A bra band that rides up is one of the top complaints we hear from women everywhere, causing discomfort, requiring all day adjustment and ultimately resulting in the immediate removal of said annoying bra as soon as you walk in the door. You also may have heard by now that most women are wearing the wrong size bra. Turns out, the two are closely related, and possibly not in the way you might think (spoiler alert: your band is more likely too big than too small).
Why Is Your Bra Band Riding Up?
80% of the support of your bra comes from its band. Shocking, we know, especially if you’ve been relying on super tight (i.e. uncomfortable) straps to do the heavy lifting (pun totally intended).
Bra Doesn’t Fit Correctly
When the band is too big, the weight of your breasts pulls down the cups in front, and has an opposite effect in the back, pulling the band up in the center of your back, in a sort of upside down U shape. Not only can this be uncomfortable and annoying but it can cause unwanted back bulge (and lead you to think the band is actually too small rather than too big). In our full breakdown of How Should A Bra Fit, we tackle this issue, and many others, noting that if it’s a hook and eye closure you may be able to simply adjust your bra to a tighter grouping to alleviate the problem. If you’re already on the tightest setting however, it’s likely that your bra is past its prime.
Bra Straps Too Tight
As previously mentioned, straps aren’t the workhorse of your bra, but rather there to keep cups in place and secure your fit. When you try to gain lift by over tightening your straps, not only are they more likely to dig in, but they can also pull the band up. Our guide referenced above also details common strap issues and solutions, and offers a quick way to double check that your straps aren’t too tight with the two finger test.
How To Keep Bra Straps From Slipping
Of course, it’s equally annoying to constantly adjust slipping bra straps, so you do want to adjust them frequently, whether you find it necessary after each wearing or only after washing. Elastic stretches both after laundering (make sure to air dry) as well as with wearing. If you simply can’t get straps to stop slipping, it may be time to look for a new bra, or a new style altogether.
Measure Your Bra Size
Anytime you’re bra shopping, we recommend taking new measurements. Even if you’ve been professionally fitted in the past, fluctuations in sizing happen for a variety of reasons, and learning how to measure at home is a good skill to have (not to mention it’s pretty quick and quite easy with our primer on How to Measure Bra Size).
How to Measure Band Size
To determine your band size, wear a lightly lined, unpadded bra and wrap a measuring tape snugly under your bustline (remember to keep it parallel to the ground, just as you ultimately want your bra band to be). As bras are made in even sizes, an odd number for your measurement indicates you may be between two sizes, in which case, you can either round down, or may want to try on both depending on the style. You may also want to explore sister sizing if you feel like the larger band size is more comfortable as you’ll need to adjust your cup size accordingly. But remember, a bra should initially fit quite snug as it will naturally stretch over time (especially one with an adjustable back closure as the multiple groupings of hook and eyes are made for this exact reason).
Loosen Your Bra Straps
Another crucial skill for us bra wearing women to have is the ability to adjust ones bra straps, whether it’s prior to putting on the bra, or while wearing it. We’ve got a few little tips and tricks to each approach, in our How to Tighten Bra Straps rundown, one of which is to remember that both straps don’t necessarily need to be at the same level. Remember, no two breasts, even on the same woman, are alike, and you may need to adjust each strap to a slightly different place to allow for this variance. Another issue that can often be solved by adjusting ones straps is cup gaping, for more on that check out our overview of Why Your Bra Cup Is Gaping.
Our Favorite Bras with Adjustable Straps
Whether your bra is a pullover or clasp style (front or back), if it has adjustable straps, you can and should use them to customize your fit. While some of our classic styles have wider, fixed straps (which when properly sized should prevent the band from riding up as well), feedback from True&Co fans led us to design adjustable strap options, a few of which have become their (and quite possibly your) new favorites.
Scoop Neck Bra
One of our all time best sellers is our classic scoop neck, and its adjustable strap sister has become a quick crowd favorite as well. Our True Body Scoop Neck Adjustable Strap Bra naturally contours your shape in smoothing True Body microfiber. A sleek look and second skin feel with the ease of a wirefree pullover style and slim, easy to hide straps? Yep, it’s exactly as good as it sounds.
Lace Balconette Bra
Stretch lace does double duty in our Madison Lace Ultimate Coverage Balconette Bra. First, it looks stunning, with a subtle sweetheart neckline and touches of beautiful lace strategically placed to flatter. Second, it moves with you, smoothing and supporting for ultimate flexibility and comfort. Generous coverage, adjustable straps and a rose gold double hook and eye closure ensure a proper fit for sizes ranging from 32B to 42DDD.
They say the difference is in the details and when it comes to cooling comfort, we believe those details should be made of mesh. Our True Body Mesh Adjustable Strap Bra is engineered for extra airflow, as well as contoured cups made to smooth and enhance your natural silhouette. Mesh at the neckline meets microfiber at the wings for breathable, wirefree support. Adjustable straps and a hook and eye back closure allow you to customize your fit for all day comfort, in sizes up to 3X.