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bras for shallow breasts

Does it feel like you’ve tried everything to get a bra that fits, including multiple band and cup sizes, and you’re still not quite there? The issue may not be one of size – it may be one of shape. Breasts and bras both come in a huge variety of different shapes, and the key to a perfect fit is to find the bra size and shape that best match what you’ve got.

One of the most helpful steps can be to work out whether you’ve got projected or shallow breasts. Just because two 34D cups hold the same overall volume, that doesn’t mean that they’re identical shapes. One bra may have cups that are deeper than the other, and if you’ve got shallow breasts then that’s going to cause fit problems.

What are shallow breasts?

Breast depth refers to how far out they protrude from your ribcage. Shallow breasts, as the name suggests, don’t stick out far. Although they have the same amount of total tissue as a same-sized pair of deeper breasts, the shallow ones have a wider base and often begin higher on the chest too, spreading that volume out over a larger surface area.

Imagine that you’ve got a little ball of playdough – that represents a deep/projected breast. Now imagine that you squish it down a bit with your finger. There’s still the same amount of playdough there, but now it’s flatter and wider. That’s how a shallow breast is.

Shallow breasts are much more common among the smaller cup sizes, however it is still possible to be full-busted and have them. When you’re standing side-on to a mirror and braless, would you describe your breasts as round? If not, they’re probably shallow.

Fit problems of shallow breasts

By far the most common fit issues people with shallow breasts face is cup gaping. When a designer creates a bra, they have to make an assumption about how far out your breasts stick from your body. So when yours protrude less than that, there’ll be a gap.

Although gaping cups can be a sign that you simply need a smaller cup size, if the current underwire fits around the base of your breast just fine then sizing down could mean the new, smaller underwire digs in. It’s the cup depth that’s the problem, not the cup size.

Wrinkling is another related fit issue. If your bra cups look wrinkled or feel baggy even when the top edge is lying flush against your skin, that’s a sign that the cup is too deep for you.

Related: What’s The Difference Between Projected and Shallow Breasts?

shallow breasts

Briana Padded Bra | Briana Bikini in Black Floral

Ideal bra styles for shallow breasts

Bras without horizontal seams

Bra seams do different things depending on which direction they’re going in. A vertical seam is there to provide lift. Horizontal seams, on the other hand, make the cup deeper, so they are something you want to avoid. Look for bra cups that are either seam-free or have vertical seams only.

Shorter cups

Although this breast shape is shallow all over, it tends to be particularly shallow towards the top. Rather than a suddenly curving outwards from your chest, shallow breasts follow a more gradual slope down to the nipple. Full cup bras end high on the chest and will therefore gape because there isn’t enough breast tissue up there to fill them out.

Instead, look for bras labeled as ‘demi’, ‘half cup’ or ‘balconette’. These all stop slightly above the nipple, covering only the part of your breast that tends to be the fullest/deepest.

Stretch fabrics

Stiff fabrics – including molded cups – are not very forgiving. If you don’t fill them out properly, they will gape or wrinkle. Stretch fabrics however can accommodate a range of shapes and sizes, and are more likely to lie flush against your skin.

That’s not to say that people with shallow breasts can never wear a padded bra. In fact, some prefer them because the padding creates the illusion of extra fullness. Just be sure to look for one with short, horizontal seam-free cups for the best chance of it fitting you.

If you have shallow breasts, leave a comment and let me know what your best-fitting bra styles are!

Related: 5 Best Bras For Shallow Breasts

how to fix shallow breasts

Charlotte Padded Bra | Charlotte Bikini in Blossom Print

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 | Adriana Bikini in Raspberry
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Published by

Estelle Puleston

Estelle Puleston is the founder of, a blog dedicated to her love of lingerie. She works full-time as a copywriter and digital marketer for the lingerie and swimwear industry, and when she’s not doing that, she’s probably sewing or enjoying a good cup of tea.

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