Summer is a season packed with strappy sundresses, hot halters, sleek racer backs, and more! There's just one problem: What kind of bra do you pair with each style? GalTime's one and only Bra Gal, Jene Luciani, has the scoop.
Strappy Styles: If you have a strappy dress with a tricky top, as long as the fabric isn’t too thin (like a silk), it helps to have foam cups like these sewn into the dress to provide coverage and a little support. That way you don’t have to worry about going braless...and you don’t have to go crazy trying to find an appropriate bra!
Braza Swim Shapers Triangle Push Up Enhancement Pads, $10.00-$14.99
Strapless Styes: A good strapless bra is a necessity, but most women say that it's the hardest bra for them to find. If you are larger busted, you want one that has full coverage cups and a nice thick silicone band around the inside to help it stay put. You should also keep your eyes peeled for a a 3-hook closure with a wider back-band, like this one. Besides the fact that you don’t want it sliding down by the end of the night, you want your breasts to peek out of the top a little to avoid a flattening effect – something a lot of strapless bras can do. Finding the right strapless bra for you is really a matter of trial and error. Some women like to go down a band size to give them a more snug fit, but if it’s leaving red marks or digging it, it’s too tight.
Related: Top 5 Bodywear Blunders
Va Bien Ultra-Lift Strapless Convertible Bra, $58
Racerback Styles: You can opt for a convertible bra that transforms into a racerback, or just opt for a racerback bra! Jene says that one of her favorites is The Hollywood EXXtreme Cleavage Strapless Bra by Frederick’s of Hollywood ($24.50, below), which is perfect under tanks.
Backless or Cutout Styles: If you’re under a C-cup, you can probably get away with a backless strapless bra from Fashion Forms ($48, left). It stays put without the use of a backband or straps. If you’re bustier and need more support, you can try the foam cups above, or a bra like the Le Mystere Dos Nu Bra ($64, right) that has a strap that wraps around the waist!
Low-Cut Styles: Low-cut requires a plunge bra, plain and simple. And there’s one made for even the deepest plunges! Just be sure to add a little double stick tape to keep the dress in place over the bra.
The Nautral Sexy Plunge Bra, $28
Is it ever OK to go "bra-less"? It’s really never OK to go bra-less! MOST, if not all, women need some support. Women that are very small, like an A/B cup, can usually get away with just a nipple cover, if it's on a case-by-case basis. Or, try a little bralette, like this one.
Beyond Bare by Barely There Bralini, $15.99 (2-pack)
And here's another great tip: If you're looking for a bra on-the-cheap, Jene says that off-price retailers TJ Maxx and Marshalls actually just EXPANDED their lingerie and foundations offerings in all of their stores!
More from GalTime.com:
- How to Find a Sports Bra that Fits!
- What to Wear to Work to Summer
- 10 Ways to Solve Common Wardrobe Disasters
- Tips for Buying a Bathing Suit Online
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Hailed as a "Brilliant Bra Guru" by BRAVO-TV, a “stylist extraordinaire” and “bra fit guru” by the New York Daily News, Jené Luciani is a nationally acclaimed fashion journalist, style expert, TV personality, spokesperson and bestselling author. She appears regularly on NBC’s TODAY Show and has appeared on NBC'S New York Live, The Style Network, Better TV, CNN Money, ABC News, Fox News Channel and Good Day NY, to name a few. In 2009, after 3 years of research on the topic of bras and based in part on her own personal experiences, Jené authored The Bra Book: The Fashion Formula to Finding the Perfect Bra (BenBella Books), which Oprah touts as “so important for women.”