HOW TO CHOOSE A SPORTS BRA

A good sports bra is a fitness essential. M&S lingerie experts Julia Mercer and Amy Orchard give us their top tips for getting it right

Get both style and substance

1. Did you know breasts can bounce up to 7cm in any direction if you’re not wearing the right sports bra? “Getting enough support is important because otherwise the delicate ligaments of the breast can stretch, exacerbating any natural sagging, and unfortunately the damage is irreversible,” says our lingerie buyer, Amy. At M&S there are three levels of support available: medium for low-impact exercise such as yoga or pilates, high for racket sports, and extra high for activities such as running or horse riding.

2. “If you have larger breasts, always opt for high or extra-high-impact support, as your bust will naturally move more and therefore needs extra hold,” says Julia, M&S’s technical boss.


Find your perfect fit

3. “When buying a sports bra, always buy the same size as your normal bra. It may feel much firmer, but this is because it’s designed to minimise bounce,” Julia adds. However, it should still be comfortable and allow complete freedom of movement – if in doubt, mimic the activity you are planning to do in the bra when you try it on.

4. A cross-back bra is a good idea if you want extra support and hold for the bust. “These work by anchoring the straps firmly across the body and reducing the movement of the fabric,” Amy explains.


Pay attention to fabric tech

5. Sweat can deteriorate fabrics if not washed out, so pop your sports bras in the washing machine after each wear. All M&S bras are tested for durability, so they can withstand multiple washes. “As sports bras are vital to support and protect the breast tissue, it’s a good idea to replace yours every year to ensure you’re getting optimum performance from your bra,” Julia says.

6. Look for breathable fabrics to help you stay cool and comfortable when you exercise. “M&S bras feature moisture-wicking technology to draw sweat away from the body, allowing it to evaporate more quickly,” Amy explains. “We also use lightweight fabrics and meshes in certain areas that require more ventilation.”


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