bralettes for rack of doom
May 27, 2020 3:14 PM   Subscribe

I have a rack of doom. It's getting hot here in New York and since I am mostly housebound for COVID-19 reasons, I don't want to have to wear one of my heavy duty underwire bras all day long. Help me find a comfy alternative for home.

My bra size is 40G and going braless is uncomfortable because these damn breasts of mine are heavy AF. I've been thinking that bralettes would be a good option for some support that isn't overly binding, but I can't find any that would accommodate my size. I haven't really looked beyond Amazon and Rihanna's Savage x Fenty line. Are there other online retailers who might carry bralettes for the extremely busty? Let me know. I'm in uncharted waters here.

posted by nayantara to Shopping (24 answers total) 25 users marked this as a favorite
Cosabella Bralette (XL = 38-40 G-H); see this Ask for more large-cup leads.
posted by Iris Gambol at 3:21 PM on May 27, 2020

I'm a 34G and I'm here to recommend cotton sports bras. I got a 3 pack of basic bitch fruit of the loom cotton sports bras for less than ten bucks. You can buy them anywhere, I got mine off amazon. They're ugly and don't do anything special, and they wouldn't be anywhere near supportive enough for actual physical activity, but they're great for lazy boob days when you just need something like a bra to sop up boob sweat and keep them in line.
posted by phunniemee at 3:25 PM on May 27, 2020 [3 favorites]

Thirdlove goes up to 46I. They don’t have anything labeled “bralette”, but I think their “lounge bra” might be what you’re looking for. I find it very comfy, though I wear a different size than you do (36D). I also like their wireless bra, though I find the band curls a little in the front.
posted by epj at 3:36 PM on May 27, 2020 [1 favorite]

I personally hate the basic cotton bras recommended above (I'm around a 36H). They don't do anything but make me sweatier because there's no breast separation so my cleavage becomes a swamp. After a while, it just feels as sore as being bra-less. I like to look for bras called sleep or lounge bras because they offer more support than being bra-less or bras with no structure but are still comfy for being around the house. I can't really reccomend a specific one because I haven't been bra shopping in probably almost 2 years as I hate it.
posted by Aranquis at 3:48 PM on May 27, 2020 [2 favorites]

Kindred Bravely makes crossover sleep bras (in cotton and "french terry" which is made of rayon) that come in regular and "busty" versions and the size chart says the XL busty should fit a 40G.
posted by needs more cowbell at 3:56 PM on May 27, 2020 [2 favorites]

Heh, I just ordered some from Hanes for exactly this reason. They have a size 40 DDD, though I’m not quite sure what that means.
posted by Melismata at 3:59 PM on May 27, 2020

You might also find good answers in this AskMe.
posted by See you tomorrow, saguaro at 5:16 PM on May 27, 2020

glamorise has a large selection of bras for the well endowed.
posted by ydaltak at 5:20 PM on May 27, 2020

Best answer: The largest size of TomboyX bralettes might work well for you.
posted by Stacey at 5:33 PM on May 27, 2020 [1 favorite]

I was also going to recommend Glamorise. I'm 36F, and I've been wearing their sports bras while I'm inside. They don't give me monobazoom, and they're quite comfortable. This is the style I have.
posted by holborne at 5:54 PM on May 27, 2020

I'm a 36G and have enjoyed the Knix bras, particularly the v-neck and evolution. I've worn underwire bras all my life and still do in public, but Knix has become my preferred pajama mode bra, as I still feel supported and separated. I do notice a little front bulge at the top in them, but I'm home so I don't care!
posted by icaicaer at 6:05 PM on May 27, 2020 [1 favorite]

Seconding the Third Love lounge bra. They are AMAZING and their customer service is A+++. I have found that they run large but YMMV.
posted by pearlybob at 6:46 PM on May 27, 2020

When we lived in NYC, my wife would get her bras from the Town Shop, NYC's fave-rave bra emporium. Maybe they'll open up again soon? Apparently they're renowned for their bra-fitting skillz.
posted by Dr. Wu at 7:07 PM on May 27, 2020 [1 favorite]

My favorite bra shop, The Pencil Test, has an online store now. Here is their selection of bralettes. They offer fit advice by email and phone if you have questions about a particular style. The store carries size D and up.
posted by terooot at 7:17 PM on May 27, 2020 [2 favorites]

I'm 36H/I and I have Glamorise sports bras for running, which are way better than other sports bras I've had in the past BUT I don't find particularly comfy for hanging-out-at-home because they are hard to get into (there's so much fabric -- necessary for active support -- that I kind of have to ... weasel all my flesh into them. Does that phrase sound sweaty and uncomfortable? It is).

This suggestion may be a bit off-road bc technically this is a maternity bra, but I've been living in this Gratlin sports-style nursing bra lately. It's not as separating as a bra with distinct cups, of course, but it's super comfortable and breathable ... and it was $18. (For reference, I got a size L.) The brand also has non-maternity stuff which might be worth a look, but I will say that the clips are super secure and I've never had one pop open. I intend to keep wearing it well after weaning.
posted by alleycat01 at 8:00 PM on May 27, 2020

I wear a 36F UK/36G US and my favorite wireless bra is the Love Your Body Wear Organic Cotton Bra ($58), made to order by Etsy shop owner Kristiana McKinnon in Asheville, NC.

