For women, having a good bra can make the difference between a fun day on the trail or a miserable time on your hike. Hiking is a rigorous activity and women need chest support to keep their back, neck, and shoulders pain free. A top rated sports bra for hiking should provide you with full support while also being breathable, quick drying, and comfortable. Not all hiking sports bras are made the same and differences in the straps, size, style, and amount of support can make it difficult for you to make a decision.
We want to make the process easier for you, so we have made a list of the ten best hiking bras and included a comprehensive buying guide which will help you understand the differences between designs. With our help, you will find the best hiking bra that keeps you comfortable and supported for a full day on the mountain.
If you have problems with your bra chafing your skin, check what material it's made of. Cotton is especially like to chafe because it holds water against your skin; try wearing bras made of light wool or a wicking synthetic material instead.
If you're a "Sweaty Betty" like I am, consider wearing a wicking layer underneath your bra. The wicking layer absorbs your sweat and reduces chafing, and doesn't interfere with the support of your bra.
If you have a favorite bra to wear for hiking, wear it when you shop for backpacks. This way, you can make sure the backpack straps won't chafe against the seams or any adjustable fasteners on your bra straps.
How To Choose A Hiking Bra – Buying Guide
The best hiking bra will be made out of a material that is lightweight, quick drying, breathable, stretchy, and durable. While it can be difficult to find all these features in one material, you will more likely find a top rated sports bra for hiking which is made of a combination of materials, so you get the best performance on the trail.
Synthetic materials tend to be the most popular choices used in bras for active women because they have all the features listed above and are long lasting. Nylon and polyester are the two most common synthetics, which can be made soft and comfortable with today’s technology.
However, cotton is a natural material that is used in some bras for light support. Cotton is a breathable material, but it tends to lack the quick drying feature. While soft and stretchy, cotton is not the best choice if you plan on getting wet on your hike.
Women come in a variety of sizes, which means that they need a wide selection of bra sizes too. Most brands feature a full range of sizes, but they may not all use the same sizing system. A bra for hiking may be sized from X-Small to 3X-Large or it may use traditional bra sizes with a bust measurement and cup size.
A top rated sports bra for hiking should always have a size chart available, so you know exactly which bra to purchase. The size chart should give you the best estimate on your size, but they may not always run true to size. Hiking bra reviews are a great resource to determine whether the size chart is accurate or whether you need to size up or down.
Fit is not the same as size, though they are related. A properly fitted bra for active women should fit rather snuggly to ensure that it can provide proper support, but it should never be so tight that it cuts off your circulation. Many bras have adjustable straps, which can help you fine tune the fit around your shoulders.
But there may not always be an adjustable band. If your band does not have a hook and eye closure for adjustability, there should be elastic to ensure you have a snug fit that won’t move or twist around your body. However, the best sports bra for hiking will have adjustable feature for a better fit.
Comfort should always be a big consideration in the design of a bra for active women. The most important aspects of comfort are the softness of the material, strap width, cups, and the band.
Chaffing can also be a concern when it comes to your comfort and having a seamless quick dry bra for hiking is the best option to reduce the risk of skin irritation. The best sports bra for hiking will have less seams to be more comfortable in the long run.
Whether you’re hiking off trail or staying to marked paths, you need a durable bra for hiking. Durability will ensure that your quick dry sports bra can provide the level of support you need, but that it will also be long lasting.
Even if you have a hiking sports bra that wicks away moisture, sweat and oil from your skin will still leave its mark. A top rated sports bra for hiking will be durable so that it can be washed multiple times throughout the years. Durable hiking bras are also less likely to experience failures in the straps or closures, which ensures you always have reliable support and comfort.
Hiking bra reviews can tell you how durable a design is and whether it is worth the investment or not. Many reviews are truthful and will state whether the bra is holding up well after a few hikes or if it needs to be replaced quickly.
There are lots of different types of bras for hiking, so you can choose one that suits your needs. The most popular is the racerback design because it is ultra-comfortable and provides excellent support. However, the pull-on design of a racerback style makes it less ideal as a hiking bra for large breasts.
Large chested women would be better off with a regular type bra that has a traditional hook and eye closure because it is easier to put on and adjust. But many brands have a variety of types of hiking bras, so you can choose what is most comfortable for you.
Q: Are Sports Bras Better Than Regular Bras?
Yes, if you are planning a hike or want to do rigorous activity. While all bras are meant to provide chest support, a sports bra will compress your breasts so that they rest closer to the body. The compression and snug fit of a sports bra allows you to move more freely and stops your chest from bouncing as you move, which reduces the overall strain on your body.
Q: Are Sports Bra Sizes The Same As Normal Bra Sizes?
It will depend on the brand and the bra. Some brands choose to use normal bra sizes, which are determined by measurements. The measurements are normally given will indicate the size of your bust and cup, with most bra sizes ranging from 28AAA all the way up to 52H. However, some brands use traditional sizes ranging from X-Small to 3X-Large, which is not the same as a normal bra size.
It is also important to consider that you may not be the same size in a sports and normal bra. The compression of a sports bra means that some people prefer to size up or down from their normal bra size.
Q: How Should A Sports Bra Fit?
Snug but not constricting. Sports bras naturally compress your chest, which makes them tighter or snugger than a normal bra. But you don’t want the bra so tight that you cannot move, cut off your blood circulation, or have parts of the bra digging into your body. The best sports bra for hiking should fit just snug enough that you get the support you need without being uncomfortable.
Q: How To Care For A Hiking Bra?
The best way to care for a hiking bra is to handwash the bra in cold water with a mild detergent. Handwashing will reduce the wear on your bra, which makes it last longer. However, many hiking sports bras are safe to be washed in the machine on the delicate cycle.
There should always be specific care instructions included in the product specifications, but in case you feel lost, hiking bra reviews are another resource to determine the best care routine.
Globo Surf Overview
When it comes to deciding what to what hiking and choosing your hiking underwear, a bra is often a woman’s first concern. A good hiking sports bra will build a comfortable foundation so that you can exercise free from bouncing, strain, and pain. We hope that with our guide you will have found the best hiking bra that will become your go to companion for all your hiking adventures.
More Backpacking/Hiking Reviews:
- Roll Top Backpack
- Hiking Sunglasses
- Hiking Gloves
- Dog Carrier Backpack
- Timberland Boot
- Fleece Jackets For Women
- Osprey Backpack
- Insoles For Hiking
- Wireless Trail Camera
- Base Layer For Women
Do you own one of the hiking bras that made it onto our list? Let us know which hiking bra is your favorite in the comments section below.