Hi guys!! I know it’s been forever and a day since I last had a real post, but here I am, and hopefully things will get a bit more regular now that I’m getting on a more regular school/sleep/work schedule!
I know I’ve referred to my breasts as being high set before, and so have a lot of other bloggers, but I don’t think anyone’s ever actually described why they think of their breasts as high set. So this post is just about why I think of my breasts as being high set on my chest, and what problems result from that.
Okay, so that really poorly done paint drawing above is my attempt at drawing what my boobs look like braless (even though their shape is pretty different than the drawing, the placement is pretty accurate). As you can see, my naked breast’s apex is already at/slightly above where bra fitters say your apex should sit while in a properly fitted bra (generally agreed upon as halfway between your shoulder and elbow). The bottom of my root sits even higher, my root ends only about 3″ below my armpits.
So, as you may imagine, this leads to a lot of bra fit issues. Mostly commonly, I deal with having to tighten my straps a lot to get anything resembling lift. Because my boobs are so high set, most bras just sort of shape them into a not-pointy-or-un-bra-ed-looking shape, but don’t lift them higher than they actually sit naturally. I also have to tighten the straps a lot to even just get the wires to sit under my root at all. Having to wear my straps tightly means that if something says “half adjustable” I will most likely just not buy it. No point really, it almost definitely will not give me any lift at all.
Also, this means that I have to be careful about wires and wings that are even the slightest bit tall. Really, I need the shortest wires available. The only brands I’ve found that has wires short enough for me to be comfortable in them are Comexim and Kris Line. Ewa Michalak’s wires were comfortable in smaller sizes, but in larger sizes they got too tall (and they would argue that that’s because my cup is too big, but in the smaller sizes I quadboob if I tighten the straps enough to get any lift, so… yeah, there will probably be a post about that in the near future 😀 It’s a whole ‘nother topic). A lot of women loooooove a wider band, because it tends to be more comfortable, but for me a wider band means armpit chafing hell
This also means that cups are almost always too tall on me, or higher coverage than you’d expect. Since my root starts so high, the underwires have to sit that high, and the rest of the bra covers the corresponding area. This is the most annoying part for me, since, as I’ve said many times on this blog, my ideal bra is lowest coverage possible. I’m looking into Comexim for my next bra purchase (who knows when that’ll be though, I’m super poor), and when I do eventually order from them again, I will be getting lowered cups and lowered gore! I’m pretty excited about that.
So, if you often experience these problems (full coverage cups, having to super-tighten your straps to get any lift, wires always poking your armpits), then you might have high set breasts! These things can all also be symptoms of trying to compensate for too-big cups though, so do what I did: try wearing your bra around with the straps loosened as much as possible for a day (just pad out any extra space in the bra) and see how it goes! Even better would be to use a bra that is usually too small if you tighten the straps to your usual level, so that you don’t need to pad anything out.
I have the exact opposite problem with low-set breasts. Strangely, I get the full-coverage cup and over-tightening strap issues a bit, but it’s seems to be because of a lack of much “going on” on top for me; I’m sort of east-west and teardrop shaped naturally, so I have to work not to get lift (that’s easy enough) but to get cleavage that shows up “high enough” to show in clothing. Looking through Bratabase and other places for fit issues, I thought I was wearing my bra “too low,” but trying to hike it up only leads to the wires sitting painfully on top of breast tissue. Oh, boobs, why can’t you be simple things?
Ack *it seems
Yes I have the same problem! So frustrating! I’ve found the Claudette Dessous Mesh is nice and low in the wings, but pokes out of the top of my tank tops, and the Simone Perele 3D Caressense Plunge is ok in the wings but the straps are way too wide and fall off, and again it shows above the neckline of my tank tops 😦 These are the only two properly-fitted bras I own and it will be a while before I get more cause I’m not working right now. *sigh*. Thankfully I haven’t needed to wear tank tops much outside the house this summer.
“So, as you may imagine, this leads to a lot of bra fit issues. Mostly commonly, I deal with having to tighten my straps a lot to get anything resembling lift. Because my boobs are so high set, most bras just sort of shape them into a not-pointy-or-un-bra-ed-looking shape, but don’t lift them higher than they actually sit naturally.”
