If you are anything like me, when you find a sports bra you love you wear it death. And you mourn the day you have to part ways with it. The day you finally decide it cannot support you anymore.
If you are lucky when you hit the shops the style you love is still available. And you can start your sports bra love affair all over again! But what if, heaven forbid, that style has been discontinued? Oh no, the outrage!
For many women there is nothing worse than shopping for a new sports bra. Endless hours of trying on different ones in the hope that you might find your new favourite workout buddy.
But what if I made easier for you. What if you could narrow your search by brand and in particular the best brand for you? That is what I will do today. I list my 8 best sports bra brands and why they may just suit you. Read on to hit the ground running when you next go sports bra shopping.
If you were to ask me what my favourite sports bra brand was. I would answer without hesitation Shock Absorber! Why you ask? For me quite simply they offer the absolute best in support. At the end of the day a good sports bra should offer great support and comfort and Shock bras do just that.
All their styles are wirefree. This is often a red flag for many women who believe only underwired sports bras offer good support. Modern materials and technical designs mean wirefree sports bras now equal and often exceed their underwired counterparts in the support stakes.
Shock bras cater for a wide range of back (8-20) and cup (A-HH) sizes. So, if you want high impact support and are happy with wirefree then a Shock Absorber sports bra is well worth a look. They are a bit on the expensive side. But if you want to keep the girls under control, they are well worth the money.
Next on my list is another European brand and wirefree specialist, Anita Active. These guys are a personal favourite of mine. Their sports bras are not only supportive and comfortable but also so lightweight (The Air Control is the lightest sports bra in the world!). And living in Australia that is a good thing. Anything that helps keep you cool while you work out is appreciated.
As mentioned all but one of their styles are wirefree. They offer encapsulation support so hold the breasts rather than just ‘squash’ them. And if you are a fan of racerback then check out the Dynamixstar.
One thing that I find appealing is their range of sizes. They try and cater for all women. From 8A to 26FF and everything in between. If this sounds good to you then an Anita Active sports bra is for you. As with Shock they are a touch expensive, but they are made well and do stand the test of time.
These guys are D+ specialists. Both in their everyday bras and their sports bras. I love brands that offer high end support and comfort to bigger busted ladies. After all every woman needs support when they exercise.
They do not make many styles but what they do make more than do the job they are designed for. They are high to extreme impact. Offer both underwired and wirefree styles. And all their styles have straps that clip together at the back to offer a regular or racerback strap set up.
Panache sports bras cover 6-18 backs and D-HH cups. If you are after bigger then sister brand Sculptresse by Panache cover up to an impressive 24 back and JJ cup!
They are supportive, comfortable and look the goods. My only negative is it is a pity they do not make a racerback style. This would be a great addition to their range and appreciated by many women.
Ok, we have looked at a couple of wirefree specialists. Now it is time to look at a true underwire specialist, Freya Active. There three flagship styles are all underwired. They do offer a token wirefree style, but it does not compare to their underwired styles.
If you are after support, then the Epic is for you. It offers up to an impressive 92% bounce control (according to Freya). The Core is also impressive in the support stakes and is a great everyday option for women on the go.
Freya Active styles cover a range of sizes (6-18 and B-K cup) so will suit most women. So, if you are a fan of underwired then Freya Active sports bras are well worth a look. It is just a pity they do not do more quality wirefree styles (can you tell I am a wirefree fan?)
Next is a brand for the fuller figured and busted among us. As I have said everyone deserves support and this US brand does an awesome job of supporting larger ladies in comfort and style.
They offer both underwired and wirefree styles with regular backs. Most of their styles are rated ‘medium impact’ and are perfect for everyday wear and less intense activity. If you want to up the ante, then the High Impact Underwire and Adjustable Wirefree styles offer the highest level of support.
Covering up to a 28 back and J cup Glamorise Sport sports bra do a great job of keeping plus size women moving. One of our bestsellers and for good reason.
Triumph Lingerie originates from Germany (who knew?) and given they have been around for over 135 years they know a thing or two about bras. Their sub-brand Triumph Triaction make a good range of quality sports bras that sit more in the ‘affordable’ range.
They offer styles that pretty much cover every combination of features. Underwired, wirefree, convertible back, padded, the list goes on. They offer something for everyone if you sit more in the ‘regular’ size range. With only one of their styles stretching to a G cup.
Triumph sports bras sit nicely in the more affordable price range ($35-75). I personally cannot fault their quality. If only they catered to a larger size range!
What Australian woman has not heard of Berlei? They are synonymous with sports bras in Australia and for good reason. They make great bras! The best bit, they work with the Australian Institute of Sport to measure the bounce reduction of many of their sports bras.
Like Triumph they cater to more ‘standard’ sizing (I guess that is where the sales volume is) and offer a range of features to suit most women. If you are after high support, then check out the Shift. If you have a bit more up top or are looking for plus size, then the ProElite and Full Support could be for you.
I do like Berlei sports bras. They are both comfortable and supportive. And sit nicely in the reasonable to high price range ($60-100). My one criticism is they have bet the farm on underwire styles, offering only one wirefree style. That said if you are a fan then check them out.
OK, we have come to the end of our 8 best list and what better way to end it than with another Aussie favourite, Bonds. They have infiltrated every corner of our underwear life, sports bras included!
They do not do a large range of sports bras. But what they do is the most affordable of all the brands on my list (sub $50!) One thing to be aware of is their bras are rated ‘medium impact’ so are not suitable for high bounce activities.
If you are after a more affordable sports bra that suits the gym, walking or riding a bike then consider a Bonds sports bra. An Aussie favourite that will not let you down.
My Final Thoughts
We are all different and there is no such thing as a ‘one style suits all’ sports bra. What suits your training buddy may not suit you. So, do not try and shoehorn yourself into her bra brand no matter how much she raves about it!
More than ever, we have access to a great range of sports bra brands. And no longer must we settle for simply what’s on offer at our local sports store (how good is the internet!)
Use my list as a starting point in your search for your new favourite sports bra. One that is supportive, comfortable and accommodates your size perfectly. After all a great workout starts with the right sports bra!
Yours in Support.