Nursing Bra Advice by Seraphine – Find the Perfect Fit My Baba 10 March, 2014 Mum, Parenting, Planning Selecting the best bra size for you during pregnancy is always tricky and this can be particularly problematic when selecting a nursing bra due to the changes and fluctuation experiences in breast size. Although every woman is different ; our nursing bra fit guide answers the most commonly asked questions to help you find the perfect fit. WHEN SHOULD I BUY A NURSING BRA? Commonly most women will buy a nursing bra during their third trimester, although you may find that you require a different fit far earlier in your pregnancy. The best time to transition to a nursing bra is when your pre-pregnancy bra no longer feels comfortable or fits correctly. WHAT SIZE NURSING BRA SHOULD I BUY? As breast size fluctuates throughout pregnancy, finding a bra that will fit comfortably through pregnancy and nursing can prove difficult. We would suggest the best way to calculate your bra size is to take your measure at 26 weeks and add 1 additional cup size and 1 additional band size to your bra size ( e.g )if at 26 weeks your measurement is 34C you would most likely fit into 36D as you move into your 3rd and 4th trimester. Find out your size with the Bra Calculator below. HOW DO I MEASURE MY BRA SIZE? Wear the bra you feel most comfortable in at the moment (ensuring that the bra is not padded or restrictive). Stand up straight keeping you breathing and stomach relaxed. Place the measuring tape flat against your back and wrap around your ribcage underneath your breasts. Ensure the tape is taut and as straight as possible: This is the value for your Under Bust. Take a second measurement this time wrapping the tape over the fullest part of your bust and around your back keeping the tape fairly straight, be sure to wrap the tape into the area between your breasts: this is the value for your Over Bust HOW DO I CHOOSE THE BEST NURSING BRA FOR ME? Seraphine’s nursing bras are specifically designed to adjust to your changing body shape. Our stretchy fabrics and multiple hook and eye fastenings will support and accommodate the size fluctuations experienced during pregnancy and nursing. Choosing the best bra for you all comes down to preference. Things you may want to consider when buying a bra are; -How Does This Style Fit Into My Lifestyle ? -How Much Shape Do I Need? (Hint – Seraphine’s designs help to create a balance between comfort and shaply silhouette) – How long do I Plan To Breastfeed For? (Hint- If you are planning to extend the breastfeeding phase we suggest that you purchase an under wired nursing bra as you will feel as though you need extra shape and support. WHAT CHANGES WILL I EXPERIENCE TO MY BRA SIZE DURING PREGNANCY? On average pregnant women will experience the following changes to their bust during pregnancy; – Pregnant – Increase of 1 -2 cup sizes and 1-2 band sizes from your pre-pregnancy size. – Post-Birth/Nursing – Increase of an additional cup size from your pregnant size. – Nursing 8+ Weeks – Band size will decrease usually to your pre-pregnancy size, cup size will be 1 size up from your pre-pregnancy size.. HOW CAN I TELL IF MY NURSING BRA IS FITTED CORRECTLY? When you purchase a nursing bra it should fit you on the middle hooks and the strap adjusters should have enough space to be repositioned allowing for looser repositioning during pregnancy, and tightening as your band size decreases throughout nursing. You should be able to run two fingers under the band of your bra and your hand should be able to fit inside the cup ensuring you have enough room for padding. When you try a nursing bra on lift your arms up over your head , if the band curves at the back and the cups ride up over your breasts you should consider exchanging for a bigger band size. If your bust is spilling over the cups of the bra you will most likely need to exchange for a bigger bra in cup and band size. CAN I SLEEP IN A NURSING BRA? Yes! There are no health risks to wearing a bra around the clock whilst nursing and you may find that wearing a nursing bra at night is essential during your first few months of feeding. When selecting a sleep bra opt for thicker straps and an elasticated under bust panel, wider cups will also be beneficial in helping to hold breast pads in place. CLICK HERE TO FOUND OUT YOUR SIZE WITH THE BRA CALCULATOR IS IT SAFE TO WEAR AN UNDER-WIRED BRA WHILST BREASTFEEDING? If you want to wear an under-wired bra ensure that your purchase a nursing specific underwired bra. These typically have softer and flexible support wires usually made out of bamboo like materials. Non nursing specific underwired bras can cause be very uncomfortable and in some cases lead to Mastitsis. It is not advised to sleep in an underwired nursing bra. WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF COTTON LINED BRAS? Cotton lined bras are generally more practical and comfortable. Cotton helps to sooth and prevent breast and nipple irritation as well as reduce the amount of moisture that build up in your bra. Cotton also helps to regulate your temperature and is washing machine friendly. WILL I NEED A NURSING BRA IN MY HOSPITAL BAG? It is advisable that you have a nursing bra prepared for the birth of you baby, however you may prefer to pack a supportive nursing top as an alternative if you are feeling uncomfortable wearing a bra straight after the birth of your baby.