Can I Wear A Bra As A Bikini Top?

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Bikinis are easily associated with bras due to their shape and structure, so I wouldn’t blame you if you choose to ask the question “Can I wear a bra as a bikini top?”

Actually, you can, but there are some things you should consider before making your decision. Some bras are designed for bikini tops, which easily means that not all bras should be used for bikini tops. This is because some bras do not possess the resistance to hold water like a regular bikini top which can make it soggy.

To put it in plain terms, all bikini tops can pass as bras – depending on the occasion – but not all bras can pass as bikini tops.

The difference between a bikini and a bra

The major difference between a bikini and a bra lies in the fabric with which they are made, as well as their purpose – bikinis are mostly for outdoor events, to be worn in public, while bras are for special occasions, to be worn inside an item of clothing.

To solve the confusion once and for all, I will be outlining some major differences between a bikini and a bra below:

The bikini

As stated earlier, the bikini is a type of garment whose primary purpose is to be worn on beaches or the poolside. There are different designs of bikinis, some can leave certain areas of your but exposed – as you so please – while others can go as high as covering the belly area and also effectively cover the butt area. To simply put, we have the brief bikini and the high-waisted bikini.

Read Also: How Many Swimsuits To Bring On Vacation?

Fabric composition of the bikini

The bikini collection is mainly made up of Lycra/spandex because of the following special properties:

Very stretchable

The Lycra/spandex material is known to be very stretchable which aids easy movement when inside a pool. This also allows it to be stretched repeatedly without affecting its original shape or size.


Even when soaked or immersed in water, the spandex material of the bikini makes it retain its lightweight.

Deterioration resistance

Thanks to the special makes of these materials, the bikini is more resistant to deterioration which can be caused by body oils especially when we decide to go sun tanning.

The Lycra/spandex material is known to be generally more durable than rubber, as well as having a higher retractive force when closely compared.

Read Also: Can A Man Wear Women’s Bikini Bottoms?

Although most bikinis are a mix of several other fabrics such as nylon and polyester to increase some of the properties stated above, these combinations only help to provide you with a swimsuit that can resist and withstand all the vigour of chlorine and saltwater combined.

Factors to consider when buying a bikini

Although similar to the bra, there are specific things you have to acknowledge when buying a bikini that you might not consider when buying a bra; let’s take a look at some of them:


You have to know your actual size to know if your preferred swimsuit will fit or not. To do this, you are advised to test your swimsuit before eating to ascertain the real size. You wouldn’t want your pant floating away from underneath you in a pool now, would you?

Experts have also advised you to measure your waist, bust, and your hips so your preferred swimsuit can fulfil its purpose. You can ask a loved one to help you out in this regard, or better still, your partner if you have any.

Choose your type of bikini

This might be mainly down to your choice, but experts have suggested you know your body type to choose between the brief bikini and the high-waist bikini.

The type of swimming function you hope to participate in should also come into play when picking your bikini. If you intend to spend more time under the sun, you might want to pick a bikini more revealing like this brief brand to help with the suntan, while this high-waist bikini will be ideal for pool sides.

Ensure the bra has the right support

When it comes to bikinis, one thing you shouldn’t overlook is the bra support, especially if you are blessed with big watermelons. If you want to look slimmer in your swimsuit, you should try this 1950s styled bikini which helps to provide your bust with the right support and freedom.

Read Also: Is It Okay To Wear Bikini Bottoms As Underwear?

The shape of the bikini

The shape of the bikini will always be in line with the shape of your body, but this doesn’t mean you would have to completely ignore some of the attributes of the bikini before making a purchase. For instance, if you are blessed with a long torso, an elongated suit will be very much ideal.

Ladies privileged to have small busts will do well with bikinis that have certain detailing around the breast area like this one. However, ladies endowed with the figure eight kind of look might want to stay away from the brief bikini as this can be too revealing, except it’s okay by you to be noticed in that way of course.

Colour and fabric

Lastly, but not the least important, you should consider the colour choice of your bikini, as well as the fabric material. Ladies with fuller body characteristics will do well to avoid bright colours, and to add, dark colours are also great when it comes to the slimming effect.

You might also want to avoid materials that are too thin since they might get too translucent especially when wet.

The bra

Unlike the bikini whose primary function is swimming, the bra’s primary function is to support the breast, as well as coverage. Thanks to advancement in the fashion industry, the bra has been modified to give the breast a shape they would ordinarily not have, such as making small-breasted women look full and confident.

A Bra can be of two makes – a support bra and a push-up bra. The support bra simply covers the breast and offers support, while the push-up bra helps to increase the volume of the breast, as well as enhance the cleavage to make onlookers go gaga.

Types of bra

The following types of bra can either be push-up or simply for support, depending on what you feel is ideal for you.

T-shirt bra

The T-shirt bra is usually one of the seamless bras you see around because its main goal is to remain invisible when putting on a conventional T-shirt or other casual outfits.

Stick-on Bra

If you have the intention of wearing an attire that would require you to open your back without revealing your bra, then the stick-on bra would be very ideal. The stick-on bra uses gum or adhesive that sticks to your breast without showing any sort of hint that you used a bra. Although it doesn’t last very long (5-9 uses max), the stick-on bra is something every lady should have in their wardrobe.

Strapless Bra

The strapless bra is every lady’s go-to when it comes to special occasions and weddings that may require you to wear a bare-shoulder gown or dress. One way to test if you have a good strapless bra is to jump up about 7-10 times. If the bra doesn’t fall off, then you are good to go.

Read Also: Why Do Track Runners Wear Bikini Bottoms?

Sports bra

Like the name implies, the sports bra is ideal for sporting activities and workout sessions. They prevent the breast from bouncing from place to place by providing firm support which can be severely tested during sports. They are usually very comfortable and can be even worn as an everyday bra.

Fabric composition of the bra

The fabric composition of the bra is mainly silky, sometimes transparent, and would normally have a lightweight feel. Bras can be lacy as well depending on your choice. They are sometimes made up of cotton, unlike the bikini which is mainly made up of spandex material.

Factors to consider when buying your bra


Just like the bikini, knowing the right size of bra to purchase is extremely important in getting the right fit for your breast. The size will determine the kind of support your breast gets.


While this is down to the breast in question, it’s important you know the shape of your breast to know the type to buy. The breast comes in different shapes and sizes, and getting the right one will be of great benefit to the comfort of your breast.

The type of bra

What exactly do you need the bra for? Do you need a strapless bra, a sports bra, or a stick-on bra? What does the occasion or dress demand? You must narrow down your need to get the right kind of bra that matches the specifications.

Other factors such as colour and brand should be considered as well because we all desire value for money spent.

Here are other questions you might have regarding the said topic:


Can I swim in a regular bra?

While you might feel free to do want you want with your bra, you shouldn’t swim in a regular bra, because such bras aren’t designed to withstand water or the chemicals present in pools.

Can Lululemon sports bras go in the pool?

While sports bras are designed to absorb sweat, they aren’t designed to absorb saltwater or chlorine. As a result, they tend to lose their tenacity if used to swim regularly. You can combat this decline by handwashing your sports bra with freshwater immediately after uses – not a minute later.

Can you use activewear for swimming?

To simply answer this question, yes, you can use activewear for swimming, but it isn’t recommended. Always practice using the right gear for the right occasion.

Can I Wear A Bra As A Bikini Top – Conclusion

Be it a bra or a bikini, the important factor here is that your breast is supported the right way. Simply achieve this by choosing the bra that fits the occasion – no compromise – that’s the only way to enjoy the good value your bra gives you. Cheers!!!

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