We have come up with a list of common mistakes women make when purchasing their maternity and nursing bras. We hope this list will be helpful and that you will be able to avoid some of the common pitfalls.
A huge percentage of women are wearing the wrong sized bra. It is our recommendation to get correctly fitted at a Lingerie boutique or Department store. A bra that is the incorrect size will not properly support you and could result in long-term sagging and or ligament damage.
Sacrificing quality for price
Invest in bras that are made from quality fabrics and trims. It is noticeable at first glance if a product is well made. The elastics should be firm and should not have too much give. A good quality bra will often have multiple layers and feel substantial to touch.
Cheaper bras are made from inferior fabrics and trims. These bras will often loose their elasticity and ability to support after a few washes. Purchasing quality should mean that you would feel more comfortable and supported for longer.
Purchasing the incorrect style for your body shape
Not all bra styles will suit every woman. Our bodies are all different including our breast shape and form.
– Plunge bras are wonderful for smaller busted woman who tend to be heavier at the base of the breast.
– Balcony styled bras is good for women who have a rounder more even weight distribution in the breast.
– Full coverage bras are ideal for women who are larger in the bust. The full cups are designed to cover over the entire breast area resulting in more support and a secure fit.
The back band is too big
This is one of the most common mistakes. The back band of the bra should fit firmly and parallel across the back. It should not rid up or feel too loose. Should the back band start to feel loose when done up on the tightest hook. It is time to throw it away and purchase a new one.
The back band provides the wearer with 80% of the bras support.
Not getting fitted
Going and getting fitted at your local bra boutique or Department store is worth the effort. A bra fitter is professionally trained and will access your body type/shape and provide you with options they have available.
Buying bras can often be a frustrating experience. Going to professionals cuts out all of the frustration leaving the customer happy and supported.
If you wish to purchase online, check out our tips on how to buy nursing bras online.
Buying a bigger cup size to allow for fluctuation
Pregnant and breastfeeding women should purchase bras that fit them correctly. Do not buy bras that have extra room in the cups. A bra that does has extra room in the cups will not correctly support or sit nicely under clothing.
Pregnant and nursing mothers should purchase bras that have top cups stretch. This will allow for fluctuation and small amounts of breast growth.
Buying too few bras
Your body goes through many changes during the 9 months of pregnancy and immediately post birth. For the first 3 months of pregnancy and 6 weeks post birth purchase a supportive seamless bra. This bra will stretch and change with your changing breast shape.
Once the transitional period is over and your breasts and body have stabilised you can then wear a non-wired or flexible wired bra that is specifically designed to support cup sizes.
We suggest you purchase at least 6 bras- 3 for those transitional periods and 3 more for periods of stabilisation.
One for wear, one for the wash and one for your drawer.
Wearing the same bra through out multiple pregnancy
A good maternity or nursing bras will only usually last approx. 6-9 months. By this time multiple washes and heavy wear will begin to loosen the elastics and the fabrication will start to loose their ability to support.
Wearing the same bra throughout multiple pregnancies is not a good idea on two fronts.
– You may not be the same size from one pregnancy to the next
– The bra will have lost its’ ability to support which can result in discomfort, premature sagging and or ligament damage.
Purchasing the incorrect band size
Most women will purchase their first nursing bras at approx. 9 months of pregnancy.
When buying your nursing bras insure the back band is fastened to the loosest hook.
Once you have had your baby you rib cage will contract. You can then start to tighten the back band as required by fastening the bra on a tighter hook.
Purchasing a bigger size when your actual size is not available
I think we are all guilty of doing this. We find a bra will love the look and feel of but the store does not have our size.
The reality is that the bigger size will actually not support you effectively nor will it be comfortable.
Wearing wired bras during periods of rapid fluctuation
It is our recommendation to wear a seamless bra during those transitional periods when the breasts are experiencing rapid growth. A wired bra worn during this time can be extremely uncomfortable and can cause conditions such as mastitis due to compression and the bra not fitting correctly.
A flexible wired bra can be worn from 4-9 moths of pregnancy and at 4 weeks post birth continued once the body learns to regulate it’s milk production.
Compressing the breasts
Your breasts will often feel extremely sensitive during this time. Purchase bras that separate and support your breasts. Not only will the bras feel extremely comfortable but will appear flattering too.
TIP: You should be able to push the centre front of the bra comfortably between your breasts. If you are unable to do this, the bra is not effectively separating your breasts.
Some brands bras are designed to push up and compress the breasts creating what is commonly known as a mono-boob. This is not only uncomfortable but can cause conditions such as mastitis during periods of fluctuation.
Synthetic fabrics on the skin
Look for maternity and/or nursing bras that have cotton lining and cotton slings.
The cotton will not only feel comfortable but will also help to keep you cool.
Synthetic fabrics do not breath and can cause irritation and sweating.