The no bra: what to think of this current trend?

T-shirt rose avec le dessin d'un sein

The no bra, that is to say the non-wearing of a bra, has experienced a real boom for several years. More and more women are deciding to leave their bras in the closet. And with the successive confinements, this trend has taken on considerable proportions. Indeed, according to an Ifop study carried out three months after the first confinement, 18% of French women aged 18 to 25 never or almost never wear a bra since the first confinement, compared to 4% before this one. ( 1)

We wonder here about the motivations that accompany this practice of no bra !

The question of comfort: a reality that differs depending on the woman

For many women, one of the first instincts when returning home after a long day is to unhook their bra. Indeed, certain bras such as padded and underwired bras compress the breasts; the straps and metal stays mark the skin and are perceived as uncomfortable by some.

However, this question of comfort remains subjective and, even if the no bra is a fashionable phenomenon, a large majority of women continue to wear a bra that provides support, comfort and femininity on a daily basis. Particularly for women who have large chests, those who have sensitive breasts or those who play sports, having unsupported breasts can be painful and very uncomfortable.

Health and no bra : what does science say?

Concerning this new phenomenon, scientific opinions differ. Some people think that this practice of no bra could be beneficial for the elasticity of the breasts. Indeed, according to some doctors, not wearing a bra would increase the firmness and natural support of the chest. Small anatomical aside: the breasts are made up of ligaments, called “Cooper ligaments”, which act as suspensory tissues. By wearing a bra made of underwires, these ligaments would no longer be stimulated and the chest would then lose tone. In any case, this is the conclusion of a study carried out by Doctor Jean-Denis Rouillon on 320 women since 1997 (2). However, it is necessary to qualify the statement here because few medical reports on the subject have to date been made public.

Celebrating breast diversity

Ditching the bra can also be a way to accept your breasts naturally, without artifice, and fight against an aesthetic standard imposed on women. Indeed, the arrival of padded bras called “ push up ” or “ Wonderbra ” in the 90s made nipples invisible and standardized breasts. According to the philosopher Camille Froidevaux-Metterie, author of the book Breasts, in search of a liberation, published in 2020 : “The bra is not only something that hugs women or that can bother them, even if it is obviously useful for those with large breasts. It is also a tool for shaping the breasts intended to make them correspond to a certain ideal imposed on everyone: the half-apple, a round breast, large enough, firm and high. So no longer wearing a bra also means making different breast shapes and sizes visible. » ( 3)

The fight against the sexualization of the female body

The #freethenipple movement , in French “free the nipples”, attests to this desire to fight against the sexualization of the female breast. Born in 2012 during the production of the eponymous documentary, this campaign campaigns for the right to freely dispose of one's body and denounces the double standard, that is to say the unequal treatment of the breast based on gender. Indeed, female nipples visible in public spaces are perceived as a form of vulgarity and indecency while those of men pose no problem. Director Lina Esco, who is at the origin of this #freethenipples movement , says: “There are so many laws against women's bodies and almost none against men's bodies. (…) There is a huge market that plays on the sexualization of women’s bodies. So why do you want to make money off my neckline, but when I want to do what I want with it, you condemn me? » ( 4) . And social media has perpetuated this sexual objectification: on Instagram and Facebook, women's nipples are censored while male torsos are allowed.

Indeed, women's breasts still remain largely sexualized. This is demonstrated, for example, by the attacks suffered by women who breastfeed in public.

And this sexualization of the female breast is illustrated in the case of this practice of no bra . According to the Ifop study, 20% of French people think that “the fact that a woman reveals her nipples under a top should be, for her attacker, a mitigating circumstance in the event of sexual assault ”. According to François Kraus, director of the Ifop “Gender, sexualities and sexual health” division, the practice of “no bra” allows “ to highlight the limits of women's clothing freedom in a society where hyper-sexualization of female breasts still overexposes them to forms of harassment or “calls to order ”.”

Bra or no bra : the importance of pro-choice

Because having free control over your body means having the choice to wear a bra or not, without judgment or injunction, at Perdième, we are keen to defend the importance of free choice. So our bet is to offer you a bra without underwire, which respects your body shape and your movements. A bra so comfortable so you can forget you're wearing one! With, in addition, the possibility of wearing it with or without reinforcement to adapt it to all busts. You can find our collections of bras available in five colorful and original designs to match with your classic period panties. To be found right here:

Written by Inès Perrein

Sources :

  1. The “No Bra” boom, underlying trend or fad? (2020, November 12). IFOP. 
  2. Krempf, A. (2014, May 2). Breasts would look better without a bra . Franceinfo. 
  3. Mansour, LA (2021, January 21). Coronavirus: Why more and more women are ditching the bra . 20 minutes. 
  4. C. (2019, February 3). #FreeTheNipples: When the breast goes to war! Digital Worlds.