Bra Guide: my favorites and when to wear different types!

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The right bra not only should be comfortable and be easy to wear, but it also needs to work with your wardrobe. I have a few bras that I regularly alternate through during a week and I’m walking you through which type of bra I wear with different tops on this post!

Before we dive into my personal favorites, go read my post from last year about my bra fitting. And follow Caralyn Mirand on Instagram because she has an incredible wealth of bra knowledge!

Strapless: One,    Two,    Three,    Four,    T-Shirt: Five,    Six,    Seven,    Eight,    Racerback: Nine,    Ten,    Eleven,    Twelve,    Bralette: Thirteen,    Fourteen,    Fifteen,   Sixteen,   Seventeen.

Let’s begin with my most often worn: the T-shirt bra.

I find this bra to offer a good mix of support and comfort in a t-shirt bra. It does have an underwire, but since the fit is exactly right, I find it to still be very comfortable to wear. I’ll wear this bra with anything from a cotton t-shirt to a tank with thick enough straps. It’s most certainly the most worn of the bunch.

Next up: the Racerback bra.

I find the cut of a Racerback tank or blouse to be quite flattering so I love wearing that style of top. Since I was wearing that style so often, I wanted to find a racerback bra that provided a nice shape and separation that would work with racerback shirts. Since I had such a great experience with the brand Natori already, I bought this racerback bra and wear it very, very often. I love that the closure is adjustable in both the front and back. It doesn’t offer quite as much support as the t-shirt bra I mentioned earlier, but it has very soft, lined cups that make it easy to wear.

The next one in rotation, and certainly the most comfortable, is: the bralette.

I have two bralettes in my regular rotation, and I have different times that I wear each of them. The Tommy John triangle bralette is my most worn these days. It has such a great balance of stretch and support, and the shape of the cups is flattering and easy. Similar and for a more sporty feel, the True and Co mesh bralette is extremely lightweight and comfortable. It’s the kind of bra you truly forget you’re wearing. I’m a huge fan of this bra on athleisure days. Here is an example of how I alternate between these two bralettes: I would wear the Tommy John triangle bralette with any tank, t-shirt, or blouse but I would only wear the True and Co mesh bralette with a tank, athletic-type shirt, or a looser sweatshirt. The Tommy John triangle bralette still provides separation and support, while the True and Co creates more of a sports-bra type look to the breasts.

And lastly, the least loved but it serves a purpose: the strapless.

You do you, but clear straps or any bra strap that shows is just not my thing. So sometimes, a strapless bra is just the only option! I’ve had my fair share of uncomfortable strapless bras over the years, but my favorite one is (shocker) by Natori. It has a wide band, with 4 hooks to provide nice anti-gravity support around the ribcage, and truly lays flat. The cups are full coverage with little support, but the lining ensures an even shape throughout the entire cup. There is a bit of silicone lining the inner rim of the band to help hold the bra in place too.

If you like to wear low cut tops, you may find this bra to be too much material. It lays completely flat on the center front part of my chest, but it also comes up higher than a standard bra with straps so you may be able to see the center part on some lower cut tops.

Beyond these four, I have a few other bras in my drawer, but they don’t get a ton of wear. If I had to only choose 4 to keep, it would be these! You’ll notice they are all nude, with very little lace or special details. I’m just looking for function and support here, and these 4 provide exactly that!

Leave a Comment

Comments (16)

  1. Emilie says
    Posted May 19, 2021

    Hi Kate! Love the recommendations. I noticed your link for the Natori T-Shirt bra goes to the Bliss Perfection, not the one you have pictured (the Pure Luxe). I noticed, because that bra is my favorite too!

    • Kate says
      Posted May 19, 2021

      Thank you!!

  2. Jessica says
    Posted May 19, 2021

    I love love LOVE how you did this post. Helpful to see the different types of bras paired with some shirt options. Thanks Kate!

  3. Marie says
    Posted May 19, 2021

    Great post. As a larger chested lady, I am nervous to buy bralettes yet I hear they are so comfortable. Do you think they are suitable in terms of support for a D cup?

    • Kate says
      Posted May 19, 2021

      In my opinion, the Tommy John triangle bralette has more support than the True and Co! So I could try that! I would also look into the Soma Enbliss bralette!

    • Emilie says
      Posted May 19, 2021

      I do not like the lack of support from bralettes. Comfortable, yes, but I don’t like how they make me look, too saggy and they lose their shape. Although I want to love them so much! I tried the Soma Enbliss bralette since everyone raves about it, but it did not work for me. I’m a 36DD. I just think unwired bras do not work as well for a fuller bust (at least for me).

      • Marie says
        Posted May 19, 2021

        I have the same experience Emilie. Wired bras are the only ones I find give support and shape.

  4. Allison says
    Posted May 19, 2021

    I picked up the Natori Bliss Perfection based on your recommendation last year. It is my favorite bra ever! Well worth the price. Since I’m in need of some others I just ordered the racer back and strapless. Thank you for these recommendations!

  5. Lynn says
    Posted May 19, 2021

    Perfect post heading into summer, although here in south Florida, this works year round for me! Thanks Kate!

  6. Michele says
    Posted May 19, 2021

    I’m disappointed that the t-shirt bra isn’t available in a cups. Us smaller-busted girls need something to give shape, provide comfort, and feel a little sexy, too! I’ve found that little to nothing attractive or flattering is out there for smaller-busted women. I’d LOVE to try these picks, though!

    • Hilary says
      Posted May 20, 2021

      Hi Michele! I’ve had really good luck with Aerie bras. They have a ton of styles and their bands start at 30 and have A cups. They offer free shipping and returns, so it could be fun to order a variety and see what you like!

      • Michele says
        Posted May 20, 2021

        Thanks so much! This is so helpful!

  7. Rachel says
    Posted May 19, 2021

    Finding this very timely as my face tshirt bra finally not the dust this last time I washed it. The tshirt bra you show isn’t the same one as is linked. The straps are different. Before I hit purchase I want to make sure it’s the correct one. Thanks!

    • Kate says
      Posted May 20, 2021

      Sorry! The wrong one was linked but it’s since been updated. I wear the pure luxe by Natori very, very often (it’s my #1 pick) but the bliss perfection is also a really nice every day t-shirt bra!

  8. Jean Bone says
    Posted May 23, 2021

    I love all of your recommendations!! Thank you for breaking it down. In your quest for the perfect bras, have you tried Lively?

    • Kate says
      Posted May 24, 2021

      Many many years ago I did and it was fine, but ultimately I’ve just worn these since I’ve been property fitted!