Finding a Nursing Bra that’s Functional yet Affordable by Katie Brooker
So you’ve learned that you’re pregnant. This is one of the most exciting and daunting pieces of news that you will receive. On top of this exciting news about a new addition to your family is the fact that everything is going to change, and sometimes you will need to make allowances for those items that you’ve budgeted for. Sometimes there will be items that you would not have budgeted for. The list is massive and the day you think you’ve thought of everything – there’s always something else. So, if you are thinking of breastfeeding, here are some things to look out for in a nursing bra, to ensure you’re getting your money’s worth.
Should I get a cup-sized bra?
Your body changes a lot when you have a baby and your breasts change even more. They don’t just change steadily either, they can be one size one day and 2 cup sizes bigger the next. If you’re not sure what size you are and you really want to ensure that your bra is going to fit you across the stages when you are changing the most, then go for a bra isn’t cup sized. This way you can wear it when you are a number of different sizes.
If you really want your bra to last, then take care to wash it properly.
● Follow the care instructions
● Wash it in a wash bag
● Do up the hook and eyes
● Cool or cold wash is better
● Use minimal detergent and an ecological one – less harsh chemicals to ruin your fibres
● Don’t use a dryer
● Hang up in the shade or for a short amount of time in the sun
When you have a baby, your diaphragm / ribcage unlock and widens, this is to make sure that you and your organs all fit in your body – clever creatures aren’t we. This may mean that if your bra fits you in the cups, it may not fit you around your diaphragm. Take heed, this expansion is only temporary and is at its most extended when you are 7 – 9 months pregnant and for about 6 weeks afterwards.
If you are measuring yourself during any of these stages, then make sure to take off one size in the underband. This is only useful if the bra you are choosing has an extension hook and eye piece, so make sure you choose a smaller size in the band and wear it on the last hook. This way, your bra will fit you for much longer.
Why do I need a specific nursing bra?
If you are looking to breastfeed and still want to wear your bra afterwards, choose a bra that is stretchy enough that you can do the ‘pull aside’ method to feed your baby. This will need to a bra with a good (approx. 8 – 10% elastane) to ensure that you won’t be stretching out the garment. So, check the labels too. This way you can breastfeed and then continue to wear it afterwards.
Nursing bras are designed so that you can unlatch the clip discreetly and easily and then voila, your baby is able to feed. Look for a nursing bra that has an easy latch and one you’re able to use. If you are pregnant and have purchased your bra, then take some time to practise unlatching, I’m sure your partner won't mind.
Katie set out to create bras for fashionable, young nursing mom that were both cool and affordable, without losing their durability. She is the designer for Charley Maternity and understands what young moms need and more importantly, what they want.