The fabric is deliciously soft; the band is sturdy but comfortable, and the straps are wide enough to spread out the weight of my breasts. The Love Your Body Wear can be tough to put on the first one or two times; it's a tight squeeze at first, but the tightness of the band is particularly important in a wireless bra. It provides all the support. (In an underwire bra, the band provides around 80% of the support.)

It's a crossover bra, so the cups provide some separation. Otherwise, I wouldn't have expected any: I can barely fit a pinky between my breasts when I'm not in a bra.

I wear it to sleep; I've worn it running errands; a 28H online friend wears it while walking her dog and going up stairs. It also has a following among those who are pregnant and nursing.

People on Etsy whose breasts measure 36J, 40G, 32F, 36F, 34K and 48K like this bra, and at least one person said it helped them get through a 13- hour workday.

Kristiana is very easy to deal with, and she replies promptly to email if you have any questions about sizing or anything else. Good luck.
posted by virago at 8:06 PM on May 27, 2020 [5 favorites]

I liked this during my maternity leave for an unstructured bra.
posted by vunder at 9:03 PM on May 27, 2020

I’m a fan of my Breast Nest, and if I could afford more than one, I’d be exclusively wearing them right now. The separate “cups” prevent sticking, and its loose enough to not feel restrictive, but just structured enough to keep things from flying around everywhere and getting in my way.
posted by HMSSM at 1:03 AM on May 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

I just ordered some bras without wires. I go for affordable, because they're not going to last. I have wire-free bras that last, but they are very structured. This is a nursing bra because you can pull it aside to nurse, but looks comfy and nursing bras work for larger cup sizes.
posted by theora55 at 8:29 AM on May 28, 2020

I’m 38G or something like that and I’ve been wearing the TomboyX soft bras since lockdown. They are great!
posted by matildaben at 8:36 AM on May 28, 2020

Best answer: Expanding on Stacey's and matildaben's TomboyX recommendation, this review by Shannon, a writer for the excellent Lingerie Addict blog, has a lot of useful information.

Shannon wears a 38GG/H in UK size bras, so her ribcage is around 38 inches and her bust is 48 inches. She wears a 2X in two TomboyX bras: the Essentials Soft Bra and the Ruched Bralette. Each of these bras is $32; different prints of these also go on sale from time to time. Three-packs of the Essentials Soft Bra are $58; three-packs of the Ruched Bralette are $89.

tl;dr: The Ruched Bralette in 2X is the bra for the 40G person who's looking for light boob control and sweat control.

Both bras are in thick, opaque, soft organic cotton (5% Spandex) with elastic that doesn't roll and are true to size. The double lining on the front panel offers more comfort and support.

The Essentials Soft Bra is a bra for days when she's prioritizing comfort, Shannon says, providing gentle hold but not a lot of lift.

Shannon owns multiple Essentials Soft Bras and was a little worried about whether the Ruched Bralette, with its thinner (adjustable) straps, would be painful:
But this bralette far exceeded my expectations! It’s not quite as perfectly comfortable as the Essentials Soft Bra, but it stays in place and doesn’t strain my shoulders. I find myself reaching for it on days when I’m lounging at home and want a light amount of support and sweat coverage.
Other differences between the Essentials Soft Bra and the Ruched Bralette:

1. The Ruched Bralette has adjustable straps, which the Essentials Soft Bra does not.

2. "Inspired by the needs of those recovering from a mastectomy, those in transition, or folks looking for more modest coverage (read: no nipple show-through)," the Next Gen Black and Next Gen Iron colorways of the Ruched Bralette are sold with removable inserts that can be swapped for pads or breast forms.

3. The Adaptable Ruched Bralette (sold in white or as a three-pack of black, white and charcoal gray), also includes pockets for inserts, pads or breast forms, but TomboyX sells the inserts separately ($5 per pair).
posted by virago at 9:46 AM on May 28, 2020

Nthing Glamorise, specifically this bra (I've also tried the non-minimizer version and find it less comfortable). There are usually specific colors on sale for ~$35 on bra sites (Bare Necessities, Figleaves, etc.) and Amazon.
posted by quatsch at 9:51 AM on May 28, 2020

Canadian MeFites who are looking for wireless bras similar to those sold by TomboyX (minus the customs and shipping charges) may want to check out the Your Open Closet Exclusive Un-Bra, created by and sold at Your Open Closet in Vancouver, whose motto is "Body positive undergarments for all genders."

Your Open Closet Exclusive Un-Bra ($39 CAD), free shipping in Canada.

It's made in sizes XS (26-27" ribcage; 30-32" bust) through 3X (43-45" ribcage; 47-49" bust).

Your Open Closet co-owner Lesley McHale told me in an email that the Exclusive Un-Bra is 90% nylon, 10% Spandex.

Here's the description:
When you need your chest supported and a bralette doesn't do the trick. When you need your chest supported and the traditional underwire bra is just tooo much! When you need your chest supported and comfort is paramount, you NEED an Un-Bra.
PS I refer to this bra as the "Exclusive Un-Bra" rather than just the "Un-Bra" to avoid confusion with the "Original Un-Bra," a trademarked wireless bra made and sold by Decent Exposures in Seattle.
posted by virago at 11:26 AM on May 28, 2020

I've found some cute bralettes on Torrid like this one. They also have much more low key ones too.
posted by annieb at 3:46 PM on May 28, 2020

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