Of all the things you could possibly want (or need) these days, the best nipple covers might not rank high on your wish list. But hot summer days call for clothes with the least amount of fabric (hi, linen dresses), and while going braless can be truly freeing, not everyone may feel comfortable with nipples peeking out—or a potential nip slip.
Thanks to the endless possibilities of the internet, we found a ton of smart, affordable solutions that make it possible to wear pretty much anything these days. So if you need some guidance, keep scrolling for a handy checklist of the best bra alternatives to stock up on. From adhesive bras to silicone nipple covers and reusable pasties, each one can solve a number of tricky top and dress situations—and are all easy to put on and remove. Temps are only getting hotter, so shop the 14 best nipple covers to wear with all your skin-baring summer looks.
The adhesive bra
What it’s good for: Backless or super-low-cut dresses and tops.
It’s easy to wear your comfiest bra (or nothing at all) when you’re at home in sweats, but those one-shoulder numbers and backless dresses require a little extra forethought. Sometimes you can get away with just a strapless bra, but if you want shape and definition without a war against gravity, adhesive styles are the way to go.
Celebrity stylist Anita Patrickson told Glamour she prefers the NuBra (shown below) over a traditional strapless style since it’s so much better at staying hidden. (This invisible bra comes in sizes A to E, and has a wide range of nude colors compared with some other brands on the market.) The proper way to put it on? “Bend over, stick one cup toward the outside of your breast, put the other one on your other breast, and clip them together,” Patrickson says. “It’ll help give you some cleavage and is the best way I’ve found to put it on.”
If you have a fuller bust, consider brands like Fashion Forms and Nordstrom Lingerie that make adhesive bras up to G cups. The options below stick well to your side and provide lift underneath clothes with low necklines and open backs.
The silicone nipple covers
What they’re good for: Thin or semisheer fabrics, plunging necklines, and swimwear.
Self-adhesive nipple covers (or silicone pasties) are especially great to wear when it’s hot out because they’re lightweight and practically invisible. These options are typically circular in shape, stretching beyond the nipple to cover the entire areola, and most brands offer them in a range of skin tones. You can even get them in a waterproof style to wear underneath your bikinis and one-piece swimsuits.
Because of their thickness, nipple concealers tend to do a better job than mesh bralettes or sports bras at masking erect nipples. Plus, the majority of adhesive silicone covers are made from medical-grade or hypoallergenic silicone, so if you plan on adding them to your daily rotation, they should be kinder on your skin.
What they’re good for: Sheer fabrics, V-necks, and loose-fitting tops and T-shirts.
Similar to reusable nipple covers, pasties offer subtle coverage when wearing sheer clothing, summer whites, and basic white tank tops. They function much like stickers and are usually flatter than reusable silicone nipple covers—but be aware: They may pucker if not applied flush to your boobs.
Pasties are often reusable, if not washable, and like the nipple covers above, most of the time you need only a touch of mild soap and water to reactivate the adhesive on the back.
Breast petals (pasties shaped like flowers) are a popular option, but ICYMI, pasties come in a kaleidoscope of playful designs (hearts, stars, or crosses) and fabrics (lace, satin, and sequins) that are great for everyday wear or special occasions. We know, we know—sequined nipple covers don’t exactly scream comfy (or safe for work), but most have latex-free or hypoallergenic silicone adhesive backings, meaning even the rhinestone ones won’t irritate or chafe after wearing them for hours on end. (P.S. Some come with test patches too so you can spot-try the product on a less sensitive part of your skin beforehand.)