The 10 Best Sports Bras of 2022

The SheFit Ultimate Sports Bra is highly supportive and customizable.

In This Article

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The 10 Best Sports Bras of 2022

Brooks / Under Armour

Sports bras can literally make or break your workout. That’s why, above all else, you want one that is: A, comfortable; and B, actually supports your breasts. While comfort can be subjective, support is a little more calculable. 

“Breasts are partly secured to the chest wall by rather weak strands of connective tissue that can be overstretched if breasts are not supported adequately,” explains LaJean Lawson, Ph.D., a sports bra science, design, and marketing guru. Proper support can help prevent damage and maintain breast shape over time. That’s why matching your support level with the intensity of your activity is key, especially where high-impact workouts are concerned. 

And it isn’t just a must-do for the well-endowed folks. “I have a rather small cup size, but I can still feel if a sports bra is supportive and I don’t want the fabric to feel oppressive,” says Deja Riley, a wellness expert and the creator of Deja Riley Athletics. She notes that comfortability and quality are non-negotiables.

Since we all know shopping for a sports bra can be a bit of a hassle, we’ve done some of the leg work for you. Our favorite overall sports bra, the SheFit Ultimate Sports Bra, is a high-impact bra that’s about as close as you can get to having custom-made support. In addition to being incredibly supportive, they’re built to last for years. If you’re looking for something a bit different, we have more top selections for the best sports bras that are comfortable, supportive, and super stylish.

Best Overall: SheFit Ultimate Sports Bra

SheFit Ultimate Sports Bra

SheFit

Why We Love It:  It’s highly adjustable and fits cups A-I.

What to Consider: You shouldn’t toss this bra in the dryer.

True to SheFit’s crown logo, its signature product really might be the queen of sports bras. Not only can you adjust the thick and sturdy 15-inch straps and convert them between an X or H back, but the SheFit Ultimate Sports Bra also has a unique 8-inch adjustable velcro bottom band so you can get it as snug as you want it. Together, these features help the wearer customize the fit and support level needed for their body and even adapt it for various activities, be it kickboxing, HITT, or jumping on a trampoline. Padding in the cups is easily removed if you prefer to go without. The Ultimate Sports Bra also provides a close, secure fit that cuts back on bounce while the higher neckline helps prevent spillage. T+L commerce editor Lydia Price is a diehard fan and hasn't strayed from the brand in years. "Before I tried SheFit, I was constantly frustrated by lack of support and wouldn't dream of doing a bounce-heavy activity like running without doubling up on bras," she says. "Now my closet is filled with SheFits, and I know I can always grab a bra that feels just right."

A front-zip closure means you never have to fight your way out of a sweaty sports bra, and it's available in nine colors that prove you don’t need to sacrifice style for support. Each bra comes with a laundry bag to help ensure its longevity. And with a seven-day trial period, you can test it out and then send it back if it doesn’t work for you — talk about a win-win.

Price at time of publish: $45

Material: Nylon, spandex, polyester | Sizes: Cups A-I

Best Athleisure: Nike Alate Minimalist

Nike Alate Minimalist

Nike

Why We Love It: It comes in skin-tone hues and a range of sizes for a myriad of body shapes.

What to Consider: It’s meant to hug the body, so some may find the fit a tad too tight.

Slipping into the buttery soft Nike Alate Minimalist with its modest scoop neck, light padding to add shape, and malleable fabric that stretches and moves with you instead of working against you, will have you wishing your regular, everyday bra was this comfortable. Don’t worry: It looks superb under your favorite T-shirt, too. Coziness aside, adjustable straps and hook-and-eye closure help tailor the fit, and perforations along the high-sweat area underneath the breasts let this bra breathe during yoga or any other low-intensity activity. A cool green bonus: It’s constructed from plastic water bottles that have been turned into recycled polyester fibers.

Price at time of publish: $39

Material: Recycled polyester | Size: XS (A-C)-3X (F-G)

Best for Running: Brooks Drive 3 Pocket Run Bra

Brooks Drive 3 Pocket Run Bra

REI

Why We Love It: It has three hidden pockets — two mesh ones on either side and one larger one in the center of the racerback that’s sized for a smartphone.

