The Lingerie Dictionary
A 2-part bra cup is when the cups are made using two panels of fabric sewn together. This bra manufacturing process makes the bra cups more supportive than they would be if made from a single piece of fabric. It also allows the cup shape to be formed to give a wrinkle free silhouette and greater comfort.
This bra has similar cup construction to the 2-part cup, but it is made with 3 panels of fabric. The 3-part cup offers even more support than 2-part cup arrangement making it the more appropriate choice for D-plus bra women.
A 4-part cup is made up of 4 panels of fabric sewn together with one panel sewn along the outer sides of the cup to pull your breast tissue from under your arms and contain your bust. 4-part cups are found mostly in larger cup sizes because they can provide more depth, support and shaping.
A babydoll is a short, loose-fitting nightgown or negligee, intended as nightwear. It sometimes has formed cups called a bralette for cleavage with an attached, loose-fitting skirt falling in length usually between the belly button and upper thigh. The garment is often trimmed with lace, ruffles, appliques, marabou, bows, and ribbons, optionally with spaghetti straps. Sometimes it is made of sheer or translucent fabric such as nylon or chiffon or silk and generally has matching panties.
This term is used to describe how a bra closes, which for D plus women usually fastens with two rows of hook and eye closures and three adjustments. Bras with a back sizing of 38-42 with a bra cup size of DD+ and strapless bras usually have three rows of hook and eye closures as well as three adjustments to give extra support.
To identify the bra wings, look at an unhooked bra and you will see that on each side of the cups there is a piece of fabric that is sewn in which has hook & eye fastenings sewn on the other ends. Once you are wearing your bra and its fastened these two pieces of material or the wings form the bra band and are the most important part of the bra as they provide support and help to stop unwanted bulge.
A Balconette bra or Demi Cup bra provides less upper breast coverage and often has cups designed to give an upward boost to your bust. A balconette bra has more of a horizontal line going across the top of the bustline and is styled to expose to upper half of your breast. The bra straps are usually wide-set and is most commonly associated with D-plus bras
A basque is a longline, cupped bra extending to the hips and generally has detachable suspenders that fasten along the lower edge of the basque. They are sized in the same way as a bra with various back and cup sizes and in some cases have detachable bra straps enabling the basque to be worn strapless. Basques generally fasten at the rear with a row of three hook and eyes that run the full length of the basque.
A Boyshort panty is sometimes called a shorty or hot pant which offers full coverage with a smooth silhouette. Boyshorts are the perfect everyday brief offering exceptional comfort and coverage,with a lower leg cut and an inseam, many customers claim this panty style eliminates panty lines under tight-fitting clothing.
A Brazilian panty offers slightly more rear coverage than a thong but less than a brief or boyshort. A Brazilian panty has a full crotch, but the back is cut to follow the apex of your cheeks in a V-shape.
A Brief is a panty with a variety of waistband styles. With a low rise brief the wasteband rests at bikini line, while a standard brief wasteband sits just below the navel, both providing full rear and side coverage. Another variation of the brief is a hi-wasted brief which has a wasteband that comes above the hips giving the appearance of a smooth silhouette and invisibility under tight-fitting clothing.
The centre gore of a bra is the fabric in the centre of the bra that connects the two cups together. The centre gore gives support to the breasts and thus the size of the gore determines a bra's support. A supportive bra will have a center gore that comes up the nipple line, while a lower centre gore works best for plunging necklines. Whatever bra style chosen when a bra is fitting correctly the gore will sit flat against the chest, with the breasts fully encased in the bra cups. If the gore is not sat against the chest then this could be an indication that the bra cups are to small and a larger size is required.
Contour Bra Cups
A bra with contour cups has cup that are designed to keep their shape even when not being worn. The bra cups are generally molded and shaped from a foam material and are similar to a molded bra, except molded bras may not have cups with padding. Contour bras are a perfect choice for any woman seeking a smooth silhouette, as they offer superior coverage and control and can also add definition to the breast shape. The elimination of nipple show-through means they are a good choice for wearing under T-shirts.Contour bras are also a good choice if you are between bra sizes, or women with uneven breasts.
A Control Brief is styled like a brief but designed to give support and flatten the tummy to give the appearance of a smooth silhouette under clothing.
