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Bra cup sizes explained in Helpful Terms

  • By: Nicki
  • Date: July 26, 2023
  • Time to read: 3 min.

To calculate bra cup sizes.

Bra cup sizes are a measurement of the volume of the breast tissue that the bra is designed to support. It is typically represented by a letter (such as A, B, C, D, etc.), with each letter representing an increase in cup size.

The cup size is determined by measuring the difference between the circumference of the bust and the circumference of the ribcage just below the breasts. This difference is then used to calculate the cup size.

For example, if the bust measurement is 36 inches and the ribcage measurement is 32 inches, the difference is 4 inches. A difference of 1 inch generally corresponds to an A cup, 2 inches to a B cup, 3 inches to a C cup, and so on.

It’s important to note that cup size is relative to band size, so a 32C bra has a smaller cup volume than a 36C bra. Additionally, different bra brands and styles may have slightly different sizing systems, so it’s always best to try on bras to ensure the best fit.

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Bra cup size table

Here is a table showing 20 examples of how bust and ribcage measurements relate to bra sizes:

Bust MeasurementRibcage MeasurementBra Size

Note that this table assumes a standard sizing system, where the band size is the ribcage measurement and the cup size is the difference between the bust measurement and the band size (e.g. 32C means a band size of 32″ and a bust measurement of 35″).

However, it’s important to remember that bra sizing can vary between brands and styles, so it’s always best to try on a few different sizes to find the best fit.

As I mentioned earlier, the cup size of a bra is determined by the difference between the bust measurement and the ribcage measurement. However, it’s important to keep in mind that this is just a starting point, and there are a variety of factors that can influence the fit of a bra cup.

For example, breast shape and firmness can play a role in how a bra cup fits. A person with softer breast tissue may find that they need a slightly smaller cup size to ensure a good fit, while someone with firmer tissue may need a slightly larger cup size.

The shape of the breast, such as whether it is fuller on the top or bottom, can also affect the fit of a bra cup.

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Another important factor to consider is the style of the bra. Different styles of bras are designed to accommodate different breast shapes and sizes. For example, a balconette bra is designed to provide lift and support for a fuller bust, while a bralette may be better suited for someone with a smaller bust.

It’s also important to keep in mind that not all bra brands and styles are created equal when it comes to sizing. Different brands may use slightly different sizing systems, and even within a brand, different styles may fit differently.

That’s why it’s always a good idea to try on bras in person to find the best fit.

Overall, understanding bra cup sizes is an important part of finding a comfortable and supportive bra. But it’s just one piece of the puzzle, and there are many other factors to consider when it comes to finding the right bra for your body.

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