Backless tops and dresses are a great way to show off some skin while flaunting your style. However, they also pose a challenge: how do you wear a bra with a backless top?
Your bra situation can quickly ruin a stunning backless dress or top. You don’t want your bra to show in the back of your dress, or worse, go braless and risk a wardrobe malfunction. That’s why figuring out how to wear a bra that won't show can be tricky.
The good news is that there are some clever ways to wear a bra with a backless top or dress and still look fabulous. With a few innovative solutions and creative approaches, you can confidently flaunt your backless ensemble without compromising comfort. Here are some tips and tricks to help you out.
1. The Convertible Bra
Let's kick things off with the classic convertible bra. This versatile undergarment is a game-changer when it comes to backless garments. With detachable straps that can be rearranged in various ways, you can easily create a racerback or halter style to match your backless top.
Convertible bras are designed for versatility. You can cross the straps in the back, wrap them around your neck, or even remove them completely. This is what makes them work well with many backless tops, depending on how you arrange the straps.
To wear a convertible bra, you need to decide how you want to wear the straps and attach them accordingly. You can also adjust the length and the tightness of the straps to ensure a good fit. To remove the bra, you just need to detach the straps and unhook the band.
That said, they may not provide enough support or lift for larger busts, especially without the straps. They may also slide off your shoulders, and some can be rather complicated to put on and take off. For a simpler solution, you might want to just use your regular bra. Here is how to wear a backless dress with a normal bra.
2. Backless Bra Adhesives
One of the most popular options for backless tops is an adhesive bra, also known as a sticky bra. These bras are made of silicone or fabric cups that have a sticky layer on the inside that adheres to your skin. They provide coverage and lift without any straps or bands in the back. Some adhesive bras also have a clasp or ties in the front that allow you to adjust the cleavage and fit. Adhesive bras are ideal for tops that have a lot of skin exposure or unique cutouts in the back.
Try a silicone style for serious staying power. Position the cups properly on each breast, press firmly to adhere to the sticky side, and voila - lifted look with no back hardware in sight!
The downside is they may not work well for larger busts, or for hot and humid weather, as they can lose their stickiness. Some are also not reusable, so you may need to buy a new pair every time you wear a backless outfit.
To wear an adhesive bra, you need to make sure that your skin is clean, dry, and free of any creams or moisturizers that could interfere with the stickiness. You also need to remove the plastic backing from the cups and flip them inside out to avoid air bubbles. Then, you can apply one cup at a time, starting from the bottom and smoothing it upwards. If your bra has a clasp or ties in the front, you can fasten them after positioning the cups. To remove the bra, you need to peel it off gently and wash it with mild soap and water to preserve the adhesive. You can reuse the bra several times if you take good care of it.
3. Bra Converters and Extenders
If you already have a favorite bra that you're reluctant to part with, you need this. Bra converters and extenders are nifty accessories that can lower the back of your bra, making it compatible with backless styles. Simply attach them to your bra hooks and voilà – problem solved!
4. Bralettes and Bandeaus
Stylish and functional, bralettes and bandeaus are a trendy choice for pairing with backless tops. These are bras that have a soft and stretchy fabric, and no underwire or padding. They are comfortable and designed to add some flair to your backless outfit. You can choose a bralette that has a lace or strappy back, and let it peek through your top or dress.
5. Strapless bras
These are bras that have no straps, and rely on a tight band and underwire to stay in place. They are suitable for strapless or off-the-shoulder tops and dresses, as well as some backless ones. They provide more support and shape than adhesive bras, and are more secure and comfortable. However, they may still show in the back if your outfit is very low-cut, or slip down if the band is not tight enough.
6. Low-Back Bras
These are bras that have a lower band that wraps around your waist, instead of your back. They are ideal for tops and dresses that have a low back, but not completely backless. They provide more support and coverage than adhesive bras, and are more comfortable and durable. However, they may still show if your outfit is very low-cut in the back, or has a sheer or lace fabric.
Look for plunging back bands that droop super low (some even have half-bands that only wrap under) along with slim racerback straps positioned close together to hide under backless styles. Make sure to properly swoop and scoop the girls into the cups for maximum boost. A low plunge cup also helps avoid spillage.
To wear a low-back bra, you need to put on your top and mark where the back of the top falls on your skin. Then, find a low-back bra that fastens below that mark. You can also adjust the straps and the band to fit your body and your top. To remove the bra, you just need to unhook it as you would with a normal bra.
7. Strategic Layering
When in doubt, get creative with layering! Choose a camisole or tank top with a built-in shelf bra to provide the support you need. This method works exceptionally well for casual or boho-chic backless styles, allowing you to mix and match.
You can layer your backless top or dress with a jacket, a cardigan, a scarf, or a shawl. This will add some warmth and texture to your outfit, and cover up your bra if you want to. You can also remove the layer when you want to show off your backless look.
Hacks for Open Back Dresses
If you don’t have the right bra for your backless outfit, or you want to make your bra more invisible, you can try some hacks to modify your existing bra. Here are some of the most popular ones:
- Sew in cups: You can sew in some bra cups or pads into your backless top or dress, and go braless. This will give you some shape and coverage, and eliminate the need for a bra. For exactly how to do it, check out our guide on how to wear a dress without a bra. However, this may not work well for tops or dresses that are very thin or loose, or for larger busts that need more support.
- Use fashion tape: Use some double-sided fashion tape to secure your bra to your skin or your outfit. This will prevent your bra from showing and make it more discreet. However, this may not be very reliable and may damage your outfit if not removed carefully.
- Placement is Key: When using a backless bra, proper placement is extremely important. Properly position your backless bra to ensure everything stays securely in place. Make sure the bra cups completely cover your breasts. If wearing an adhesive bra, follow the instructions to correctly clean and dry your skin beforehand so the adhesive sticks well. Smooth the edges of the bra to blend seamlessly with your skin and avoid any peeking out from the sides. Apply any provided tape or grip pads for extra security.
- Consider Cleavage Level: The level of cleavage created by your top is important when selecting an appropriate bra. For very deep or plunging backs, choose a bra with little to no coverage between the cups so it remains entirely hidden. Tops with higher backs allow you to wear bras with a center connector piece or partial coverage in the center. This provides more support and lift. We cover the other side of the coin on this topic in our guide on how to wear a deep v neck dress without a bra.
- Do a Test Run: Once your bra is in place, do some range of motion tests. Lift your arms overhead and bend forward as if picking something off the ground. Jump lightly in place. Evaluate whether everything stays stable or needs slight adjustment. Visually check from multiple angles with a hand mirror to guarantee no shifting or visibility issues.
For more tips and tricks, read our guide on types of bras to wear with different dresses.
So, there you have it – a comprehensive guide on how to wear a bra with a backless top or dress. As you can see, wearing a bra with a backless top doesn't have to be a daunting task. With the wide variety of specialized undergarments and creative solutions available, you can confidently embrace backless fashion while maintaining the support you need. And if you want to go braless with your backless top, be sure to read our guide on how to wear a backless dress without a bra for tips.
No matter what strategy you choose to use, the most important thing is to find a method that makes you feel confident and comfortable. Remember, fashion is about expressing yourself, and there are no hard and fast rules. Experiment with different options until you discover what works best for you. With these tips in your arsenal, you're ready to confidently embrace the world of backless fashion without compromising on comfort. Good luck!