Can You Wear a Sports Bra as a Top?

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Fashion is constantly evolving and changing, especially since the pandemic. With more people working from home and not having to look completely put-together every day, wearing athlesire clothing on a daily basis has become somewhat normal. Because of this, you might wonder, can you wear a sports bra as a top?

Can You Wear a Sports Bra as a Top?

Yes, you can wear a sports bra as a top because it offers ease, multifunction, and comfort. It’s a very flattering piece of clothing that can be worn with any bottoms as long as they’re high-waisted, as these can help accentuate the waistline and emphasize your silhouette.

A woman in a dark blue racerback sports bra wearing blue and gray leggings

Many women have their own reasons as to why they consider it as a useful top. Some of the most obvious include:

  • Ease: It makes travel easier, and can work for both running and for going out, allowing women greater freedom when it comes to leisure activities.
  • Multifunctional: It’s athletic wear, and it can be also used in settings outside of sports. Some people even wear zipper-front sports bras as streetwear.
  • Comfort: It works for those who do not like the heat or cannot tolerate heat well. It provides the comfort of reducing breast movement without letting themselves be stifled by an oppressive shirt.

Benefits of Wearing Sports Bras Work as Tops

Fashion-wise, it’s made for a very flattering piece of clothing. The benefits of using a it as a piece of fashion include:

Supportive Top

Since it’s made to support the breasts during rigorous activity, it’s designed to be thicker and sturdier, giving them a look closer to a tank top than a bra. This allows for better comfort and movability for the person wearing it.

Flattering on Your Body

Thanks to its unique design, those who have curves benefit from it since it can put focus on those curves, especially with the right pants. You can even show off your waistline without fear of revealing anything else.

Numerous Style Options

Depending on the design of the sports bra, you can have anything from a tight crop top that covers everything, to a more revealing top.

It allows flexibility in styling and accessorizing since you can wear it with many different clothing options. Crop tops and sports bras are very popular in the scene of street fashion. You can even tie-dye an old sports bra, and freshen it for your casual wear.

Tips on Choosing the Right Sports Bra

In the US, 22% of women wear sports bras multiple times a week. While the study did not indicate whether or not women were wearing sports bras as a top or underneath clothing, if you are them multiple times a week, it’s important that you take the following into consideration:

Graphic image of a blue bra that describes that sports bras should have a snug fit, wide straps and moisture wicking material

The Right Fit

You’re going to wear these bras as tops all day. It’s important that you choose a bra top that doesn’t chafe or slip, and isn’t tough to take off. Knowing your bra size can help you choose the appropriate bra for you.

It also helps to know the measurements of your ribcage. The band that helps restrict your breasts could restrict breathing if it’s too small. When in doubt, get adjustable sports bras.

Comfort Always

Your top has to be comfortable or else it’ll make any movement a nightmare. It shouldn’t be squishing your breasts so hard that it hurts, it should only restrict their movement. If you do feel like it’s too tight, you can always try and stretch it out before wearing it.

It also shouldn’t be making it hard to move your arms and shoulders. If you sweat a lot, make sure your bra absorbs sweat.

Know Your Activity

Not all bras are made equal. The intensity of the activity will determine what bra you should use. This is especially true if you’re going to use them as tops.

A black spaghetti straps sports bra and gray leggings are worn by a woman

If you’re going for a casual night out or doing simple exercises, it’s best to use what’s called a low-impact bra. It provides some restrictions and isn’t too tight. The medium-impact bra is more appropriate for activities like dancing or cycling. If you’re planning on running or doing some intense cardio, it’s better to use high-impact bras.

Related Questions

What Bottoms Can Match a Sports Bra When Worn as a Top?

It doesn’t matter if it’s jeans, sweats, shorts, or chino pants. What matters is how high they can go. Wear anything high-waisted when wearing a short-length top. This is because they help accentuate the waistline and emphasize the silhouette of the body.

Are There Other Non-conventional Tops I Can Also Wear?

What you can use as a top will depend on your tastes, your comfort level, the aesthetic you’re trying to follow, and if it’s appropriate for the weather.

Other alternatives include the following:

  • Crop tops: Crop tops are basically any shirt that’s been cut off to reveal the stomach. Variations of the crop top can fulfill a lot of aesthetics, from soft-looking sweater crop tops to grungier graphic tee crop tops.
  • Cinched waist blouses: Cinched waist blouses can provide the same effect of emphasizing the waistline without sacrificing coverage. If you don’t like the cinched waist blouse, you can always turn to wrap-around blouses instead.
What Is a Sports Bra? (And How To Pick One For Various Activities)


At the end of the day, the only thing that should matter is what makes you comfortable and happy. If you’re not trying to be offensive with what you wear, you should be allowed to wear what you want, so go ahead and wear a sports bra as a top if you want to!


Allena is the Founder and Editor of The Better Fit, a platform dedicated to empowering women with practical advice on bras and fitness, inspired by her own revelation of the widespread issue of incorrect bra sizing. Her expertise and tips have been recognized by major publications such as Cosmopolitan, Better Homes & Gardens, Insider, and NBC, making her a trusted voice in women's wellness and lifestyle.