What to Consider: The high neckline may not be appealing or comfortable for everyone.

Always on the run? Look no further than the Brooks Drive 3 Pocket Run Bra to carry you mile after sweaty mile. Surprisingly stretchy for how compressive it is, this high-impact, athletic supporter is anything but your standard pullover style. Behind the high-cut outer panel are lightly padded, molded cups that encapsulate each breast to shape, support, and help stop excess bounce without making you feel like you’re an overstuffed turkey. The barely-there performance fabric, which limits chafing thanks to bonded versus raised stitched seams, wicks away sweat and dries super quick. And for those well-endowed runners — I’m a 38DD and have this style in multiple colors — know that this full-coverage racerback will absolutely meet all your cardio workout needs. 

Price at time of publish: $50

Material: Polyester blend | Sizes: 30AB-40DE

Best Low-impact: Lululemon Like a Cloud Sports Bra

Lululemon Like a Cloud Sports Bra

Lululemon

Why We Love It:  You won’t feel compressed or restricted.

What to Consider: The thin double straps aren’t adjustable.

If comfort is king, then go on ahead and crown the Lululemon Like a Cloud Sports Bra the winner. Lightweight and pillow-y soft with molded foam cups, this simple yet chic silhouette is the one you’ll reach for whether, like Riley, you’re practicing yoga and stretching it out or just lounging around at home. Another standout feature: The thin double shoulder straps don’t dig in, so you won’t be left with an imprint of this low-impact model on your skin when you pull it off. (FYI: The D/DD cupped version has a slightly different shoulder strap configuration, with one thicker, regular strap and the other thinner and crossback.) There’s also a ribbed version, which Y7 instructor Casey Lane Anderson counts among her faves to keep her supported during yoga, as well as a longer line one too.

Price at time of publish: $58

Material: Nylon, elastane, and polyurethane | Sizes 2-10

Best Hook-and-eye Closure: Under Armour UA Infinity Mid Covered Sports Bra

UA Infinity Mid Covered Sports Bra

Dick's Sporting Goods

Why We Love It:  The straps are convertible so you can switch up the style.

What to Consider: It tends to run small, so you may need to size up.

If getting into — and out of — your sports bra is trickier than a Saturday New York Times Crossword puzzle, the hook-and-eye closure on the UA Infinity Mid Covered Sports Bra will eliminate that. This feature, which has a little extra tab of padding over the metal eyes for comfort, paired with the adjustable straps helps you better customize the fit on your body and breasts. Flip the bra inside out and find a PU-injected figure eight mold in the cup area. This design supports breasts better by mimicking a pattern closer to how they actually move during exercise (think up, down, in, out, side to side). On a strictly visual level, the scoop neck, cross back, and vibrant colors are so cute, you’ll want to sweat sans shirt in your next boxing or spin class so everyone can get a look.

Price at time of publish: $40

Material: Polyester and elastane| Sizes: XS-XXL

Best for Large Breasts: Knix Catalyst Sports Bra

Knix Catalyst

Knix

Why We Love It: You get sufficient support even without underwire.

What to Consider: It can take time to break in and feel like it was made for you.

Sports bras for the well-endowed are usually high on function but not on looks. Luckily, the Knix Catalyst bra, which fits up to a 42F and is easy to get on and off thanks to a hook-and-eye closure, has you covered on both fronts. Built for high-impact activities, the encapsulated molded cups work to separate and stabilize the breasts without flattening you out or causing any annoying spillage. The thick, adjustable ladder shoulder straps add an extra measure of support too. Also noteworthy: This wire-free pick is highly breathable with small perforated holes that sit smack dab in between your breasts — a super high sweat zone — to help increase airflow and keep smells at bay.

Price at time of publish: $89

Material: Nylon and spandex | Sizes: 28A-42F

Best High-impact: Outdoor Voices Powerhouse Bra

Outdoor Voices Powerhouse Bra

Outdoor Voices

Why We Love It: There is a little clasp behind the zipper to help ensure the bra doesn’t open mid-workout. 

