How to Put on a Bra

My friend Katherine writes a series called Uncomfortable Truths that is positively brilliant. I love this feature so much that I might have contributed my own not-so-comfortable facts once or twice.


In a recent installment, she discovered a fascinating bit of information about the way we go about restraining ourselves.

Katherine hooks her bra backwards (in the front) and upside down, then swings it around and places it where it should go. She assumed everyone else did it “correctly”, aka putting their arms through and hooking it in the back.

I am Katherine’s Normal – I put my arms through and hook in the back. I also assumed everyone did it “correctly,” aka like me.

However, it quickly became evident through the comments on the post that there are many more women in the world like Katherine than Katherine or I would have thought.

(Thereby nullifying her confession as an Uncomfortable Truth – she owes us all one extra next time.)

I had to know the stats. So I tackled the research project to find the truth in this pressing matter, using the highest of scientific methods: Facebook.

I received 146 responses and the data was shocking.

Here’s a broad overview.

Bra Graph Split

That’s right, ladies, we have been lifted and separated.

Who would have thought that we were a nation divided between those who needed to see the clasps and those who did not?

Furthermore, if you take out the one percent of Hook-In-Backers who get their husband to do the hooking, we are nearly an even split.

(Also. Whose husband is always around when they’re putting on their bras? Are they just magnetically drawn to this procedure? Do they have an app that keeps them abreast of this need? Do they linger a few extra minutes before heading to work so that they can be a part of the brocess?)

(Maybe I’m just jealous because I don’t even see my husband in the mornings. No – wait – I’m not jealous – I get to sleep in instead.)

We did, however, rack up a few jugs of outliers, as well as some specifics that must be addressed.

For instance, the number of Backwardsers were split between whether they were just backwards or backwards and upside down.

And then there were a few Hook-in-backers that hooked with it upside down, which seemed to puzzle the rest of the respondents.

(But far be it from us to be knockers of someone else’s technique.)

And although we didn’t have anyone that hooked then stepped into their bra (we all have hips that preclude such), there were people who hooked before pulling the bras over their head…and a couple that hooked at waist level then pulled it up.

Here is the complete statitstical breakdown:

Bra Graph

Now it must be noted that the decision on how to put on one’s bra is a grave and important one to make. Several respondents admitted to getting strained muscles or sprained wrists from using the wrong method, and a broken toe is not out of the question. Although many respondents said that they put on their bras “just like Mom taught”, make sure that your Mom taught you a method that will not maim your body.

I hope this has been enlightening. And please – weigh your girls in below.

34 thoughts on “One Girl at a Time.

  1. I’m really having trouble wrapping my head around the “upside down” ones.

    I have occasionally hooked my bras in the front , but I can’t quite understand what purpose doing it upside down would serve. *puzzles*

  2. I hook mine in the front and spins it around like Katherine simply because I admit I can’t reach around to hook it in the back. I would have to ask for someone to help and that ain’t happening. I am plus size woman (not just in my weight) so don’t know if that is a factor.

  3. I’m with Renita…why upside down? :)

    I do it in the back….but I recently bought a racer-back bra with the hook in front. It’s really nice!

    PS – Based on this blog post, I immediately subscribed to Katherine’s blog. Y’all are FUNNY!

  4. I’ve always hooked in back for as long as I can remember. Then I found a front closure Spanx bra. Not only does it hook in front, but there are no strap adjustments to be made. (I admit my husband does help even the girls up in my other bras when needed).

    Also, do all of you actually wear a bra e.v.e.r.y. day? If you factor in those of us who just let things fall where they may, I bet we are a dead even split.

    1. I thinks the choice to wear a bra every day has to do with breast size. I have “D”‘s” so I would never go without!

    2. I do unless I’m not leaving the house. I can’t imagine not wearing one…I think I’d feel like I was in one of those “I’m naked in public” dreams if I did.

  5. Hilarious Rachel!
    I hook in the back. How on earth do you hook upside down? & Mary Margaret, I wear one every day, & a sports bra around the house. Once they get to a certain size, it’s too uncomfortable not to.

  6. I had actually been waiting for the results of your survey, believe it or not. It just never occurred to me that there were other ways to put on a bra. As a matter of fact, I actually had to stop and think about how a couple of the options would work. I am SO glad that there are other people besides me who find this all incredibly curious and interesting!

