Thursday, 26 Jul, 2007 Health & Fitness

Better Bras for Women - Hong-Kong Researchers Say They Did It


In 1935 US fashion designers have established a system for bra sizes. This system is used up until now for making underwear for women. The system was based only upon two main measurements - under the breast and over it. However, researchers from Hong-Kong developed an absolutely new system for measuring breast, which should widen the choice for bra sizes. Researchers said that this new mathematically found algorithm would make underwear more comfortable and would make the clothes look and feel better. Despite the direction towards Chinese women, the research is due to help women worldwide to wear more comfortable bras, if the new standard proves to be more efficient.

The researchers claim that over 100 measurements are necessary to make a perfect bra, which would be like a second skin and would not cause any discomfort. Yet the entire system, suggested by Hong-Kong researchers could be shrunk to one factor - width and length correlation.

An article in the International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, published by a team of researchers from Hong-Kong Polytechnic University, claimed that the geometry of a woman's breast was very complex and should be measured in 3 dimensions. This was the main reason the researchers suggested the bra size standard used today was inappropriate for a bra to fit perfectly. Researches showed that only in Britain 70% women suffer from bras of inappropriate sizes.

In the current research 456 Chinese women agreed to have their breasts scanned. During these tests 100 measurements proved to be most important in describing a woman's breast. Researchers laid emphasis on such features of a woman's body as peculiarities of the thoracic cage, breast size, its height and plumpness and even the shape of the bra itself.

The bra size standard used today consists of four letters of the alphabet: A - for young women, and small breasts' size, B - for mid size breasts, C - for big size breasts, D - for very big sized breasts. Women with different types of thoracic cage should wear different sizes of bra, the researchers claim. The size of the bra can be not only 34 B, but 36 A or 32 C. Yet today women can wear only one size, even if it does not fit perfectly the size of their breasts. The new study, however, claims to widen the choice of bras' sizes from 8 to 16.

According to Hong-Kong scientists the new measurements' system will be of great help not only in the clothes industry, providing women with better bras, but in medicine and surgery. The new 3D breast scanning could provide surgeons and medics with vital information about the patient's breast shape, which could be used either for plastic surgery or for making better breast implants.

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