1) I wore a well-fitted, non-padded bra.
2) Standing up straight, the underbust and bust measurements were taken flush to my body and parallel to the floor.
3) Some calculators require an overbust method which I have included for clarity (see picture below for measuring method).
4) Rounded up and down when appropriate. Ex. Round my overbust down to 36".
5) ALWAYS listened to the fit guide's instructions on how to measure and round up/down.
Picture of Bust and Overbust measurements (Olga)Measurements
Last Fitted Size at Nordstrom
30G (Nov. '14)
Bra Calculators by Brand
Calvin Klein: 34D
Frederick's of Hollywood: 34D
La Senza: 34DD
Lily of France: 34D
Marie Jo: 30G
Vanity Fair: 34D
Victoria's Secret: 36B*
Wonderbra: 34F UK
Bra Calculators by Sales Company
A Sophisticated Pair: 28GG, 30G or 32FF UK (depending on how tight I wanted the band)
Figleaves: 30G UK
Bare Necessities: 36B
Nordstrom: 32E UK
Marks & Spencer: 30G UK
Online Fit Advice Only
In Store Only
So are bra calculators useful or useless? Many of these sites came with very good fit advice but would not have delivered by using the calculator alone. When possible try ordering a bra in a variety of sizes and try them on (make sure the site you use has a free return policy, though). Some manufacturers use their own sizing system (different from standard), so don't be afraid to try things on. And before anything else, try it on in-store whenever possible.
Now ask yourself: what does 36DD even mean when everyone measures things so differently?
A few notes:
- Some brands call the underbust the "bust" and the bust as "chest".
- Some brands only allow a measurement of 30" or greater for their underbust measurement. I rounded up in those cases to an underbust measurement of 30".
- If you really want hard numbers for bra fitting, check out Bratabase. Real people have taken measurements of the bras they own and are available to members.
* I have been measured IN-STORE at Victoria's Secret and they normally take the band measurements and add 4 inches, then subtract the underbust from the bust to get the cup. So thus: 29"+4" = 33" (round up to 34)... 38"-34" = 4"... D cup. So 34D in-store. What a difference!