It’s been a few years since I wrote this review of Aerie bras, so I thought the time is ripe for an update. Aerie has been the silver lining in the storm cloud that is mall retailers, and I am sure my unflinching support has contributed to their monstrous double-digit same-store growth for the last eight (!!) quarters. This segment in general is so full of promise that Gilly Hicks, which became a zombie after it was folded into Hollister, is being revived.
But this is about Aerie bras, so we’ll save that Gilly Hicks discussion (which stands on its own) for another time.
Style Aerie Romantic Lace Padded Bralette in Red Velvet
Padding It’s lined, but there is no pushup effect. If you are looking for something to enhance or enlarge the appearance of your chest, this will not do on its own.
Comments I’ve become an Aerie bralette convert; it fits neatly into the slozy narrative I’ve written for myself. The lace itself is the greatest selling point: the fringe trim adds a little something extra; if you want to wear it under a loose sweater and find it unseemly to show a regular bra. The size chart is helpful: I wear a 32C in bras, and take a small in bralettes.
Padding Perkier (again, Aerie pushup bras are organized into five levels: perky, perkier, perkiest, whoa!, and double whoa!!); you can definitely see the push-up effect, but it’s tame and not cartoonish.
Comments From my last review, you all know that I am practically married to the “Brooke” style (both the “typical” type with hook and eye closure in the back, and the racerback with front-closure). I am sad to report that the Brooke is not what it used to be (which isn’t to say I won’t continue to buy it in bulk): the underwire feels more rigid, and the padding seems denser. It’s still a “good” bra (straps that are supportive without being constrictive; it’s very washer-and-dryer friendly in lingerie bags; it has a smooth appearance under clothes; and it’s tag-free), just not the one I fell in love with.
Style Aerie Romantic Lace Strappy Back Bralette in Soft Muslin
Padding Unless otherwise specified, most Aerie bralettes are lined, but with just enough fabric to to conceal the outlines of one’s nipples.
Comments I buy Aerie bralettes out of vanity, not because they offer support or have practical purpose. Having said this, they are versatile: bandeau bralettes especially have made low-cut tops more wearable for me. The fit is also fairly uniform across styles.
Style Aerie Sunnie Pushup Bra in True Black
Padding Perkier (so level two out of five). It lifts and shapes without dramatizing the goods.
Comments I like the Sunnie Pushup Bra for the same reasons that made the Brooke appealing to me. I like the basic set-up: sturdy straps and underwire for ample support (for someone with an average chest like me, I feel it offers enough support for running—please don’t take this to the bank); smooth cups; and material without embellishment. The Sunnie offers a little more coverage in the back compared to the Brooke.
Style Aerie Sunnie Pushup Bra in Buff-Gloss
Comments This style has the same style name as the Sunnie Pushup Bra in True Black, but with a lace cradle (/wing). I prefer the one with all-smooth fabric to this one with lace touches, because the former feels a little more comfortable to me. But they are otherwise the same. I also found that in some runs the cups are slightly larger than expected, but this deviation is not consistent.
Style Aerie Sunnie Wireless Lightly Lined Bra in Nude
Padding Lightly lined. This style is marketed as the lovechild of the Sunnie bra and a bralette, so the amount of padding is a little less than half of what you’d find on the Sunnie Pushup Bra.
Comments I like this style a lot, because it has no underwires, but still offers enough support (through the stretch padding and straps) for average-sized chests. It’s a pull-on style, so I expect its reception to be mixed. It’s overall a comfortable bra, but may not be for everyone (e.g., those with chests requiring extra support).
Also, I am a lazy person who can’t be bothered to hand wash my delicates, so I throw everything into lingerie bags and wash/dry them in machines. (I know, my life is appalling.) These bras have all survived numerous washes without losing shape, so while you should still follow their original care instructions (hand wash only!), machine washing them will not cause their premature, untimely death.