6 Bra Buying Hacks From An Ex-Victoria's Secret Employee - That Cheap Bitch

6 Bra Buying Hacks From An Ex-Victoria’s Secret Employee

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

Buying bras can be a traumatic experience. They’re not cheap. There are five million different types with weird bells and whistles. How do you know if you’re in the right size? What is so wondrous about a Wonderbra?  Does bra fitting involve a stranger looking at my melons?!





Take a deep breath and chill the f**k out. Today we’re bringing you 5 bra buying hacks from an ex-Victoria’s Secret employee.


Surprise! It’s me!

I worked there for 3 years in college, so I’m pretty much a bra whisperer.

Let’s begin with the first step on your journey to bra zen.

1. Get sized by a professional.

Even if you don’t plan on buying a bra from VS, (because yes, I know, it’s ridonkulously expensive) next time you pass by a store, head to the dressing rooms and asked to get fitted. Victoria’s Secret trains specific employees to be Bra Specialists, who spend all day every day in the dressing rooms measuring ladies for boulder holders. Bra fitting is done over your shirt with a tape measure, so no… no strangers will be checking out your chest region.

Tell the bra specialists what you’re looking for (push up? unlined? full coverage?) and try on her suggestions.

Now you’re thinking, “BUT EMILY!!! I DON’T WANT TO BUY A VICTORIA’S SECRET BRA SO WHY AM I TRYING THEM ON?!” Because bra fitting isn’t a science. She may measure you as a 34C, but your baggy sweatshirt was covering up your 34D’s. Save time and effort by figuring out your exact size now and skipping on the guess work later. On that note…

2. Get what you need and get out.

Before you leave, ask for a fit card. The Bra Specialist will write down your size and which styles you liked the most. The cards include the VS brand style names, so if you really liked a lightly lined, full coverage bra, write these details down next to the brand name.

Then, you can take this information to your store of choice and buy the correct size and style at a lower price.

3. Shop online.

Victoria’s Secret stores only clearance out their merchandise twice a year: once in the early summer and once after the Holidays. If you try on a bra in-store but want to save some cash, check the VS website for discontinued colors and patterns. FYI, you won’t find neutral color bras (nude, white, black) on clearance, both in-store or online, unless the style has been discontinued. If you’re holding your breath for a “Very Sexy” brand bra in nude for $25, you’re going to be waiting a very, very long time.

Most department stores don’t carry the size selection of bras that VS does, or at least not in-store. If you’re a hard-to-find size,  shop online. You’ll save gas money/bus fare/time if you avoid running from department store to department store looking for a size they probably don’t carry.

4. Don’t skimp.

Okay, here’s my brand loyalty plug. I wasn’t paid to say this, it’s just my honest opinion. Victoria’s Secret bras, or bras from any specialty retailer, will fit better and last longer than bras from discount stores like Target, Kohl’s, wherever. Shop at the semi-annual sale, shop online, make sure you’re in the right size, all those things. But remember that you get what you pay for. So if you’re having some serious bra problems, just invest in a good bra and treat yo’ self.

5. If you’re unhappy, bring it back.

Another plus of shopping at bra-specific stores is excellent customer service. Always keep your receipts! Even if you wear a Victoria’s Secret bra every day for 2 weeks, if you think you’ve been incorrectly fitted, they’ll refund you or let you exchange it for the right bra, with you receipt. If you don’t keep your receipt, they’ll still give you $15.99 towards a new bra. Lose a detachable strap? Go back, ask for a new one, and they’ll give it to you.

6. Brand loyalty is key.

Whether your bra cost $50 from VS, $200 from Bloomingdales, or $10 from Target, find a bra you like and stick with it. Write down where you bought it, write down the brand name, and go back to ol’ faithful every time you need a new boob wardrobe.

Do you have any bra shopping hacks? Let me know in the comments.

  • Amanda

    Might be TMI but… after I had my twinzies, bf them, and weaned them, MY twins were so different. I am so glad I broke down and got a fitting! Now, it’s good to know I can save $ on the neon, leopard, colored ones online!

    • obsessed with the “twins” pun in this comment.

  • As a former Bravissimo employee (& a completely natural 30/32FF) I firmly believe that the correct bra size should be a top priority for every woman & completely agree with getting a professional fitting (although not over a shirt with a tape measure). Check out Bravissimo’s Boob School to learn the basics of the best bra fit: http://www.bravissimo.com/boob-school/class/#1

    + take a peek at their fab fitting videos & bra style guides for loads of helpful tips: http://www.bravissimo.com/perfectfit/

  • I nominated you for the ‘one lovely blog’ award 🙂

  • Lisa Jordan

    I’ve been at VS for two years now and you are 110% right about every single thing you said!!! One thing I will add is the reason they’re so expensive is because they are one of the longest lasting bras you will EVER wear… That is if u wash them correctly!!!!! I’ve had my body by Victoria’s for over two years and I’m still rockin them!! I tell my customers all the time how amazing our bras are and that’s just my honest opinion!

    • Zee

      How do you properly wash them ?

      • ang

        Handwash. I’m pretty sure all the labels say the same.

  • Jessica Sant

    I really have to disagree here. I got fitted at VS recently. They sized me one band size down, and two cup sizes up from what I’ve been wearing for around 4-5 years now. I was expecting I’d only need to go up a cup size because of some recent weight gain. I went along with the associate, went through the fitting and bought a 36DDD bra. I will be returning it today because it is gnawing my skin under my bust to the point I want to inhale and not exhale at all. Sheer pain. It’s too tight even on the loosest hook. I am certain that I simply needed to move from a 38D to 38DD, and don’t appreciate that I was upselled a product that uncomfortable. I doubt I will ever buy a bra from VS because of this ever again.

  • PinkPipe

    I prefer the A Bra That Fits calculator that allows you to measure at home. When I have gone in person to get fitted, the online calculator was dead on with what the bra fitter decided on. I wear a 38 B, so bras are kind of hard to find if I don’t shop online, at Nordstrom, or a bra boutique. I really like the fit and styles that Wacoal makes, and I prefer unlined, mesh, underwire bras especially during the super hot summers we have here. Boob sweat be damned!