Many women are tasked with the question of whether or not they need a Nursing Bra after giving birth. Hourglass Lingerie is here to tell you that we think you do! Nursing bras serve so many critical purposes beyond just assisting in breastfeeding. Allow us to teach you everything we know!
What is a Nursing Bra
Your Breasts After Pregnancy
All moms will experience “engorgement” once their baby is born. This phase is when the milk is coming into the breasts at the highest volume. This is also the point where the mom’s breasts will be the largest.
At this point, it is incredibly important to treat the breasts gently. If the breasts are restricted from narrow wires, it could negatively impact the flow and amount of milk being produced.
Even if not breastfeeding, restricting the breasts could cause issues for the mom down the road such as clogged milk ducts or mastitis. This is why we recommend Nursing Bras to all moms, even if not breastfeeding!
What is a Nursing Bra?
What differentiates a Nursing Bra from a classic maternity bra is its ability for the cups to open up to allow easy access for breastfeeding.
The best nursing bras are made of soft and stretchy material. Either clip, fold, or pull aside for easy one-handed access to the breast for nursing.
Most nursing bras also have spaces for removable breast pads. Breast pads absorb leaking milk between feedings to prevent it from getting onto the mother’s clothes.
Even if not breastfeeding, properly fitted nursing bras are still critical to a mom post-partum as they will help elevate back, neck, and shoulder tension from the new growth in the breasts.
Simply put, nursing bras are much more than just a simple bra without underwire.
Buying a Nursing Bra
Most women wait until about the third trimester to start shopping for nursing bras. This is because the breast size should stabilize for the most part at this point.
The biggest thing to consider while shopping is that once the milk comes in and the breasts become engorged right after birth, the breasts will likely go up in one cup size or more.
The bra should be made of a material that can stretch with the breast as they fluctuate in size throughout the day. Anything restrictive, irritating, or itchy should be avoided!
The final consideration to make is that for a little after the birth, the mom’s bra’s function is solely for comfort and easy access. However, as time goes on mom may want a more structured and sleek nursing bra for going out.
Hourglass Lingerie offers many options for both!
Types of Nursing Bras
There are two main categories that nursing bras fall into: cross-over and drop-down.
The cross-over design is ideal for sleeping and relaxing around the house whereas the drop-down design is better for feeding during the day or in public with privacy in mind. Both are made to allow for easy and discrete feeding of the new little one!
Nursing Bra Fitting
Fitting a nursing bra can be one of the most difficult tasks simply because the mom’s breasts can fluctuate 1-3 cup sizes in one day! The most important thing to keep in mind is that nursing bras are made of a stretchy material specifically for this purpose.
It is not necessary to buy a nursing bra that has too big cups to try and accommodate the largest breast size, as you would for a normal bra. The best time of day to measure yourself is midday before a feeding when the breasts are fullest.
Our rule of thumb for sizing nursing bras is to take the maternity bra size and add one cup size and subtract one band size. For example, a 34D maternity bra would become a 32DD nursing bra.
Unlike a maternity bra, these should fit best initially at the loosest setting so you can gradually tighten it as your body returns back to its normal size.
All of this can be confusing and time-consuming with a new little one running around, so allow us at Hourglass Lingerie to help! Call and schedule a personalized, one-on-one nursing bra fitting with our bra experts to ensure the best fit the first try!
Bra Style Guide
Now that you've learned everything you could ever possibly want to know about Nursing Bras, why not learn some more? Our Bra Style Guide is the perfect collection of guides to every bra style on the market. Try something new, explore an old favorite, or step out of your comfort zone!