The Ultimate Guide To Bras: Finding The Perfect Fit And Style For Every Occasion

The Ultimate Guide To Bras: Finding The Perfect Fit And Style For Every Occasion

Buying a bra is an essential task, yet it can feel tedious and difficult for many. A good bra provides support, comfort, and confidence, but this requires some preliminary work to find the perfect fit. If you've ever struggled to find a quality bra that fits well, feels comfortable, and enhances your appearance, you're not alone. With so many bra types, styles, sizes, and brands, bra shopping can be overwhelming.

This guide is designed to help you navigate through the options and find the ideal bra for your needs. Whether you're looking for a bra to wear every day or a special occasion, this guide will provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision.

Quick Links

Different Bra Types & Styles

When it comes to bras, finding the right fit and style can make all the difference in terms of comfort, support, and confidence. By understanding the features, benefits, and considerations of each type, you'll be well-equipped to make informed decisions and find the perfect bras for your needs.

  • Underwire Bras: Underwire bras feature a wire support system beneath the cups, providing extra lift, shape, and support. They are particularly suitable for those with larger bust sizes or those seeking enhanced support. While some women find underwire bras uncomfortable, properly fitted ones can offer excellent support and improve your silhouette.
  • Wirefree Bras: Wirefree bras, as the name suggests, do not have any underwire. Instead, they rely on alternative support structures such as wider bands, strategic seaming, or moulded cups to provide lift and shape. Wirefree bras are often preferred for their comfort and flexibility, making them a popular choice for everyday wear.
  • Full Coverage Bras: Full coverage bras offer maximum coverage and support, covering the entire bust. They are designed to minimize spillage and provide a secure fit, making them ideal for those with larger cup sizes or for anyone seeking extra support. Full-coverage bras typically have wider straps and a higher centre gore for added comfort and stability.
  • Minimiser Bras: Minimiser bras are specifically designed to reduce the appearance of the bust, creating a more streamlined silhouette. They distribute the breast tissue evenly and provide a minimising effect without sacrificing comfort. Minimiser bras are an excellent choice for those who prefer a more modest look or struggle with button-down shirts that tend to gap.
  • Strapless & Convertible Bras: Strapless and convertible bras are versatile options that can adapt to a variety of outfits. Strapless bras are designed to stay in place without shoulder straps, making them ideal for off-shoulder or strapless tops and dresses. Convertible bras, on the other hand, come with detachable and adjustable straps, allowing you to customize the style to suit different clothing necklines and back designs.
  • T-Shirt Bras: T-shirt bras are seamless and offer a smooth, rounded shape under fitted clothing, making them virtually invisible. They are a go-to choice for everyday wear and provide excellent coverage without any visible lines or texture. T-shirt bras are a must-have for anyone looking to achieve a sleek and polished look.

Sports Bras 101: Everything To Know About Sports & Exercise Bras

Sports bras are essential for any physical activity or exercise routine. They are as important a consideration as wearing the correct sports runners and activewear when exercising. Sports bras minimise breast movement, provide support, and reduce discomfort during high-impact activities. Sports bras can be categorised into compression bras, which press the breasts against the body, and encapsulation bras, which surround each breast with individual cups. Some sports bras combine both compression and encapsulation for maximum support and comfort.

What is a compression sports bra?

A compression sports bra is a type of sports bra that is designed to tightly compress the breasts against the chest wall, reducing the movement of the breasts during physical activity and providing more support than a regular sports bra. It is made of stretchy, moisture-wicking fabric and usually has a racerback design to add more support to the shoulders and upper back. Compression sports bras are suitable for high-impact activities like running, aerobics, and HIIT workouts.

What is an encapsulation sports bra?

An encapsulation sports bra is a type of sports bra that provides individual support and compression for each breast. It features separate cups for each breast, which helps to prevent uncomfortable sweat buildup and uncomfortable shifting during exercise. Encapsulation sports bras also typically have a sturdier construction than other types of sports bras, providing added support for high-impact activities.

How should a sports bra fit?

