Bralettes are everywhere right now. They are the epitome of relaxed, laid-back style; the Netflix and chill of bras, but with just enough lace and sheer to make it glamorous. But do they really work for the plus-size figure?
I’ve shared bralettes for the fuller figure before. I’ve worn them in lingerie shoots and for lounging around the house when the clap, clap, clap of going down the stairs without an underwire isn’t an issue.
But what about wearing bralettes outside of the house? For wearing with backless tops and plunging blouses? For wearing with slinky party dresses and sheer tops? After all, Christmas is just around the corner!
So I decided to test our three bralettes that have been specifically designed for the plus-size and fuller bust market. I’ve taken one set each from Playful Promises Curve, ASOS Fuller Bust, and Rougette by Tutti Rouge. They all look beautiful, worthy of wearing out for a night of cocktails and, dare I risk it, dancing. But can they live up to life outside of the house?
Gabi Fresh x Playful Promises Rosa Embroidered Triangle Bra
The Gabi Fresh collaboration with Playful Promises is at the more luxurious end of the bralette spectrum. The Rosa is a simple triangle bralette made from soft and sheer mesh cups embroidered with delicate flowers in tones of red, orange, and yellow, wrapped by green leaves. The back band is exceptionally wide with a six hook-and-eye closure at the central gore.
The bra has a deep plunge that makes it perfect for wearing with lower-cut necklines and support is given be subtle darts in the mesh cups. The long-line back band also adds support.
The bra is made in dress, opposed to lingerie sizings, and I’m wearing the 18. It is a near perfect fit on my 36H check with my boobs safely encased in the mesh. The back band is a little generous and I could, perhaps, have dropped to a 16 but then the cups would likely have been too small.
As you can see, the bralette gives a natural shape to the boob with only a subtle lift but I love this natural shape, especially when wearing plunging tops. The combination of H-cup breasts and plunging necklines often causes a little too much boob – the literally dominate my silhouette. The more natural shape that this bralette gives my body is more subtle than a conventional, wired plunge bra and allows me the opportunity to brave even lower tops.
The bralette is also supportive. The cups do not move and my boobs remain safely encased even whilst having a manic dance party in my lounge. I am clap-free when running down the stairs and there are no uncomfortable pressure points on my shoulders.
The only, very minor, criticism of the bra is that the long-line shape means that the back band can fold upwards when sitting down. This is mostly due to my rolls but it also means that one of the hook-and-eye closures has sprung open. Only ever one though – so I’ve been in no risk of escaping!
SHOP THE LOOK
Rougette by Tutti Rouge Phoenix Bralette in Floral Lace
The Phoenix bralette by Rougette, part of the Tutti Rouge brand, is another triangle cupped bralette. The bra comes in ivory and black colours with the cups and back band being constructed from a floral lace.
This is a pull on bralette. As such, there aren’t any fastenings to worry about.
I am wearing a 36F/G and the bra is a great fit. This suggests that the sizing is quite generous as my H-cup breasts fill the cup without risk of spilling out of the sides or over the top. The band is a perfect fit and therefore true to size.
The bralette is a plunge shape with padded cups that offer extra support and encasing. The Phoenix offers a little less uplift of the breast tissue than seen in the Playful Promises bralette above. Yet it still offers great support with little movement when subjected to the dance-party and stairs test that every bra of mine goes through.
The long-line design of the band on the Phoenix is very soft and flexible. It is unlined lace which helps the band stay put; it doesn’t slip about movement. The band doesn’t even roll up when sitting down.
The back of the bra has a lot of coverage. This makes it less than ideal for backless dresses and strappy tops. It does, however, make it perfect for layering beneath t-shirts, turtlenecks, and blouses. It would also make the perfect lingerie-as-outerwear top. I’d wear mine with high-waisted jeans and a blazer but it would also look amazing with a high-waisted skirt.
SHOP THE LOOK
ASOS Design Fuller Bust Rio Lace Moulded Longline Triangle Bra
I’ve reviewed items from the ASOS Fuller Bust range before and have been a little ambiguous about the quality. They are certainly a hit or miss brand. Yet I’d heard good things about their bralettes and the now sold out velvet number featured on my Instagram earlier this month has been a real hit. Therefore, I really had to include an ASOS Fuller Bust item in this review. Especially as they are so reasonably priced.
The Rio bralette is made with triangle cups in a scalloped lace, lined with a moulded cup. The lace has a beautiful, deco-inspired, geometric pattern to it that continues onto the long-line back band.
The band is deep at the front but tapers in a very low-slung back band at the back. This means that it looks great worn with low-back or backless clothing. It does, however, mean that the support is lacking in this bra. The bralette gives very little uplift or support which means your breasts move very freely in this item.
The bralette did, however, remain supportive enough to prevent clapping when running up and down the stairs. Yet it failed the dance test miserably. My boobs literally flung out of the cup. I also noticed that, after several hours wear, my left boob (which is the bigger of my asymmetric pair) became intent on peeking out.
I am wearing a 36H in this bralette but it is generous in the back and shallow in the cup. I do wonder if it would be more supportive in a 34HH or 34J. Sadly, as it is, I don’t feel this is a bralette I will be wearing out of the house.
SHOP THE LOOK
I think it is clear that I adore the Playful Promises and Tutti Rouge bralette offerings. In fact, I’ve tried another bralette from Tutti Rouge that I also love – you can see a little video of me dancing around in it on my Instagram.
The ASOS bralette, however, is a definite no from me. That doesn’t mean I won’t try another style from there and someone has suggested I put a few stitches in this one to create more support through a central gore. But I’m terrible at altering clothes so I really think this bralette will be reserved for those rare Netflix and chill days.
Have you tried any bralettes that you love?