I Hate All Bras, But I Love This One Enough to Sleep In It

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Photo: GraphicaArtis/Getty Images

When I wear a bra, I spend the whole day eager to get home and sling it right off. Some days I feel constricted enough to secretly de-bra, right there in the office. The politics and social norms of bra-wearing are part of another conversation, for another time. For now I will just say: in my 29 years on earth, I’ve never met a woman who downright loves the existence of bras, even a well-fitting one. Most women struggle to even find the right bra size in the first place.

But none of those problems exist with the Free New Bralette from Cosabella, because once you slip it on, it doesn’t feel like you’re wearing a bra at all. When I used to work at Gilt, I spent a lot of time surfing our backend system for affordable but chic underthings, and Cosabella was always my brand of choice for its soft, sexy lace and great fit. But while I was perusing the rainbow-colored assortment of Never Say Never bras, I came across this simple black bralette, and thought, I deserve a day or two without an underwire. And I haven’t looked back.

The Free New Bralette is like a lightweight sports bra in shape and a really soft T-shirt in feel. Like a fitted crop top that I wear under shirts. It gently hugs your boobs but won’t cut into your back, arm, or shoulder skin like most underwire bras and sports bras, for that matter. And this bralette, unlike most, isn’t just for smaller-breasted among us. I’m in the C-cup range and have no complaints.

To be clear, the bralette will not shape or lift your boobs; it’ll simply give them some support so you can go about your day feeling comfortable. So comfortable in fact, that I’ve slept in the Free New Bralette more times than I care to admit — this, coming from someone who used to take them off at work. And the trend definitely seems to be catching on. Have you seen Everlane’s new bras? Yep. The same thing.

As an added bonus: In this current era of sportier, modest fashion, the black bralette also feels pretty sexy. And it doesn’t have any hooks and eyes that someone might fumble with. No snaps. No nothing. This thing feels like nothing, and then comes off all in one swoop. That’s something everyone can enjoy.

Cosabella Free New Bralette
$45, Orchard Mile

Other comfy underwear we like

The Tank Bra
$22, Everlane

Writer Lori Keong reviewed the Everlane underwear line mentioned above. Of the Tank Bra she said: “This Everlane bra is double-walled, though, so there’s shielding going on, and I have a feeling it would look very cute peeking out from underneath a workout top.”

Jockey Elance
$23, Amazon

For Fugly Week, long ago, senior editor Margaret Rhodes praised the high-waist jockeys she loves and buys in three-packs. “Like a hug for your uterus.” That’s how my dear friend described her Jockey Elance Brief underwear to me. Since learning about them six years ago, I’ve come to rely on Jockey’s fabric hugs. After a long day at work punctuated by crowded subway cars and heavy grocery bags, I go home and put them on immediately.”

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I Hate All Bras, But I Love This One Enough to Sleep in It