Bras with a quarter cup, also known as shelf bras, do not cover the breasts entirely: they leave the nipples and areolas exposed. These bras typically have very little padding and are made to be more revealing than a full-cup bra.
Quarter-cup bras are most commonly used as erotic lingerie, although sometimes they are well-suited to women with petite busts who prefer a natural silhouette under snug-fitting clothes. Because they are designed to lift the breasts and push them together to make more defined cleavage, quarter-cup bras, despite their minimal material, do offer some support. Women who experience nipple irritation or prefer more coverage and support might consider demi-bras instead.