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There are SO many styles of bra available, from balconette to plunge and padded to non-padded with so many others in between, but do you know what a half cup bra is? Sometimes referred to as a demi cup or shelf bra, a half cup bra is essentially what it says in the name: a bra with cups that come up to around halfway up your breasts. The neckline of a half cup bra tends to have a straight-across cut rather than a sloped shape like you’d see on your standard balconette and plunge bras.

Due to the shape of half cup bras they offer great support but sometimes they may not be completely practical because of the lower coverage! They’re designed to give incredible shape and uplift, creating a real ‘cakes on a plate’ look and they really put your boobs up-front and central. Depending on your breast shape and the softness of your breast tissue, you may find that going for your usual bra size in a half cup bra results in overspill or bulging over the top edge of the cup, so we tend to suggest going up a cup size if you’re looking for something that has a little more coverage and isn’t just for the bedroom! 😉

Sometimes you may come across a balconette bra that has a similar shape to a half cup bra – you can spot these by the neckline! Styles like our bestselling Curvy Kate Starstruck offer the extra coverage that you’d find in a normal balconette bra but come with a little half cup quality thanks to the straight-across top edge and vertical seams, ensuring you get a boosted, rounded shape and great cleavage.

Balconette Bra Comparison - Half Cup style vs Traditional BalconetteVertical seamed 'half cup' style balconette bra vs a traditional 3-part cup balconette bra.


While a half cup bra can work for every breast shape once you find the perfect size, they’re a particularly great option for someone who has bottom-heavy breasts, or has lost fullness on top, as the cups lift and shape all the breast tissue by pushing it up from the bottom to fill out the top.

If you find that a plunge bra doesn’t work for your breast shape, or you feel like you’re always spilling out of the middle due to the lower gore, then a half cup bra is well worth a try. They offer the same cleavage-inducing fit as a plunge but with taller wires like a balconette to help keep your boobs firmly in place!

Choose a half cup bra if you’re looking for some amazing cleavage and lift. Thanks to the straight-cut shape and lower rise, plus the amazing shape they give, they work great under a more revealing outfit or square-neckline.

So, what size should you go for? If you’re looking for that va-va-voom with ultimate lift and it’s a bra that you’d be wearing for special occasions only, we’d suggest you stick with your normal bra size – if you find that you’re between cup sizes, go with the larger size. However, if you’re looking for something you can dress up or down and get some more regular wear out of without the risk of spilling over the top, then try a cup size up from your usual bra size to get the best fit.

Comparison of sizes in a half cup braFit example of a half cup bra


Ready to take the plunge and flaunt those curves of yours? Shop all our gorgeous half cup bra styles here!

LJ x

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