Bra shopping can be one of the most frustrating activities if you don’t know what you’re looking for. People are all shaped differently, and especially if you’re trying to find a specific type of bra — the best bras for wide-set breasts, for example — you need to head into the store knowing exactly what features are going to support wide-set breasts. For some expert help on the subject, I reached out to Candice Smith, chief lingerie stylist at Rigby and Peller.
Smith had tons of great insights as to which bra styles help center breasts, and which features people should be looking for when their breasts are set further apart on their chest and tend to fall outwards toward the sides. “All of the parts of a bra work together to give you the best support,” Smith says. “It is all about finding the right style [...] Bras with side support are going to be the best at centering your breasts.” If you’re having a really hard time finding something that works, Smith recommends “an appointment with a lingerie stylist who can make the process a lot more pleasant.”
1. A Classic Full-Coverage Bra With Side Support
Thia Bali One U underwire bra is a full-coverage contour bra with a design thick band and side wire for side support. The thin cups give you just the right amount of support, and reviewers love that it’s extra-comfortable with no binding or pinching.
According to one reviewer: "If you are built so that you are spaced wide apart [...] [this makes] sure each of the girls is adjusted to be fully INSIDE the cup."
- Available sizes: 34B - 42DD
2. The Best Wire-Free Bra
With an extra wing along the sides, this Warner’s No Side Effects bra provides plenty of support without the wire. Easily adjust the straps from the front and machine-wash it when it’s time for a refresh. Panels on the side made of breathable mesh and contoured cups provide extra side coverage. With more than 7,000 five-star reviews, it’s a popular choice.
According to one reviewer: “This review is for all those women who have wide rib cages, but small cup size. I buy a size 38B, but would really be more comfortable with a 40 B [...] It is nearly impossible to find a comfortable bra. [...] This one fit the bill. I can wear it all day and not feel squeezed. It looks nice too. I will be buying another in the future.”
- Available sizes: 34A - 40DD
3. The Best Front-Closing Underwire Bra
The Bali Comfort Revolution front-close bra offers just about every feature that Smith talks about: a thick supportive band, a plunging neck, structured sides, and cups that push inwards. It’s also got a front closure, which can help make it easier to position breasts inward, and it still manages to be supportive without all the padding and extra bulk thanks to the well-wrapped wire. "The front closure is good and does not dig into my skin. The band is wide and supportive. The cups mold well around the breast. There is no oozing out the sides of the breast :) Straps were easy to adjust," one customer wrote.
According to one reviewer: “The back band is nice and wide and boy does this baby stretch. I was worried about it being a front clasp because in my youth I had the clasps break on me on occasion (not with this bra!) [...] The straps don't fall, the band in back feels like a sports bra and the cups are full coverage, no nips peaking through.”
- Available sizes: 34B - 42DD
4. An Underwire Pick With Vertical Flat Seams For Extra Support
The Freya Marvel underwire side-panel bra is another one that works well for wide-set breasts because it’s got a side panel and a vertical flat seam that gives you loads of support under the arms. The low plunge center helps direct all the support under the breasts, rather than pushing them inwards and to the sides, and reviewers love that it’s ridiculously comfortable while still helping to achieve a rounded natural shape.
According to one reviewer: “It's easily one of the best fits I've had, literally no bras fit me right, and the gore doesn't gap! [...] I have wide set, shallow breasts, and my sternum is sunken in too. I like that it's not padded in any way without being too sheer, and the design is super cute!"
- Available sizes: 28DD - 38G
5. A Wire-Free, Full-Coverage Bra With Lots Of Support
When it comes to the most supportive parts of a bra, Smith says, “The most important element is the band, as this is where the majority of your support comes from. Your band should be snug (you should be able to fit two fingers under the band) and should sit low on your back (parallel or below the front of your bra).” For a thick band that’s great at lifting up and forward, this wireless full coverage bra is a wonderful option that provides tons of support without an underwire. Its M-shaped frame and wide straps provide support without the wire. Choose from more than a dozen colors and band sizes from 32 to 54.
According to one reviewer: “I like the support of this bra. It has strong elastic sides, a nice wide bottom band and wide cushy straps which gives me the lift in the front and minimizing on the sides that I want in a bra. The fabric in the cups is very soft.”
- Available sizes: 32C - 54DDD
6. A Supportive Bra With Side Panels
“Women with full breasts want to look for seamed bras with a side panel that will direct the breast tissue forward,” says Smith. The ribbing and stitching on this Fantasie Lois underwire side-support bra directs the breasts forward rather than sideways, giving you a natural shape without all of the bulk. It’s also got supportive underwire and a wide band that hugs the contours of your body. It comes in six different colors.
According to one reviewer: “The bra itself is beautiful, but the wires are so wide. If you have breast tissue that extends past your armpits and towards your back, you may really like this bra."
- Available sizes: 30D - 42FF
7. A Back-Closure Underwire Bra With Thousands Of 5-Star Ratings
“We always recommend an underwire for the best support,” says Smith. “The larger your breasts, the more important the wire becomes.” The Olga signature support satin bra lines the underwire with silky satin and padding to ensure the most comfortable fit. It’s also got a padded foam sling that gives you added forward support, and the bands are thick, comfortable, and lifting. And it's earned a 4.5-star rating overall after more than 5,000 reviews, so it's a clear favorite with customers.
According to one reviewer: "This is by far the most comfortable bra I've ever worn [...] The fabric is wonderful, the padding on the underwire really makes a difference and the straps stay put and do not dig in. The price was also AWESOME! I'm ordering more."
- Available sizes: 34D - 44DD
8. A Padded Bra Available In Sizes Up To 44H
Because of its side boning and side padding, the Parfait padded underwire bra also helps you to achieve a centered look. The satin neckline gives you coverage without pushing your breasts down, and the specially designed back allows for support and lift without riding up. It’s a really good option for larger breasts, and is available in a wide range of sizes. Choose from more than 10 colors from classic black to vibrant red. "This bra is amazing. It lifts as well as pushes in. Totally recommend for wide set breasts. It also lifts without adding volume,” one customer raved.
According to one reviewer: “It fits so well, the structure is perfect, and the wires hit right at the edge of my breast tissue, which is hard to do because I have somewhat wide breasts”
- Available sizes: 28D - 44H
9. This Affordable Underwire Bra With Side Coverage
With more than 8,000 five-star reviews, this affordable bra with wide side panels has quite the fan following and since they offer easily adjustable straps, a supportive underwire, and extra side support, they’re a great option for wide-set breasts. With contoured foam cups that mold to your unique shape and easy-to-adjust front straps, they’re a reliable option at a great price.
According to one reviewer: “This is the best bra I've ever owned! I have smaller but wide boobs! Kinda hard to explain but people always assume I'm an A cup but really I'm more of a B cup. This bra fits me perfecting. I have no bulging at the top what so ever and it is so comfortable! Definitely going to buy more! Don't hesitate!”
- Available sizes: 34B - 42C
10. This Push-Up Bra Option
“For the more average bust woman, a push-up bra or plunge style will also help center the bust,” says Smith. This extreme-support push-up bra has tons of memory-fit padding on the sides, as well as a thick contoured side band, that helps push your breasts up and together. It’s also got a gorgeous lace design, a plunging style, and a comfortable racerback for added support. It comes in more than a dozen colors. However, note that each size is meant for only C or D cups.
According to one reviewer: “Mine came with add-on clasps to allow the bra to fit more comfortably if incase it seems too snug for your liking. Definitely adds volume and lots of support. Great for wideset breasts!”
- Available sizes: 36C/D - 48 C/D
This article was originally published on