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All about Bras
Parts of a bra
Made for You
The way a bra is cut, assembled and sewn has a big impact on how it fits your unique shape. In this section we'll dissect each part that goes into a bra and explain its function and how it affects your bra fit.
ALSO KNOWN AS A "BRA FRAME" OR "BRA BASE," A BRA BAND IS THAT PART OF A BRA THAT GOES AROUND THE RIBCAGE.
This part of a bra also includes the bra’s sides and back. A bra band is designed and engineered to carry the weight and thrust of your breasts. It is what determines how your band size will fit and feel. This is why it's so important that you find your correct band size – too tight and your underwires can dig into your ribcage; too loose and your breasts won’t have proper support.
A bra’s cups are sewn either into or onto a bra band. Some bra designs have what is called a "bandless" or "floating cup" design – meaning that the cups are not sewn onto a band underneath them. Instead, the band is sewn onto the outer edges of each cup and has no presence in the front of the bra. This bra design gives a lighter look to the bra but can compromise your support – especially if you have larger breasts.
A BRA DESIGNED WITH A BRA BAND THAT GOES ALL THE WAY AROUND YOUR TORSO WILL GIVE YOU THE BEST SUPPORT.
And, if that bra band is made of powernet (a very sturdy knit fabric that is also used in extra firm compression garments), you have the strongest support possible without having so much stretch that the bra will shortly stretch out. There is an important point to be made here. Bras that can be easily stretched from end to end have a much shorter life than bras with little stretch. So, if you want a bra to last longer and stretch out less, look for a bra where the band is made with powernet.
Some women can have a problem with their band flipping up or folding under their arms. This is a common problem in the larger band and cup sizes, as well as with full-busted petite women. One reason could be that the band size is too small. Another reason could be the manufacturer's inexpensive and stretchy fabric choice for the band. Assuming you have your correct band size, one solution is to look for bras with bands made with powernet and/or a band with boning sewn vertically along the sides. At HerRoom, we describe the sides of every bra in the Fitter's Comments section located just below the bra description.