A corset is a support undergarment that is close fitting,boned and gives shape and which is fastened generally with a hook and lace arrangement at the rear. A Corset begins either above or just below the bust and extends down to the waist or below the hips. Like a basque a corset has detachable suspenders so can be worn with or without stockings.A corset supports the breasts from underneath and usually pushes them up and over the neckline edge.
A demi cup or half cup bra has a contoured underwire design with a large portion of the upper half of the cup cut away to expose the upper part of the breasts. It is very similar to a balconette bra as the shoulder straps are set farther apart (wide-set) making a half cup or demi bra the perfect lingerie addition when worn under a low cut top or dress.
An enhancer bra creates the illusion of a fuller bust line with the use of additional padding in the bottom of the bra cups. Sometimes this padding is removable as it may not be needed for DD cup sizes and above.
Fillet infill Pad
Bra fillet infill pads are used in enhancer bras and are built into the bottom of the bra cup to push the breast up and out for an enhanced cleavage.
In this type of bra the padding and shaping in the cup of the bra is created using a foam materiel. This ensures that the bra cup and padding do not crease or bunch up during washing giving a smooth look to the cup. A foam lined bra cup gives the wearer modesty by preventing nipple show-through. Foam cups are also thinner than a padded bra and usually doesn't add volume to your breast size.
Foam bra cups are generally used in T-shirt bras due to the smooth one piece cup construction and are perfect when you don't want to see bra seams under your clothing.
This is a panty that looks like a boyshort but with a looser fit. This is due to the brief not having elastic in the legs so does not cup your cheeks.
A front closing bra closes in the center front where the gore of the bra is with either a plastic barrel closure or a hook and eye closure. A good style for plunging or v-necklines but it may effect the support given by the bra for larger cup sizes.
Women who have larger breasts DD and above, but smaller band sizes, such as a 32G.
Full Cup Bra
A full cup bra covers most of the breast area, offering better coverage and support than a balconette bra. This style of bra cup is perfectly suited to larger cup sizes and will not cause a crease or indentation along the top of the breast.
Women who wear bras sizes 32-36DD and 38-42C-DD and larger are classified as full figure women. Bras made in these sizes are usually designed to give additional support with additional padding, wider shoulder straps, and a triple hook and eye bra fastening arrangement at the rear.
A support bra will have additional banding under the cups, substantial side wings, and bra closure arrangement with two or more hooks.
Fully Adjustable Bra Straps
Fully adjustable bra straps have o-rings or other hardware between the slider and the front strap base. With a fully adjustable bra this strap style can fully adjust to a very short strap length giving the wearer great choice and comfort.
A G-string is very similar to a thong in that a g-string gives minimal rear coverage but is more skimpy than a thong. There is no small triangle of fabric at the waistband in the back. but has a simple string coming off a thin waistband. This is the go to panty choice to prevent panty lines under tight-fitting garments.
The name given to a hook-and-eye or snap crotch closure found on Thong bodies.
A half cup bra has a contoured underwire design with a large portion of the upper half of the cup cut away to expose the upper part of the breasts. It is very similar to a balconette bra as the shoulder straps are set farther apart (wide-set) making a half cup or demi bra the perfect lingerie addition when worn under a low cut top or dress.
This brief style is high-cut on the leg and sides but still offers full coverage at the rear.
Hi-waisted briefs provide two distinct benefits to the wearer. The first benefit is that this style of brief gives shaping and support to the waistline and so can be worn as shapewear. The second is that due to the low cut styling of the leg in this style of brief it also gives a seam free look under tight clothing.
A mid coverage brief which rests lower on the hip than a standard brief. The rise is shorter, so the waistline of the hipster is well below the navel. A hipster brief is a perfect solution for wearing under low-cut jeans.
Inner slings are the name given to the support panels in a bra cup. An inner sling can be a curved strip of fabric that follows the natural curve of the bra cup.This fabric is rigid and sewn inside the cup to providing additional support. An inner sling can also go around the entire breast circumference, or just be the panels on the sides of the bra.
Lined Cup Bra
This style of bra has a lining in the cup which gives additional support and added opaqueness to the cups which also helps to reduce nipple show-through.
A long line bra allows the D plus woman to have a bralet look but with the added advantage of full support but with a smoothing look of the deeper back band that this style of bra has.
A Low-rise brief has a waistband which rests on the hip approximately 3" below the waist. It has less side fabric than a standard brief but the legs are of a traditional brief style whilst giving full rear coverage.
