Guide to bra extenders and other accessories
From clips to padding, there is a wide range of bra accessories to address any problem you may be having with the fit and function of your bras. Bras can be expensive items, and for many women, it is simply unreasonable to buy a different bra to go with every type of outfit.
Whether comfort or fashion is at the top of your list, many bra strap accessories can help you perfect the look, feel and function of your bra. Combine these with shaping and enhancing additions to your bras, and you will be able to transform your look and relieve discomfort easily and affordably. Learn how different popular bra accessories work and which ones are worth the investment.
The dainty straps of many fashion bras may not have the traction needed to stay on your shoulders. You can fix this problem with an attachable horizontal strap that reaches across your back to connect the straps and hold them in place. On the other hand, highly elasticized bra straps tend to cut into the skin, leaving annoying and painful red tracks across your shoulders. To avoid this, you can use bra strap shoulder cushions that sit snugly on your shoulders and secure to bra straps of any width.
When you have an outfit in mind that makes a conventional bra difficult to conceal, you may want to opt for invisible straps. Invisible bra straps, made of stretchy plastic, attach to the loops of a bra and sit discreetly under the straps of tank tops or camisoles. For backless outfits, you can use bra back converters that attach to each side of the back closure and wrap down and around the ribcage to meet in the front. The converters lower the back band by 2 to 3 inches, hiding it below the seam of your dress or top.
Bra Accessories for Size and Shape
If the length of the back band is a bigger issue than where it sits, a bra extender can help. Bra extenders come in different sizes, ranging from two-hook models that loosen a bra by about half a size, to four-hook extenders that grant an extra 3 inches to the bra band. These are great accessories for women who find that their shape has changed following a pregnancy, or for those who can't seem to find a bra that combines the right cup size and band size for a good fit.
One way to redefine an unbalanced or small bust is to use bra inserts to gain shape and size. These can be made of silicone, foam or inflatable plastic, and the right kind for you will depend on the outfit or activity. For cleavage, consider the versatility of inflatable inserts – their size can be adjusted to go with any neckline or event, and they fit into the pockets of specialty bras like push-ups or shelf bras.
Bra clips offer more cleavage without the added padding of inserts, and they have another benefit – since they attach to the back of the bra straps, keeping them pulled together, they also prevent the straps from falling down or showing at the sides of a tank top. Although there are a number of companies that market their own unique styles, the designs are very similar to each other, and any should work just fine.