How to Choose the Best Sports Bra for You
Best sports bras
Finding the best sports bra just for you can be tough. There are so many questions you have to ask: does the fabric rub in places it shouldn't, or does it disappear against the body? Will it wick sweat and dry fast during even the most intense HIIT workouts, or will it absorb perspiration like a sponge? Does it dig into your armpits or ribcage, or does it feel just right? And most importantly, is it supportive enough for your favorite workout?
We know you don't have an unlimited activewear budget to try out all the sports bras out there. That's why Health staffers and friends tested 70 of the newest models to find the ones that checked all our boxes—support, fit, comfort, and style. The best sports bras of 2017 come in a huge variety of colors, patterns, and cuts, including super-trend looks like high necklines, strappy details, and mesh panels. (Prefer a classic T-back sports bra? We have those too.) Prices range from $20 to $93.
Meet the 16 standout low-impact, medium-impact, and high-impact sports bras.
Low-impact: Jockey Zip Front
To buy: $36; jockey.com
Testers were feeling this bra for multiple reasons—the zip front allowed for easy on and off, removable padding added modesty, and sweatwicking fabric kept folks cool and dry.
Low-impact: Brooks Juno
To buy: $65; amazon.com
The hook-and-eye closure and adjustable straps—both of which make it easier for reviewers to customize the fit—made this a standout. The pretty spring color didn’t hurt either!
Low-impact: Asics Power Bra
To buy: $55; amazon.com
The sporty-cool look is totally on trend, but that’s not the only thing this bra has going for it. The fit keeps you super supported without flattening your chest, exercisers said, and the T-back hides nicely under racer back tanks.
Low-impact: Panache Sport Underwire
To buy: $70; barenecessities.com
Rave reviews all around for this athletic supporter; our volunteers liked that no matter what workout they tackled—running, HIIT, or dance—this underwire option kept the girls in check.
Low-impact: Sweaty Betty All Train Bra
To buy: $90; sweatybetty.com
Full disclosure: This stunner was a bit tricky to get into, but all participants agreed that once it was on, it held them in well. Plus, bonded edges (instead of stitched) meant no uncomfortable rubbing.
Low-Impact: Lululemon Free to Be Zen Bra
Medium-impact: Soul by Soulcycle Elastic Bra
To buy: $48; soul-cycle.com
Testers loved the thick, comfortable elastic straps. One word of advice: The soft, unstructured cups make this a better option for those who are on the smaller side.
Medium-impact: Outdoor Voices Doing Things Bra
To buy: $65; outdoorvoices.com
From A cups to triple Ds, this was an all-around crowd-pleaser. And everyone reported that this bra knows how to breathe! Shout-out to the strategically placed mesh inserts and back cutout.
Medium-impact: Champion the Curvy Strappy Sports Bra
To buy: $40; amazon.com
Curvy girls, rejoice! This style, volunteers said, was made for you. Molded foam cups smooth, a wide bottom band lends extra support, the V-neck is ultra flattering, and the straps adjust to accommodate your size.
Medium-Impact: Smartwool PhD Seamless Strappy
Everything from the wool fabric to the adjustable straps to the breathability wowed judges. As Kristine T., a 32D, noted, “It felt like it molded to my body in an ideal way.”
To buy: $60; amazon.com
Medium-impact: 2(X)ist Cutout Racerback Sports Bra
To buy: $36; 2xist.com
Testers found the scoop neck super flattering (hello, cleavage!) and appreciated the fact that the soft straps didn’t dig in.
Medium-impact: Fabletics Kessler
To buy: ($35; fabletics.com)
Sleek, supportive, and simply amazing: Those were some of the words our participants, specifically the smaller-chested ones, used. What’s more, it stayed put (read: no riding up) during workouts.
Medium-impact: Freya Sonic Underwire
To buy: $69; barenecessities.com
Our busty wearers were happy to finally have a supporter that actually held them in. One even noted that now that she has worn a sports bra with underwire, she is never going back.
Medium-impact: Niyama Sol Diamondback
To buy: $58; niyamasol.com
The strappy design and light-as-air, four-way stretch fabric kept our testers in this bra long after their workouts were complete. Also cool: It’s quick-drying—within minutes, the sweat evaporates.
Medium-Impact: Tasc Nola
First impression: Many thought it looked really youthful. “When I picked it up, it felt like a training bra for 12-year-olds,” said Jacqueline A., a 34B. “But when I put it on, it was the comfiest, most soft-to-the-touch bra ever.” Plus, it’s reversible.
To buy: $32; tascperformance.com
Medium-Impact: Brooks Fiona
This was a real crowd-pleaser, thanks to features like the adjustable band and straps. “It felt very sturdy,” said Ashley C., a 38C, who rocked it during indoor cycling. Erin B., a 34D, also liked that the wide straps didn’t dig in.
To buy: $50; zappos.com
Medium-Impact: Crane & Lion Keyhole
Medium-Impact: Montiel Hazel Crop
High-impact: Janji Night Market Floral
To buy: $44; runjanji.com
Don’t be fooled by this supporter’s thick fabric: Our testers still all raved about how soft, breathable, and quick at wicking sweat it was.
High-impact: Old Navy Seamless Light Support Strappy
To buy: $20; oldnavy.gap.com
Our volunteers were pleasantly surprised that such an inexpensive bra could be such a high performer—it’s great for spin class!
High-impact: Athleta Everyday Bra in Powervita
To buy: $54; athleta.gap.com
A sexy, low-cut bra that’s still supportive? Yes, please. Testers’ favorite detail: the mesh strips along the bust and back.
High-impact: Ryu Versa Bra
To buy: $53; ryu.com
While our exercisers may have been soaked with sweat, this racerback bra was not. Plus, it was a cinch to get on and off.
High-impact: Show Me Your Mumu Bra
To buy: $54; showmeyourmumu.com
Want comfort? Look no further. One tester said this fun, floral-print bra felt like pulling on a silk pajama top.
High-impact: Gaiam X Jessica Biel Cut Out Bra
To buy: $65; gaiam.com
The organic abstract print was a huge hit. More important, the smooth fit was raved about by our wearers, who also noted they wouldn’t be afraid to go sans shirt in this pick.
High-impact: Smartwool Merino Seamless Racerback Bra
To buy: $60; smartwool.com
The seamless construction allowed wearers to twist and turn without fear of irritation. The unexpectedly soft wool won points, too.
High-Impact: Lynx Ladder Back Bra
Talk about cozy—our testers didn’t want to take this one off. “I ended up wearing it all day, and I was never uncomfortable and didn’t feel restricted,” said Alex C., a 36B.
To buy: $60; lynxsportswear.com
High-Impact: Wacoal Sport Underwire
Granted, “it’s grandma-ish,” noted Mia K., a 34DDD, “but the support was too awesome to ignore.” Added Zoe D., a 32DD, “I appreciated the back clasp.”
To buy: $65; amazon.com
High-Impact: Berlei SF3 Electrify Sports Bra YYN7
Several testers were ready to scrap their current styles for this one. “It felt great,” said Victoria B., a 34DD. However, the seams can show through.
To buy: $45; amazon.com