Monday, October 29, 2012

5 Reasons Your Bra Straps Slip

One of the most common problems we see when doing Online Bra Size Consultations for our clients is slipping straps. To help you solve this irritating bra issue here are the top four causes of slipping bra straps.

When you're wearing the correct band size your straps will sit closer together on your band and on your shoulders

1. Your Band is Too Big
If your bra band is more than a couple of inches bigger than your ribcage measurement then the chances are your band is loose enough that it can ride up your back and cause your straps to slip off your shoulders. The proportions of a bra with a bigger band can add to the problem too. For example, even though the cup volume on a 38E is the same as the cup volume on a 32G the straps are slightly closer together on the 32 band than on the 38 band. It's worth checking that your band size is close to your ribcage measurement as this could be the source of your slipping straps.

Solution: Smaller bra band size. Remember you will have to increase your cup size when you reduce your band size so that you don't lose cup volume.

You can see that the strap isn't flush against the body because the breast is lifting the strap.

2. Your Cups are Too Small
Rather than slipping off your shoulders your straps may be 'popping' off your shoulders. If your cups are too small then you have rogue boob spilling out at the top of your cups and this can interfere with how your straps lie against your body. Your straps should lie flat against your body and over your shoulder but if there's stray boob wedging itself under the strap then it can cause your straps to 'pop' off your shoulders. If you have breast tissue spilling at the top, sides (under the armpit) or underneath your cups then this could be the cause of your slipping straps.

Solution: Larger cup. You may be able to keep your same band size and simply increase your cup size. However, you may discover that you need a slightly smaller band once all of your boob is in your cups as some of your breast tissue may have been living in your band rather than the cup. If in doubt we can help you find your best size with a free online size consultation.

3. Your Cups are Too Big
If you have lost some breast volume or your bra cups have stretched out over time then your cups can become too big for you. When you fill your bra cups your breast anchors the cup into place. When part of the cup is empty the cup can move around causing your straps to slip off your shoulders.

Solution: Smaller cup. You will most likely be able to keep your same band size (if you are comfortable in that size and your band doesn't ride up) but reduce your cup size.

If you have a short torso or high set breasts then bras with shorter wires will keep your straps in the right place.

4. Your Bra is Designed for Taller Women
If you are under 5ft 5" (or you have high set breasts) you may find that no matter what size you try your bra straps still slip off your shoulders. This is because the wires are too long for your torso or the height of your breasts so the straps don't sit in the right place. 

Solution: Look for bras with shorter wires that are proportional to your torso length (or breast height).
The racer clip on Panache Sports bra is ideal for sloping shoulders

5. Sloping and Narrow Shoulders
Straps can slip off narrow and sloping shoulders even when you're in the right size so style is really important.

Solution: Look for styles where the straps are set closer together or have a V back where the straps form a V at the back to prevent slipping.  Bras with racer clip backs (like the Panache sports bra above) are also a great option for narrow or sloping shoulders.

See Also: Bras for Narrow and Sloping Shoulders

As well as checking these five tips it's worth making sure you have tightened your bra straps so that your straps are flat against your body but not digging into your shoulders. Bra straps will lengthen as you wear your bra so they need to be adjusted regularly to fit your height. If your band rides up when you shorten your straps then your bra may be old or you need a smaller band size.

Besides finding your best bra size it's equally important to find your best bra styles that compliment your body and breast shape. Finding your best style can eliminate the annoying slipping straps forever! xx


  1. I think I can add #6 to the list: a plunge bra constructed for cleavage + firm wide/side full breasts (cups are pushed down and to the sides, instead of cups pushing breasts up and to the center, so straps become further apart then they should be).

  2. thanx for the wonderful article...realy informative especially since i have experienced these problems...keep up the good work and god bless you

    1. Thank you for being so encouraging Somayya xx

  3. I knew it! I'm just too tiny!

    The teardrop shape cup tends to be full coverage, no? Can you recommend any styles where the strap attaches closer in like that, but are appropriate for 28GG+ full on bottom breasts?

    1. Teardrop shapes can be fuller coverage, however, the Claudette bras have really impressed me with their lighter designs that are petite friendly. Claudette doesn't yet do 28 bands or GG+ but I think they will soon.

      There still isn't a go to brand that is good for shorter women with small bands and larger cups but it's something we push our manufacturers about regularly because it's SO needed in the marketplace. Some brands are just too wide for shorter women xx