How to Choose the Best Maternity Bras
Deciding when to invest in maternity bras is a matter of personal preference and comfort.
If your regular bras start feeling uncomfortable, there are a few key features that will help you to find the best maternity bras to get you through the pregnancy and beyond.
How to Choose the Best Maternity Bras
Check the fit of your current bras to determine when it’s time to buy maternity bras. You will probably notice your bras feeling tighter. If one or both of your breasts seem to be pushing out of the sides of the cups, or the bra leaves marks on your body, consider moving into a larger bra.
Ask for a professional fitter to measure you to determine your new size during pregnancy. Knowing the right size is the most important element of choosing the best maternity bra, as this ensures that your breasts are contained and supported, reducing overall discomfort sometimes caused by breast changes. You may need to buy larger bras as the pregnancy progresses, but you should buy the size that fits at the time of purchase for proper support.
Try on any maternity bra you consider instead of just buying a larger size of your current bra. Because your breasts change with pregnancy, you may find your current bra style no longer fits properly or supports you enough. When you try on a maternity bra, move around as you would during the day to see if the bra stays in place and provides support.
Choose a maternity bra with wide straps that don’t dig into your shoulders. Wide straps provide the best support for your growing breasts by spreading their weight out across a wider piece of material. Check the seams where the straps attach to the cups and band to ensure that everything is secure.
Explore different models of bras.
An underwire bra can provide excellent support, unless it feels uncomfortable to you. A sports-bra style may offer greater comfort because the flexible support bands won’t dig into your breasts.
Choose nursing bras if you intend to breastfeed your baby. Nursing bras can be used during pregnancy as well as after the baby is born, according to the Ask Dr. Sears website. Well-designed nursing bras provide excellent support, and they have flaps that open to allow for easier breastfeeding; if your goal is to stay within a tight budget, nursing bras are your best options.
Test out maternity sleep bras, which are designed to comfortably support your breasts at night. Many pregnant women find that wearing a bra at night makes it easier to sleep comfortably. The best sleep bra has a flexible, soft band that won’t restrict your movement while you sleep. You can also find nursing bras that are designed for sleep.
Compare the look of the bras you’re considering. You don’t have to give up style for the sake of comfort and support during pregnancy. Many sexier bra options for pregnant and nursing women are available. The best maternity bra boosts your confidence with a flattering, attractive style, in addition to supporting your breasts.
Identify the fabric of the bra.
The best maternity bras are those made of cotton, according to the Ask Dr. Sears website, because cotton allows the skin to breathe. This reduces the chance of bacteria-causing moisture getting trapped in the cup near your nipples. This is especially important when you start nursing and may have breast milk leaking from your nipples.
Buy a size that fits you now. When you put on your bra, the cups should cover a large enough area of your breasts that you feel secure and supported, and there should be no gaps between your breasts and the cups.
The Ask Dr. Sears website recommends choosing a size that fits when fastened on the second row of hooks. The positioning of the hooks relates to the width of your back, not to your cup size. As your pregnancy progresses, you may experience back weight gain, which could affect the bra’s band size.
If you have to fasten the bra on the last set of hooks now, you don’t leave yourself any room to grow. Another point to check is where the band sits when you are wearing the bra. If the band sits level all the way around your back, you probably have a well-fitting band, according to “Parents” magazine.
Tips & Warnings
- Buy at least three maternity bras that fit well. This allows you to change your bras frequently and have backups when one is in the laundry.
- Invest in quality maternity bras, especially if you buy nursing bras now. It’s tempting to save money, since you may only wear them for a short time, but cheap bras often fall short in support and comfort. The best maternity bras require an investment upfront and pay you back with months of support as your breasts change with pregnancy.