Finding the Right Nursing Bra

Finding a Nursing BraMy first visit to Mom’s Milk Boutique was to order nursing gear. I knew I needed different bras in my drawer as a non-nursing bra can hinder your breast if you lift it up and onto your breast during nursing. Nursing bras also often offer extra support and convenience during those nursing months.

For the best fit, consider contacting a lactation consultant and/or visit a local specialty lingerie shop and ask for a certified bra fitter. Your size may change during pregnancy, immediately after birth, and again a month or two after giving birth. Your needs may change as well as you become more active, return to work, or some other change in your routine. You might consider purchasing just a soft or highly adjustable bra or two to make it through those first few weeks. Later you can follow up with the purchase of more or styles not encouraged directly after birth, like underwire.

Think about what styles of bras will come in handy for you. A sleeping bra offers minimal support but extreme ease of use, especially for those first weeks and months. A soft cup is an all-around go-to; underwire offers additional support and stability for some. A nursing sports bra might prove helpful if you are very active. Tank tops are useful and comfortable, particularly if you love layering in cooler months or going minimal in warmer months. Last, if you anticipate you’ll pump very regularly, you may want a pumping bra to round out your options.

Also consider your personal preferences. After learning and getting comfortable with nursing, I found my preferred method for going out in public was a stretchy tank under another shirt. I pull the top shirt up and the tank down, providing me enough coverage and ease for my own personal comfort (and access for baby!). If you are more comfortable with more skin showing or if you’d prefer to nurse more under a cover, your ideal bra might deviate from mine.

If you love a cute, flirty, or sexy bra, consider brands like:

If you want a tank top, these brands are your friends:

If your mind goes straight to function and ease, consider:

If you are in need of significant support and extended sizing (DD/E+), look to:

  • Elomi
  • Elila
  • Panache
  • Freya
  • And some of the other brands mentioned above as well

If you need to watch your pennies, readily available options include:

  • Gillgan & O’Malley (Target)
  • Leading Lady and Spencer (JC Penny)
  • Loving Moments (Walmart)
  • Destination Motherhood and other Maternity stores
  • And scout out sales on some of the other awesome brands listed!

I personally found success with a combo of many of the listed above. I nabbed two Bravado Essential Nursing Tanks on sale and wore them almost every day for six months as well as throughout nursing both of my boys. I also scouted out some very inexpensive, light-support sleeping bras at Target. For out and about, I purchased two Elomi underwire bras. They were an investment, but my local lingerie store professionally fitted me and the bras offer fantastic comfort and support. Last, I purchased two non-nursing sports bra (Panache and Freya) as my cup size changed but did not convert them since I wore them for short amounts of time and never needed them in a nursing context.

Lynette Moran shares her life with her husband and two sons, ages 1 and 3 years. She has cloth diapered both since birth and enjoys all things eco-friendly and mindful living.

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