You expected your belly to grow tremendously when you found out you were pregnant. You may have been less prepared to find out that for most women, everything does. Your butt, thighs, hips, breasts — all of it grows.
Maternity bras seem like one of those silly, unnecessary pregnancy purchases at first. After all, you already have bras. Then as you begin to grow throughout your pregnancy and those cute little pre-pregnancy bras don’t fit any longer, you find yourself rethinking everything. These maternity bras offer a bit more support and comfort to accommodate your body’s changes.
Do I really need to use maternity bras?
If your current bras feel comfortable and supportive enough for your chest, you probably don’t need special new ones. If, on the other hand, you don’t feel satisfied with the fit or support, considering using different bras during your pregnancy is a good idea.
Good bras for pregnancy are made from gentler, more breathable fabric and have stronger supports for your breasts. At this time, your body is building the tissue that will produce milk for your baby. That’s awesome! But that tissue also weighs more, causing them to exert more pressure on your back. Experts say you should use a maternity bra after your first trimester. The fit and shape of prenatal bras mold better to the pregnant body.
Are there any benefits?
Usually, when we talk about bras, we hear a lot about “support.” Support for what? Well, the ladies, of course, but do they do anything else for us?
Well-fitted pregnancy bras offer more than just a lift for your breasts. They improve posture, which will save your life when the inevitable prenatal back pain strikes. The more you bend, the worse it gets. Keeping your chest correctly aligned with your back reduces stooping or over correcting by leaning too far backwards.
Using the right pregnancy lingerie will also save you some money because it’ll last longer. The pretty materials we usually gravitate towards in our bras before pregnancy just aren’t designed to stand up to the weight and growth of your chest during pregnancy. The elastic (if it has any) is likely to wear out much more quickly.
What should I look for?
First, you absolutely must know your size. Finding your cup and band size is really simple with a measuring tape. You’ll measure underneath your breasts to see the band size and directly across the fullest part of them to get your cup size. Finding a size chart online will tell you which cup number corresponds to the number of inches to your bust size.
After finding the right size, you need to think about what you need from your bra for your comfort. Thicker straps, if your chest is larger, can help the band do its job more easily, preventing early wear. On the other end of the spectrum, if you’re petite, bras with extra-wide bands and straps may prove more uncomfortable.
No matter your body shape or size, when you purchase your new bras, you need to choose a band size that fastens on the highest hook. This will buy you time by giving room for adjusting outwards as your pregnancy progresses.
Can I just use nursing bras?
Good news, thrift mamas: you can use nursing bras as well during pregnancy, as long as they meet the same requirements as maternity bras. Most of them will because your breasts are still large and tender while breastfeeding. Lingerie makers take this into account when designing the straps and materials used in nursing bras. All the bras below do double duty as nursing bras.
If you’re stocking up on nursing covers, you’ve probably come across bamboo rayon. It is used to make the most sumptuously soft muslin blankets. Kindred Bravely has tapped into all that lovely softness to make a very comfortable line of bras for sleeping. The light stretch accommodates changing breast sizes throughout pregnancy and your nursing months.
Six muted, pretty colors complement your pyjamas nicely. Not losing yourself in the temptation for baggy sweats and your husband’s t-shirts can help you feel healthy and pretty during this time when you’re sacrificing your body for your sweet baby. Kindred Bravely’s bras hit the sweet spot of functional comfort and attractiveness.
The size ranges from small to very busty women which is a blessing. Even ladies with unusual combinations like a small band size with a large cup size can find a good fit. Larger sizes have additional support to compensate for the increased weight they need to carry.
- Ultra light, breathable bamboo rayon and spandex fabric blend
- Low fuss care, machine washable
- Some women have found that their bras have stretched throughout the day
These bras are the quintessential prenatal and nursing bras. Bravado Designs knows what it takes to make pregnant ladies tick. Check off easy nursing access to allow one style for all your needs, soft, comfy fabric, and sturdy support straps.
If you have a large chest, you’ll still be able to find a bra that fits. Bravado Designs spent extra time and effort engineering their Original Full Cup line of bras to rise to the demands put on them by busty women.
The bras from Bravado Designs are all designed by women. Women who have had their own babies and know what they wished they could have had during their pregnancies and while nursing. They put serious thought into widening the band and smoothing out the seams for your comfort at a time when you’re miserably uncomfortable.
- Full coverage even for large chests.
- Comfortable enough for lounging around.
- Support is good even during exercise.
- Finding the right fit may take some work.
- No lining in the cups.
Sunzel knows you’re a busy mama-to-be and has considered that by offering 1, 2, and 3 packs in their basic colors. Some of the other, prettier colors have a 2 pack. Most of them, though, are ordered one at a time.
Light, cozy cotton is the main fabric used to make these sleeper bras. The last thing you want when you’re trying to sleep (ha! Sleeping while pregnant. Good one.) is some uncomfortable trim digging into your chest. There is still enough spandex to hug your body and offer support. Win-win.
Wide shoulder straps help defeat the nemesis of your breasts – gravity. No back closure, no snaps to release while nursing, no fuss. Sunzel truly created a product to help maximize comfort for pregnant and nursing women.
- Natural, breathable materials used as much as possible.
- Several cute colors are available.
- Fits from size Small to XXXL.
- Finding a match between band and cup size can be difficult.
The folks behind the Hofish pregnancy bras have done their best to make sure these bras cover all your biggest insecurities. The band is designed to be extra wide to help smooth any bulge around your armpit and along the top of your belly. The cups provide good coverage on the sides. They even throw in matching bra extenders to make sure your fit stays snug in late pregnancy.
The whole premise of Hofish’s take on pregnancy bras is to use light compression to support the chest and smooth problem areas. Unfortunately, to achieve that compression, the fabric is entirely synthetic. If, like some women, you’re experiencing extra sensitive skin during your pregnancy, you may not find the Hofish lingerie to be a good match for you. Synthetic materials don’t allow your skin to breathe as easily as natural ones and aren’t as moisture-wicking.
- Good, comfy fit.
- Many users find them durable and tough.
- Removable padded insert allows more front coverage.
- Fiddling with the fit and adjusting the straps is common.
- Extra-large breasts will likely need more support.
Wired bras can be uncomfortable during pregnancy, adding just one more thing digging into your ribs with the baby heels. Suekaphin seems to genuinely try to consider mom’s comfort needs.
The 100% synthetic fiber blend of the material is not really friendly for the mama hoping for a natural product. If you don’t mind, though, the spandex and nylon combination will certainly hug your chest and smooth out anything you don’t want to be seen. There is ample support for the gals with these bras.
- Smoothing sides for any bulges or rolls.
- Plenty of support to ease pressure on your back.
- Very kind, responsive customer service.
- Quality control can be a problem.
- The sizes run small.
The attention to quality is what allowed Kindred Bravely to take the win with their pregnancy bras. The soft, luxurious bamboo rayon is an incredible choice for sleepwear. Pregnancy is hard. You may as well be comfortable.
The support from the band and the straps are enough to help your back out and lessen stooping. The racerback design pulls your posture to the appropriate stance with minimal work on your part. Even the ladies get a gentle pull upwards. This can be all the difference when you’re pregnant between feeling sexy and feeling like a heaping wreck.
The other bras all offer their own benefits if you want to try one besides the Kindred Bravely line. However, as the best all-around bras for pregnancy and nursing support, it’s difficult not to recommend the winner. Ease of use, beauty, comfort, and quality are all rolled into one little package.