Lingerie 101: Your Handy Guide on Bras for Every Occasion

Lingerie 101: Your Handy Guide on Bras for Every Occasion

Styles and fashions will come and go, but the one item that’s a constant staple in your wardrobe is your trusty bra collection. Today, having just a couple of basic bras is not enough. If you’re planning on wearing a variety of outfits and engaging in different activities, having different kinds of bras that support you no matter the occasion is a must. The kind of bra you might wear with a plunging neckline is vastly different from the one you require while working out. From options that provide additional support to those that feel like you barely have anything on, everything you need is right at your fingertips.

However, when you’re spoiled for choice, it can be challenging to navigate different bra styles and make the right purchase. If that’s the case, worry not. We’ve compiled a list of the different kinds of bras available and given you pointers on when to wear each. With this nifty list giving the lowdown on all types of bras under the sun, you’ll have no trouble pairing lingerie with outfits.

What are the Different Types of Bras You Can Include in Your Wardrobe?

Your life is as multifaceted as you are. Why should your bra be any different? To ensure that you are as supported as you are comfortable, you can pick from the following styles of bras:

Padded Bras:

Whether you’re building a wardrobe appropriate for professional settings or daily life, a padded bra comes in handy like nothing else. Such bras are designed with a padded cup. While some are built-in, others can be inserted into the pockets provided.
Padded bras are crucial when it comes to coverage and concealing bits you’d rather not show. Plus, they give your bosom a fuller shape, accentuating your natural figure.
You can opt for an underwired option for a subtle lift, whereas a wireless bra is apt for everyday wear. Available in various styles, padded bras can elevate your dressing to another level.

Non-padded Bras:

On the other end of the spectrum, you can go with a non-padded bra for utmost comfort. A non-padded bra consists only of the fabric used to make the basic structure of the bra. There is no extra padding involved.
Instrumental in providing support and contouring to the natural shape of your breasts, these bras are versatile and work with almost any outfit.

Perfect for regular use, they are lightweight and keep your torso free from infection-causing bacteria released via sweat. Plus, today you can pick from an array of non-padded styles to cater to the different styles of clothing in your wardrobe.

Push-up Bras:

Often, you need to spice up an outfit by emphasizing your natural assets. And that’s exactly what a push-up bra is good for! A push-up bra is specifically designed to uplift your breasts and move them closer to each other. When worn properly, a push-up bra provides prominent cleavage that amps up the oomph factor just when you need it.

While you can find wireless options, most push-up bras come with underwired cups that offer a gentle lift. They also include angular padding that can help modify the shape and look of your bosom.

You can opt for push-up bras of varying levels of intensity to regulate the lift as per your preference. Play around and pick a push-up bra that not only uplifts your breasts but also your confidence!

Balconette Bras:

If you’re not familiar with the concept of a balconette bra, then fret not. The name is derived from the word ‘balcony, which hints at the shape of this undergarment. With wide straps and a straight neckline situated at a right angle, the structure of a balconette bra closely resembles that of a balcony.

A balconette bra is particularly suited for clothing items that have a wide or broad neckline. Paired together, you can show off your clavicle without pesky bra straps getting in the way.

You can also enjoy the ample support provided by the sturdy structure. If you’re someone who enjoys experimenting with necklines, then a balconette bra is a no-brainer!

T-shirt Bras:

A modern type of bra for a modern woman. In today’s day and age, most women fall back on t-shirts on any given occasion. Whether you’re lounging around at home or dressing it up with other items from your wardrobe, a t-shirt is one piece of clothing you can trust blindly.

To ensure that you get the most out of this classic garment, you need the perfect bra. This is where a t-shirt bra comes in handy. Constructed similarly to a padded bra, t-shirt bras have smooth-surfaced cups that almost disappear underneath your top.

The seamless finish ensures that the bra leaves no impression, regardless of how snug your t-shirt is. Whether you wear a t-shirt or any other outfit with a clean and fitted silhouette, this bra is here to the rescue.

Underwire Bras:

If you’re going to the trouble of wearing a bra, you might as well opt for one that offers ample support, right? If support is what you’re looking for, then an underwire bra is the perfect fit for you.

These bras are fitted with wires under the cups to help keep your breasts in place. They also offer a subtle lift, creating a flattering shape.

You can choose between underwire bras that are padded and unpadded, as per your preference.

Underwire bras are a sturdy option that can get you through long, active days, especially if you are top-heavy and have a larger cup size.

With underwire bras, you can say goodbye to uncomfortable sagging and enjoy comfortable upliftment.

Strapless Bras:

While bras are often necessary, bra straps don’t have to be. If you’re someone who’s in the habit of wearing tube tops or off-shoulder outfits, then strapless bras are a must-have. These bras come without straps and allow you to wear different necklines without a care in the world.

From breezy bandeau-style bras to ones with removable transparent straps, you can pick from a host of options. And when it comes to support, they’ve got you covered.

Strapless bras usually come with underwired cups or silicon lining to compensate for the lack of straps.

You can also find options that have boning to provide more structure to the undergarment. Regardless of your choice, a strapless bra can give you the freedom to dress how you want.


Who can say no to the best of both worlds, and a bralette lets you do just that? A cross between a bra and a crop top, a bralette is designed to be shown off.

