By Kara Reinhardt, Cheapism.com
Warmer temperatures are coaxing shoulders and backs out from underneath clothing -- and bra straps along with them. Some women understandably shun strapless bras that don't stay up and convertible bras that can be worn seven different ways but cost $50 or more. You can find a comfortable bra that stays in place for less than $25.The best cheap bras will give you support without compromising on comfort.
Below are Cheapism's top picks in a variety of essential styles.
- The straps on the Barely There Invisible Look Underwire crisscross in the back to stay hidden under racerback tanks and other tops that show off your shoulder blades. This bra earns high marks for comfort in online reviews and starts at $18, making it a good option for everyday. Available colors and prints include basic black and taupe.
- The Lilyette Tailored Strapless Minimizer Bra is one strapless bra you don't have to keep yanking up all day or night, according to consumers posting reviews. It comes with straps that can be worn multiple ways, including halter and single-strap configurations. Women with larger cup sizes appreciate that this bra doubles as a minimizer, and anyone can appreciate the price, which starts at $17.
- Reviews of the Maidenform The Dream Bra Push-Up Bra note the natural shape created by the graduated padding inside the cups. The straps convert to a crisscross in the back and the price starts at $24. Consumers commenting online deem this push-up bra comfortable enough to wear every day.
- The Moving Comfort Fiona sports bra also starts at $24 and comes in myriad colors, so you can coordinate with your workout gear. Some consumers find that this sports bra confers enough style and coverage to be worn by itself. It has an adjustable closure in the back so you don't have to peel it off over your head after a sweaty training session.
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A strapless bra with convertible straps, like the Lilyette Tailored Strapless Minimizer, may be the best all-around bra you can buy. It can be configured to fit under almost any cut of clothing, so you don't have to buy a specific bra for every outfit. Other convertible styles, such as the Barely There and Maidenform bras above, have straps that detach only in the back, so they won't work under one-strap or halter tops but are more versatile than regular bras with classic camisole straps.
The bras on the list above all have seamless, molded cups designed to create a smooth, flattering shape. With the exception of the sports bra, they also incorporate underwire for additional lift. If that raises a red flag for you, note that consumers testify to the comfort of these bras in online reviews. They're made with fabric that combines nylon or polyester with spandex, elastane, or Lycra to provide both stretch and support.
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The hook-and-eye closures in the back have at least two hooks, so the band is wide enough to be supportive. Look for a bra with three hooks or more to accommodate a larger bust and minimize the dreaded "back fat" that tends to bulge out around the band. Correct fit is crucial, so try to have a professional size you up.
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