Shopping smart for petite busts

By: Polly    on Tue 17th May 2016

I have a beautiful and accomplished friend with the kind of schedule that would melt the brains of most others. This stylish and determined mother of three small children runs two businesses and has a home to die for, and yet bra shopping on the local high street left her ego-bruised and empty-handed.

The so-called ‘problem’ faced by this fit, very slim young mother, who could conquer the world from her smart phone should she wish to, was a petite bust. While much is made of the trials and tribulations of comfortably and appropriately attiring the larger-than-average pair of breasts, a well-fitting and cleverly designed bra can make a huge difference (literally) to a small bust.

However, in this long-established high street store my slight-busted friend was informed by a fitter, who possiblneeded to revisit her training, that perhaps a ‘specialist shop’ would hold the key to her bra-hunting dreams. Which left her feeling like a transvestite. And still in search of a decent bra.

‘Oomph’ factor

We’ll leave for now the total failure of both customer service and sales skills in this sorry scenario because it has a happy ending with the magical effects of a 2 cup sizes bigger bra purchased online and my friend kindly volunteered photographic proof!

Petite bra shopping success
Petite bra shopping success

Let’s look now at shopping to boost your assets.

The twists and turn of life do leave marks on the outside, and they are marks to be celebrated. Every wrinkle and scar tells a story of a life lived, as does every fluctuation in hip or bust size, every dimple of cellulite and every stretch mark. Love them all because they are a map of our journeys.

That’s not to say that occasionally we don’t require a little extra oomph, and I briefly felt like weeping on a recent occasion when a pre-children, pre-thirties photograph of my ready-to-party rack at 23 was uncovered…when I die, THAT is the one going in my obituary column!

Fitting guide

Small or large, you first need an accurate picture of your bra size and has a fab step by step guide you can check out.

Once you are certain of your size, there are ways to shop for it:

  • Look for ‘lightly lined’ styles. A heavily padded bra is not going to be helpful for small breasts but these have light padding all over the cup to create an even, natural shape.
  • Styles boasting the ability to create the illusion of a breast size increase of two cup sizes are now available which basically work with judicious padding and scooping.
  • Women with smaller busts often have issues with their straps sliding down. Halterneck styles can help with this.
  • Air-padded styles now available offer gentle support and moulding, for example the A la Folie Magic Air bra available from 32A cup and upwards via
  • Look for support in the back to prevent riding up. Racer back styles are great for this, or you can adapt other styles with racer back clips

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