The bra you wear is essential to your comfort, confidence, and breast health, which is why it’s vital to know your exact measurements. You spend too much of your time wearing a bra to invest in something uncomfortable or poorly fitted. In addition to figuring out your precise bust size, it helps to know about all the different types of bras available to you.
The Demi Cup
A demi cup bra covers up about half of the breast. It usually includes underwire, resulting in its signature lift. Demi cups create cleavage by lifting and pushing out your breasts. This type of bra is an ideal fit for most, but not all, breast sizes. Women with larger chests may not receive the support they need.
Push-up bras are similar to demi cups, except that they offer more coverage and they have a layer of padding. Underwire and wide sides support larger breasts, give them shape, and lift them toward the center of the chest. The padding and the fit flatter small breasts, as well. Women who have asymmetrical breasts benefit from a push-up bra with removable padding.
Balconette bras are supportive but still sexy. The style is comparable to the demi cup, but it covers more of the breast and only bares the top half. Its shelf-style silhouette and the band around the bottom combine to push the breasts upward, as opposed to pushing them toward the center.
The Padded Bra
It’s possible to find a bra with a little oomph that doesn’t fit like a push-up bra. There are padded bras with and without underwire. Browse for styles that lift breasts toward the center or push them forward.
The Full Cup
Full cup bras are powerhouses. In the universe of lingerie, they are super-heroines. The cups contain the entire breast. The straps and sides are wide for comfort and structure. Some have underwire, while others don’t. They come in lace, satin, and cotton, among other materials.
The Sports Bra
Sports bras are protective as well as supportive. Designed to fit snugly, they prevent your breasts from bouncing painfully during exercise and other physical activities, since too much vigorous movement can damage your breasts. You can find sports bras in a variety of fabrics, ranging from cotton to moisture-wicking materials that absorb sweat and keep you cool. Most of them slip over your head, but some have hooks in the front or back.
The Strapless Bra
Almost every woman knows what it’s like to wear a dress or top that allows her bra straps to be seen, and there are many types of outfits that call for strapless bras. It’s generally best to look for a strapless bra with underwire to hold up the breasts. You can also find them with and without padding.
The Deep Plunge
Deeply plunging bras ooze sex appeal, but they’re also flattering and impressively supportive. Sweetheart necklines and plunging designs require a similarly designed bra that won’t reveal itself beneath your clothing. Look for bras with a deep dip between the cups. Opt for a padded plunging bra so that gravity doesn’t play any tricks on you.
The Adhesive Bra
Adhesive bras are just two cups connected by a strip in the middle. They’re most often made of silicone, and they lack straps, sides, and a back. The style is ideal for revealing outfits or tightly fitted items that would otherwise show the shape of a bra. It’s the bra to choose when a strapless piece doesn’t quite work. Because of the design, however, it’s better suited to women with smaller breasts.
The Nursing Bra
Every new mother who chooses to nurse needs a nursing bra that feels soft against her skin, supports her breasts, and unhooks easily. The convenience of opening a flap to nurse is priceless, particularly in public. Focus on finding a bra that promises flexible sizing so that it will accommodate the fluctuating shapes of your breasts.
The Minimizing Bra
Minimizing bras are ideal for larger breasted women who want to make their chests appear smaller. The style offers full coverage, but the fit is tighter. It presses against the chest and redistributes the breast tissue, making the breasts appear flatter and smaller.
For every type of breast, there is a bra out there. It’s imperative to be professionally fitted for a bra to ensure that the bust and cup measurements are correct. Often, uncomfortable fits, slipping straps, and overflowing cups are due to an ill-fitting bra, which can also cause back pain. Once you know your proper size, you can find your favorite type of bra at JCPenney.