Post Surgery Bra Fitting Guide

Post-Surgery Bra Fitting Guide

It is our aim at The Fitting Service to help you feel comfortable and supported in your bras post-surgery. We understand that sometimes it is not always possible for you to visit us face to face, so we have created a guide for you to follow when fitting your bras. If you do need any further assistance please do not hesitate to call us on 01622 805108 or email us on

Please note – depending on the type of breast surgery you have had, it is usually recommend to wait at least 6 weeks post-surgery for a bra fitting as this allows time for you to heal and any swelling to go down. Your surgeon or breast care nurse will inform you about how long to wear your immediate post surgery bra for. 


 Buying a bra is just like buying a pair of jeans, in different styles, colours and brands you may be a different size. Depending on the brand you may also find that the way they measure is different to other brands causing you to be a different size.

For this reason we prefer to focus on fitting a bra rather than measuring for a bra. 

What Does The Perfect Bra Fit Look Like?

 The band is snug and even all the way round the body.

 The straps are not digging in or falling off the shoulders.  

The cup is smooth and encasing the whole breast and/or breast form and the centre front in against the body as much as possible.  

The fullness of the bra should be sitting half way between your shoulder and elbow.



To be able to achieve the perfect fit it is important to take note of:


The underband

 The underband provides 80% of the support or the bra, therefore it is important that it isn't too loose but equally shouldn’t be too tight!

You should only be able to get two fingers behind the back of the underband and around to the side seam. If you are in the first year post breast surgery, I would always recommend fitting onto the middle set of hook and eyes. This ensures that the bra is not too tight as the risk of lymphedema is higher within the first year. I would still continue to wear the bra on the last hook and eye but just for fitting, fit on the middle set. 

 The band should sit horizontally around and should not be arching up or sitting too low. 

 Fitting notes: If you can pull the back further out than the two fingers then you should try the next band size down. 

The straps

The straps account for 20% of the bras support and just like the underband, you should only be able to get 2 fingers underneath the bra strap. It is perfectly normal to have straps at different lengths as we are all slightly different. We would suggest to regularly check the strap adjustments as with wearing and washing they can move.

 Fitting notes: If your straps are digging in then you will need to go down in the band size. It is perfectly normal to have straps at different lengths as we are all slightly different. 

If you have more of a petite build you might find styles with a ‘u-band’ slightly better for you if your straps are sliding off as it means that the straps are not as wide set.

 The cup

The cup should fully encompass the breast tissue and breast form unless you are wearing a style designed to only cover half the tissue for instance a half cupped bra. There should not be any overspill at the sides, top or underneath the bra, nor should there be any wrinkling of the fabric.

Fitting notes:

If the cup is wrinkling or gapping then go down a cup size.

If there is over spill then go up in the cup size.

The Centre front

The centre front should sit as flat as possible between the breasts as much as possible, this is more achievable with an unwired bra. You want to ensure that it is not pulling away too much and you should not be able to see through the centre front. If this is the case then try the next cup size up.

Breast form

Your natural breast will fluctuate with weight loss or gain and changes throughout the day so it is important to fit to your natural breast side, not the breast form side. This is also the case for any size differences between your breasts, always fit to the bigger side.

Fitting FAQS 

What bra should I wear if I've just had surgery?

If you have just had breast surgery then we would recommend a front fastening bra for a minimum of 6 weeks. Front fastening bras allow for any limited arm movement, post operative swelling and they are more comfortable.

Can I wear an underwired bra?

We suggest waiting a year before wearing an underwired bra. If at all possible we would advise you to have a face to face fitting so that we can check the wires would not interfere with any scaring, breast form or your reconstructive surgery.

Can I use a bra extender?

Bra extenders are an excellent way of creating that little bit of extra room around the band that you might need during the day, however, they should only be used as a short term solution just as using an extender changes the support that you get from the bra.


If you are still unsure about any size queries or are in need of more fitting advice, book in for a virtual or face to face fitting consultation. Please click the link to book.