A bra is a big deal. Most of us remember getting our first one. We have favourites; the best one for running, the perfect one for that white t-shirt or summer dress, the sexy ones… Most of us have a few bras that we wear a lot, sometimes until they fall apart.
Once I became a mother I realized that all of these bras were great for breasts that didn’t do anything. But now that you are a new mom or mom to be, you know that the breasts you’re walking around with now are ever changing, dynamic, and entirely different than before.
So how do you find the right nursing bra for you? First, simply look at three things: Fit, Function and Fashion. These three simple things will help you choose the right bra for you. Then look at what stage you are in your pregnancy or nursing journey to decided what you should be looking for.
Fit is probably the most important. When you are nursing, your breast size can fluctuate many times during the day. Remember this when you are trying on bras; consider when you last fed your baby and also leave room for a nursing pad.
Fit should always be comfortable and supportive. Today nursing bras are made in the highest quality fabrics to provide you with the quality of fit that you need.
How is a nursing bra different from a regular bra? (a question I am asked A LOT by the way) Well, a nursing bra does something! Along with all of the things a regular bra does, it has some unique functions related to helping make breastfeeding easier and more comfortable.
Your nursing bra will be used countless times. Strong clips, easy to adjust straps are critical. Some nursing bras open from snaps or zippers at the centre or below the cup, while others open at the top of the cup.
There are soft cup bras designed to be lifted above the breasts or pushed to the side. The choice is yours, since all openings have their benefits and offer variety.
More important than where the opening is found, is the ease of opening and the quality and strength of the clip, zipper, or snap. The bra will be opened many many times—and it is very important that you be able to unfasten and fasten the bra easily, since you will often be doing so with your hands full.
Lastly, fashion cannot be overlooked. You can have a beautiful nursing bra! There are many options for fashion. Fabric types, color, and bras that have lace and other accents are wonderful. Have a look around and find a bunch of bras that are beautiful, comfortable and make you feel great.
Now that you know what to look for, you probably have one more important question, “When should I buy my first nursing bras?” There are a few times when you may be looking at choosing a bra.
In early to mid pregnancy you may find that your pre-pregnancy bras are now too tight. A nursing bra can be a good choice now, since you can find a better fit and may also be able to get use out of the bra later when you are breastfeeding.
Ideally, you will be fit for your first nursing bras during the final part of pregnancy— around 38 weeks. At this point, the band size will be accurate and we recommend going up at least one full cup size for when your milk comes in. For pregnancy and early nursing, focus on comfort and ease above all. Ideally, you should have at least two non-underwire nursing bras that are washer and dryer safe. You may also be a mom who is already breastfeeding an infant or has a baby some weeks, months, or years into breastfeeding. At this point, you can find bras for everyday or for a special occasion, for nighttime or even for fitness.
I promise you, that if you time your purchase right and look for a bra with the best fit, function and fashion for you, that you will LOVE your nursing bras. Love them to pieces, until your babies have grown into children and your nursing days have passed.
Alison Kramer is a mom to three little ones and owner of Nummies. Please visit www.nummies.com for beautiful nursing bras and to read Alison’s blog.