When it comes to fitting bras and chest binders, the goal is for you to feel as comfortable as possible in your new underthings, regardless of measurements. We will gladly make recommendations and suggestions as to what size and style might work best, but we are not experts on your body—YOU are the only expert on your body!
If you're in the Portland area, we encourage you to schedule an in-store fitting. Appointments can be made either over the phone or right here on our website!
First, determine the band size. Measure around your "underbust", the widest part of your ribcage just below the breasts. You may need to lift up the breast tissue in order to get an accurate ribcage measurement—a great reason to enlist a helper! For optimum support, you'll want the band size to be as close to this measurement as possible. If you measure at 34" around, start with a 34 band. If you measure at 35", try either a 34 or 36 band, depending on your sensitivity to constricting garments. The smaller size will be more supportive, but it may not be as comfortable. It’s all about your priorities and preferences.
Now it's time to pinpoint the cup size, which can take some trial-and-error. We don't typically work from bust measurements for our in-store fittings, but the method described below will provide you with a great starting point, and may even be right on the dot!
Ready? Here we go! You'll want to wear a bra when taking the bust measurement, ideally something with minimal to no padding. Measure around the fullest part of the bust, taking care to keep the tape measure level (another excellent job for your assistant). Combined with the band measurement, the following formula will provide a solid starting point for bra sizing:
BUST MEASUREMENT − BAND SIZE (ROUNDED) = CUP SIZE INDEX
Use the cup size index to count off the letter of the cup. For example: You measure at 33" around and decide on a 32 band. Your bust measurement is 40", so your cup size index is 8. I like to count on my fingers for the next step—1(A), 2(B), 3(C), 4(D), 5(DD), 6(E), 7(F), 8(FF), so the estimated size is 32FF!
|A||B||C||D||DD||E||F||FF||G. . .|
|cup size index||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9. . .|
How to Put on a Bra:
Does it fit!?
Please note that we use UK cup sizing as our default sizing system. Feel free to contact us with any fitting questions—It’s what we’re here for!
Be sure to take binder measurements either topless or over a snug-fitting shirt. Unlike with other measurements, you'll want to wrap the measuring tape tightly so that it's about as snug as a binder would be.
Refer to the Danaë sizing chart below to get an idea of what will work for you. As with other undergarments, you are ultimately in charge of determining what fits best. Can you breath? Is the fit gender-affirming? Is it relatively comfortable? (Let’s be honest, chest binders are not the most comfortable garments around, but consider how you’ll feel wearing it for more than a few minutes/throughout the day.) All of these factors are important, but be particularly careful not to bind too tightly. Ill-fitting binders can lead to breathing issues, cracked ribs, or even a punctured lung.
Sizing (in. )
|chest||26-30||30-33. 5||33. 5-40||40-43||43-45||45-46. 5|
|waist||20. 5-23. 5||23. 5-27||27-30||30-33||33-35||35-38|
|shoulder||10-12||12-14||14-16. 5||16. 5-19||19-22||22-23|
When getting into a binder, be sure that your body and the garment are completely dry. The styles we currently offer on our site should not be worn in water (with the exception of our swim binders). Remember to continue checking in with your body, and be particularly aware of your ability to breath during physical exertion—for certain activities, you may want to skip binding. Try not to bind for more than 8-10 hours at a time. After removing the binder, cough a few times to loosen any fluid that has built up in the lungs, and take some deep breaths.
Tips from Danaë
Binder Fitting Sources: