Types of Bras: 11 Essential Styles Every Woman Should Know

With more #bra types to choose from than ever before, shopping for the right fit, style, and features can be a little bit overwhelming. It’s a good bet that regardless of your shape, size, or the specific features you’re looking for, there are bras to fit your needs. But how do you find the best bra?

If the choice of bra styles and variations seems to have multiplied since the last time you shopped, you’re probably not imagining things. If you happen to be looking for a sports bra you’ll see compression styles, those with encapsulated cups, criss-cross straps, racerback models, pullovers, and more.

Do you need a seamless bra that will disappear under clingy tops or fabrics? Did you know that a plunge bra isn’t just for wearing under low-cut tops and dresses? (If your breasts are larger, this kind of bra can lift you in a way that may be better - and more subtle - than a pushup bra).

What about that padded bra that promises to look natural - and when might you want to wear a corset bra? It’s taken decades, but designers have started paying attention to women's needs, wants, and desires when it comes to bras. We’ve got some advice to help you find the best bra for your needs.

What Are The Different Types of Bras

Types of Bras

#1 Shaping Bra

This trending and innovative bra type are often made with structured foam cups that deliver comfortable control and natural lift and shaping. Shaping bras also smooths the back and sides, leaving you with a perfectly sculpted chest under any outfit.

#2 Wire-Free Bra

Undeniably one of the comfiest bras you’ll ever own. Wire-free bras are the perfect bras to wear if you don’t like wearing one but you have to. They support and lift your chest without the painful restrictive wires. They are ideal to wear under any outfit, on any occasion.

#3 Convertible Bra

Convertible bras are probably the most versatile bras one can own because of their ability to be styled in many different ways. Most convertible bras come with detachable straps, if not, moveable so you can transform them into a halter, criss-cross, racerback, or even strapless—which perfectly fits hard-to-wear dresses.

#4 Bralette

Bralettes are lightweight and non-wired bras that are primarily designed for comfort. They are often made of soft and breathable fabric that is gentle on the skin while still delivering light support. Perfect to wear for lounging in and running errands.

#5 Sports Bra

Sports bras are every women’s workout partner. They are designed with supportive straps and structured cups to protect the breasts from pain and discomfort during physical activities. Sports bras have become so popular that most women wear them to achieve a comfy athleisure look.

#6 Side Support Bra

You might have already guessed what this bra is for from its style name. Side support bras are mainly designed for securing your breasts to prevent side spillage by projecting them forward. They provide full coverage while leaving you with smooth lines.

#7 Minimizer Bra

Designed for fuller-figure women, minimizer bras reduce busts up to 1 ½ inches. These full-coverage bras help women achieve a smoother and naturally-shaped chest by evenly distributing the breast tissues.

#8 Strapless Bra

From what its name suggests, these are the types of bras without straps. They are perfect to wear under shoulder-bearing dresses so no awkward straps would show.

#9 Underwire Bra

Underwire bras are designed to contour your chest while providing an ideal lift. The underwires provide more structured support while giving your chest a fuller look on top. This type of bra is great for those who have relaxed, side-set, and teardrop breast types.

#10 T-Shirt Bra

T-shirt bras are the type of bras that are almost invisible under any clothing because of their smooth and seamless cups. A lot of women are in love with this type of bra because they provide moderate shaping while keeping you supported and comfortable.

#11 Nursing Bra

It’s a special type of bra that supports lactating mothers without completely removing their bras. Most nursing bras have clip-down, fold-down, and pull-aside cups for easy breastfeeding access.

Bras: Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: How do bra extenders work?

A: Bra extender can be easily attached to your bra hook to give you an ideal fit without sewing.

Q: Which bra hook would give me the perfect fit?

A: You should start with the loosest hook, slip two fingers underneath the band, and make sure it feels snug to check.

Q: How do I find the right bra size?

A: Take two measurements with the help of a tape measure. One around your rib cage for your band size and the second measurement around your bust is going to determine your cup size. Find your ideal size in the bra size calculator. Also check plus-size bras.

Q: Can I machine wash my bra?

A: Yes. But you have to set the cycle to gentle, and you have to put them inside a washbag and avoid using strong detergents.

Q: Can I put my bras in the dryer?

A: No. It will damage the elasticity of your bra. Lay flat on a towel for it to absorb the excess water, or air dry.

Q: Is there a special way to store my bras?

A: Keep the shape of your bra by giving them space and using organizers or drawer dividers. Avoid folding them and storing them in crowded drawers.

Make Your Choice Stress-Free

Shapermint believes that ladies of all shapes and sizes deserve bras that fit perfectly and comfortably regardless of the outfit or occasion. That’s why we curate the best women's bras from trusted manufacturers and continuously vet them through the best experts - our customers.

Because we know that choosing both a bra size and bra design can be challenging, our Fit Experts are available 24/7 to assist you with their encyclopedic knowledge of fit, style, and features.

To make it even easier, our exchange policy lets you try on styles until you find the ones that work for you.

So what are you waiting for? Get the most stress-free bra-buying experience ever. Don't forget to refer your family and friends to Shapermint and get $25 each!