While it is true that most bralettes do not have any underwire or padding, you can seek support by choosing the correct fit and size. And the aesthetic appeal of these bras more than makes up for the lack of construction.

Since bralettes are more of a style statement than a sturdy undergarment, opt for one that is comfortable and pleasing to the eye. Whether paired with a jacket or worn as is, a bralette is perfect for vacation or to add an edge to any outfit.

Convertible Bras:

The master of all bras, a convertible bra lets you experience various styles with just one garment. While the bra can easily function as a regular one, it can be modified to give you plenty of options. You can adjust the straps to create strapless, cross-shoulder, halter, and many other bra styles.

You can pick between padded, non-padded, and underwire options to regulate support and shape as per your liking.

If you’re a frequent traveler, a convertible bra can be a blessing, saving space while you pack for trips. Since it enables you to enjoy so many options with just one bra, it’s also relatively easy on the pocket. A convertible bra is versatility personified.

Sports Bras

Out of all the activities you might engage in, working out is when your breasts need the most support. Whether you’re a fan of high-intensity training or a sport, you should be able to exercise without any discomfort.
To ensure that your breasts are supported to the maximum extent and any bounce is taken care of, you can opt for a classic sports bra.

Sports bras are especially designed to hold your breasts in place during intense physical activity. You can pick from a range of sports bras, depending on the impact of the physical activity you want to engage in.

With several strap and neckline options, you can choose a sports bra that is as comfortable as it is stylish.

Halter Bras:

Whether it’s a breezy day outside or a night out on the town, a halter top or dress is the answer to all your outfit worries. However, to ensure that your halter outfit is not ruined, you need a bra that complements it. Presenting, the halter bra.
This bra has a single strap that can be fastened at the back or neck. With the straps tucked away under your halter outfit, you can enjoy clean lines without any unseemly straps popping out.

Again, you can opt for wired, padded, or non-padded options as per your preference. From lacy options that can be worn as is to functional bras that work on a regular basis, a halter bra is here to save the day.

Stick-on Bras:

Innovation in all areas of life makes things easier, and bras are no different. If you want a bra with absolutely zero hassle, especially if you’re wearing a particularly revealing outfit, then stick-on bras are the way to go. Also known as pasties, these bras are essentially undergarments that have no shoulder or back straps.

Simple cups are perfect for backless and/or strapless outfits.

While they might not offer the most amount of support, they do the job they’re intended to do: provide coverage.

If you’ve been eyeing an outfit but haven’t worn it because you couldn’t figure out which bra would work with it, chances are a stick-on bra will do the trick!

Beginner’s Bra:

Getting used to wearing bras when you hit puberty can be a challenging time for most women. With growing pains already making you feel uncomfortable, the last thing you want is a bra adding to the hassle. Which is why it is best to opt for a beginner’s or training bra while just starting out.

They’re similar to bandeau bras and have no hooks or pads. While they do have straps, the band at the bottom keeps the garment in place.

Easy, breezy, and stretchy, a beginner’s bra will let a young girl enter womanhood with less pain and a more pleasant experience.

Nursing Bra:

If you’re a new mother, then you might be breastfeeding your tot, and a regular bra might simply get in the way.

To make your life easier, you can opt for a nursing bra and feed your baby with the utmost ease. Nursing bras usually have a flap at the cups that allows easy access for feeding.

These bras are constructed using breathable cotton and are non-padded and non-wired to ensure that you do not experience any discomfort while your breasts are sensitive.

The bras are built to accommodate your changing breast shape and size, along with making breastfeeding more convenient.

How to Choose the Right Bra?

Now that you’re aware of all the bra options at your disposal, you have to ensure that you pick the right one. While choosing a bra, you have to consider various factors. If you’re just getting started or need a little help, refer a few pointers you should keep in mind listed below:


Of course, the style of bra is the first aspect to keep in mind. While narrowing down the bra style that you’re on the hunt for, you’ll have to weigh in the occasion and outfit too. Once you know where you’ll be wearing the bra and with what, you can decide which style would be the most suitable.


When it comes to bras, it is of utmost importance to pick one of the right size. If you’re confused as to what size bra would work the best for you, you can rely knowledgeable sales staff or look up material online. You can also make use of bra size calculator to help you determine what size would fit you best. Just keep a measuring tape handy and within seconds you’ll know what size bra to purchase. Do keep in mind that often sizing might change according to the style of bra you choose.


Bras are technically considered to be undergarments and they protect some of the more sensitive areas of your body. So, it is best to purchase bras that are made from quality materials. Ideally, the material should be durable and not cause irritation. You should also pay attention to the construction and hooks to ensure that the garment won’t disappoint in the long run.

If you’re on the lookout for bras that last long and meet all your expectations, then look no further than Wacoal. Wacoal was founded in Japan in 1946 and has since established an impressive legacy of helping women find lingerie that makes them look and feel their best. With an aim to revolutionize the way Indian women approach lingerie, Wacoal offers only the best quality products, designed to make life easier. With an emphasis on construction and materials, along with warm and well-versed on-ground staff, you will find exactly what you’re looking for at Wacoal.

Wacoal houses a wide range of bras that have been crafted to perfection, with a keen attention to detail. To find a bra that is not only expertly made but also caters to your specific requirements walk into any Wacoal store or place an order online.