Lululemon’s enlite bra is currently billed as their ultra high-tech, ultra supportive sports bra. It’s also one of the few they offer in band/cup sizing instead of their normal numerical options. When this bra was released a couple years ago, they hailed it as thoroughly tested and meticulously designed.
This review is part of an ongoing series of high impact sports bra reviews. You can read all of my high impact sports bra reviews here.
At first, I didn’t buy the enlite bra because of sizing. The size offerings in this bra are limited, and my band size (30) is not offered in the version I am wearing. That said, I had read some reviews that suggested this bra runs small, so I decided to give it a shot. I bought a 32C. After I bought and tested this bra, lululemon released a variant of the enlite, called the enlite weave, which is available in extended size offerings (band sizes 30-40). Just my luck. I haven’t tried the newer version in my true size yet.
Now that I’ve tried it for myself, I don’t agree that the band runs small. While the 32 band is somewhat workable for me, I would definitely prefer a smaller band. With that in mind, I personally do not recommend sizing up in the band.
I was also surprised by how generous the cups are. I am between cup sizes and I ordered the smaller of the two sizes, and there’s still plenty of room. The cups use encapsulation technology, which means each breast is supported separately. The cups are very structured and shaped. The top of the bra is intended to completely encapsulate all sides of breast tissue. Between the coverage and the shaping, this bra offers plenty of modesty if you like to wear it on its own.
I sometimes run in a sports bra without a shirt, so it’s valuable to me if a bra looks like a sports bra instead of like underwear. (Even though, yeah I know, it kind of is underwear.) Many high impact bras are frankly kind of hideous (all function, zero style), but the enlite bra definitely wins points for its sleek look.
I like the addition of the zip front. Although lulu offers a version with no zip, I think I would have a very hard time getting it on and off without it. Take note that the versions without a zip have slightly lower coverage
Another major plus of this bra is the fabric. It’s silky and plush and feels good against the skin. The shaping and fabric in the bust area is somewhat thick, plus the coverage is relatively high, but overall it still breathes well.
That said, where this bra falls short is adjustability. For a high support bra, it’s common to see some options in adjusting the band or shoulder straps, but the enlite has neither. As a shorter lady, I usually need to tighten shoulder straps, and this bra definitely feels too long over the shoulders. If you look at the photos from the back, you can see a couple places where the straps pucker out a bit because they’re not totally tight. Note that the enlite weave version I mentioned earlier in this post does have the addition of 3 hooks in the back.
Another major consideration with the lack of adjustments is longevity. No matter how well you care for them, bras always stretch out over time. Not having the option to tighten this bra as it ages means you’ll likely need to replace it sooner, which is particularly painful given its high price point.
I went for several runs in this bra, around 6 miles at a time. It provided pretty good support, but less locked down than others in my repertoire. Remember, though, I had to size up in the band, which is a pretty big caveat.
Overall, I think lululemon’s enlite bra is good, but not great. With a painful price tag of $98 for no zip front and $108 for the zip front as shown in this post, it’s one of the most expensive out there. In my opinion, it does not offer significant benefits compared to less expensive high impact bras. For example, SheFit’s bras are similar in style and performance promises, and personally I think SheFit’s offerings are substantially better than the enlite. SheFit’s are adjustable for a better fit, provide better support, and cost about $30-$40 less a piece.
While the enlite has some pluses, I don’t think the positives are enough to justify the price tag when other styles do just as much or more for less. With that in mind, I doubt I will buy more of this bra, with the possible exception of trying my true size in the new version.
If you’d like to try the enlite bra for yourself, it’s currently available in 3 versions: zip front, no zip front, and the enlite weave (has hooks).
I love the Enlite bra and I have it in 8 colors; I’ve gotten rid all of my other sports bras except for a few light-support styles I keep for lounging around the house. *But* I am a 36DDD and the options for my size that are supportive enough for high impact activities which not having lots of pieces that poke and chafe during stretchy ones are thin on the ground. I am also tall enough (5’7″) that the shoulder height is perfect and if it were too loose that would probably be a dealbreaker. I sized up to my sister size 38DD; I could get the 36E on but the 38 was supportive enough without being a wrestle, especially since I have the non-zip version. The zip-front version is too high for me since I usually wear a tank top over it and on a larger size it’s just a lot of fabric; if that were all they had I’d still buy it over any of their other options.
(I think your reviews are great, including this one! I just wanted to share my experience with a different body type.)
Suzanne | Agent Athletica says
Thanks so much for the comparative thoughts! I have similar challenges of wanting something simple but supportive for a difficult-to-find size. Usually I end up compromising in some respect: less support, more poking, etc. Find good sports bras and love them hard, hah. :)
Jenn Rossum says
I have had five of these bras now and was contemplating whether to buy another or try a different style. I just threw one out because the hooks came out of the band. I know Lululemon will replace the bra but it was already past its prime. I agree the bra is very supportive but I do think the bras stretch over time and lose some support. The only means of adjusting them is tightening the band if you have the back clasp style. I broke the clasp on the one zip front I had fairly early on because as a woman with substantial “up front assets,” it isn’t the easiest thing to fasten but it is more comfortable not to have a back clasp during activities like yoga. I will say it was a godsend cycling.
I’ve tried so many different sports bras and this is the only one that doesn’t make me want to cry so there is a very good chance I will order another one. It’s tough to find perfection here
Yes, I agree with you! For the price, not that great. I use to be able to run in Nike fit no problem but have been looking for something with a little more support after having a child and heard about this bra. I was a bit disappointed to find that there was still a lot more of “bounce” happening with this bra that cost as much as my running sneakers.
I bought a different bra from lululemon for $48 dollars and although it was a little tricky to get on and off at first, I feel much more supported in a bra that is half the price! I will check out SheFit and hearing great things about enell too.