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How to Tell the Difference Between Different Types of Bras

How to Tell the Difference Between Different Types of Bras

portrait of Tricia Ismail
Tricia Ismail
Senior Editor

A cheat sheet for all the bra styles and their unique benefits. 


Do you like lower cut cups, or a little more coverage? Do you like straps that are wider set, or closer together?

Always dedicated to finding your perfect fit, we are utilizing our bra expertise to guide you through the different bra styles and their best use cases, to help you know exactly what to ask/look for the next time you are bra shopping.

What Is a T-Shirt Bra?

A T-Shirt bra is defined as a bra that is completely invisible even under even your thinnest T-shirt — no excess bulk, zero bra lines. To do this, T-Shirt bras are constructed to completely form to your body to eliminate gaping and digging. The cups are seamless and generally lined, to smooth out any lumps and make sure that no nipple shows through. This second-skin fit also means that T-Shirt bras have earned a reputation as a more comfortable bra option. 

ThirdLove breaks down what an everyday t-shirt bra is with the classic t-shirt bra in nude.
24/7 Classic T-Shirt Bra in Taupe.

 

What Is a Demi Bra?

A demi bra is all about the cup. You can generally identify a classic demi bra by the partial cups that cover between 50-75% of the breast in order to emphasize your natural cleavage. Coverage is the same all across the bra (similar to a balconette bra) as opposed to Plunge or T-Shirt bras where you have a slight dip in the middle. Additionally, the wires are made in a wide u-shape, evenly arched, to fit perfectly underneath your breast tissue,.

ThirdLove breaks down what a demi bra is with the Pima Cotton demi bra in white.
Pima Cotton T-Shirt Bra in Sea Salt.

 

What Is a Plunge Bra?

A plunge bra might be the easiest bra to spot. Identified by the v-neckline, plunge bras have angled cups that help eliminate gaping while giving your breasts a little accentuation for a push-up kind of look, without any excess padding. Plunge bras generally offer lower coverage but are incredibly versatile, with a low neckline that remains invisible under most tops and dresses.

ThirdLove breaks down what a low cut or plunge bra is with the classic plunge push-up bra in mauve purple.
24/7 Classic Uplift Plunge Bra in Twilight.

 

What Is a Balconette Bra?

Telling signs that you have found a balconette bra are in the cups and straps. The cups offer a little less coverage than a classic demi for an added emphasis on your natural cleavage and the straps are set wider apart for the same purpose, almost to the edge of your shoulders. Fun fact: the balconette bra is named after the architectural feature because it is supposed to act as a literal balcony, or shelf, for your breasts. 

ThirdLove breaks down what a balconette bra is with the black lace balconette bra.
24/7 Lace Balconette Bra in Black.

 

Still stumped on which is the right style for you? Take our Fit Finder® Quiz and we will match you with a size and style that fits you perfectly.

See our other T-shirt, Demi, Plunge, and Balconette styles below:

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