Britney Jean Spears (born December 2, 1981) is an American singer, songwriter, dancer, actress, former television music competition judge, and occasional author. Born in McComb, Mississippi, and raised in Kentwood, Louisiana, she performed acting roles in stage productions and television shows as a child before signing with Jive Records in 1997. Spears's first and second studio albums, ...Baby One More Time (1999) and Oops!... I Did It Again (2000), became international successes, with the former becoming the best-selling album by a teenage solo artist. Title tracks "...Baby One More Time" and "Oops!... I Did It Again" broke international sales records. In 2001, Spears released her third album, Britney, and played the starring role in the film Crossroads. She assumed creative control of her fourth album, In the Zone (2003), which yielded the worldwide success "Toxic".
In 2007, Spears's much-publicized personal struggles sent her career into hiatus. Her fifth record, Blackout, was released later that year, and spawned hits "Gimme More" and "Piece of Me". Her erratic behavior and hospitalizations continued through the following year, at which point she was placed under a still on-going conservatorship. Spears's sixth album, Circus (2008), included global chart-topping lead single "Womanizer". Its supporting tour The Circus Starring Britney Spears was the highest-grossing global concert tour in 2009. Later that October, "3" became Spears's third single to reach number one on the Billboard Hot 100. Her seventh album, Femme Fatale (2011), became her first to yield three top-ten singles in the United States: "Hold It Against Me", "Till the World Ends" and "I Wanna Go". In 2012, Spears was featured on will.i.am's single "Scream & Shout", which topped charts in over 24 countries. She also served as a judge during the second season of the American version of The X Factor. Spears's eighth studio album Britney Jean is scheduled to be released in December 2013, at which time she will also begin the two-year residency show Britney: Piece of Me at the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.
An underwire bra (also under wire bra, under-wire bra, or underwired bra) is a brassiere that utilizes a thin, semi-circular strip of rigid material fitted inside the brassiere fabric. The wire may be made of metal, plastic, or resin. It is sewn into the bra fabric and under each cup, from the center gore to under the wearer's armpit. The wire helps to lift, separate, shape, and support a woman's breasts. Many different brassiere designs incorporate an underwire, including shelf bras, demi bras, nursing bras, and bras built into other articles of clothing, such as tank tops, dresses and swimsuits.
The concept of an underwire can be traced to an 1893 patent that describes a breast supporting device using a rigid plate under the breasts for stability. The modern underwire bra was designed in the 1930s, and gained widespread popularity by the 1950s. As of 2005, underwire bras were the largest and fastest growing segment of the bra market. A bra without an underwire is a softcup bra.