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Inexpensive Bra Options: How to Save Wisely

I'm sure I'm not the only one who has made this mistake: you're shopping for bras in a small band and/or small cup size, and what the store has available is mostly designed for teenage girls. You need a bra, for god sake, and you notice that these are quite inexpensive. You try one on and it doesn't fit horribly, so you buy it because after all it's not hurting your wallet much. Then you take it home... and never wear it.

Now, I'm not saying teen bras are always awful. If you need a petite bra and you find a brand and style for teens that happens to fit you well, there's nothing wrong with buying them. But there are several things to watch out for.

First, they almost always run shallow in the cup. Measuring as an A cup does not actually mean you have shallow breasts; you may be small but full, or have most of your volume at the bottom of your breasts. Either way, finding a good fit in a teen bra can be challenging. They often won't adequately surround and contain all of your breast tissue, leaving the outsides or tops of your breasts spilling out. The cups may also be too close together for your frame, leading to the bra fitting tight and uncomfortable even if you are in the correct cup size. And finally, bras for teens have shorter straps which may not even be adjustable.

Make a list of what you need in a bra. If it includes close-set shallow cups, short straps, and minimal support, then you might be just fine with the teen styles. One that I have seen many adult women give good reviews for is the Maidenform Girl soft cup.

You'll see that it is available in sizes 30A through 38A in basic colors. And that's it. Not much color variety, and no cup sizes above A. But the price is right at $14 retail, and it's often on sale for much less ($9.80 at the moment). It also has quite good reviews. Maidenform is generally a reliable brand with styles that have remained popular for years, and of course they also make bras for adult women, so you can assume that they have a good understanding of how to design a decent bra. So if you want a serviceable style at a good price and it is within your size range, I think it's safe to give this one a try. It has adjustable straps, no underwire, and just enough padding for nipple coverage. Customers rate it as having adequate support for small breasts. Go to to find out more. (As an Amazon Associate, I may receive a commission from your purchase).

Update: I discovered that one of the Maidenform Girl styles does come in more solid color options. You can view these choices here:

Calvin Klein, whose bras in small cup sizes often work well for petite women, also makes bras for girls. Their A cup in this model fits like an AA in adult bras, so it may be a good choice for AA-cup adults.

You should of course feel no shame for wearing a teen bra. But I also think that adult women of every size should have more options than this, in both color and style. Cutesy patterns on teen bras exist... and I hate every single one of them. I'd much rather go with a very basic style like the Maidenform or Calvin Klein, knowing that it is not for special occasions but for everyday wear and hardly anyone is going to see it anyway. I am now mostly out of their size range, but could probably fit into the 36A if necessary.

Have you, as an adult, tried these and/or or other bras designed for girls? Please share your experience in the comments.


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