What is a Balconette Bra?

Looking to share your inner Marilyn Monroe? Then the Balconette Bra may be the perfect bra for you! This style, made popular by the star in the 1950s, is designed to wear for all events ranging from special occasions to lowkey evenings.

The balconette bra, or balcony bra, is a bra with a horizonal, low-cut cups and wide straps that create an upward lift, like a balcony.

The original design of a straight-across neckline really drives home the balcony imagery! No matter what you call it, after reading all of the reasons we love balconette bras, you will be dying to add one (or more) to your wardrobe!

All About Balconette Bras

The Balconette Bra is definitely one of the flirtier bra styles. They enhance your natural cleavage by offering a little less coverage than a demi-cup bra. While the cups are shorter seemed, there is still optimal support from the underwire and vertical seems under the cups. The emphasis is not as much as it would be in a push-up bra, which is what makes this style so versatile for any occasion. If you are looking for a push-up bra, check out our article, What is a push-up bra?

The straps of balconette bras are fairly unique. They are set wider apart to provide additional cleavage enhancement. Sitting wider on the shoulders seems intimidating (nobody likes pulling up a loose bra strap all day!) but a good-fitting balconette bra’s straps will never slip.

Some balconette bras also feature stretch-top cups, which work wonders for hiding asymmetrical breast differences. If you are looking for other bra styles to fit these standards, check out our article Bras for Asymmetrical Breasts.

How Can the Balconette Bra Benefit You?

Hourglass Lingerie is always looking out for our full-breasted ladies! That’s one of the reasons why we adore balconette bras so much. They look great on everyone, but especially fuller-busted women.

Balconette Bras are incredibly supportive, leading to great lift and shape- something that can be hard to find for larger breast sizes. Of the many reasons we love them, this is the biggest one as to why we always recommend balconette bras in our shop!

Our favorites at Hourglass Lingerie are the Panache Envy 7285 Black Balconette and the Freya Idol AA1050 Nude Underwire Molded Balconette Bra.

When Should I Wear a Balconette Bra?

One of the worst fashion errors is visible bra cups or straps. It can easily take away from your style, but fear not!

Balconette bras are the perfect solution for style circumstances such as:


  • Low-cut necklines (creates the push-up effect without the push up)
  • Broader necklines
  • Business and formal attire
  • Girls' night out


In addition to their wide-set straps that create a hidden feature, balconette bras accentuate your curves and cleavage, resulting in comfort and confidence to go about your day!


When Should I Not Wear a Balconette Bra?

While balconette bras are so versatile, there are some occasions that we recommend choosing a different style of bra to best suit you! We recognize that every woman is built perfectly unique and deserves to be equally supported.

Some instances where we recommend an alternative style include:


  • Naturally slanted or narrow shoulders
  • Less than firm breast tissue


These women usually have no trouble finding a stellar bra- just not in the balconette style. For women with loose breast tissue, the balconette bra may support your chest, but the overall apperance tends to be flatter. For women with narrow shoulders, the wider-set straps tend to slip off the shoulder more frequently. If you think this could be you, check out our Why Do Bra Straps Keep Falling Down? page for the bra styles we suggest you try instead!

Balconette Bra Sizing

You will know your balconette bra fits perfectly when the band is snug but fingers can still slide under, the underwire lays flat, and the cups enclose the breasts well. If any of these criteria are not met, then you are likely wearing the wrong size.

The most tell-tale sign of poor fit in a balconette is breasts overflowing from the cups. The easiest way to size yourself is to check out our Size Guide and read up on all of our tips and tricks.

Or, if you would rather have the perfect fit without the hassle of research, call and schedule your free, personalized fitting with an Hourglass Lingerie fit specialist. We would love to help you and share our admiration for balconette (and other) bras!

Bra Style Guide

Now that you've learned everything you could ever possibly want to know about Balconette Bras, why not learn some more? Our Bra Style Guide is the perfect collection of guides to every bra style on the market. Try something new, explore an old favorite, or step out of your comfort zone!