Shopping for maternity clothes is a rite of passage for many expecting moms: the cute tops to show off the baby bump, special pants that won’t fall down, and comfortable sleepwear to keep cool when the hot flashes kick in.
But moms-to-be often forget to add new bras to their maternity wardrobe.
You may have noticed changes in your breasts before you knew you were pregnant, and you’ll likely experience size fluctuations throughout pregnancy. While it’s tempting to save money by making do with the bras you already have, a new bra can help you feel amazing and comfortable.
Maternity bras feature breathable fabrics and just the right amount of stretch to allow for fluctuations in size. Sleep-style nursing bras also provide just the right amount of support at night, without making you feel constricted.
With materials like bamboo and cotton, many maternity bras feature fabrics that allow your nipples to breathe. In addition, they often have wide straps to offer more comfortable support and reduce or eliminate back, neck, and shoulder pain.
Finding the Right Size
Each brand has its own bra fitting guide or size calculator. So even if you have referenced another website for your measurements, you should always check the manufacturer’s website to make sure you have the most accurate estimate.
A soft tape measure works best, but if you don’t have one, you can use a ribbon, scarf, sash, or belt and a ruler. Measure directly under your breasts, holding the measure snug but not tight, to determine your band size. When necessary, round up to the nearest even number. Take a second measurement around the fullest part of your breasts to determine cup size.
Finding the Right Fit
Your measurements and a bra size guide will help you get an idea of what to order, but the true test comes once you’ve got the bra home and are trying it on. When you put your new bra on, it should feel AMAZING! The band should be low and even under the breasts. Try it on sitting down. Stand up and see how much support you receive. A well-fitting bra shouldn’t slide.
A lot of women make the mistake of buying a bra with too much room in the cup. Most nursing bras are made from stretchy material to accommodate fluctuations in size, so you won’t need to go up several cup sizes, as you would if you were wearing a regular bra.
You know your bra is too big if:
- Your breasts slip out the bottom of the band.
- The band rides up in back.
- The cups wrinkle.
- The straps slip off the shoulders on the tightest setting.
Your bra is too small if:
- There are mounds of breast poking out the sides.
- The bra “pokes” you anywhere.
- The center rides up and doesn’t lay flat.
Nothing should poke you; nothing should slip around. You shouldn’t have to pull and tug at it all day just to feel comfortable. If your bra isn’t just right, keep looking until you find one that makes you feel amazing. It can be so easy to put up with the wrong bra, but your body will thank you for taking the time to pick the right bra. You owe it to yourself.