Supportive Sports Bras for Busty Gals, According to a Bra Expert

Even though sports bras have been around for over 30 years, they are still a mystery to most women. Author Jennifer Weiner recently posted a TikTok video showing her getting ready to go out for a run. What got people’s attention about the video is that Wiener was zipping up three sports bras to reign in her larger bust.

Believe it or not, layering multiple sports bras is common for ample-busted women who complain they can’t seem to find the proper sports support. Researchers say an unsupported breast can bounce up and down by as much as 6 centimeters when you’re working out — not a good thing for the girls.

If you’re a D-cup and above, this likely applies to you! As the bestselling author of “The Bra Book,” now in its second edition (BenBella Books, 2017), and a nationally known bra expert who has studied this at length, I’m here to share that you don’t have to look any further to find sports bras suitable for bigger breasts. 

How To Shop for Sports Bras When You Have a Large Bust

The first thing you should know is that sports bras come in two styles — compression and encapsulation. 

  • Compression: This is the common style that women often think of and it comes in one piece and gets pulled over your head or zips up the front. The idea behind this is that it “compresses” breasts together and to your chest, to prevent them from moving. 
  • Encapsulation: This style of sports bra is like a regular bra because it has somewhat separated cups and is often a band with a clasp in the back. It “encapsulates” both breasts separately, but still helps hold them firm to your chest so they don’t move. Sometimes they even have an underwire for additional support. 

For larger busts, encapsulation is preferable, as the compression style can still have movement when the fabric of it offers too much stretch. 

Tips for Finding the Right Sports Bra

  • Bounce Test: I always recommend doing what’s called the “bounce test” when you get the bra on for the first time. This simply entails jumping up and down in front of a mirror to see whether your breasts are moving or staying firm to your chest. 
  • Consider the Activity: Designers make sports bras with certain activities in mind, such as a yoga bra, which is more for low impact, or a high impact bra for running and kickboxing. Often, if you look at the bra’s tag or online description, it will tell you what it’s designed for. 
  • Proper Fit: As with any bra, knowing your true bra size at this very moment will help! Get a proper bra fitting before you embark on that purchase. 

Now that you know what to look for, here are some options to choose from that are specifically designed for D-cups and above. Less bounce is in your future. Happy shopping! 

6 Best Sports Bras for Large Breasts

1. SHEFIT Ultimate

shefit ultimate bra
Image: SHEFIT

We love the “Ultimate” bra from SHEFIT. This “as seen on Shark Tank” brand is famous for its “zip cinch lift” patented technology which allows you to customize the fit of the bra on your body, reducing “bounce” by 50%. Plus, it comes in lots of pretty colors and doesn’t need to be covered up. They have their own sizing system, but its extended range accommodates up to 55-inch busts. 

Price: $75 at SHEFIT

Related: SHEFIT Sports Bra Dupes for More Support and Less Bounce


2. Nike Dri-FIT Indy Sports Bra

nike dri fit indy sports bra
Image: Nike

Specifically designed for larger busts and from Nike’s plus-size collection, it has front adjustable straps, which many sports bras on the market don’t. Plus, Nike has always made a decent sports bra, and this one is also at an affordable price point. 

Price: $24.97 (reg. $35) at Nike


3. Victoria’s Secret Knockout High Impact Sport Bra

victorias secret knockout bra
Image: Victoria’s Secret

This one is a fave because it has a patented “bra within a bra” technology and a premium 4-way stretch — meaning you get two bras in one (accommodating up to a size 40F). It has hidden cushioned underwire cups, with a front zip “cover.” The adjustable padded straps offer stabilized support, making it perfect for running, boxing and other high-impact cardio.

Like SHEFIT, it has a high-end semi auto-lock zipper (very important if you’re like me and you’ve had your bra spring open at the gym). Plus, the size range accommodates up to a size 40F. 

Price: $54.95 at Victoria’s Secret


4. Lane Bryant LIVI Active High-Impact Sport Bra

lane bryant livi
Image: Lane Bryant

Your best bet for a bounce-free high-impact workout, LIVI Active’s maximum support sports bra keeps you running, jumping and kicking serious butt. Molded underwire cups provide full-coverage support, with wide, padded straps for extra comfort. Sheer mesh insets and back band keep the air flowing — up to a size 40H. 

Price: $29.50 (reg. $69.95) at Lane Bryant


5. Essential Bodywear Jesse Luxe Sports Bra

jesse luxe sports bra
Image: Essential Bodywear

The Jesse Luxe Sports Bra gives maximum support with a full underwire, contoured construction, and a bounce-free cup design. Ventilated mesh panels and breathable, moisture-wicking fabric help keep you cool and dry regardless of your activity. The four-panel hook-and-eye back closure provides needed support for up to a 42G and makes this bra easy to take off — so no more fighting to get out of your bra post-workout. 

Price: $99 at Essential Bodywear


6. Love and Fit Athena 3.0 Nursing Sports Bra

athena nursing bra
Image: Love and Fit

Nursing mamas with sore, heavy breasts need a little love too! The Athena 3.0 from Love and Fit has mid to high support and coverage and offers a secure fit, adjustable straps covered with smooth silky fabric to keep you super comfortable (i.e., no painful digging in) — and the interchangeable clips are thicker and super secure for easy nursing pre- and post-workout. They also added five tiers of adjustability to the back band. You can wear the adjustable straps crisscrossed or keep them vertical for an everyday bra.

Price: $72 at Love and Fit


Caring for Your Sports Bra

Remember, properly care for your sports bra to extend its life (especially with sports bras, since they’re typically constructed with more high-tech and wicking-type materials). Wash between every use with the bra secure in a mesh garment bag to protect any clasps, as the dirt, sweat and oils in your skin can break down the materials of the bra faster. Use a gentle detergent and a cool water “delicate” cycle, if possible. Avoid extreme heat, such as the dryer. It’s better to let it air dry! 


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