I have re-written this post after my visit to a bra-fitter in Krakow.
I have got several questions about empty space at the bottom of the cup. In the meantime a bra fitter told me I was wearing my bras too low. I hadn´t noticed that the bottom of my cups were slightly empty (I am going to use my mirror lighting from above as an excuse), but the imprint the underwires leave on my skin shows clearly that the cup sits too low.
If you need to yank the cups higher grab the ends of one underwire with each hand and pull up, so that the bottom of the underwire sits flush with the breast. Repeat with the other underwire. Check how the bra lies now. The underwire should sit just below the breast, not on top of it!) Before the yanking you should have gathered everything in.
I am reminding myself to do this everytime I put on a bra. This is because I put on bras by hooking them in the front, much lower than my breasts; and when I turn them around I apparently don´t do a thorough job of pulling them up. Snug bands stay put where they are placed, so my bra stays slightly too low.
This step is also very important when trying on bras. It is possible that once you pull the cups up, the hole fit of the bra will change (usually for better). For example the inner edge of my Panache Tango II has stopped slicing into my breasts after I started wearing the cups higher.
If after yanking the cup higher you are not satisfied with the fit, check for these problems:
* Are the underwires too narrow ?
Giveway: a part of the breast under the armpit is escaping out of the bra. Get a bra with broader underwires.
* Are the underwires too long ?
Giveway: the tips of the underwire are poking into your armpit when you pull the bra up. This happens if you are petite, or your breasts are high on your ribcage. Get a bra that is lower cut, where the underwires don´t go so high up.
* Are the cups too small ?
Imagine trying to put a big orange inside a small glass: the orange will not go all the way in, and there will be empty space in the bottom of the glass: not because the glass is too big, but because it is too small. Giveway: the breasts are spilling over the top of the cup. Try on bigger cups.
* Is the bra model incompatible ?
Sometimes the cut of the bra doesn´t agree with the breast shape. Move on to a different model.
Sketch by Eternal*Voyageur