What to Consider: If you are a fan of cleavage, the high cut paired with a compressive nature won’t do you any favors. 

Say so long to juggling and jostling. With the help of its compressive fabric and minimal-stretch wide straps, the Outdoor Voices Powerhouse, which pushes breasts forward and together, is built to battle bounce during high-impact activities (think running). The front zipper, which locks into place when the tab is facing down, not only offers an easy-on strategy, but also a quick release for anyone who has ever felt like they are engaged in tug of war while battling to get their sports bra off. And no matter how intense your sweat sesh gets, the meshed back ups air circulation to keep you from overheating.

Price at time of publish: $78

Materials: Nylon, lycra | Sizes: SM/B-LXLD

Best for Small Breasts: Sweaty Betty Stamina Sports Bra

Sweaty Betty Stamina Sports Bra

Nordstrom

Why We Love It: The seamless design wards off chafing.

What to Consider: A racerback can put undue pressure where your neck and shoulders meet.

Support from the sweat-wicking and compressive Sweaty Betty Stamina Bra, which mainly comes courtesy of the thick underband, tops out at a C cup, making this pick best suited for those with smaller-sized chests. The totally seamless construction helps prevent chafing and skin irritation, and it keeps everything secure and in place during medium-impact activities such as easy jogs, indoor cycle classes, and cardio classes. Heavy sweaters will also be impressed: Outfitted with tons of perforations along the length of the racerback as well as around the sides and underneath the breasts, this bra, which comes in 18 hues, is super breathable.

Price at time of publish: $44

Material: Polyamide and elastane | Sizes: XS-XXXL

Most Breathable: Asics Runkoyo Jacquard Bra

Asics Runkoyo Jacquard Bra

Runnerinn

Why We Love It: The soft, stretchy fabric, which is made from recycled materials, is supportive without being restrictive.

What to Consider: If you have a larger chest this may not be supportive enough.

During exercise, the back can be quite a magnet for sweat. The fully meshed racerback on the Asics Runkoyo Jacquard Bra acts like a window, letting in cool air while expelling excess heat from this big-sweat zone to help ensure you don’t get too hot. The poly-spandex fabric also wicks those sweat beads away from the skin during medium-impact activities so it doesn’t pool and leave your skin wet or sticky. The super soft material on this compressive sports bra also feels amazing against the skin. Oh, and the jewel-toned colors it comes in — so cute!

Price at time of publish: $40

Material: Polyester and spandex | Sizes: XS-XL

Best Budget: Champion Authentic Logo Bra

Champion Authentic Logo Bra

Champion

Why We Love It: It has a firm and secure fit.

What to Consider: It lacks some of the bells and whistles of other brands.

Let’s face it, this is an iconic pullover silhouette that has been around for years, and its staying power should speak to how well it meets the wearer’s needs. The two layers of cotton-rich jersey, though on the thicker side, are still very soft against the skin as well as highly breathable. The sides are high enough to prevent side-boob spillage but low enough that they don't uncomfortably dig into your underarms or restrict movement. It’s nice to know you can still snag a high-quality supporter that gets the job done at a low price point.

Price at time of publish: $18

Material: Cotton and spandex | Sizes: XS-2XL

Tips for Buying a Sports Bra 

Match intensity levels with your fitness routine

You don’t need the same level of support when doing tree pose in yoga that you do banging out burpees in a HIIT workout. So your first step is to determine what the bra you are keen on is actually made for. Luckily, most are labeled as high, medium, or light/low support on the tag so that you can easily make the distinction and match the style with your sport. Overall, though, the more bounce-provoking your activity (think anything that involves running or jumping) and the larger your cup size, the more motion control you need to comfortably go all out, says Lawson, who advises acquiring a wardrobe of styles ranging from comfy light support for that yoga routine to a ban-the-bounce style for those HIIT sprints on the treadmill.

Know the difference between compression and encapsulation

Compression styles are made of strong, spandex-rich stretch fabrics that restrict bounce by hugging your breasts close to your body. These types, which Lawson says are great for high-impact activities if you’re a small to medium cup size or for lower-impact activities if you’re fuller figured, offer more freedom and flexibility as styles with more stretch move easily with your body.