A sports bra design consisting of side support panels to restrict horizontal movement of breast tissue, and a center front panel that extends along the neckline and sometimes into the strap to restrict vertical movement of breast tissue.
A maternity bra is designed for women who are pregnant. A maternity bra offers more support to the breasts with wider sides,and an under-bust band with non-elastic straps to reduce breast bounce. Maternity bras are designed to provide greater breast coverage, whilst the better quality maternity bras have fabric that allows breath-ability to prevent breast tissue irritation.
Minimizer Cup Bra
A minimizer bra reduces the apparent size of the your breasts by reduce the projection of your breasts, so these cups are generally more shallow and wide than average bra cups.This allows you to more easily wear button down shirts and blouses without the fabric pulling around the bust. A minimizer bra works by the cup distributing everything more towards the underarm and the center front to limit protrusion. A minimizer only shifts the mass in areas other than directly in front. No bra can actually reduce breast size, but this is the next best thing.
Molded bras have cups which are machine molded from a single piece of fabric into a shape the manufacturer feels mirrors the preferred natural breast shape without any seams. Molded bras are usually unlined and may be either soft cup or underwire. They are seamless to create a smooth silhouette, unless overlaid with lace. A molded bra with thin foam or fiberfill lining that causes the cup shape to be more rigid is known as a contour or T-shirt bra.
A Multiway Bra bra has detachable straps that can be configured in up to six different configurations: conventional, halter, one-shoulder, off-the-shoulder, criss-crossed, and strapless. Some multiway bras have straps that are attached to the cups and so cannot be configured in another way thatn standard bra configuration
No-Wire (Soft-Cup) Bra
A non underwired bra that is especially comfortable for everyday wear.
A nursing bra is designed for women who have given birth. This style of bra offers more support to the breasts with wider sides,and an under-bust band with non-elastic straps to reduce breast bounce but with the additional feature of cup openings to allow for ease of breastfeeding. Nursing bras are designed to provide greater breast coverage, whilst the better quality nursing bras are made of fabric that allows breath-ability to prevent breast tissue irritation.
A padded bra creates the illusion of a fuller bust line with the use of additional padding in the bottom of the bra cups which adds size and definition to give a well-proportioned look to smaller bustlines. Sometimes this padding is removable as it may not be needed for DD cup sizes and above.
Unlike traditional bra straps, padded straps mean the part of the strap that rests on the top of the shoulder has padding for additional comfort. A padded bra strap is also usually wider for added comfort.
A plunge bra is designed with a very low center panel to reveal more breast for a sexier look. Plunge bras create the appearance of increased cleavage because of their deep (plunging) front silhouette, angled cups and thin center gore. Plunge bras differ from push-up bras in that they are not heavily padded. A perfect choice for eveningwear and low-cut tops.
Push up bras are designed to lift the breasts to give the impression of a larger breast size. This is generally done with the use of additional padding in the bottom of the bra cup, which can in be removed in some types of push up bra. Push-up bras are designed to both push up and in to create more cleavage for lower necklines.
Racer Back Bra
A Racer back allows the bra straps to be positioned toward the centre of the back and allows for a greater arm movement by not restricting the shoulder blades. A bra featuring this type of bra strap arrangement can also be worn when traditional bra straps would show under a sleeveless garment.
Any bra that has seams running though the cups is a seamed bra. For larger cup sizes a seamed cup offered the best support and Intimate-secrets would always recommend a bra with a 3 part or 4 part cup design.
A Seamless bra has cups that have been molded into a permanent shape and fit. This bra gives a smooth siluette under clothing and is particularly suitable under revealing and tight-fitting tops.
A shapewear garment is designed to control the tummy, and shape the waist,sides or buttocks.
A Shelf bra is a built-in bra that is frequently found in swimwear and sleepwear and is a sewn-on elastic underband under the cups that gives light support and stability to the breasts. The cups are generally made from a light mesh but can also be a lightly padded moulded cup style for shape and modesty. Shelf bras can be wireless or have an underwire for extra support.
Side slings are the name given to the support panels in a bra cup. An inner sling can be a curved strip of fabric that follows the natural curve of the bra cup.This fabric is rigid and sewn inside the cup to providing additional support. A sling can also go around the entire breast circumference, or just be the panels on the sides of the bra.
