Most women experience breast changes during pregnancy, and in Customer Care, we’re often asked which maternity bras are best for each trimester of pregnancy. Though every woman -- and every pregnancy -- is different, we thought it would be helpful to share the maternity and nursing bras our customers and team especially love during each trimester.
Below are our tried-and-true recommendations to help you find the best bra for each trimester.
First Trimester Maternity Bras
The first trimester is the beginning of your magical pregnancy journey, though it may not always feel magical. This period is often characterized by bloating, morning sickness, and exhaustion -- after all, it takes a lot of energy to grow a human!
Though many people continue wearing their pre-pregnancy bras during the first trimester, if you’re feeling tired, sensitive (emotionally and physically -- thanks, pregnancy hormones!), or nauseous, you’ll want a bra that will bring you comfort and support. We have some great options for you!
The French Terry Racerback Bra has wide straps and provides light support. It’s made of a fabric blend that stretches easily -- so you won’t have to deal with restrictive bras, which can cause increased breast tenderness. The French Terry is also a great sleeping bra (and it’s perfect for holding nursing pads to prevent leaks postpartum).
The Organic Cotton Bra has scoopback coverage and a more structured fabric. For ultimate comfort and light support during the night (or even during the day), these sleep bras can help you get the rest you need.
The stretchy cups of the full coverage Simply Sublime® Bra accommodate growing breasts and changing bra sizes. The removable padding gives your bust a nice shape, and the buttery-soft fabric feels sublime on increasingly tender breasts (hence the name!).
Due to its incredible stretch, this soft cup bra works great throughout pregnancy and postpartum, and the hook and eye closure helps you get the perfect fit. (Bonus: all of our hook and eye bras come with bra extenders!) The perfect everyday bra!
Second Trimester Maternity Bras
Many women find the second trimester to be the most enjoyable. Nausea and pregnancy exhaustion often subside, and you may start to feel more comfortable in your growing body. During this period, your breasts may become fuller as breast tissue grows, and most women find their baby bump really starts to show, so comfortable, stretchy maternity clothes become a must.
If your energy increases during the second trimester, the moisture wicking Sublime® Nursing Sports Bra offers support while you stay active, whether that means workout classes like prenatal yoga (with your doctor’s okay), walks in the neighborhood, or simply growing your baby!
It has removable padding, provides moderate support, and has a racerback, just like your trusted pre-pregnancy sports bras. With easy-to-use nursing clips, this bra works through pregnancy and breastfeeding.
If you’re looking for a bra with a little something extra to help you feel like yourself, our Sublime® Lace Racerback Bra features super soft, stretchy fabric with a beautiful lace detail in the back. This pregnancy bra has removable padding and a stretchy chest band that will move with you as you grow.
Third Trimester Maternity Bras
During the home stretch, you may find your joints loosening and your hips and rib cage expanding. Underwire bras may start to feel particularly constricting as your breasts grow. This pregnancy breast growth makes finding comfort more and more elusive for many during the third trimester, but we’ve got just the bra for that!
The Sublime® Adjustable Crossover Nursing & Lounge Bra is the perfect solution for third-trimester discomfort! The soft, supple fabric feels like a dream on your sensitive skin, and it provides light support while simultaneously making you feel like you’re barely wearing a bra.
The shoulder straps are adjustable, and the padding is easy to remove. Plus, the pull-aside nursing access means it'll easily transition to your post-birth needs.
While you're only pregnant for three trimesters, there is such a thing as the fourth trimester! This is what the three-month period after giving birth is commonly referred to in order to emphasize the enormous changes your newborn undergoes to adjust to life outside of the womb.
It’s a period of great transition for you too, not only in your hormones, your body, and your overall life, but also in your breast size, especially when your milk comes in / your milk supply starts increasing (breasts produce colostrum, then transitional milk, then mature milk).
To give you the most comfort and help you avoid breast pain and clogged ducts after your baby arrives, a bra with stretchy cups (and easy nursing access) is a must! The Sublime Bras and Tanks -- as well as lounge bras like the French Terry and Organic Cotton Bras -- stretch to accommodate the changes in size that happen from day to day and feeding to feeding.
The Sublime® Maternity & Nursing Tank provides the same comfort as the Sublime Nursing Bra, with added coverage for your belly during the postpartum period (and beyond!); the tank has just enough support to help you feel “pulled back together” after giving birth. Paired with our ultra high rise maternity leggings, you’ll find yourself covered and supported post-birth. The easy drop cup also makes it a great choice to sleep in!
If you’ll be returning to work, exclusively pumping, or looking for an easier way to build your freezer stash of breast milk, the Sublime® Hands-Free Pumping & Nursing Bra is a must -- almost as essential as your breast pump!
This is the postpartum unicorn that allows you to pump, nurse, or pump and nurse simultaneously -- all without changing your bra. It’s made of the same soft, stretchy, and extra supportive fabric as the other bras and tanks in our Sublime line, so you’ll get the support that you need in a sublimely soft fabric. We're adding more and more pumping bras to our catalog; check out the selection now!
The wire free Signature Sublime® Contour Nursing & Maternity Bra offers molded cups with fixed padding for a smooth and polished look under your clothes. The deep V cut works with tank tops, scoop neck nursing tees, and maternity dresses.
Stretchy in the chest band, the Contour has foam cups that provide the same clean, sleek look you’re used to without uncomfortable underwire, which can constrict milk ducts. (We also love the Everly Wireless Bra, the non-nursing version of the Contour, from our sister brand, Davy Piper.)
And don't forget breast pads like our Organic Bamboo Nursing Pads -- you won't want breast milk leaks waking you up at night as your milk production regulates!
Super Comfortable Maternity Bras and Nursing Clothes Are Key!
The Kindred Bravely product line has been created with each stage of pregnancy (and easy access for nursing) in mind. We hope this guide to the best maternity bras for each trimester helps you find a supportive bra you'll always reach for!
Whether you're looking for a seamless nursing bra, the best pumping bra, or the perfect bra fit, our bras are designed to provide maximum comfort while you go through the amazing work of growing and nourishing a child.
Always measure before you order and order as close as possible to the time you expect to wear your garments (you may go through a few cup and band sizes during your motherhood journey).
For more information on sizing, check out this blog or take our fit quiz. If you have any other questions, reach out to our Customer Care Team anytime; we’ll be happy to provide customized bra fit and style advice to help you find the best pregnancy bra.