Encapsulation styles, on the other hand, have an individual cup for each breast like many everyday bras and often come in band/cup sizing. “Features like molded cups, underwires, and contouring help separate and support each of the ‘girls’ individually for enhanced support and shaping,” Lawson says.

Choose breathable and lightweight materials

As you exercise, you sweat. That sweat is a tool your body uses to help keep your core cool.  Why does this matter? Well, your sports bra sits right over some of your key heat and sweat zones, like between your breasts and along your back, so you'll want to look for quick-drying, breathable fabrics designed to draw sweat away from your skin for a feel-dry workout, advises Lawson. That’s why it’s best to steer clear of sports bras with wide racerbacks that cover most of your upper spine — your number one heat/sweat zone — and instead look for narrower mesh racerbacks, ventilating keyholes above the waistband, and conventional U-back strap designs to keep your back cooler and drier.

When it comes to fabrics, pick a bra made with the sleekest ones possible — this includes seams and trims — inside and out to help avoid causing any friction with the skin, because chafing is the worst. A good hack: “Check out any potential trouble spots by holding that part of the bra taut and rubbing it against your cheek to check softness,” Lawson says.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • How should a sports bra fit?

    “Things that pinch, scrape, poke, jiggle, and squeeze in all the wrong places can be real workout killers,” Lawson says. To help find your perfect fit, she advises you to consider these six tips:

    1. Take your measurements: Most online sports bra retailers will give you instructions on how to measure to determine your actual bra size. Put on your favorite, most comfortable, most naturally shaped everyday bra and use a cloth tape to get your numbers. Avoid anything push-up, padded, or smash-me-down (like a compressive sports bra) that will distort your true curves and throw off the whole measurement.
    2. Watch out for jail-breakers: If your breast are peaking out of the bottom of the bra when you raise your arms, try going down to a smaller band size to snug things up and keep everything in place.
    3. Down in back: Turn sideways and check the back of the rib band — if it’s pulling up and riding higher than the front of the bra, the band might be too large or the straps too short. Try a smaller band size to keep things anchored and, if adjustable, release the straps a little.
    4. Check your cleavage: When looking straight down, the center front of an encapsulation or underwire style should sit flat on your chest. If it doesn’t, try going up a cup size.
    5. Beware cups that overflow: If your breasts spill over at the sides or top of the bra, you’re definitely going to need a bigger cup.
    6. Avoid cup wrinkles: Folds, wrinkles, or other looseness in the cup are your clue to go down a cup size for best support and to banish the chafing that can happen when your breasts are free to jostle around in a too-loose cup.
  • How should I care for my sports bra?

    While each sports bra has its own care tips, there are a few general rules to help ensure yours doesn’t expire before its time:

    1. Wash it after each use. Damp, dirty sports bras are a haven for bacteria, which can be transferred to the skin and potentially cause issues (think a rash or pimples). Plus, they stink!
    2. If you forgo hand washing (which is preferred) and opt for the washing machine instead, make sure you fasten all clasps, use a lingerie bag, and choose the delicate cycle.
    3. Steer clear of the dryer. Over time heat can wreak havoc on a sports bra’s elasticity, leaving it stretched out of shape.
    4. Look, we all have our favorites, but rotating your sports bras out will help them last longer. If you really love a particular one, consider purchasing multiples in the style.

Why Trust Travel + Leisure

Rozalynn S. Frazier is an award-winning, multimedia journalist, NASM-certified personal trainer, and behavior change specialist living in New York City. A proud graduate of Spelman College and New York University, she has more than 20 years of experience creating and editing content for magazines, websites, newspapers, books, and brands. A 10-time marathoner, she’s passionate about health, wellness, and fitness, and works to expand access to these spaces, making them more diverse, inclusive, and representative of the community in which we live. Rozalynn's work has appeared in various print and digital publications, including Shape, SELF, Men's Health, Women's Health, Health, Runner's World, Real Simple, Bicycling, Cosmopolitan, Essence, and O.

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