9 Best Sports Bras That Don’t Cause Chafing

woman stretching inside her apartment
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Sometimes, it can seem like carefully choosing your activewear might be more involved than getting ready for a night out. When it comes to choosing a sports bra that won’t cause chafing, the struggle can feel particularly real. However, one of the best ways to prevent sports bra chafing is making the effort to select the right bra in the first place.

You can stop sports bras from rubbing in all the wrong places by wearing materials made to prevent chafing (aka, keeping skin from rubbing against skin or materials — further aggravated by sweat). I didn't realize how big of a difference clothing selection made until I went on my first real 10-hour hike in the mountains of Maine. As I nursed my raw skin with aloe that night, I realized that any old clothing just wasn’t going to cut it anymore.

If you’re willing to forego the snooze button to run, it’s especially disheartening to have to quit halfway through because your clothing is causing a rash. In order to avoid shoulder-digging, rib-rubbing, armpit-irritation, and chafing caused by an uncomfortable sports bra, be mindful of the way it’s made. The fabric, cut, fit, and support is especially important, but it’s also important to remember that everyone’s body is different, and what works for someone might not work for another. Behold! Nine great options to check out below.

Go For Seamless

Champion Women's Freedom Seamless Racerback Sport Bra (Size XS-XL), $11-$32, Amazon

Cotton can be particularly abrasive while working out, as it absorbs sweat and is much heavier against your skin. Champion's racerback sports bra uses polyester, spandex, and mesh ventilation to create a lightweight, moisture-wicking sports bra that keeps you dry and comfortable. It’s one of the best-selling sports bras because it doesn’t have any seams, and it’s so cozy you barely realize you’re wearing it. Plus, it comes in 20 different colors and five different sizes to fit different styles and bodies.

For Extra-Soft Material, Try Bamboo

Tasc Performance Women's Endurance Sport Bra (Sizes XS-L), $21-$67, Amazon

Bamboo is a great material to consider, too, as it creates some incredibly soft fabrics. This Tasc sports bra is made with 35 percent high quality bamboo. It also features flat seaming and a four-way stretch to create a comfortable, snug fit. Furthermore, because it allows for great temperature regulation and moisture-wicking, this bra is a super comfortable and durable bra for workouts.

Don’t Sacrifice Support For Comfort

Champion Medium-Support Curvy Bra (Sizes S-XL), $15-$39, Amazon

It’s hard to find both support and comfort when it comes to workout clothing, but this supportive pick from Champion has it all. It’s made with a combination of nylon, spandex, and polyester to create this V-neck sports bra, which allows for shaping, support, and a stylish color block design without chafing. It’s also machine washable, so it’s easy to care for, and reviewers love that it’s durable and won’t slip off the shoulders. One reviewer says, “[This] provides great support, but isn’t flimsy or thin like other brands I have purchased.”

Personalize More Than Just Strap Length

Puma Seamless Sports Bra (Sizes S-L), $10-$33, Amazon

Another secret to avoiding chafing is to make sure that your clothes fit snugly, but without digging in. This seamless sports bra from Puma is an awesome option because it allows you to personalize your sports bra — but not just with adjustable strap fit. It actually has removable padded cups, so you can alter the fit to be as comfortable as possible. It also features seamless synthetic material and a racerback design for extra mobility. One reviewer puts it simply: “Without a doubt, it is the most comfortable bra I have ever worn.”

Compression Fabric Is Your New Best Friend

Vesi Star Women's Comfort Padded Sports Bra (Sizes S-XL), $16-$21, Amazon

Compression fabric is great for workouts because not only is it made from lightweight, quick-drying material, but it helps to keep muscles in place (which also prevents excess friction while moving). Vesi Star's sports bra provides extra support and hold with its compression material. It also has a flat seam across the bottom to stop irritation or chafing, and nylon stabilizers to reduce bounce while jogging. Sweat evaporates quickly, as the fabric is breathable and mesh-like in certain areas, and you can remove the padding for personalized support.

For Low Intensity Workouts, Underwire Wicks Away Sweat, Too

Playtex Outgoer Underwire Lightly Lined (Sizes S-2X Plus), $16-$45, Amazon

Underwire is a tricky thing when it comes to workout gear. If the garment is not extremely high-quality, it’ll start to poke through in no time — a sensation I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. However, Playtex's lightly lined underwire option is exceptionally durable, well-made, and strong, and it uses stretchy synthetic materials that reduce chafing and irritation. The cups are padded, the straps are thick, and the fabric is quick-drying, to make for an especially comfortable workout session, no matter your bust size.

Go High-Impact Without Abrasive Fabrics

Enell High Impact Sports Bra (Sizes 00-8), $64, Amazon

This Enell sports bra is ideal for extremely intensive activities or situations, where you’ll need the utmost of bounce-free support. The wrap knit nylon compression fabric is especially soft on skin, while the wide non-stretch straps keep everything in place, reducing resistance and rubbing, and the front hook-eye design makes it much easier to put it on and remove it. One thrilled fan comments, “It's hard to imagine getting excited about a sports bra, but I'm a big girl with large breasts that loves to work out…. This one works no matter what I'm doing.”

Find The Right Fit For Ultimate Comfort

Glamorise No-Bounce Sport Bra (Sizes 34F-50G), $22-$72, Amazon

A good fit is exceptionally important because if something is too loose or too tight, you’d better believe you’re going to start feeling it before the one-mile mark. This Glamorise sports bra is an incredible sports bra because it utilizes polyester, nylon, and elastane to create a smooth, comfortable fabric that effortlessly glides against skin. Because it offers full coverage and bust control, it’s a great option for those looking for support, and it also comes in loads of different cup sizes (everything from 34 F to 50 G), so you can hold everything in place without ending up with an irritating rash at the end of your workout.

Clip-Free Straps Mean No Uncomfortable Rubbing

La Isla Crossback Yoga Sports Bra (Sizes XS-XL), $15-$17, Amazon

This seamless crossback bra is a great option if you always feel the clips of your bra digging into your shoulders. Plus, it's wonderful for anti-chafing because of its flat seams and twist back that moves with you for little resistance — all of which reduce friction and irritation. Removable pads let you customize how much support you'd like in the front, and moisture-wicking fabric keep sweat fro pressing back against skin.

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Images: Maskot/Maskot/Getty Images; Amazon (9)