A sports bra should fit snugly without being too tight or uncomfortable. Here are some specific guidelines for how a sports bra should fit:

  • Band: The band around the chest should fit firmly and comfortably. You should be able to fit two fingers under the band, but it should not be loose enough to move around during exercise.
  • Cups: The cups should fit each breast individually and comfortably. They should not be too tight, causing bulging, or too loose, causing bouncing or shifting during movement.
  • Straps: The straps should be adjustable and snug but not too tight, causing pain or discomfort. They should also not be too loose, causing the bra to move around during exercise.
  • Compression and support: The sports bra should provide adequate compression and support for your level of activity. It should minimise any bouncing or shifting of the breasts during high-impact activities.

It is essential to choose a sports bra that fits properly because it helps to prevent discomfort, chafing, and even injury during exercise.

Maternity Bras 101: Everything To Know About Maternity & Nursing Bras

During pregnancy, the body undergoes numerous changes, making it important to have proper support. Maternity bras are specifically designed to accommodate the changing shape of breasts and provide comfort during pregnancy. They often feature wider and more adjustable straps, stretchy fabrics, and convenient nursing features for postpartum use.

What is a maternity bra vs. a nursing bra?

Maternity bras are designed to support the changes in a woman's breasts during pregnancy, whereas nursing bras are designed for breastfeeding and provide easy access when breastfeeding is needed. Many bras on the market offer both maternity and nursing functionalities, making it easier for women to transition between the two stages while wearing the same comfortable, supportive bra.

When to buy a maternity bra?

You should buy a maternity bra when you start to notice that your regular bras are becoming uncomfortable or don't fit correctly. This can happen as early as the first trimester of pregnancy when your breasts start to grow and become more tender.

Here are some signs that it may be time to purchase a maternity bra:

  1. Your regular bras are feeling tight or uncomfortable, especially around the band or cups.
  2. The cups of your regular bras no longer provide enough coverage or support for your growing breasts.
  3. You're experiencing breast tenderness, soreness, or even pain and need more support.
  4. You're noticing changes in the shape or size of your breasts, such as unevenness or sagging.

Maternity bras offer more support and have features that adapt better to the changes that your body undergoes during pregnancy and nursing. They have wider straps, broader bands, and roomier cups that offer more comfort and support. It's essential to check the fit and consult a professional if you have any doubts when choosing a maternity bra.

Best Types of Bras for Different Clothing

Invest in an underlay

When it comes to choosing the right bra for specific clothing, it's essential to consider both comfort and style. Here, we'll explore the best types of bras to wear with dresses, T-shirts, tank tops, strapless and backless outfits, as well as sportswear, ensuring you feel supported and confident in any ensemble.

Bras for Dresses

When selecting a bra to wear with dresses, it's crucial to consider the neckline and back design. For low-cut or plunging necklines, a plunge or deep V-neck bra is a great choice, as it provides support while remaining hidden under the dress. For dresses with open or low-back designs, a convertible bra with a low-back converter or a backless bra is the perfect solution, offering support without compromising the dress's aesthetic.

Bras for Tank Tops & T-shirts

T-shirt bras are an ideal option for wearing under-fitted T-shirts. Look for seamless and moulded cup styles that provide a smooth and rounded shape, ensuring no visible lines or textures show through the fabric. T-shirt bras with lightly padded cups also offer additional coverage and nipple concealment, perfect for thin or light-coloured T-shirts.

Bras for Strapless Clothing

Strapless tops and dresses require a bra that provides ample support without the need for shoulder straps. Strapless bras with a wide band and silicone grip lining are excellent choices, as they stay securely in place even during movement. Look for convertible strapless bras that come with detachable straps, allowing you to switch between strapless and traditional styles based on your preference.

Bras for Sportswear

Sports bras are a must-have for any physical activity or sport. For low to medium-impact activities such as yoga or Pilates, a compression sports bra offers adequate support by pressing the breasts against the body. For high-impact activities like running or aerobics, choose an encapsulation sports bra that provides individual support to each breast. Look for moisture-wicking fabrics and adjustable straps for added comfort during workouts.

