First Bra Shopping: a how-to guide

Do you remember shopping for your first bra? For most women, memories of their first bra shopping experience involve both anticipation and embarrassment. Puberty is tough on so many levels, and having to stand half-naked in a change room whilst someone hands you bras to try on can hit the top of the 'most embarrassing experiences' list.

Many women cringe at their memory of the brightly-lit change room, the matronly shop assistant, and the confusing/boring bras on offer... remembering forever the colour and style of that first piece of lingerie they ever owned.

For many girls it's a significant occasion in life that is shared with their mother, so we are sharing our Bra Fitters' tips for ensuring this rite-of-passage is a positive body experience for future generations of women.

  • Take your daughter to a professional bra fitter. This will not only ensure she gets the perfect fit, but will also teach her that bra fitting isn't an exact science. As her shape alters on the journey of life, she'll be better able to recognise what the best fit feels like.
  • Talk about the up's and down's of ˜breast assets'. It's never too soon to teach your daughter that there are many things in life that can alter the size of her breasts, and that most women's breasts are not actually symmetrical. It's not unusual for women to wear 5-10 different bra sizes during her lifetime. Because the grass is always greener on the other side, if she's worried about how big or small they are, remind her that one day she may just love them.
  • Buy her a sports bra. It's important to protect her breast tissue and ligaments, preventing neck and back pain (and eventual breast sag!). And by reducing bounce, she'll feel much more comfortable and confident to lead a healthy, active life.
  • Remind her that we all come in different shapes and sizes. Young girls who are overly-conscious of their bust size will often hunch their head and shoulders forward, to make their bust less obvious. But hunching sets them up for shoulder tendinitis, aching neck and headaches. Ironically, standing upright with good posture and a well-fitted bra actually makes your breasts look smaller.

Why is it that 50% of teen girls visiting Brava want their Mum's help, but the others dread it? Sometimes it's best for mothers to hand the job over to Brava fitters who are adept at maintaining communication while minimising embarrassment. It works because we give young girls their privacy; they can put the bras on themselves, but we check that the fit is right (that's what we're here for!). Our bra fitter's have a contemporary understanding of what teenage girls want in a bra, and will work with them on their need for fashion and fit.
We love it when we see the favour in reverse as daughters drag their mothers into Brava for a bra fitting! Now all grown up, the faded memories of negative experiences have turned positive when they drag Mum into Brava because her bras are 10 years old, her breasts could do with a lift in a correctly fitted bra, and her appearance and confidence is transformed.

Brava was born after both my daughter, Maxine, and I had terrible bra fitting experiences as teens. So we're thrilled to now offer pretty, fashionable bras that are supportive and comfortable for women of all ages, in D-K cup sizes and starting in a Size 6 back. If you'd like to read more about Bra Fitting for Teen Girls click here. And here is a blog post on the increase in cup sizes for teenage girls.

Tell us about your first bra shopping experience by leaving a comment below!