Lingerie for every body: From nursing bras to comfy cover-ups

Why save your favourite underwear for best or the bedroom? From nursing bras to comfy cover-ups, here’s our pick of the everyday pieces that are pretty and practical.

The super supporter

lingerie supportive bras
Louise Samuelsen

Bra, £32, and briefs, £16, Fantasie, figleaves.com

For bigger busts, three-piece cups provide all-round support, lift and shape. Our model Brielle says: ‘Having a bra with the perfect fit boosts my confidence by ten and makes me feel like a queen.’

  • Wide straps help distribute the weight of larger breasts over a wider area, putting less stress on your shoulders
  • Check your bra size by having a professional fitting every six months. They are free and most high street stores including M&S and John Lewis, offer walk-in appointments and cater for bigger busts

Our favourites

Bra, £33, and briefs, £16.50, curvykate.com 

Bra, £42, and briefs, £24, elomi.com 

Bra, £40, and briefs, £24, panache-lingerie.com 

Bra, £68.95, and briefs, £44.95, louisabracq.com 

The cute comfort pieces

lingerie comfortable bras
Louise Samuelsen

Bra, £22.99, and briefs, £12.99, oysho.com

The simplicity of a bralette lends itself to plush velvets and lavish lace details. Deborah says: ‘I love bralettes. The lack of underwiring allows your body to breathe and their feminine shape makes me feel sexy.’ 

  • Bralettes are a super-comfortable wardrobe staple and come in a variety of padded and non-padded options
  • This style is perfect for peeking out of backless dresses or low-cut tops

Our favourites

Bra, £63, and briefs, £34, hanro.co.uk 

Bra, £9, and briefs, £6, topshop.com

Bra, £299, and briefs, £153, eresparis.com 

Bra, £60, and briefs, £30, lovestoriesintimates.com 

The longline cover-up

lingerie longline bras
Louise Samuelsen

Bra, £22, and briefs, £12, next.co.uk

An extended balcony bra is perfect if you want coverage and a more contoured shape. Model Nicky says: ‘I’m really conscious of my tummy and I’m pleasantly surprised by how covered this style makes me feel while still looking feminine.’

  • Look for styles with boning or elastic for a shapewear fit
  • Longline bras elongate the torso  to give the illusion of height 
  • A balconette style is great for those wanting a lift with separation. if you prefer more cleavage, opt for a plunge style

Our favourites

Bra, £17.99, and briefs, £4.99, hm.com 

Bra, £38, and briefs, £16, bouxavenue.com 

Bra, £28, and briefs, £14, Rosie for Autograph, marksandspencer.com 

Bra £38, and briefs £18, gossard.com 

The pretty nursing bra

lingerie nursing bras
Louise Samuelsen

Bra, £34.99, and briefs, £16.99, hotmilklingerie.com

Think comfort and practicality that doesn’t compromise on style. ‘I adore this bra’s fit and detailing such as the rose-gold magnetic clips,’ says Louise. ‘It’s great that brands are realising that nursing mums want to look and feel beautiful, too.’ 

  • Firm elastic straps cushion any bounce and give extra support 
  • A minimum of four hook positions enables your bra to grow with you 
  • To calculate the size of your nursing bra, take your measurements at 26 weeks and add one additional cup size and one additional band size 

Our favourites

Bra, £70, and briefs, £25, Six, net-a-porter.com 

Bra, £12, and briefs, £6, tuclothing.sainsburys.co.uk 

Bra, £29, and briefs, £12, seraphine.com 

Bra, £60.72, and briefs, £27.67, Cosabella, shopbop.com

The mastectomy hero

lingerie mastectomy bras
Louise Samuelsen

Bra, £42, and briefs, £22.99, amoena.com

Post-surgery bras can look beautiful while providing discreet pockets to hold breast forms in place and wider straps and underbands for comfort. Model Hannah says: ‘The pockets of this bra are so well-made you’d never know I was wearing a prosthesis. I love its vibrant style, too.’

  • Ensure the centre of the bra between the cups sits flat against your chest
  • Soft seams, a deep front and side panels offer optimum support and comfort in the first year after surgery
  • Bras with a high cotton content will be gentle on your skin and help you stay cool if experiencing hot flushes  

Our favourites

Bra, £32, and briefs, £12, royce-lingerie.co.uk 

Bra, £44, and briefs, £20, anita.com

Bra, £27, and briefs, £14, nicolajane.com

Bra, £30 for a pack of two, and briefs, £17, debenhams.com 

The sheer go-to

lingerie sheer bras
Louise Samuelsen

Bra, £32, and briefs, £17, gossard.com

Lightweight lace cups not only look beautiful and celebrate your shape, but they work under everything from T-shirts to fitted dresses without a hint of a bra-line. Sinead says: ‘Sheer bras look much more natural under clothes than padded styles and are so pretty.’

  • Multiple layers of lace are less exposing while keeping the delicateness of a sheer style 
  • Elasticated sheer bras are great if your size fluctuates throughout the month
  • High-apex bras help to create a flattering plunge neckline, while offering a good fit and lift

Our favourites

Bra, £65, and briefs, £25, beija.london

Bra, £90, and briefs, £50, Noelle Wolf, selfridges.com 

Bra, £34, and briefs, £18, And/Or, johnlewis.com

Bra, £56, and briefs, £38, doralarsen.com

 

Styling by Stephanie Sofokelous. Fashion assistant: Lottie Franklin Hair: Emma Small at Stella Creative Artists using Bumble and Bumble. Make-up: Lica Fensome at Stella Creative Artists using BareMinerals. Models: Sinead, Brielle, Louise and Nicky at Milk, Hannah at Zebedee, Deborah at Wild London. Production and casting: Lucy Coghlan