  7. Ha! Loved this and am definitely sharing with my girlfriends! I personally will do the backwards upside down if wearing a standard hooking bra. That being said, I prefer to buy/wear front clasping bras. I feel they fit better and they’re my go-to. When I put on a regular bra I feel like I’m killing the lifespan of the band due to the method I use to put it on….Just a thought!

    Thanks again for sharing!

  8. I wonder if the larger the assets, the different the method?

    I’m rather well endowed. I hook backwards and upside down. Then I spin it around, and pull it right side up so the ladies fall into the cups while pulling up the straps. (If it wasn’t upside down, the ladies would get in the way.)

    I’ve tried hooking behind my back before, but most of my bras have 3 or even 4 hooks, and it’s too hard to find them all in the right spot. And then there’s more front adjustment needed to get everything situated.

    1. Did your Dad post this? I was scared to watch considering the topic of this post. So I reluctantly clicked the you-tube link. :)

  9. Honestly, I’m flabbergasted. I seriously had no idea that everyone didn’t do upside down and backwards. I mean, is that not in the manual of puberty a la “Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret?” I swear I think it is in there. I’m disturbed. Wow. I need to go talk to my daughters right now and find out what they do because I didn’t teach them. I just thought it was default. Shock. Awe. I will not sleep tonight thinking about this. Wow.

  10. Wow, who knew. I lol’d at the choice in vocabulary throughout this post- did you get any hubby help with those?

  11. I hook in back, at the waist, then pull it up and put my arms through. Also, my husband volunteers to assist anytime he is in the room and sees me even so much as glance at my bra rack. (haha. rack.) A-hem…anyway, because I wear a ridiculous cup size, I also refuse to wear *real* bras unless I am leaving the house. At home I employ wireless, claspless, sports type bras.

  12. Great Post! This is hilarious. I totally agree with Michelle Hartz. I think size matters. My assets are not really assets and don’t get in the way of anything because they are almost non-existent. Therefore I just stick my arms through and hook in the back.
    And… how do you remove?! I refuse to undress (or dress) in front of anyone!! I unhook while fully clothed and pull my straps off and then pull through the arm of my t-shirt.

  13. I’m a backwards and upside down-er myself.

    I love Chris’ explanation for ladies undergarments in your previous post :)

  14. Lol, loved all the puns! I didn’t weigh in on FB because I rarely wear a “real” bra. I’ve never been overly endowed to begin with and now with my post-nursingx3 (aka: shrunk) “girls” I wear a sports bra-type every day. The only time I wear my “real” bra (yes, I have ONE Victoria’s secret under-wire bra) is on Sundays. I’ve tried all the methods, but if I’m in a hurry its just an old-fashioned hook in the back. Thanks for the indepth study! :)

  15. Can’t figure out backwards and upside down……I’ve always just put arms in , hooked in back. I’m going to try backwards and upside down just to figure it out!

  16. I tried a bra that hooks in the front this month, following the first wave of conversations about this topic. So I put my right arm through, then try to bring it around and put my left arm through and hook it in the front. But somehow the bra gets twisted behind my back on the way around to my left side, before I can get my left arm through it. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME? I’m like a bra idiot.

  17. I guess I’m in the “normal” category although I don’t think those contraptions are in the least bit normal. My hubs has said on more than one occasion while watching me attempt the maneuver, “I am SO gad I’m not a woman”.
    Hey Rachel, have you ever thought about doing a bra equivalent of the mom jeans? I think it would be a hoot.

    1. I have not.


      The other day, I was in the drive-thru at Chick-Fil-A, as I spend half my life, and this lady and her husband and small children were walking toward me. At first glance, I was like “Oh. Huh. She’s mighty pregnant.” Then I was like, “WOW. She is carrying that baby pretty high.” Then I was like “OHDEARCRAP THOSE ARE HER BOOBS.”

      That’s right. Her boobs were SO big…and SO low…and SO uniboobed…that I thought she was pregnant.

      Ladies, this should not be so.

      (In her defense her husband was carrying an infant seat. So those could’ve been nursing boobs. BUT STILL.)

  18. O.M.G.

    This was just too funny for me NOT to comment. Though I choose not to wear a bra…(for obvious reasons)…I will give the male perspective, or at least this male’s perspective. Though I would help my wife put hers on, she has never asked. She had probably never thought to ask. Probably because I tend to enjoy the absence of it, I am more accustomed in the help of removal.

    Thank you so much for the laughs. The comments were just as good as the post itself.

    I hope this post helped all the ladies who struggle with which method is best.

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