The key to finding the best bras for different clothing lies in considering the specific needs of each outfit. Experiment with different styles and brands to find the ones that fit you best.

Bra Size Guide: How To Measure Bra Size

What bra size am I?

Finding the right bra size can make all the difference in terms of comfort and support. Incorrectly measuring or trying to guess your bra size can lead to discomfort, pain, and an ill-fitting bra. Fortunately, measuring your bra size is a simple process that can be done with just a few measurements and calculations. You can use our ultimate guide on how to measure bra size to calculate your bust measurements with our comprehensive bra size chart. This guide will through the simple steps to measure your bra size accurately so that you can find a bra that fits comfortably and provides the support you need.

View Bra Sizing Guide

Bra Care & Maintenance 101: How To Wash A Bra

Proper bra care is essential to maintaining the longevity of your bras, as well as ensuring they fit correctly and provide the support you need. Washing your bra incorrectly can damage the fabric, stretch out the elastic, and even cause the bra to lose its supportive shape.

For a comprehensive guide, look no further than our bra care and wash guide, the only lingerie and delicates wash guide you'll ever need. You'll find expert advice on how to wash a bra, including the best methods for different types of bras and fabrics, how often to wash them, and how to properly fold and store your bras.

View Bra & Lingerie Care Guide

Bras: Frequently Asked Questions

How many bras should you own?

The number of bras you should own depends on a few factors, including your lifestyle, wardrobe, and personal preferences. A good rule of thumb is to have at least 7 to 10 bras in your wardrobe. This includes your bras for everyday wear, as well as sports and special occasions.

How do bra extenders work?

Bra extenders are a popular bra accessory. They are small pieces of fabric with hooks and eyes in the centre that attach to the back of a bra. They work by adding extra length to the band of the bra, allowing it to fit more comfortably around the body. They can be especially useful for people experiencing weight fluctuations, swelling, or during pregnancy.

How do push-up bras work?

Push-up bras work by using padding and underwiring to lift and centre the breasts, creating the appearance of a fuller bust and more cleavage. The padding is typically concentrated in the bottom and outer sides of the bra cups, and the underwiring provides additional support and lift.

Get To Know The Most Comfortable Bra Brands in Australia

When it comes to finding the perfect bra that combines both style and comfort, there is a range of exceptional brands to choose from. Each brand offers a unique blend of quality craftsmanship, innovative designs, and impeccable fit. Whether you prioritise superior support, luxurious fabrics, or everyday functionality, these brands have established themselves as go-to options for bra-wearers seeking unparalleled comfort and confidence. Explore the world of bra brands to discover the ideal fit for you, and get ready to be introduced to some of the most comfortable bra brands available in Australia:

Berlei bras

Known for their innovative design, superior support and comfort. Berlei offers a range of sports bras that are perfect for active women as well as those looking for stylish and comfortable every day.

Triumph bras

Popular for their high quality, elegant designs and exceptional fit. Triumph has a wide range of bras that cater to different body shapes and sizes.

Playtex bras

Playtex bras are known for their affordability, comfort and practicality. The range caters to different needs and lifestyles, from everyday bras to sports bras and nursing bras.

Bendon bras

Bendon bras are characterised by their luxurious designs, exceptional fit and attention to detail. Bendon's range of bras is made with high-quality materials and construction, ensuring a fit that makes you feel confident and comfortable.

Get to know our top bra brands even better here.

Find Your Dream Fit and Get The Support You Deserve

Finding the perfect bra can improve the look of your outfits whilst prioritising your comfort and confidence. A well-fitted bra can make a world of difference in how you feel and move throughout the day. Whether you need a supportive sports bra, a delicate lace bralette, or a versatile and supportive everyday option, there's a perfect fit waiting out there for you.

Remember, a good bra is not just about the looks, it's essential to find the right fit and support that meets your needs. Take the time to evaluate your body shape, measurements, and style preferences to find the ideal bra that you love and feel confident in. Every person should feel comfortable, confident, and supported in their bra. Don't settle for less than what you deserve and invest in a great set of perfectly fitted, supportive bras today.