Soft Cup Bra
An unwired bra is known a soft cup or wire-free bra. Maternity, sports and teenage bras traditionally were always soft cup bras, however more modern bra design and manufacturing techniques have enabled underwire technology to be incorporated into all these styles. Soft cup bras now offer greater support as well and make the perfect solution for a woman who can never find a comfortable underwire bra as modern designs offer greater support than previous designs and the cups come in all size ranges. However when fitting yourself in a soft cup bra the centre gore of the bra may not completely sit flat on your chest, but should still separate your breasts.
A Sports bra is designed to provide extra support to the breasts during exercise to reduce the amount of breast bounce which can lead to breast tissue damage. Sports bra design includes wider straps and broader cup coverage and are graded with an impact level from High to low.This is the most important addition to your lingerie draw any Intimate-secrets customer can make if they regularly carry out exercise and you should not be tempted to exercise in a normal soft cup or moulded cup bra.
A strapless bra is an underwire bra with wider bra wings, no straps or removable straps, and a two or three hook fasting at the rear. Many times, silicone is stitched to the upper and lower edges of the bra band to keep it securely in place on the body. This bra style is mostly worn with strapless tops, evening gowns or tops where a normal bra would show. It is vitally important that you are sure of your bra size when wearing a strapless bra because if its too loose you have no support, too tight and it will work its way down your chest area.
A bikini brief with a high cut leg line, thin string sides and full rear coverage.
A support panel is another name for an inner sling sewn inside a bra's cups. A support panel can be a curved strip of fabric that follows the natural curve of the bra similar to an underwire, except soft. The fabric is rigid and sewn inside the cup to provide additional support. An support panel can also go around the entire breast circumference, or just be panels on the sides or bottoms of the bra cup. Some support panels can be sewn to the outside of the cup, or incorporated into the cup design as an added panel.
This is the strap hanging from a suspender belt or basque that supports stockings. Better quality suspenders have metal clasps to keep the stockings in place and also a greater number of suspender straps. 4 strap suspenders are the most common but 6 strap and 12 strap are available.
A suspender belt is worn around the waist with four suspender straps with clips to hold stockings up and in place. 6 strap suspenders and 12 strap suspender belts are available giving the wearer better stocking support and can be purchased in a variety of colours. Lingerie fashion etiquette dictates that the color and design of the garter belt match the stockings and panties.
Suspender tights are an alternative to wearing stockings and suspenders as the waist band, suspender straps and stocking legs are are made from nylon and are permanently attached in one piece.
Suspender briefs are generally a brief with suspender straps attached to hold up stockings without need for a suspender belt, girdle or corset.
A T-shirt bra is the other name for a smooth cup or contour bra. Like a molded bra, the cups are seamless with a thin layer of foam included to give breast shape and modesty against nipple show-through when wearing close-fitting tops.
A tanga brief is between a bikini brief and a thong in design. A tanga brief has narrower rear coverage than a normal brief, but is not as narrow as a thong. They are also a comfortable transition from a bikini brief before attempting a thong.
A Thongs is a style of panty that has a narrow strip of fabric at the back that begins as a "v" shape at the waistband before tapering to a thin strip by the time it reaches the crotch. A thong gives minimal rear coverage but is the perfect panty if you want no visible panty lines and a smooth appearance.
A Bra that has traversal seams in the cups gives the cup and breast a more rounded appearance. A traversal seam runs in a semi-circle or arc shape within the cup design.
An underwired Bra has a sewn-in molded wiring that runs underneath the breast in each bra cup. This is a support feature which helps to lift, separate and shore up the bustline for greater support and a better shape especially for full-figured women. The bra underwires are made from different types of materials in todays modern bra designs and can now be a flexible wire, a plastic coated piece of metal, or a molded plastic shape.
A Waist nipper or waspie offers firm control of the waist and tummy. They are a boned garment that starts under the bust and goes down to the waist or over the hips with a front hook fastening. It is the perfect shapewear lingerie for a woman seeking to create an hourglass figure under slim fitting clothing.
A Waspie offers firm control of the waist and tummy. They are a boned garment that starts under the bust and goes down to the waist or over the hips with a front hook fastening. It is the perfect shapewear lingerie for a woman seeking to create an hourglass figure under slim fitting clothing.
The side/back panel of a bra that counter balances the front so the bra can it can provide uplift and support for the breasts.