeons Forums()

  • Rachel Jones

    So True! I went there about 3 years ago, before I discovered the best way to measure for me, and got fitted because, hey, sales and cute bras, why not? For reference, I typically wear a 28H or HH in UK sizes, my under bust is 27 and my bust is 38.5. Three years ago, my under bust was about 26-26.5 and my bust was 36. They declared me a 34D. I tried it and found it offered no support and I was squeezed out all over the place. Then, I tried a 32DD. That, too, seemed awkward and away too much boob hung out. Finally, the fitter gave me 32DDDs, and while they still didn’t work, I ended up buying some on clearance because it was the best I could find, and I made do with them until about 5-6 months ago.

    Since then, I have returned once, with a friend, and when they asked to fit me, and I told them no thank you, since I could not fit their size range, they asked what size I believed I wore. I told them that my 28H UK size bras fit me quite well, thank you, and they looked at me like I was crazy and said “That doesn’t exist,” point blank. I laugh now when I think about it, because my breasts certainly exist, they don’t phase in and out of the world or rest on a different plane of reality. I will never go back there, although I did manage to give away some of my older models of VS bras to a friend whom I helped measure and who was very close to their size.

  • Sharon

    Had my first bra fitting at VS last weekend. I’ve always been about a barely A. Then I got pregnant/nursed twice. Things changed for a while. I am done with pregnancy/nursing and want a bra that fits properly. The first girl measured me, outside my clothes, and said I was between a B and a C. I had to contain a giggling fit as I was certain my cup size was nowhere near either of those. The second gal didn’t like the C band size and stated I needed a D. I, unfortunately, purchased that bra and wore it for one hour. It was so uncomfortable and literally left marks on my skin. I fully intend to return it next week when I’m near that store again. I was so looking forward to having a bra that fit properly. Even if I had to spend way more than I’d ever spent on a bra. Seriously, one of their bras cost more than any of my nursing bras.

  • JessiRvrs

    Yup, I’ve learned years ago to just don’t bother there for bras. I do get their panties and creams eventually.

  • emma holland

    Hello :-)
    I went to Debenhams to get fitted a few months ago. I went in wearing a 34 HH size but it looked like I had two pairs of boobs. I always hesitate spending what I consider to be a lot of money on a bra. But I could see that I needed to have a fitting. The assistant that helped me told me to remove my top she just looked at my boobs, didn’t measure anywhere. Told me that the cup size was too small and that I was more a 36 band. When I asked her what cup size she would recommend she looked at me like I had asked ridiculous question. Her response was ” I don’t know I’ve never seen bigger than an E cup and we only deal with the more normal sizes. You will have to look on the internet” .
    As soon as she said that I felt disgusting and like some sort of freak! My partner was waiting for me outside the fitting rooms, he asked how it went, I was almost in tears and told him I didn’t want to talk about it and that I just wanted to leave.
    For a couple of weeks I hated my boobs. Then my partner said he was taking me to a proper lingerie store. So we went for a day out. We got to the store, I told the assistant what had happened previously she was shocked. She measured me, brought me a couple of bras to try on. She said I was a 34 HH but close to the next size up, she said it was the bra style that was wrong. She told me to look for a full cup but unfortunately they didn’t do my size in store. However she did give me a couple of websites that did have my size. I left there feeling happier and less like a freak.
    My partner always tells me that I shouldn’t worry about my body and that I’m perfect. But I have always had problems with my boobs since the age of 9. Bullied, groped, made to feel like it was all I have going for me. So now I am looking into getting my boobs reduced. When I was 11 I was a 32DD, I was hoping that I wouldn’t get much bigger but alas that isn’t the case. So I feel this is my final option.
    Thank you for posting this blog, it made me laugh and also kind of glad that there are other fuller busted women who find it difficult to find a good fit.xx

  • SurelyShirley

    I’m glad I read this. It’s given me a big insight into some of the problems and I’m in need of all the information I can get because I’m just now beginning to see my breasts reach proportions that need me to pay more attention to bra size than I have done so far. I have never shopped in VS probably because I always thought they’re too much into modeling for males, maybe.

    BTW I know there are guys who read these kinds of blogs with photos just for the arousing content that they think they might find there. I used to be seen as one (tho I didn’t feel like it myself) until I made myself obviously not and got on this road I’m on. Funny, but some of the guys I knew still think all I have is a fetish about bras and panties. It just goes to show what some of them know.