Updated August 2022
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Buying guide for best longline sports bras

If you love fashion as much as fitness, then it’s time to invest in a longline sports bra. It seems like everyone is wearing longline sports bras these days, and it’s not just fitness enthusiasts. Their unique silhouette hits just below the line of a regular sports bra and just above the length of a crop top. Given their design, longline sports bras can be worn on their own or as a base layer.

There’s more to longline sports bras than just style, too. Many wearers agree that longline sports bras offer far more support than regular sports bras. With a much wider band, longline sports bras are less prone to shifting during periods of intense activity. The wider band also helps redistribute weight from the bust, making for an overall more comfortable fit.

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Longline sports bras are popular everyday athleisure wear with their flattering, longer silhouettes.

Key considerations

Benefits of longline sports bras

Longline sports bras offer plenty of unique perks. For one, the wide bands of longline sports bras provide additional support, not to mention a shift-free fit. The band typically hits at the smallest part of the waist, giving wearers an hourglass silhouette as well.

Longline sports bras are ideal to wear in warm weather since they can be worn without a top, thus eliminating a layer of clothing. These styles are also often preferred by women seeking a more compression fit in a sports bra, namely in higher-neckline styles.

Popular materials

Like other sports bras, longline styles are made from a wide variety of materials and blends. Cotton, polyester, spandex, rayon, nylon, and elastane are the most common options. Many of these materials have wick-away properties that pull sweat and moisture from the body. Some materials have anti-odor properties as well, meaning they’re treated to neutralize or kill odor-causing bacteria.


Many longline sports bras are specifically designed for different levels of exercise intensity. Low-impact sports bras are ideal for activities where your feet don’t leave the ground much, such as light aerobics, Pilates, or barre. These bra styles tend to be lightweight and comfortable, but they don’t offer too much support.

Medium-impact sports bras are recommended for medium-intensity activities, ranging from cycling to cardio dance. These bras offer decent support as well as compression as they prevent the bust from moving excessively.

High-impact sports bras are geared toward wearers who engage in intense exercise, such as running, circuit training, or even horseback riding. These bras are structured to reduce bust movement and redistribute impact throughout the back.


When it comes to size, expect to see two types of sizing for longline sports bras. Many longline sports bras follow a small, medium, and large size range. While manufacturers often have compatibility charts to help you find the right size, it’s not unusual to try more than one size before finding the correct fit.

Some longline sports bras keep things simple and follow traditional bra sizing. Unfortunately, the manufacturers who adopt this sizing tend to be premium or high-end brands. On the upside, cup-and-band sizing is far more accurate than spectrum sizing.

Some longline sports bras are equipped with hidden pockets to store keys or media players. These features are especially desirable to runners and cyclists.



Lining vs. padding

Lined styles of longline sports bras have soft inner layers of material that are sewn in both for support and modesty. While linings don’t have contoured cups, they smooth over, shape, and streamline the bust.

Padded styles, on the other hand, consist of a lining with contoured pads or cups. In some longline sports bras, the padded cups are removable. That said, many wearers find removable pads more of a hassle than anything else because they’re prone to shifting during exercise.

Strap styles

Strap styles vary considerably when it comes to longline sports bras. Straps are especially important to compare before you buy as they impact the fit as well as the support of the sports bra.

Thin or spaghetti-strap designs are ideal if you prefer less material around your shoulders. Unfortunately, these straps don’t offer much in the way of support. These longline sports bras are best for low-impact exercise or fashionable wear.

Traditional straps, which measure approximately one inch wide, resemble those seen on regular sports bras. Generally speaking, they offer moderate support and help to distribute weight and impact across the shoulders and chest.

Some longline sports bras have very wide straps, resembling high-cut muscle tees. While these bras tend to offer more in the way of compression support, their straps are rarely adjustable.

Pullover vs. hook-and-eye styles

Longline sports bras are available in pullovers as well as hook-and-eye styles. Most longline sports bras are pullover styles, which means they don’t require adjustments for each wear. Unfortunately, they have a tendency to be difficult to remove, especially if you’re sweating.

Longline sports bras with hook-and-eye closures are growing in popularity. They have adjustable bands to provide a customized fit, just like a regular bra. A pitfall of these styles is that they are prone to getting overstretched.


Some longline sports bras are designed with ventilation features, such as cutouts, mesh panels, or slits. These details aid in boosting airflow around the body and through the material. They also add a bit of style to the overall design of the bra. It’s important to note that these areas are more delicate than the rest of the sports bra, so they’re more likely to sustain damage or show signs of wear and tear.

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A telltale sign that it’s time to replace your longline sports bra is when the straps or the elastic band feels looser than usual. If you can wiggle two fingers comfortably between both of these areas, the bra has already stretched out too much to be supportive.

Longline sports bra prices

Longline sports bras generally range in price from $18 to $80. Entry-level longline sports bras cost $25 or less. Most of these styles are geared toward fashionable wear or low- to medium-impact activity. Construction quality is hit or miss, but there are definitely some good bras in this bracket.

Mid-range longline sports bras are priced between $30 and $50. Styles in this bracket are well-made, with finer details like better-quality straps. Most leading athletic apparel brands have longline sports bras in this price range.

High-end longline sports bras cost $50 and up. While many of these bras are incredibly well-made and feature unique patterns, they’re not much different in overall quality from mid-range options.

The lifespan of a sports bra is approximately one year of regular wear. Even if your longline sports bra looks like it’s in great condition, after a year the fibers are usually overstretched and support is somewhat compromised.



  • Wear a longline sports bra to hot yoga. If you’re not ready to forgo your workout shirt at hot yoga, a longline sports bra is a happy medium that will keep you cool during class.
  • Invest in solid colors. If you’re a big fan of patterned workout bottoms, be sure to pick up longline sports bras in solid colors to mix and match.
  • Wash longline sports bras inside out. To prevent mesh panels or fine details from getting snagged in the washing machine, it’s a good idea to wash longline sports bras inside out.
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Many women enjoy wearing low-impact longline sports bras as lounge or sleep bras because they’re soft and flexible.


Q. If I’m in between sizes for a longline sports bra, which size should I choose?

A. This a quite common issue with every style of sports bra. Some wearers recommend sizing down since sports bras stretch out over time anyway. Other wearers say it’s best to only consider bras that come in your size, as you’ll have to sacrifice comfort or support when you size up or size down.

Q. What is the best way to wash a longline sports bra?

A. Because sports bras, including longline styles, are made of stretchy materials, it’s best to forgo the fabric softener in the washing machine. Stick to gentle, color-safe detergents and cool water washes. As far as drying goes, you’ll dramatically increase the lifespan of your sports bra if you let it air dry.

Q. Are strappy longline sports bras less supportive than styles with regular straps?

A. Yes. The strappy design is more fashionable than it is supportive. If support is your main concern, it’s best to invest in a longline sports bra with thicker straps and compression to stop unnecessary movement.


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