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how is a bralette supposed to fit

There’s no denying it: Bralettes are having a big moment. Surely, this is because the bralette manages to strike a compromise between style and comfort, which is a pretty remarkable feat. Not only do bralettes lend a fashion-forward look to any ensemble, but they’re also ultra-lightweight — in fact, you’re bound to even forget you’re wearing one. But this delicate undergarment is different from its traditional bra counterparts in many ways — namely, in that very often it doesn’t contain underwire, padding, and other typical features.

So, you may be wondering: how is a bralette supposed to fit? Don’t stress — in this guide, we’ve outlined some tips to help you figure it out.

This is how a bralette should fit:

The band

Did you know that the band is responsible for providing most of the support? That’s why it’s the first aspect of the bralette you should be examining.

The band should rest flat against your rib cage (in other words, you shouldn’t be able to pull it very far away from your torso) with no gaping. Keep in mind that elastic (which most bralettes are made with) stretches out over time, so it should fit as snugly as possible without being uncomfortable whatsoever.

Moreover, the band should be level all the way around without riding up whatsoever. Just to be sure, try this simple test: Raise your arms above your head and observe whether the band lifts at all.

The cups

Some bralettes feature padded cups while others are unlined, and some contain underwire while others are wire-free. Either way, the cups should fit a certain way.

Your breasts should feel completely contained by the cups with no gaping. If you’re spilling out of the cup, you likely need to go up in size, or you may also want to try a full-cup bralette for more coverage. Conversely, if it seems like there’s too much room in the bralette, you probably need to size down, but you could also try a demi cup bralette or another style with slightly less coverage. Keep in mind that even wireless bras should feel supportive with the right features, such as seamed cups.

The straps

It goes without saying that the straps perform a very important function on a bra, and it’s no different when it comes to a bralette.

The straps certainly shouldn’t be digging into your shoulders, leaving behind indentations. But you also shouldn’t be able to lift the straps more than about one inch away from your shoulders (that’s an indicator that they’re too loose, and therefore can’t offer adequate support).

Pro tip: If the straps are digging into your shoulders but the cups and band on the bralette fit well, then consider a bralette with wider or cushioned straps for comfort purposes. Also, if the straps are still falling down after you’ve adjusted them (and the rest of the bralette fits flawlessly, of course) consider a bralette that converts to a criss-cross style (thanks to a J-hook).

Fit Tips

When you’re shopping for bralettes, keep these aforementioned fit tips in mind to be sure that they both look flattering and feel comfy. And a final word on sizing: some bralettes stray from standard bra sizing, running from small to large. The problem with that sizing strategy is that it’s next to impossible to find a perfect fit without taking cup size and band size into account, so we advise seeking out bralettes that mimic traditional sizing — particularly, but not only if, you’re full-busted.

Related: Bralette vs Bra: What’s The Difference Between A Bra And A Bralette?

We Highly Recommend

Whether you’re shopping for new everyday bras or lingerie for a special occasion, it’s always a good idea to seek out a second opinion. We know how hard it is to find bras that fit well and feel good, especially when you’re doing it on your own. If you’ve ever felt unsure about your bra size or you just don’t know where to go to find good bras, it’s time to let a bra fitter help.

Many specialty lingerie boutiques offer bra fittings. Their expert bra fitters will take the pain and frustration out of bra shopping and do all the work for you. Even better, their product knowledge can save you time and money. Plus, they know where all of the best bras are hiding.

If you’ve struggled with finding bras in the right size, it’s time to make a change. Visit our specialty store locator to find a store near you and schedule an appointment.

Happy bra shopping! 

Featured image lingerie:
Adriana Lace Bralette P5482 | Adriana Lace Bikini P5483 in Sky Blue
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Published by

Rebecca Strong

Rebecca is a Boston-based freelance writer who focuses on style, fitness, food, and travel. She has contributed to such publications as HuffPost, Elite Daily and U.S. News & World Report. When she's not writing, she can be found at home or in the studio working on the songs for her upcoming album. Her favorite bra is a black demi-cup style with all-over-lace — timeless and feminine.

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