Breast Support with Bras, Bustiers, Shapers and More
Think a bra is just a bra? Think again! Any woman who's gone through dozens of bras to find the perfect fit knows that there are endless ways to comfortably support and shape your breasts underneath all of your outfits.
If all your wardrobe contains is one or two types of bras, you're limiting yourself. But don't get overwhelmed about the different types of bras that are out there. When you break it down, most bras have just a few variances. Take a few minutes to learn about your options; then choose bras based on what you need for any occasion, any style, and any level of comfort.
1. Basic soft cup
This is your starting point for all bras. Soft cup bras provide support using the strength of the underband beneath your bust, along with comfortable straps. They provide minimal shaping, but enough lifting and support to feel comfortable in your casual attire.
2. Underwire Support
A step up from a soft cup is a bra that uses an underwire in the cups to provide more rigid shape and support. Some women find the rigidity of an underwire less comfortable than a soft cup, but the lasting shape of the bra cups is unbeatable.
For the best of both worlds, the Ahh Divine Underwire Leisure Bra by Rhonda Shear provides the shape of an underwire bra with the support of a soft cup, as the underwire is knitted.
Special occasions like weddings and formals require some special support. A bustier provides the "wow" factor for special occasions where you want a tall and slim torso and a boosted bust. A bustier is strapless because it carries the weight of the breasts in the body of the garment rather than in the straps.
The Formal Chic Ultra Lift Seamless Bustier by Va Bien lifts and shapes for any special occasion.
If there's one variable you need in your bra collection, it's different types of straps! There's no need to worry about showing your straps when you can select from racerback, criss-cross, halter, traditional and even strapless bra styles. Many bras also come with convertible straps for maximum versatility.
There's an amount of padding ideal for different attire and breast sizes. Use minimal padding to conceal the nipple and provide a smooth shape, like a t-shirt bra, or use lots of padding to enhance your cleavage, like a push-up bra.
6. Cup Coverage
Bra cups provide varying amounts of coverage. Full coverage cups offer the most comfort and support, while demi cups, which cover about half of the breast, produce the most cleavage and are ideal for low-cut styles.
7. Underbust Design
Some support and shaping garments don't cover the breasts at all! The Bodysuit by Amia is an example of a body shaper designed to be paired with the bra of your choice, so you can customize your ideal shape and support.
If you're wearing a form-fitting strappy or strapless top, it's almost impossible to wear a bra underneath without showing straps or seams. That's why quality tops will utilize a built-in shelf bra.
9. Bra Shaper
Sometimes you just want an all-in-one garment that supports your breasts, minimizes your midsection and shapes up your rear. The Wacoal Try A Little Slenderness Hidden Wire Body Briefer is a shaper that does it all comfortably.
10. Support Levels
Some bras are better than others at providing lasting support for a full day of wear. Full-support bras generally provide full breast coverage, use wide straps and are designed for everyday use. They may be more comfortable than push-ups, demi cups and various strap designs, particularly if you have a full bust. Sports bras are also very supportive and can make your exercise routine much more comfortable.