Do Posture-Correcting Bras Actually Do Anything?

Good posture is important to both your appearance and your health. When you straighten up, you look taller and more confident. Having good posture also helps to ease back pain, promote circulation, relieve tension in your neck and shoulders, and so much more. If you have poor posture, it's never too late to try to save it. Regular stretching, muscle-strengthening activities, and maintaining an upright posture in everything you do can help you improve your form over time.

While these posture-improving tips are easy to follow, not all of us can follow through with them. We might put some effort into stretching and aligning our joints, but we can also spend the rest of the day slumped over our computers or staring down at our phones. Life always has a way of getting in the way. For this reason, we all need a tool that makes the process more automatic and seamless — something that trains our joints to be in alignment without us having to lift a finger. Something like a posture-correcting bra. 

Like a regular bra, a posture-correcting bra also contains cups and straps that cover and support the breast. However, it's designed in such a way that helps the wearer subconsciously adopt a more aligned, efficient posture as they're standing or sitting. But do they actually do anything? Absolutely — you just need to put it on, and the rest will be taken care of. Here's how posture-correcting bras can help you obtain a better posture. 

Posture-correcting bras make good posture your second nature

To clarify, a posture-correcting bra is not some kind of medical-grade, electric bra that emits healing rays into your body to correct your posture overnight. It's rather an undergarment with design features that work on your proprioceptive sense to train you to stand straighter under all circumstances. "Posture bras have a broad back with criss-cross elastic [bands sewn into the material] to help pull the shoulders back and retract the shoulder blades," Karen Erickson, a spokesperson for the American Chiropractic Association (ACA), tells Forbes.

"When you wear them and round forward, the elastic will pull, reminding you to resume erect posture," Erickson adds. Plus, the way you wear a posture-correcting bra is no different from the way you wear a regular bra. Compared to a regular bra, a posture bra can better address the muscular imbalances brought on by everyday posture errors (i.e., slouching and bending) and provide more support to the shoulder and neck by distributing the weight evenly. 

Over time, this automatic posture correction will become second nature to you. Posture-correcting bras are excellent in honing our sense of body awareness, constantly reminding us of what is and what is not an ideal posture. They do not cut you any slack. The moment you start to round forward, they will give your muscle a gentle nudge so you can pull your shoulders back and bring your whole body back in alignment. 

How to choose the right posture-correcting bra

You can wear a posture-correcting bra when going about your everyday routine, such as driving, working, or cooking. There's no need to wear it when you're sleeping. Posture-correcting bras are available in various forms and fashions and can be found in many specialty lingerie shops. When picking bras, choose one that matches your breast size so it fits you snugly without digging into your sides. When it comes to cup designs, the cup should cover the whole breadth of the breast and perk it up. You know your cup is too small when your breast tissues feel tight against your underarm.

If you are not sure about sizing, you can always measure your bra size at home — but don't hesitate to hit the lingerie store and ask for guidance from the staff. For back designs, go for those with criss-cross elastic bands or high-back designs that stimulate you to pull your shoulders down and back at all times. In terms of straps, go with wider straps so that your weight is evenly distributed over your shoulders. You'll want to ensure the straps aren't too tight, as too-tight straps can concentrate the weight in a specific location, which can compress your nerves and worsen your back and shoulder pain.

Wearing a posture bra is perhaps the path of least resistance to achieve a better posture and figure. To amplify the results, engage in stretching exercises and practice good posture whenever possible.