Difference Between a Bustier & a Longline Bra

by Caroline Howard

Behind every great woman is a great bra. A strapless or low-back top worn for special occasions can necessitate special lingerie. Two types of specialty bras, bustiers and longline bras, can push, pull, and suck into place what needs to be to create the perfect look.

Bustiers

Lingerie retailer barenecessities.com (reference 1) explains a bustier as a modern version of a corset, designed to accentuate a woman's curves. Bustiers are strapless garments with flexible boning for structure and support, and they extend to the hip.

Longline Bras

A longline bra may provide more control than a bustier, particularly underneath clothing. Slimming stomach support is often a feature in longline bras. A three-quarter style stops at the hip, while a full-length extends past the hip, notes longlinebra.net. (Resource 2)

Benefits

Bustiers are typically designed to define a waistline and accentuate a bustline. Longline bras are more supportive and smoothing; they may also help with posture, because the boning make them more difficult to slouch in.

Accessories

While bustiers are almost always strapless, longline bras can be found in strapped styles, making them advantageous for women with fuller busts. Both longline bras and bustiers may come with garters for attaching stockings, rather than wearing pantyhose.

Fun Facts

Tight or constricting lingerie such as bustiers have been out of fashion, but are returning as more comfortable fabrics are available. Celebrity blogs such as imnotobsessed.com(Resource 3) tout shapewear as the "best-kept secret" of the stars.

Photo Credits

  • Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Clyde Robinson

About the Author

Caroline Howard has lived and worked in Washington, D.C., since graduating from SUNY Albany with a bachelor's in psychology. Since 1995 she's written about women's health and contraception on the Birthcontrol and Am_I_Pregnant communities on LiveJournal.com, Shebrew.com and Wegohealth.com. Howard writes about fashion, style and shopping on her blog.