The Pros and Cons of Non-Underwire Bras

By Linda's Online on November 12th, 2013

Hello, darlings. I get it – not everyone is a bra fan like me. Most women who are self proclaimed bra haters typically complain about the uncomfortable underwire. Did you know that 9 out of 10 women who hate their underwire are actually in the wrong size? That’s right! That being said, non-underwire (or soft cup) bras can sometimes be the better option for certain women. Keep reading  for my take on the pros and cons of wearing a non-underwire bra, and who should wear them

Pro: Bras without an underwire are the better option for some pregnant women, especially later in their pregnancy or for those that are carrying high. They’re also great for right after birth when breasts are engorged and a woman’s bra size is constantly fluctuating. Bra Diva Kim has a very good video on this very topic: Watch Pregnancy and Nursing Bra Tips.

Con: As I said above, many women who hate underwire bras are actually just in the wrong size! Switching to a non-underwire bra will not solve the problem. With or without an underwire, a bra in the wrong size will either dig in, roam around, ride up, gap, or squish. A bra in the right size is always more comfortable! If you think you may be wearing the wrong size visit a Linda’s bra fitting shop in NYC or use this helpful video and my Bra Size Calculator

Pro: Women who have  a medical or physical condition know that non-underwire bras are a Godsend. For those who have just had surgery, have a hiatal hernia, or a high ribcage, wearing a wireless bra is the best option. Check out my full line of soft cup bras and the surgical selection on my website for lots of bra style options.

Con: Your bra’s job is to lift and shape your bust, and the most popular shape comes with wearing an underwire. Non-underwire bras can certainly do their job, but the preferred style (lifted, round and smooth) is much more easily attained with an underwire bra. Shaping the breast tissue inside an underwire creates the look most women love!

Pro: Non-underwire bras are great for the weekend, lounging around the home, or even sleeping! Wire-free bras (in the correct size) can still provide support while remaining flexible for running weekend errands, stretching out on the couch, or sleeping in. Read more about Weekend Bras

Con: For those blessed with a very full breast shape, non underwire bras can not offer the lifted and separated look. In order to separate breast tissue, a bra’s underwires need to tack onto the body in between the breasts. Without an underwire, only the band can tack, which sits below the breasts, not between them. Read more about tacking

Pro/Con: For those with very large breasts, support is key. As I mentioned above, the underwire bra offers a more popular shape, and the support is unparalelled. Those with a bra size cup above a B (honestly) will benefit from the support of an underwire. However, for those with extremely large breasts (like L-N) and a very large back, a non-underwire bra could actually fit best. The Elila 1305, for example, is a very popular, very structured non-underwire style that fits up to N cup. 

Pro/Con: Bras for exercise often do not contain underwires, and for good reason. For those moving and bending the body, a sports bra without an underwire is flexible and comfortable. Plus, most women worry less about shape or separation when exercising, and focus on support and function. However, I carry many sports bras with an underwire! Depending on their activity, some women actually prefer the support and separation that comes with wearing an underwire sports bra. 

What’s your take? Do you prefer wearing an underwire or non-underwire bra? What about on the weekends? What about for exercise?

Don’t forget, darlings: fit comes first! Whether you are pro or anti underwire, always wear the right size.




  1. […] The second risk is the underwire of a bra. It is rumoured that the wire is pressed so tightly against the skin to support the breasts, that it begins to block the lymphatic drainage nodes, therefore causing a build up of toxins in the breasts, which could potentially over time become cancerous. ( […]