After discussing our store demographics as well as the best-selling band sizes, today we’re examining cup sizes. Keep in mind, cup size means nothing without a band to give it context, but for the purposes of our analysis, I want to compare how sales across cup sizes differ. Below is a graph for the sales distribution of each cup size. (Note: For my discussion, I will refer to cup sizes using the UK sizing system.)
Observations & Notes:
- Cup sizes E through G account for over 62% of our sales, down 3% from last year, and if we include D and DD cups, the number jumps to 75%, also down from last year.
- The GG+ cup sizes account for over 22% of our sales, up a percent from last year.
- Traditional mainstream cup sizes A-DDD/E account for nearly 31% of our total sales.
- Best-selling cup sizes E-G are all within 1% of each other with the UK F cup (US G) edging out the competition.
The A-DDD/E Cup Sizes
I have mentioned before that we focused the bulk of our initial inventory on DD+ sizes so as not to overlap too much with nearby Victoria’s Secret; however, after the store gained momentum and a foothold in the area, we saw a surge in customers wanting a greater selection in the B-DD market. We responded by expanding our inventory, and I think the increase in sales this year positively reflects the decision. Once we became known as “the bra store” rather than “the bra store for big boobs,” our customer base diversified to include a range of sizes, all of which needed better support garments. While the initial stigma was difficult to overcome, I think the fact nearly one third of our sales derives from A-DDD cup sizes signals it as a smart business strategy. Incorporating more cup sizes from established brands like Natori and Wacoal complemented new inventory from b.tempt’d and Affinitas to create a unique mix of well-fitting basics and fashion styles. However, one of the groups not adequately represented in this analysis are the women we have not been able to help. Despite my best efforts to serve the needs of all women, the shop does have a deficit, specifically women wearing 40-44 band sizes and A-C cups. The entire market is underdeveloped with none of our present manufacturers addressing it properly, and we’re investigating alternatives for next year. Were we able to satisfy the needs of these women, I think the A-C cup size segment would be even stronger.
GG+ Cup sizes
Our sales for GG+ cups has always been unpredictable. It’s not unusual to go a couple weeks without seeing anyone in this size and then have three women wearing a 34H walk in on the same day. However, over the least two years, sales have continued to grow, and with improved options available from manufacturers, we’re seeing these customers coming back for basics in addition to fun fashion styles. Bringing in fresh Cleo styles like Lily and Ellis as well as the stellar Panache Envy were a great start to growing sales, but once we started stocking the amazing Comexim, the influx of orders skyrocketed. In fact, I predict next year we’ll see even more sales in this category on account of both the availability of Cleo Marcie basics as well as special orders for Comexim and Anna Pardal.
Clearly, the sizes we sell the most fall within the standard D-G cup size range, which intuitively makes sense. Most dress patterns allow for a 5 to 9″ difference between waist and bust—an allowance in line with the D-G market. What interests me while examining this year’s statistics is how close in percentage all of the best selling cup sizes are. A less than 1% difference in sales is a stark change from our first year where certain cup sizes would overshadow the others. As the years have gone by, these sizes have slowly equalized, and I anticipate they will stay this way in the future too.
D Cups are Huge
Every week, we continue to battle the misinformation that cup size indicates breast size. Some women have gone so far as to say they need a breast reduction because they went from a 38DD cup to a 32FF cup. I hope these statistics will show that D+ cups are quite common, and no one should feel bad about their cup size. It’s just a letter after all.