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molded cup bra

You’ve likely heard of molded vs. non-molded bras. But, do you know the difference? The main difference between molded and non-molded bras is their padding. The different types of padding, or lack of, creates a certain breast appearance, fit and comfort level. Let’s dive into molded bras and what they do for your bustline.

What is a molded bra?

A molded (or moulded) bra has padding in the bra cups to mold and contour your breasts into shape. The molding helps create a very particular, rounded and symmetrical breast shape. Molded bras are also extra supportive because the molding helps to lift and support your breasts.

The padding in a molded bra is thicker in some areas of the bra cups than others. For example, there may be extra moulding in the bottoms of the cups to provide more lift. Or, there may be additional molding in the sides of the cups to push your breasts inward – creating cleavage.

Moulded bras are available in a variety of styles. Push-up bras and contour bras are the most popular molded bras. However, other styles, like plunge bras or demi bras, can also be molded. The type of bra, paired with its specific molding, creates a unique shape. Demi bras, for instance, naturally make your bust appear more voluptuous because the cups only about half of the bottom of your breasts. A molded demi bra would create even more lift.

molded bra

Emma Plunge Molded Bra P5490 | Emma Hipster P5495 in Black

What is a non-molded bra?

A non-molded bra does not have molding that contours your breasts. Instead, non-molded bras may be lined or unlined.

A lined (or padded), non-moulded bra will have an even layer of padding in the cups. This creates a rounded breast shape to accentuate your natural shape. Full-cup bras and some t-shirt bras can be examples of padded, non-molded bras. (Remember, bra styles, including t-shirt bras can be available in molded or non-molded fits, too.)

An unlined, non-molded bra has no padding or additional lining in the bra cups. The unlined bra provides a natural appearance and fit since the cups aren’t manipulating your breast shape. Examples of unlined, non-moulded bras include bralettes, demi bras, etc. (Unlined bras provide the least coverage of bra styles since your nipples may easy show through the bra’s material.)

Non-molded bras, whether lined or unlined, are still supportive bra options. Many non-molded bras are designed with multi-part cups, where multiple pieces of fabric are sewn together to create each cup. (Instead of one piece fabric.) The multiple seams create a sturdier cup that provides more support than a cup with fewer seams.

bralette bra

Adriana Lace Bralette P5482 | Adriana Bikini P5483 in Pearl White

Which style is the better option?

Whether you choose a molded or non-molded bra depends on what you want the bra to accomplish for your bust. A molded bra will contour your breasts into a desired shape with its excess padding and molding. A non-molded bra will subtly accentuate your natural shape with an easy fit.

It’s important to note that all molded bras vary in padding and molding. Some molded bras will have much more molding than others. If you’d like to your bust to appear bigger, create lift or add more cleavage, a molded bra is an excellent choice. You can even opt for a “super push-up bra,” like the Lynn Super Push-Up Bra by Parfait, to create maximum lift and cleavage.

However, if you’re not looking to increase your bustline or mold it into a desired shape, a non-molded bra is for you. Depending on how much support and padding you need, there are a variety of non-molded bras that can accentuate your bust slightly or provide you with a barely-there feel.

bralette vs bra

Adriana Lace Bralette P5482 | Adriana Bikini P5483 in Sky Blue

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:
Emma Plunge Molded Bra P5490 | Emma Hipster P5495 in Bare
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Published by

Lauren Hamilton

Lauren Hamilton is the founder of, a lifestyle and relationship blog offering relationship advice and encouraging women to be the happiest, most confident version of themselves through positivity and self-love. She's also a freelance writer and communications strategist. Follow her on Instagram or Twitter, and check out some of her accomplishments on her portfolio.

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