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3 new bra styles and exactly when you should wear them

Comfort and style are no longer opposing forces in the world of women’s bras. It’s about time!

In the past, women often had to choose between two less-than-perfect options in bras. Many of us long endured undergarments that pushed the breasts into a predetermined shape and encased them in stifling molded cups (often coupled with thin straps that pinched the skin). 

These bras could look sexy and stylish, with cool color options and pretty details - but after a few hours, they left us too annoyed or pained to care anymore.

Running weekend errands or returning home after work, many of us might change into something more comfortable: a cozy soft-cup bra or even a favorite stretched-out sports bra. But these options were decidedly unfashionable: color options were just the most basic, fabrics were less-the-luxurious, and little effort was made by manufacturers to make these bras beautiful, stylish, or sexy. 

The message to women was clear: you’re fashionable or you’re comfortable. But not at the same time.

Hallelujah for changing times. 

The hottest bra trends right now embrace comfort, practicality and more natural silhouettes while offering luxurious and high-tech fabrics and sophisticated color choices previously unavailable in cozy, body-friendly bra offerings. 

The emergence of athleisure in fashion has a lot to do with this. (That’s the casual clothing trend that made it okay to wear yoga pants all weekend, rather than just during an actual yoga class, and thus yielded much more fashionable yoga pants in the process.)

Another contributor to the marriage between style and comfort in women’s bras has been the increasing attention to diversity and body positivity in women’s fashion overall. Rather than needing a heavily molded bra to shape the breasts into one ideal form, more women are demanding bras with more forgiving, flexible construction that reflects and embraces their unique body shapes.

These updated soft-cup bras — reborn under the name “bralettes” — celebrate women’s bodies with stylish colors and details, and some (like Tommy John’s) feature cutting-edge performance and luxury fabrics for optimum fit and functionality, amazing feel against the skin, and a fashion-forward look to boot. 

This new breed of bra doesn’t just feel better on women’s bodies, it better accommodates all the things women’s bodies can do — whether that’s a ten-hour day at the office followed by living-room yoga while binge-watching a Netflix series, wrestling two kids and groceries into the car, or tackling an HGTV-worthy home DIY project over a weekend. 

Here are three new bra styles we can thank these enlightened fashion trends for - along with tips on when to wear to get the most out of them.  

1. The Scoop Bralette

The Scoop Bralette is, in comfort terms, like that favorite stretched-out sports bra many women used to cling to far past its expiration date, in a desperate bid for everyday comfort and support. 

Now you can toss that baby out for good, because the Scoop Bralette is designed for exactly this once-hard-to-come-by level of support in women’s bra options: the comfy, comprehensive coverage and unfussy pullover design common to many sports bras, minus the high level of compression necessary during high-impact activities. 

The Scoop Bralette style provides all the comfort of a slightly stretched-out sports bra, with softer, more flexible fabrics for everyday wear — and a lot more style points, since it’s not actually a wardrobe relic from the last decade. 

Wear this bra style anytime you crave maximum comfort. Tommy John’s version offers support while banishing uniboob at the same time, with our Built-In PowerMesh that lifts and separates. Choose between our Cool Cotton and Second Skin fabrics, both of which offer luxurious softness against the skin. 

2. The Triangle Bralette

The Triangle Bralette style offers similar comfort and support to the Scoop Bralette, with a more minimal soft-cup bra shape. 

Wear this style anytime you want maximum comfort under a lower or V-neck cut top (necklines that may show a Scoop Bralette style bra). The triangle bralette is also a great option for women seeking the comfort of a bralette with the slightly more revealing and traditionally feminine triangle cup shape. 

Tommy John’s Second Skin Triangle Bralette features fully adjustable straps that are convertible from classic to cross-back for a custom fit (and our straps are wider and softer than most, to make sure they stay put and don’t pinch, no matter how you wear them). 

3. The Longline Bra

Today’s Longline Bra trend is an updated version of bra styles from the 1930s to 1950s. Back then, Longline Bras included cups that pushed the breasts up and out (often featuring the bullet shape in fashion at the time), plus bands bands that extended all the way to the waist, smoothing the torso and cinching the waistline. 

These heavy-duty highly structured undergarments helped create a well-defined hourglass figure, along with a less-than-ideal experience for the wearer; they tended to be thick, stiff and uncomfortable.  

Longline Bras that provide a smooth silhouette and plenty of support have been updated over time to be a bit more wearer-friendly, with more breathable, flexible modern fabrics. But until the recent resurgence in the look, most modern women only opted for this style under formalwear, such as an evening gown or wedding gown, to create a highly polished, controlled shape.

The new Longline Bra trend harkens back to mid-century fashion, but updates it to better embrace women’s comfort, movement and natural body shapes — combining the resurgence of this retro look with the comfy Bralette trend mentioned above. Modern Longline Bras include options with molded cups, but soft-cup bralette versions are widely available too. The extended bands of today’s trendy Longline Bras vary in length; not all extend all the way to the natural waistline. 

Today’s Longline Bras are less about pushing and cinching the body into a predetermined shape, and more about adding a creative option to your closet! These bras tend to show off interesting design elements, ranging from sleek and modern to finely detailed with lace, straps and colorful patterns. 

The most daring wearers, including some celebrities, are showing off their modern Longline Bra looks by wearing them in lieu of shirts under blazers or denim jackets. 

Wear your Longline Bra that way yourself, use it for a bit of extra smoothing and support under dresses per tradition, or simply wear it anytime for a fun extra dose of creativity and confidence beneath your outfit.  

The Bottom Line

Whether you’re already a devotee of the Bralette trend or a more traditional underwire gal for daily wear, Tommy John believes comfort should be more than a passing trend in women’s bras. In fact, we place comfort at the center of all our underwear designs, for women and men alike. Because, let’s face it, we all look our best when we feel great, too. 

Check out Tommy John’s Bralettes and more and learn what makes all our styles the most comfortable bras on the planet