Read these 12 Full Figure Bras Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Bra tips and hundreds of other topics.
If you want to keep your straps under control, a great option is the racerback bras for full figured women by Hanes. The T-shaped back of the bra that curves down the center of your back is most often seen in a sports bra, but can also be found in regular bra options as well. Racerback bras look fantastic under a sleeveless shirt, because the straps don't peek out or show, leaving you with a clean look and great support without showing your bra off to the world when you leave the house.
The racerback comes in both a seamless and seamed style, and can be found in underwire or soft cup. With a sectioned bra, each section of the bra (most commonly two or three sections) is seamed and stitched independently so there is solid support as opposed to soft support. When you want to keep your breasts contained and in one place with no movement, a racerback sectioned bra would be your best bet by far. Just make sure to try on your sectioned racerback under the shirt you're going to be wearing it with. The support can be substantial, and if you've been wearing bras that squish and let you sag, your shirt may fit a little differently when your bust is being supported.
If you are full figured and thinking about shopping for bras, you need to make sure you are shopping for the right bra.
Type of Bra
When it comes to the type of bra you want, focus on what you want it to look like under your clothing. A full support bra can be very comfortable, but you will know it is there. A soft underwire bra can be nice, but if it isn't the right size you will find your bustline hanging over the underwire rather than being supported by it. For running to the store or doing errands a soft bra is fine, but if you are going in to work, you don't want to look unprofessional by wearing a bra that doesn't support you at all. Don't distract the office by bouncing your way to your desk. Different situations require different levels of support. Be prepared by having the right bra for the right occasion.
When you measure yourself for your proper bra size, don't go crazy with the cloth measuring tape. Digging it into your skin won't make your bra fit better. Make sure it's taut but not cutting into your skin when you measure around your ribcage. When measuring the bustline, don't measure where your nipples are -- measure where the largest point of your breasts are. It can be great to have a bra on to do the measurement, but make sure it isn't a minimizing bra or a bra that's a cup size too small or you won't be getting an accurate measurement. If available, have a person trained in bra sizing measure you at a local store. Sometimes the best way to find a great bra is to try some different sizes on once you've used the measuring to get a ball park idea of what you need.
Bras for plus size women offer extra support to hold larger breasts close to the chest. Sometimes, however, this can cause discomfort if the fabric is not breathable. Fabrics that don't breathe make you sweat and can irritate the sensitive skin around your breast area.
A plain cotton or cotton blend bra is a breathable fabric that will help keep you cool, dry and comfortable. The Just My Size Hidden Frame Cotton Wirefree Bra is one such example. It offers stylish lacy insets, cushioned straps and seamless cups for added versatility.
Full figure does not mean that you are plus sized. Most bras labeled “full figure” actually have more to do with breast tissue than body type. A woman who wears a 34C bra may get more comfort and better containment from a full figure bra: it depends on the amount and location of her breast tissue.
Average figure bras typically have shallower cups than full figure bras. Two women could have the same bra size (34C for example), and one, due to her having more breast tissue, would get a better fit from a 34C full figure bra than a 34C average figure bra. The full figure bra will offer deeper cup capacity, more coverage, and for this woman, support her better. The other woman, who is the same bra size (34C), but has less breast tissue, could wear either a full figure bra or an average figure bra in that size. She just isn't likely to need the deeper cup capacity, coverage and extra support, so she wouldn't notice any benefit from wearing a full figure bra.
If you are spilling out of the top of your cup, or don't feel as supported as you'd like to be, try a full figure bra in your size and see if that makes you more comfortable. Examples of average figure brands are Playtex® Thank Goodness it Fits® and Barely There®. Great full figure brands to try are Bali®, Playtex Secrets® or Playtex Cross Your Heart®.
Support is the key when buying bras for plus size women. If you do not provide proper breast support, you will not only likely stretch your Cooper's ligaments, which will cause strain on your neck and back, but you will also cause your breasts to sag faster.
Sometimes, plus-size women have heavy breasts to begin with; add the absence of proper support and the chance they will sag doubles. Wear a plus-size bra that holds you breasts in the middle of your chest and firmly in place to prevent bouncing during the day.
One of the most common errors in choosing bras for plus size women is picking one with cups sizes that are too small and a band size that is too big. This happens because a large number of bra styles do not have larger cup styles. However, it is important to buy a plus size bra that fits your specific measurements only.
There are a number of retailers, specifically online, that cater to large bra sizes. The important thing is to get the right fit -- even if you must take extra steps to do so.
Finding plus size strapless bras that fit perfectly can be a challenge. This is why it is so important to try your bra on before you purchase it. Plus size strapless bras that fit incorrectly can lead to sagging breasts, wrinkled/bunched up fabric, odd looking breast shape and more.
Plus size strapless bras can give you great support with an outfit that looks better without visible bra straps. Look for strapless bras with molded cups that help give your breasts a natural shape. It's also a good idea to purchase a plus size strapless bra with extra banding fabric for additional support.
The right kind of plus size bra provides a smooth, slimming look for just about any outfit. This is particularly important when it comes to well-made clothing that is tailor-made for your body. If you are wearing an ill-fitting bra, chances are it is ruining the overall effect you are trying to achieve with some of your favorite outfits.
For example, if you have large, wide breasts that extend under your arms, consider changing to a bra that has more side support on the sides to help push breast tissue forward. This will give you some lift and help your shirts and blouses fit and look much better.
If a woman has full breasts, she can still benefit from the shaping features of many bras currently on the market. Breasts come in all different shapes and sizes and bras that shape help to make breasts look round and full.
The Playtex Secrets® Lace Underwire Bra features hidden paneling within the structure of the bra to help with shape and a cushioned underwire to help lift the breasts. With its lacy, scalloped trimming and satin cup, this plus size bra looks and wears well.
Looking for beauty, comfort and support in bras just for plus size women? Glamorise® bras are specifically designed for fuller figures and have special features for your comfort. The best part is that you can choose from a range of styles and functions – from a sexy plunging lace underwire to a cottony stretch leisure bra to an active support workout bra to a back-supporting posture bra. Glamorise even offers hard-to-find A & B cup bras for band sizes 38-58.
For women with bigger busts, finding a bra with style and function doesn't have to be difficult. It is as important for a woman to have lingerie that looks good, as it is to have the right fit and support. After all, if you feel good inside, you want to project that same confidence on the outside. Playtex's Legacy LaceTM collection does just that. Made with beautiful lace and breathable Airform® fabric, these bras are specifically designed for full-size women. They provide enough support for the breasts that you can feel confident and secure, and sexy, at the same time.
A plus size bra with an underwire can help to give extra support to large breasts. If an underwire bra does not fit correctly, the result can be discomfort and indentations in your skin from the underwire. There are, however, solutions to this problem.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|