There is a saying in the lingerie industry in regards to bras in the United States, “Everyone wants something smooth and nude” There is this innate belief that having a beige colored molded cup bra is a staple in every woman’s wardrobe however this style is predominantly only seen in the US market. Because of this there are a lot of myths floating around about foam injected bras, the top one we hear is “Lacy/sheer bras just aren’t supportive.”
We aren’t saying molded cup bras don’t serve a purpose in the world of lingerie, they create a very smooth finish, they can provide a rounded silhouette to the breasts and sometimes they are the only bras that will work with that one shirt (you know the one).
However, the issue with molded cup bras is right in the name itself, they are molded pre-shaped pieces of foam, and not all of us have breasts that match the shape of these bras. Some of us have breast tissue that is more dense and doesn’t quite fill out the cups, some of us have less fullness on the top part of our breasts and it leaves a lot of gaping and shifting around of the bra throughout the day. Some of us have very pendulous breasts and with molded cups there just isn’t enough depth to the cup. This can cause pressure against the breast tissue all day long, or even when the wires are the correct size, the breast tissue wants to escape and for a lot of us although it is what we are used to, it is not the only way.
Support: As with all bras the support is coming from the band and the straps to help hold up the breast tissue. Now there are definitely a few lacy bras out there that can provide a little bit more shimmy and shake. However, in our our experience lacy or cut and sewn bras can be just as supportive and comfortable to wear as a molded cup bra (and they’re a lot easier to store in an underwear drawer).
Seams have a purpose: The placement of seams on a bra along with the materials used will allow for more or less projection of our breast tissue in the cups. Vertical seams can help shape our breast tissue upwards, horizontal or arched seams allow for more room in the cup so our breasts aren’t squished flatter. With seamed bras there can be more freedom, they can allow for a more natural breast shape underneath clothing, you can use the seams to hide your nipples.
Breathe-ability: A non-padded bra allows for more airflow, which makes them excellent choices for hot days, whereas with padded bra you can end up sweating a lot more. Which can make for a lot of discomfort depending on the top you’re pairing it with.
Bulking up: No matter what your bra size, a molded cup bra will add some bulk to your breast tissue and can make them appear larger. If you’re trying to reduce the size of your breast tissue those lacier and sheerer fabrics will definitely help achieve that goal.
Fabric makes a difference: Some bras have lace all over and sometimes this is a soft and stretchy lace, however in a higher quality garment there will be an additional layer of fabric to help with the integrity of the lace and will help maintain the shape and support of the bra for a longer period of time. A stiffer fabric either all over the cup or on the side and bottom of the cup can help provide a firmer feel to the cup throughout the day while still providing a little more breathing room, however with a stiffer fabric cup there is less forgiveness in the fabric and if it doesn’t fit 100% perfectly for your breast shape then it’s time to make a judgement call.