Let's talk about Bra style & how not every bra is for every shirt (I'm looking at you friend)!
We have so much going on as women, we're basically superheroes.
Our bras are supposed to hold up our superhero sidekicks... ALL THE TIME. Right? So why are we expecting one bra to do the work of 7 bras? Why do we always just want the one bra to do everything? Why do we expect one $40-72 bra to last 7 years?
One bra does not every shirt make! If you take a real look at your wardrobe most women and even men have a different style of shirt for different occasions.
In comes our superhero bra styles. Let's discuss them from least coverage to most coverage:
- the Bralette -
It just sounds cute doesn't it?! That's because it is! Its a non-wired bra with no padding or molded cups. Its long been known to be made for those of us who aren't so full in the cup. Now many brands have made strides and are getting rid of that stigma, and women up to a G can wear a bralette if they so choose.
When to wear this: Anytime! Especially if you want coverage in a top that also displays the fabric of your bralette. A bralette screams "flirty and cute".
- the Demi & the Balconette-
In this group you have several versions that I will put together because they all serve the same purpose: low cut and sexy.
A demi is a bra with the straps set almost to the edge of your shoulder blade (which means if you have rounded shoulders, the straps will almost certainly drive you insane unless you add a strap clip in the back to help keep it in place) and cups that are typically half shaped and are horizontal to the bust line.
The balconette (not to be confused with a balcony which is another shape in the same family) is a low cut demi bra, which I call a "straight-no-chaser". It just cuts straight across and if you sneeze your nipple has a 50% chance of popping out.
When to wear this: Anytime that calls for cleavage or when you want to feel a bit va-va voom
- the Strapless & Bandeau -
The strapless bra aka the bra that attempts to defy gravity for those pesky articles of clothing that just need it.
When to wear this: Any outfit that bra straps ruin the look of...
- the Push Up -
A push-up bra is essential for anyone who literally wants a lift or when one wants a helping hand for that special date night top/dress. My favorite push-up of all time is now discontinued by Le Mystere. However there are some of us who do not want to wear a push-up bra as we are quite busty enough to wear any bra and it still looks like a push-up bra.
When to wear this: *see demi/balconette*
- the Plunge -
Plunge is not to be mistaken with her sister the push-up bra. A plunge bra typically has cups that form a deep V at the center of a bra.
When to wear this: Any top or dress with a deep V neckline!
- the T-Shirt -
The classic of all classics. Almost any person who walks into a lingerie shop or department store is looking for the ubiquitous "smooth under my shirt doesn't show my nipples or have any lines" type of bra.
The t-shirt is a smooth bra which essentially is a bra that you feel comfortable in while wearing your T-shirt or fitted top.
When to wear this: Anytime you don't want seams, lace or nipples making an appearance in a top.
- the Full Cup -
The full coverage bra is self-explanatory. It provides full coverage for almost the entire breast and depending on the bra manufacturer and the style almost probably to your armpits and back.
When to wear this: Anytime you want to feel super secure! Sometimes this bra becomes a busty girl's bff.
- the Minimizer -
A minimizer are meant to minimize the look of the size of your breast tissue. They are typically quite full coverage with rigid fabric. In all of our time fitting, we've mostly found that most minimizers push your breast tissue east and west towards your arms and flatten or compress in the middle. We've also found that in a minimizer while you may feel smaller tends to make you look bigger because of the fabric, placement of the wire and the bra design overall. That's not to say that they haven't improved over the years! There are some who live in and love their minimizers.
When to wear this: Anytime you want. Most minimizers out there are marketed as full coverage everyday bras.
- the Sports/Active-
The sports bra is a necessity if you are doing any kind of working out or moderate daily activity that works up a sweat . It is basically your "anytime I know I'm going to sweat and my breast tissue is going to move" bra. All of the different brands, styles and purposes means this is your garden bra, your running bra, your spin class bra, your dance class bra, your yoga class bra, etc. Some sports bras even have the function of silver nitrate, this is important to people for post-surgical purposes. My favorite sports bra allows me to jump up and down and my breast tissue does not hurt, slap me in the face, bounce on my belly or have too much friction.
When to wear this: *see above*