In Which Jenn Reviews A Cheap Sports Bra

Running clothes

Influenster recently sent me a 40% discount code off a C9 by Champion sports bra from Target. I was kinda on the fence about the whole thing – 40% off is good, but I have a fair array of sports bras already – until my Target run on Tuesday. Sports bras were on sale! I can’t resist stacked discounts, so I picked one up for review.

The discount code covered two lines of C9 bras: power core and power shape. The main difference seems to be in the cups; namely, are they molded (shape) or no? Some are racer backs, some not. All models I saw have adjustable straps.

I have in-between boobs; that is to say, not so small that I can throw on a tank top and wander about braless (you guys are lucky!), but then again not so big that I naturally get a ton of cleavage with little to no effort (you guys are lucky!). I liked the look of the molded bras, but most of them seemed to have back clasps, which I am less a fan of in sports bras – I hate standing around grappling for hooks with my arms twisted behind my back when I have a workout to get to, geez.

I was also having trouble finding my size, as some are sized like standard bras (ie, 34C) and some are S, M, L. I eventually picked out a medium support power core bra in size medium.

C9 Sports bra
My selection.

Cute, right? Putting it on initially, I was struck by how much more support it offered than I expected. I got a little bit of boob-squish, but not to the extent that high support bras tend to provide. The boobs are definitely strapped down but not suffocated. Otherwise, while just hanging around, it’s pretty comfortable.

The real test is of course in the run. I have some sports bras that require a bit of lubrication if I’m going for a long run, under the band and sometimes on the upper boobs. To find out if this one has any hot spots, I went Vaseline-free for the inaugural run (you’re welcome). Chafe report: nada. Nary a mark on me. Now, I was running on a beautiful morning – low 60s, light breeze – so sweat wasn’t much of a factor; I’d need to try again on a hardcore sweaty day to get a sense of how chafe-y it gets then. But for starters: not bad!

In short, for my medium boobs, medium support was just fine. It’s not super flattering for small-to-medium boobs in that it squishes you down and flattens you out, but then again, it IS a sports bra. It keeps the bounce out. If you want something with a bit more shape, I’d suggest trying a model with molded cups (or this VSX bra, which I have and like). Otherwise this is a perfectly serviceable sports bra at a pretty great price.

Standard cost for the various models seems to run between $16.99 and $22.99, Target is running a bunch of sales both in store and online right now! I got mine in store for $10 ($6 after my discount code) and saw others marked at $15, so if you’re interested in a new sports bra now’s the time to jump on it.

Have you used C9 sports bras? How do you like ’em?

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