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Underwear and bras during pregnancy

Our top ten maternity bra and underwear commandments

Pregnancy is such an exciting time and as your bump begins to sprout you may also notice that your cleavage is growing too.

If you were more Kiera Knightly than Kim Kardashian in the cleavage department before you became pregnant then having these new curves can bring mixed feelings, from happiness to confusion about what you need to make sure they remain supported.

At a glance

  • Get professionally measured to ensure you have the correct support
  • Avoid underwires in your bra as they can restrict the growth of breast tissue
  • Think about investing in nursing bras, especially if you plan to breastfeed

And if you were bigger before you may also find with the extra growth comes an extra strain on your back. As a result it’s important to invest in new underwear that fits and stretches with your growing cleavage.  Opting for one of these can also help prevent the stretching of delicate breast tissue which leads to sagging and stretchmarks.

Here’s our top ten maternity bra and underwear commandments

  • Thou shalt go and be professionally measured. There’s a range of highstreet stores that offer this service free so have a look to see which one is closest to you.  You may find as your pregnancy progresses and your cleavage continues to grow, you become best friends with the measuring assistant – those in the know recommend you get measured regularly during your pregnancy to ensure you’ve got the right support throughout
  • Thou shalt avoid underwires.  It is thought that underwired bras can not only be uncomfortable during pregnancy but could also restrict the growth of the breast tissue so it’s best to avoid these at all costs
  • Thou shalt buy maternity bras with wide straps. If you’ve been blessed with a bigger bust then look for bras with wide straps, which will support the weight and ensure your shoulders don’t suffer
  • Thou shalt never wear bra straps too tight. Whatever size you are, you should always ensure that the straps are comfortable. It may be tempting to hoist up that new cleavage but if your straps are leaving marks, they’re too tight
  • Thou shalt let my bosoms breathe.  Pick a maternity bra with a breathable and stretchy fabric, which will ensure you stay dry under there too
  • Thou shalt know that maternity bras can be sexy. Over the years maternity underwear has moved on from granny to glam with a range of maternity bras offering the support with the sexiness. You can also buy gorgeous underwear sets, which are perfect for making you feel great – how much better do we feel when we know our bras match our knickers?
  • Thou shalt consider a sports bra. If you’re still friends with the gym then a sports bra is a must-have offering both support and comfort. Some women also use these to sleep in
  • Thou shalt think about nursing bras. As you get towards the end of your pregnancy you may find that your cleavage is growing daily. This as a result of your breasts getting ready to produce milk. If you’re going to breastfeed your little one then now’s a great time to think about investing in some nursing bras. Designed with detachable straps with easy openings and in soft fabrics, these are great for when you need to feed your little one. Make sure you get measured around two weeks before your due date so you can get the best fitting one, although you may find that you’ll continue to grow once baby has arrived so if you’re worried about the fit pop back to get measured again later
  • Thou can still wear a G-string (if you really want!) The key thing about knickers during pregnancy is that they are comfortable and sit well under or over your bump without being too tight. As a result it’s recommended you shelve the Spanx and restrictive control pants. However while many of us will opt for comfortable briefs (they don’t have to be Bridget Jones style) or shorts, as long as you’re not suffering from piles you can still wear those thongs. Just make sure you don’t buy them too tight… chaffing, need we say more
  • Thou shalt avoid wearing your other half’s boxers. It may be tempting to nick his boxers when you’re sitting at home without the risk of being interrupted by friends or family, but these aren’t great for offering support. Instead invest in a couple of pairs of maternity shorts, which will give you the comfort you need as well as supporting your bump. And let’s face it, they’ll be far sexier!

Have a look at our Bump to Baby Product Guide to find even more helpful information and top tips.

At a glance

  • Get professionally measured to ensure you have the correct support
  • Avoid underwires in your bra as they can restrict the growth of breast tissue
  • Think about investing in nursing bras, especially if you plan to breastfeed
There's a range of free bra measuring services around so look for one that is local to you

Underwear and bras during pregnancy

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