Pregnancy may have brought you to one of those moments where you wondered if your breasts will ever stop expanding. And, you know you arrived at that point when choosing the right bra size became taxing. Here is a light guide to support you through the questions that might often cross your mind when buying a maternity bra.
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1. When To Buy A Maternity Bra?
Breasts become more tender and fuller after a few months into the pregnancy. Moms will notice these changes from the 12th week. From their experience, many mothers suggest buying nursing bras in the last week of pregnancy to extend their usage to the nursing period. Don’t be in a hurry to buy a maternity bra—your breasts still increase in size after delivery and during nursing. By the time you reach the end of your pregnancy, you will have to replace that lingerie with a larger bra.
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2. How Is It Different From A Regular Bra?
Maternity bras are more comfortable and provide accessibility when it comes to breastfeeding. They have adjustable hooks that give more room when your breasts become fuller. While regular bands have 2-3 hooks to alter the band size, maternity bras have 4 hook-eye-fastenings, with broader shoulder straps. It is usually the cup that differs according to the type of bra—few open and close for easy breastfeeding while others have snaps between the breasts to fold the fabric outward towards the armpit. Cotton is the preferable fabric for maternity bras because it dries quickly and helps the skin breathe.
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3. How To Find The Right Size?
There is no right size for maternity bras. Your pregnancy will keep altering your breasts. Until breastfeeding, the bra size may increase by 2 band sizes and 4 cup sizes— it can differ throughout the nursing period. Most women prefer to buy maternity bras that are 2 sizes bigger than the usual, but one can only determine the correct size until the milk has settled in and your breasts are ready for nursing. While choosing the bra, make sure it fits you comfortably in the first hook, so that you can adjust it later. It is best to get your bust size measured in a lingerie store when you are buying one.
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4. What Are The Different Types Of Maternity Bras Available?
The styles and types of maternity bra depend upon their usage.
Feeding Bras: Shop for these bras when you have crossed the 36th-week mark. Fabric flap and non-slip shoulder straps will assist you while nursing—the bra stays in place when breastfeeding. Breathable cotton fabric and enclosed inner cup seams provide extra comfort.
Sleep Bras: Nursing while sleeping gets easier wearing these bras. Sleep bras keep the breast pad in place during the night when you are nursing.
Sports Bra: Yes, they have a pregnancy and nursing collection too! Maternity sports bras provide support when you are going for a workout or yoga session—it has broader and padded straps, seam-less design and comfortable fabric.
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5. How Many Bras To Purchase?
Buy a minimum of 3 bras during pregnancy and let your budget decide the rest. Wear 1 for a day or two and then switch to another when you put it for a wash. If you are tight on budget, consider borrowing one from a friend or sister who has a similar size. If you still want to wait before purchasing a new bra, buy a bra-extender—an easy and cheap hack to keep up with your bra size until your breasts start burgeoning.
Maternity bras should be comfortable. Avoid underwires—they can clog your milk ducts and may irritate you. Look for bras that are neither too loose to leave your breasts sagging nor too tight to suffocate you. Before buying one, keep in mind that your bra size is likely to increase and you may need to use nursing pads as well.