The Best Bras for Every Stage of Pregnancy & Postpartum
Your boobs deserve ample support during pregnancy and nursing. They’re working overtime for baby and go through a lot of changes throughout the journey. A proper fitting bra will relieve breast discomfort; provide support to prevent sagging; and help to alleviate back and neck pain. Not sure where to start? These are the best bra styles every mother needs from bump to baby and beyond.
During the first trimester, you are definitely starting to get fuller and are likely also experiencing tenderness – usually one of the first signs of pregnancy! While your bra size may not have increased quite yet, now is a great time to measure yourself. Most women wear the wrong size bra anyway and you could be worsening any discomfort if you’re not getting the proper support.
The Best Bras for the First Trimester:
For sore, tender breasts, the Wrap Sleep Bra is an absolute must-have. You will definitely want this maternity sleep bra to keep yourself supported and comfortable all night long. It’s also the perfect style for lounging around at home. We recommend getting at least two Sleep Bras, so you always have one to wear.
If breast tenderness is making your underwire bras feel like torture devices, we recommend starting your collection of Seamless Maternity Bras. This grow-with-you style has no underwire and is soft and stretchy. For a pull-over option, try the Rib Knit Seamless.
Seamless Clip Down Maternity and Nursing Bralette, $20
What’s Happening to Your Breasts:
During your second trimester, you will usually notice the largest increase in your bust size! On average, you can expect an increase of two cup sizes and one band size as your ribcage begins to expand to make room for your growing bump. If you haven’t needed a new bra yet, now is the time.
The Best Bras for the Second Trimester:
Though your boobs may not be as tender as they were in those earlier days of pregnancy, having some extra support while you sleep is key. The Wrap Sleep Bra will keep your breast tissue – and back – supported, and it’s completely hardware-free design will keep you comfortable.
These grow-with-you Seamless Maternity Bras offer the perfect amount of support, lift, and comfort all pregnancy long. The flexible fit means it will comfortably fit you even as your ribcage and bust continue to expand.
Maternity leave hasn’t started yet – so you’re probably going to want some structured bras to wear to work. Our Full Coverage Underwire Maternity Bra smooths and contours and will continue to support you into the 3rd trimester and beyond with its four rows of back hooks.
Fit Tip! Your bra should fit comfortably on one of the tightest hooks, so that you can loosen the bra into your third trimester as your ribcage begins to expand.
During your third trimester, the bras you bought during your second trimester should still fit, but you will probably need to move to a looser hook as your bust and ribcage continue to expand. That baby is getting bigger and bigger! Comfort is the name of the game by the end of pregnancy since little feet may be digging into your ribcage, making bras – and just breathing or eating – uncomfortable.
The Best Bras for the Third Trimester:
With the discomfort you may be feeling simply from being VERY pregnant, the Maternity Sleep Bra will be your go-to bra for lounging at home, napping on the couch, or Netflix binging. Soft and free of all hardware, it offers light support without adding any additional pressure of an underwire.
Even as your bust and ribcage continue to expand during the third trimester, your Seamless Maternity Bras should still be feeling comfortable and supportive as they are meant to fit across multiple sizes. The Rib Knit Seamless Maternity is a great choice for optimum comfort, as it offers 360-degree support in a comfortable pull-over design.
Those first hours, days and weeks after baby is born, there is A LOT going on with your body. It is working overtime keeping up with baby’s demands. Your boobs can take on different shapes and sizes by the hour as your milk comes in, your baby cluster feeds, and you figure out this whole breastfeeding thing. Comfortable nursing bras and tops are absolutely essential.
The Best Bras for Those Early Weeks with Baby
When you finally get a moment to sleep – your boobs are still hard at work. Leaks are bound to happen. Wearing a Nursing Sleep Bra will keep nursing pads in place and provide light support all night long. Simply pullover to nurse whenever baby is hungry.
You know who loves a newborn? All your family and friends. Houseguests are a given during this exciting (and hectic!) time. When you absolutely must put a bra on, make it a Seamless Nursing Bra. Its fit flexibility will keep you supported and comfortable through all your size fluctuations. Added bonus: its straps clip-down for easy nursing.
Okay, so this isn’t technically a bra, but it’s a nursing must-have. This simple but essential nursing cami, with built-in shelf bra and clip down straps, provides added support when worn with a bra, or light support when worn alone. Layer it under everything to make any outfit nursing friendly.
You never know when you are going to need to start pumping. If your baby has a hard time latching, you might need to pull the pump out ASAP. Having the right bra makes pumping so much easier. If you have a traditional breast pump with flanges, the Hands Free Nursing & Pumping Bra is a lifesaver – just use the provided slots and do your thing. You can even pump on one side, while nursing on the other. If you have a wearable pump, like the Elvie or Willow, try the 2-in-1 Nursing & Pumping Bra, made specifically to hold these pumps in place with the perfect amount of pressure to maximize each pumping session.
After your first few weeks with baby, your milk supply will begin to stabilize, and you can expect less drastic changes in size fluctuations. Around 12 weeks postpartum is when we recommend you remeasure yourself for new bras.
The Best Bras for Fourth Trimester & Postpartum Nursing
Nighttime feeds are still on the schedule, and leaks are still bound to happen. Wearing a Nursing Sleep Bra and having nursing pads on hand is still a must.
For those long days on the couch nursing baby, a Seamless Nursing Bra, like this Rib Knit Seamless Nursing Bra is essential. This supportive and sporty bra is also great for stroller walks and light activity as you try to fit in some me-time.
Whether you’re headed back to work or just for a night out, a great Underwire Nursing Bra or molded Wireless Nursing Bra gives you the look, feel and fit of a traditional bra – just with the added function of nursing clips.
Whether you’re an exclusive pumper, or only do it once in a while, a pumping bra is a necessity. For traditional breast pumps with flanges, the Hands Free Nursing & Pumping Bra is your go-to. It even allows you to pump on one side, while nursing on the other. If you have a wearable pump, like the Elvie or Willow, the 2-in-1 Nursing & Pumping Bra was made specifically to hold these pumps in place.
*Most women experience the most breast growth during the 2nd trimester, but it’s possible you will experience significant changes into the 3rd trimester. If your bra is getting uncomfortable or is no longer as supportive as it used to be, go ahead and remeasure yourself.