How to Flatter Your Small Bust

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With the media constantly pushing bigger and bigger breasts, small-busted women can feel a little left out. Some small-chested women are less concerned about mass media’s beauty ideals and simply want to look more proportionate. Others wants to fill out blouses without them sagging. Whatever your reason for wanting at least the illusion of a bigger bust, here are some tips for flattering this key area:

*Wear the correct bra size: Too many women wear the wrong bra size. Signs that you’re making the same mistake include: constantly falling down straps; straps that dig into the back; underwire that fits above the bottom of the breast; cups that flatten out the bust, especially in uncomfortable or painful ways; or pink marks, welts, or cuts in the skin after use. If you’ve noticed any of these signs, it’s time to buy a new bra. Go to a department store to get professionally measured (most will do it for free). Remember that, with the proper size, the breast should be between the shoulder and the elbow if your arm is straight down. The right bra will not only feel better, it will make all of your clothes fit better, too.

*Wear padded or molded bra: Bras should only be slightly padded, otherwise the padding will look too obvious and artificial. Never buy bra that makes you appear more than one cup size bigger. For instance, if you’re an A cup, don’t buy a bra that makes you seem like a C cup—aim for a bra that makes you appear like a large A cup or a B cup. If you dislike the look or feel of padded bras, buy molded bras instead. Molded bras shape out the bust beneath blouses, making it seem rounder. Avoid fill-in bras altogether as they don’t enlarger the look of your breasts at all.

*Wear patterns: Women with small busts generally have pear-shaped bodies, in which case the lower half of their figures is heavier than the upper half. To balance out the body, wear patterned blouses and solid colored pants and skirts. But don’t choose a huge pattern for your top, as it will consume your torso. Instead, choose a moderate-sized pattern—nothing too small, either, because that can actually minimize the appearance of your bust even more.

*Wear ruffles: Subtle ruffles add volume to a small bust, but don’t let giant ruffles overwhelm your frame. Look for little ruffles used as trim for the neckline or that fall directly under the bust or that run vertically down the center of the blouse. Avoid wearing ruffles on your pants, as they will bring the eye down to your lower half and away from your bust.

*Wear brighter tops: Choose brighter tops and darker bottoms, even if they’re both in the same color. If you want an all brown outfit, for example, put on a tan sweater and a chocolate-colored skirt. If you’re aiming for a black and white combination, be sure that your top is white and your bottom is black. This trick will make your body appear more proportionate, so your bust will seem fuller.

*Wear details at the bust: Anything centered on the bust will make it seem larger, which is why peasant tops are a small busted girl’s best friend. They cinch right under the bust, so it automatically looks bigger. Textured or reflective fabrics right on the bust also create an optical illusion. Buttons, embroidery, and other attention-getters are great ways to increase the appearance of a bust.

Making a small seem bigger involves several different strategies. The most important tip to remember, however, is this: don’t wear low-cut shirts! They will only emphasize what you don’t have. But collarbones can be just as alluring as cleavage, if not more so.  If you’re not proud of your collarbone, simply find another part of your body to show off, like your shoulders, legs, back, or behind.


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