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Best woman-owned bra shop where every bra-wearer is welcome

a bra garter and panty set on a mannequin
An ensemble at Busted Bra Shop Credit: Lee Padgett

The right bra can improve your posture, relieve back pain, help clothes fit better, and sometimes make you feel a little sexier (or a lot), but let’s face it: shopping for bras can be a major pain in the boob. Many top-selling brands prioritize fashion over quality (as if we can’t have both), and center consumers within a narrow range of sizes, skin tones, gender identities and presentations, and budgets—limiting their clientele and their profits, rather than deepening their investments in inclusivity, diversity, and design. 

That’s what makes Busted Bra Shop so refreshing. Founded by Lee Padgett in 2013, the Detroit-based company came to Hyde Park in 2018, and opened its sixth location in Lakeview last year. They operate on the premise that everyone is welcome, and anyone who wants to wear a bra deserves a great fit. “Sometimes people like to wear something beautiful close to their skin that no one knows about,” Padgett says. “It empowers them, in a way. That’s my biggest thing—I want to empower people.”

Busted’s bras run from 28-56 bands and A-P cups (by contrast Victoria’s Secret stores carry 30A-44DD). Prices run $40-275, but most are between $50-80. They also carry maternity and post-surgery bras, as well as swimwear, loungewear, and lingerie from sizes XXS to 10XL. While they don’t currently carry chest binders (Padgett says she doesn’t currently have enough knowledge about binding), they do sell compression tops, and also offer panties that can accommodate any anatomy. 

Given the intimate nature of fitting intimates, Busted’s atmosphere is purposely welcoming and low-stress. You can browse their gorgeous displays or consult with their team of bra-fit experts, who’ll measure those unsure of their size, and pull customized selections from their stockroom. They also host private parties (no deposit required) for birthdays, showers, gender affirmation celebrations, or any other reason. Padgett also adds that they’ve got great snacks.

Busted Bra Shop
Shops at 3148 N. Lincoln and 1013 1/2 E. 53rd

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