Vanity Sizing

August 09, 2019

Vanity sizing has become quite popular in the fashion industry. Large fashion companies are purposely changing how things are sized, so much so, many customers come into our store not knowing what their true size is. Fortunately for them, we have a fantastic staff that is able to help them figure out what size they truly are in loungewear, underwear, or shapewear. However what about bra sizing? Is there such a thing about vanity sizing for bras? There are 3 different things going on in the bra industry.

1. In our store, we are a staff of bra fitters. We correctly size you for a bra and then provide you with different options and styles that fit your body type. Just like clothing and footwear, there really is only one true bra size for your body. In some cases, bra manufacturers cut and sew bras differently and it does have an impact on your size. Since we work with these bras on a daily basis it is easy for us to adjust what size you need for each bra. For the average consumer, it becomes much more difficult and confusion often sets in.

2. Consumer mindset. Recently we had a customer come into the store that said she was a 36A but when measured she was a 30D. The reason for the 36A? She did not want to be a D cup. She preferred her vanity sizing. So we started calling things A+++ for her and she felt better about her bra fitting and walked out with a 30D bra and after 2 weeks came back for more “A+++” bras. 

3. We are starting to see the industry take notice of vanity sizing and some manufacturers are actually sizing down their bras i.e. a D cup is labeled a C cup. Other manufacturers have introduced half sizes or small, medium, large bras. This might make the consumer feel better about what size they wear, but does not solve any bra fitting issues. In may cases, it may cause more confusion. It may also cause discomfort, pain in the neck and shoulders, and/or for breasts to sag.

No matter the scenario, confusion often sets in with customers. I am not in favor of vanity sizing but sometimes I wish that we did have our own sizing in the store. When women come in for a bra fitting and find out their true bra size, some of them do not like it and react in disbelief. My comment to them is that their breasts did not change shape from when they entered the store. They just have been wearing the wrong size bra. This sometimes helps with the disbelief. Sometimes, though, it does not help because they truly don’t want to be bigger than a C cup. They have a negative feeling about being a large size. These are the fittings that I wish we had vanity sizing in the whole store. I would love to change it to a numbered system starting with 00. An A cup would be 00, B Cup a 0 an so on. So if you are a 34F, the most common size in the store, your vanity size would be 34-4. An F cup has such a negative association for many customers that I feel that if we told them they were a 4 cup it would not even phase them. New sizing, new mindset!

I do not think my sizing plan will be a reality in the bra industry anytime soon. So, to all the women that get sized after reading this, please do not fret over your cup size. It is strictly a mathematically calculation. Your breast did not change size in the couple of minutes it took you to walk to the dressing room. Believe me, your undergarments define your whole outlook for your day and how people see you. Patience is continued to be learned.



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