Tips on finding bras that fit and how to care for them

Triumph's head of design Asia shares how to make the most of your next intimate apparel purchase

Even as you stock up on new clothes, bags and shoes during the Chinese New Year period, do not neglect your undergarments.

Comfortable lingerie is definitely among the top 10 things that savvy office ladies should spend on.

What is next is to make sure you are caring for these delicates well, to make them worth the splurge.

Unfortunately, there are common mistakes that we do not know we are making when it comes to handling, washing and caring for bras.

Ms Uta Witting, the Triumph head of design Asia, shares more about lingerie shopping and care tips.

You are always buying bras in the same size

Do get professionally measured and fitted for your bra size once every six months. Otherwise, you could be wearing the wrong size without even knowing it.

Your bra size does fluctuate as you might lose or gain a bit of weight due to hormones, which in turn affects your size.

The shop assistants at speciality stores will be able to recommend suitable styles for you, based on your bust shape and size.

You buy from new brands online that you have not tried

Just like the size of clothes you shop for, bra sizes vary from brand to brand and are not really as uniformly standardised. So it is best to try the different styles on in-store before buying.

Besides getting the size wrong, you also risk buying a bra with an uncomfortable fit when you shop from an unfamiliar brand.

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You rub or squeeze your bras when you wash and dry them

You know the drill: Either hand-wash your bras or put them into a washing bag at a gentle cycle when you machine-wash them.

But you still risk ruining your bras when you do all that right and then decide to rub them vigorously, or wring and squeeze your bras in misguided attempts to dry them.

So handle them gently and always air-dry your pieces, a clothes dryer will stretch your bras out of shape.

You hang your bras by the cups or straps

This, too, will distort and damage their shape by stretching them.

Ms Witting advises hanging bras at the centre band, so that the water will drip out naturally when you air-dry your lingerie.

You forget to put your bras back in shape, after washing them

Make sure to shape your bras after you have washed and dried them. Smoothen the shape by gently brushing your fingers in an outward motion over the fabric from the cups to the back band.

You picked white to wear as your 'invisible' bra

Contrary to popular belief, a white bra is not the best "invisible" everyday bra - this is why your bra is still showing under your dress or shirt.

To find the best bra for you that is close to a nude shade, shop for pieces in the colour that best matches your skin tone.

You use your old bras for too long

Bras do have use-by dates, especially if you are wearing the same few ones weekly.

You should shop for these bras as often as you get measured and fitted for your size, depending on how often you wear and re-wear the same bras.

This article was first published in Her World Online (