The "No Bra" Brassiere thumbnail 1
The "No Bra" Brassiere thumbnail 2
Not currently on display at the V&A

The "No Bra" Brassiere

1965 (made)
Place of origin

watch Shaping the body: from corsets to bullet-bras Eleri Lynn, author of the V&A book 'Underwear: Fashion in Detail', tells the story of shape-wear: from the steel and whalebone engineering of Victorian and Edwardian corsetry, to the breast-flattening bandeau bras worn by 1920s flappers, the bullet-bras of the 1950s, the arrival of Lycra i...
Object details
Object type
This object consists of 4 parts.

  • Bra
  • Packet (Container)
  • Label
  • Label
Brief description
Bra, American, 1965, Rudi Gernreich, 'no-bra' style, nylon & elastic

Wallet, American, 1965, for Rudi Gernreich, 'no-bra' bra, plastic

Descriptive label, American, 1965, washing instructions for Rudi Gernreich 'no-bra' bra, printed paper

Descriptive label, American, 1965, for Rudi Gernreich 'no-bra' bra, printed paper
  • Bust measured inside garment circumference: 80cm (Note: Measured by Conservation)
  • Underbust measured inside garment circumference: 68cm (Note: Measured by Conservation)
  • Nape underbust length: 22cm (Note: Measured by Conservation)
Production typeMass produced
Gallery label
  • Invisible underwear The youth culture that revolutionised fashion in the 1960s introduced a new ideal body shape: tall, skinny, naturally firm and long limbed. Clothes were correspondingly revealing and required minimal, smooth-fitting underwear. Rudi Gernreich's 'No-bra' bra is made from sheer nylon net. The associated advertisements claim that the bra, 'supports yet gives you the natural nude look of a firm, young, bra-less bosom'. Bra, 'No-bra' Rudi Gernreich (1922-85) for Exquisite Form USA, 1965 Nylon V&A: T.35:1-1999(16/04/2016-12/03/2017)
  • In the 1960s, it became fashionable to have an adolescent, skinny body. Stockings and suspenders gave way to tights, and girdles to Lycra panties, while the truly fashionable figure required no support at all. Advertisements for the No-Bra Bra boasted that it 'supports yet gives you the natural nude look of a fim, young, bra-less bosom'. The bra was a success, and prompted a wave of imitations. 'No-bra' bra Rudi Gernreich (1922-85) for Exquisite Form USA, 1965 Nylon V&A: T.35:1-1999(2013-2015)
Accession number

About this object record

Explore the Collections contains over a million catalogue records, and over half a million images. It is a working database that includes information compiled over the life of the museum. Some of our records may contain offensive and discriminatory language, or reflect outdated ideas, practice and analysis. We are committed to addressing these issues, and to review and update our records accordingly.

You can write to us to suggest improvements to the record.

Suggest Feedback

Record createdFebruary 20, 2002
Record URL
Download as: JSON