It's amazing what a little tape and some extra bra straps can do.
Most people may associate December with self-imposed Netflix hibernation, but let's be real: We all have events to attend. Whether it's a winter wedding, a fancy dinner, or the dreaded office Christmas party, why not pull out all the stops (especially when 90% of your month is likely spent wearing chunky knits and boots). But for those with a little more than a handful – lucky you – and for whom going sans bra simply isn't an option, it can feel like glittery, body-con, high-slit, low-backed pieces are to be avoided at all costs.
A good bra can change everything from your posture to the way a certain article of clothing sits on you. But where traditional bras fail, there's a whole world of weird and wonderful non-bras out there to step in to save the day, keeping you lifted and in place, even in the most challenging dresses.
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Keep scrolling for the best bras for different types of dresses to solve all your common strap conundrums.
the dress: strapless
The Solution: Strapless Bodysuits
Strapless bras are great in theory, but in reality, they slip, especially if you are larger than a C-cup. Bodysuits, on the other hand, prevent the cups from sliding down and offer the kind of legit support that strapless bras and bustiers can only aspire to. They really are the only viable option for women with larger chests. For longer-lasting lift, try going down a size in the body or band and up a size in cups.
Classic Strapless Thong Bodysuit, €87.33, COMMANDO available at Net-A-Porter
the dress: Backless
The Solution: Stick-On Bra
If you're showing off everything from your neck to the small of your back, it's likely that you won't be able to wear much lingerie — or you could go braless. But if you prefer some sort of support, you're going to have to stick to, well, stickies.
Self-Adhesive Bra, €14.99, H&M
the dress: halterneck
The Solution: Bra Clips
We have all experienced the pain caused by a strapless-turned-halterneck bra, converted merely by one thin strap stretching from one shoulder to the other, and almost severing us by the neck at the same time. Luckily, there's no reason to sacrifice support for style: bra clips help hide your bra straps and give you a little extra lift and too.
Round Bra Clips, €5.50, Oxendales
the dress: plunging
The Solution: Plunging Bra
The opposite of the low-back plunge, the deep V dress shows off your décolletage — and requires much more than a push-up bra to pull off. Luckily, bras have been created specifically to work with deep-V necklines. Case in point? The U-plunge bra, with seamless finishes and a deep neckline to hide under that dress
Seamless U-Plunge Bra, €30, Fashion Forms available on Net-A-Porter
the dress: One Shoulder
The Solution: A Multi-Ways Bra
Technically, the Wonderbra Multi-ways Push-Up Bra is a strapless bra with adjustable straps – but as much as we have a love/hate relationship with multi-way bras, there are just some styles where they are the best solution, especially if strapless just doesn’t give you the support you need. Wonderbra is a lingerie institution, and a reliable brand when it comes to style and fit, so you know you’re in good hands – this bra is perfect for these popular one-shoulder styles.
Multiway Push-Up Bra Ultimate Silhouette, €45.62, WonderBra
the dress: OFF THE Shoulder
The Solution: Strapless Bra
The summery trend has made its way into fall and winter dressing, which means we'll probably be seeing this neckline everywhere come New Year's Eve. Luckily, the proper undergarments are actually pretty straightforward — if you get the right fit.
Halo Convertible Lace Bra, €47, Brown Thomas
the dress: Square neck
The Solution: A Square Neck Bra
A dress with a square neckline is probably the easiest bra conundrum to solve, but if you don’t have the right one it can ruin the whole look. There’s nothing worse than adjusting your bra straps all day so they hide under the straps, or looking back at holiday pictures to spot your not-so-colour-coordinated bra poking out from the corners. High apex bras just do not work for these types of dresses, so opt for balconettes, as their straps sit wider on the cup and the cup shape mimics that of the dress’s neckline.
Gia Soft Cup Bra, €80, Lé Buns
Main image by @mach&mach on Instagram