The Bralette – The Anti-Bra

Whether you’re a A-cup looking for lacey, flirty comfort or a DD+ gal in need of support, there’s a bralette out there for you. A slew of upstart indie brands (like Pansy, Richer Poorer and La Fille d’O) as well as established names like Cosabella, Eberjey, Chantelle and Negative Underwear have embraced this minimalist, often unlined style that offers shape without structure. “It’s the anti-bra,” says an industry expert.

The most glaring difference between a bralette and a traditional bra is the lack of structure. Bralettes tend to be free of niggling wires and padding, but offer plenty of support with fabrics like spandex and soft satin. They also look less like a bra and more like a mini crop top, which can add both comfort and a bit of sexiness.

In fact, some brands are embracing the bralette’s “unbra” qualities by eliminating cup sizes and instead relying on simplified band and size sizing (small, medium, large). Plus-size women have been demanding this type of fit as well, with a few lingerie brands offering C and D-cup options in delicate compression lace that provides a hidden lift.

In addition, many bralettes use new fabric tech to provide subtle support. For example, some use stretchy power mesh from Belgium-based Liebaert. “It’s an amazing material,” says a lingerie shop owner, adding that it stretches, cleaves and molds to the bust, almost like a tattoo. Some independent designers—like Araks, Clo Intimo and Lejaby—have incorporated the tech into bralette styles, while other mainstream brands, including H&M and Lonely, are testing the water with power-mesh lingerie in their stores and on their online shops. bamboo bralette

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