Women the world over may soon have bras that fit better, thanks to researchers in Honk Kong who’ve come up with a brand new formula.
Bra designers currently use the formula devised in the US nearly 70 years ago in 1935 to design the underwear. According to that formula, the size of a woman’s breasts and therefore the bra size that she needs is decided by measuring under and across the bust, with "Alphabet" bras being the norm: A cup (youthful); B cup (average); C cup (large); and D cup (heavy).
However, the team from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University begs to differ, and states that not only is a "woman's breast is a very complex 3D geometry", but that the current sizing system may be "inappropriate in the categorisation of breast sizes for bras", reports the Telegraph.
They state that there are more than 100 key measurements necessary to produce the bar with the perfect fit, and that the sizes should be based on a new depth/width ratio - or DWR.
The researchers have now honed down their 100 measurements to 8 factors to describe the breast shape - overall build, breast volume, inner, outer and lower breast shape, height, and gradient and orientation.
The new DWR method, they say, will help them increase the number of existing bra sizes by between eight and 16 size combinations - offering more choice to women.
"This is the first time that a bra-sizing system protocol has been proposed based on 3D nude breast characteristics," they say.
"Besides the intimate apparel industry, the new breast sizing system may be applied in the medical field to identify the breast size for plastic surgery or other apparel product development," they add.
And the researchers add that a new system of measurement really is needed, for 70 per cent of women in Britain are wearing the wrong-sized bra.