That’s pretty much why I’ve always assumed that they’re high-set. Also I have problems with bras pushing them down rather than lifting them. Oh and despite being 5’5″, which is a very average height, I can’t wear necklaces with a chain longer than 16inches (which is usually the shortest possible, for those who don’t know) as they disappear into my clothes even with a fairly low-cut (on me) neckline. My breasts start quite soon after my collar bone, which given that they’re 32FF(UK)s and therefore probably average if everyone was correctly fitted, is quite ridiculous!
It drives me crazy trying to find bras that lift. It’s as if either people with high-set breasts aren’t supposed to exist or don’t need a bra because the only reason anyone ever wears a bra is to make their breasts look high and perky, obviously /sarcasm. High ones are still uncomfortable for those of us who hate the feeling of the underside of our breasts touching our ribcage, and still waggle around and bounce and generally get in the way. I wish I had some buying tips to add, but I don’t.
I know mine are, they pretty much start at my collarbones, which is why that whole measuring above my boobs thing flat doesn’t work for me. I have trouble with full coverage more because I’m petite though–I top out at a whopping 5’2″. But I don’t have to tighten the straps too much, probably because I need them longer so that I can keep them scooched closer to my neck to minimize the chafing from where the strap meets the cup on my armpits.
So how much can you lower the gore and cups on Comexim? Because ideally, I’d really like to try a lowered full coverage style (to get the straps centered without having the bra show through everything but a turtleneck) with a plunge gore (less than 2″).
This is my problem! Cups always stab my armpits, and bands sit higher than they should, because the whole bra is higher
thanks for this, I’ve always wondered what constitutes as high-set
LIft should not come from straps, period. I mean, it doesn’t. Lift should come from the band and cup construction, and the straps are there to just distribute that force. If you are tightening your straps just to get lift, I think the bra doesn’t fit you.
The straps are also irrelevant to keeping the wires right under the root of your breast. That is also a fit issue: it’s about the right band and cup fit. So again, if you’re using the straps to keep the wires in place, the bra doesn’t fit.
I agree that these are definite fit issues and indicate the bra does not fit well. The problem I’m having is that since basically no bras are fitting me (across a variety of different sizes, bigger bands, smaller bands, bigger and smaller cups), I’m having to resort to the best of the worst and end up doing the things listed above (tightening straps, usually) to get a bra that will lift my boobs at all, and keep the band in place. The main problem I have is that since I have to wear my bra so high on my torso, the underwires are too long and if I don’t wear the straps tightly then the whole thing will get pushed down by my armpits sitting on the underwires.
A bit late on this, but as a pretty blatantly high-set gal, I suspect the reason that the symptoms of high-set breasts and too big cups are one in the same is because we have to order cups that are too large to compensate for the fact the cups just aren’t in the right place – half of the material of the cup just isn’t anywhere near actual breast tissue, so we end up with quad-boob in a cup that’s technically the right size. The cup that ‘fits’ is actually too big – causing the wires and straps to dig in, and the band to be a constant horror no matter what size we buy (I’ve gone as low as a 28 and still couldn’t get the band to stop sliding. This problem actually had nothing at all to do with the band size, and everything to do with my high-set placement.). It also ends up screwing up the placement of our breasts in the bra, as was stated, making lift a virtual impossibility. My breasts always felt like they were being shoved with brute force towards my armpits – not at all a flattering look, bit like a brick wall, really!
High set breasts are usually also close set, so a quick fix for the problem that works well for me is to perform a minor surgery on the bra that takes about 5 minutes – pinch and sew the center gore together. You’ll probably need to buy a back size larger as this surgery shortens the band by about an inch (or invest in an extender), and a cup size smaller. It does alter the look of the bra, but not too terribly much.
Removing the center gore moves the cups in and up to where high-set breasts actually sit. It pulls the underwire and straps out of the armpits, and the band up closer to the actual root of the breast. Now, all the fabric of the bra is actually encasing breast tissue- not just hanging out halfway down the ribcage or inching toward the spine, so you find the cup size you thought you were is actually bigger than the actual volume of the breast tissue. With the bra cups in the right place, lift is no longer an issue; the breasts no longer stretch towards the armpits, or try to hold long conversations with the kneecaps – they sit in the center of the chest where they belong!
I should also say that since this alters the positioning of the cups, this surgery doesn’t work on full cup bras – it’s great on balconettes, though.