When you're a young mom, any help is extremely important, and you value any convenience doubly. That's why it's important to find out why a nursing bra is an option you should seriously consider. With a special lactation bra, you will be able to focus only on deepening your special relationship with your baby.
Why do we need a nursing bra?
Not every mother decides to buy a special breastfeeding bra. Some think they don't need them - after all, you can always pull the breast out of a stretchy bra. Of course, you can. The question is, however, why not bet on comfort and functionality? With a nursing bra, motherhood is simply easier!
A nursing bra is used, first of all, for comfortable and fast feeding. All thanks to special clasps on shoulder straps, thanks to which you can unclip the cups almost immediately. In this way you can quickly pull out the breast and start feeding the baby. At the same time the straps in these bras are attached to the base of the cup. This ensures that when the strap is unclipped, you can easily manage it and do the bra up again.
Let's face it, during the first months of a baby's life moms usually undersleep. Relax, it will pass, but for now it is worth taking care of at least a little comfort, for example in the form of a nap. And if you want to take a nap, it is best when your little one does the same - preferably next to you, without putting it back to the cot, on UNO UP or NESTE UP co-sleeper cots. And when your little one wakes up hungry, a nursing bra will prove extremely helpful. Feed your little one and you'll both go back to sleep.
What is more, such a bra has an advantage over a regular bra as it does not distort. If you bend out the bra for a long time, it simply deforms. Consequently, after a month or two it is only suitable for throwing away.
A special nursing bra does not only provide comfort for easier feeding, but also protects a woman's breast. A perfectly clinging bra helps to prevent the cleavage skin from stretching, additionally burdened with breasts which are heavier than usual. When the breasts are held up tight, it prevents them from excessive moving, which can be painful during lactation. It also relieves the spine and shoulders - especially if a woman has large breasts. Another significant advantage is the fact that breastfeeding bras make it possible to wear breast inserts, and thus allow to maintain hygiene and cleanliness of clothes and beddings.
Being a mom, don't forget about yourself and comfort. Breastfeeding bras can help you with this, as they are better suited to breastfeeding mothers and fit the shape of their bodies. There are many different styles, cuts and colors on the market - you are sure to find something for yourself!
Before we start breastfeeding - what bras to wear during pregnancy?
The rules of choosing bras during pregnancy are not radically different from the way you buy them normally. The only difference is that you should observe your breasts more closely than usual and react to changes. During pregnancy, the glandular cells that produce nutrition during lactation grow, and the amount of fatty tissue increases. You will also notice an increase in the circumference under your breasts as your whole chest gets bigger. For this reason you will probably have to change your bra for a bigger one from time to time. We use the word "probably", because there is no rule in this respect. Some women are forced to change bras every 4-8 weeks, while others will comfortably go through the entire pregnancy in the same size.
The rule is as follows - if you feel that your bra is starting to get uncomfortable, it means it's time to get a bigger size. However, you should not buy bras for days. Each one should be tailored - neither too loose nor too tight. A bra that is too small can lead to protrusions and scrapes. It may also result in decreased lactation after childbirth, because it may clog the milk ducts. On the other hand, a bra that is too loose may not be able to carry the weight of your pregnant breasts. On the other hand, if you have a problem with only a too small circumference under the breasts, you may buy a so-called extension - a removable strap with hooks and eyes.
Is it worth deciding on a special nursing bra? Not necessarily. Manufacturers tempt you with a promise that such a bra will be enough for the whole pregnancy period. This may be true, but certainly is not a rule. Because it may turn out that even such a stretchy bra will not be enough for the whole nine months. Besides - it's no magic. Pregnancy bras do stretch. That's why they hold up breasts much less well.
At what point should I buy a nursing bra?
The process of buying a breastfeeding bra can be divided into two stages. The first begins even before the birth, but only at the end of pregnancy, around 35-36 week - certainly not earlier, because the breasts can still grow. Then you should buy a bra without underwires. Why? For two reasons. Firstly, in the first weeks after giving birth your breasts change very quickly and it is difficult to predict their size. Whereas a bra with underwires must be very skin-tight. Secondly, it is about your comfort. Breasts during the first period of breastfeeding are exposed to pain and discomfort. They may be swollen, tumid and bitten by the little one. Therefore, your breasts need constant protection and comfort.
The second stage of choosing a nursing bra should take place around 4-6 week after the delivery. This is when its size should stabilize due to the regulation of lactation. The breasts are no longer swollen and sometimes become predictable, changing according to a constant rhythm: full-empty. Only then are you able to estimate size fluctuations and adjust the appropriate cup size and cut.
How to choose a nursing bra size?
Remember, that the first nursing bra should be bought while still pregnant, preferably not earlier than a month before childbirth. Start calculating the size by measuring the circumference under the breasts with a measuring tape. Subtract 10 cm from the measurement - your bosom will shrink by about this much after childbirth. But if you know that your circumference during pregnancy has not increased dramatically compared to nine months ago, it is enough to subtract 5 cm. On the other hand, if you feel that the change is really big, then you can subtract even 15 cm. The second step is to choose a cup size. Again, reach for a measuring tape and this time measure yourself on the breasts, at nipple height. Buy a bra with a cup size larger than the ones you have been wearing so far. After giving birth, your breasts increase in size by one size. If you have any problems with measuring or estimating your size, it is always a good idea to consult a professional bra fitter, who will let you try on several models and then help you choose a perfect bra.
How to fit a nursing bra?
A secret to a well-fitted nursing bra is the material it is made of. It should be made of knitted fabric, so that it fits well when the breasts change during the feeding period. At the beginning of lactation, the bosom is big and heavy and then it gets smaller. Thanks to the stretchiness, the bra always holds up the breasts correctly - no matter whether you have just fed the baby or it has not yet eaten.
But that's not all. When fitting a nursing bra, it is necessary to pay attention to a few more issues. First of all - whether the joint of the cups adheres well to the breastbone, the top of the cup does not stick to the breast, and in addition the cups are simply not too small. Remember, if you choose a bra with underwires, they should in no way stick into your breasts - neither on the side nor on the front. This can lead to blockage and, as a consequence, even lactation problems. Also pay attention to the bra straps - they have to fit perfectly - neither sticking in nor falling off the shoulders. The bra's circumference, on the other hand, should fit well to the back - in such a way that the bra does not move upwards.
You should also take care to ensure that the cup is the right size to cover your nipple and that the bra fits evenly around your breasts. If you leave any space in the cup, your breasts will move when you walk and thus lose firmness and hurt.
Features of a good nursing bra
A good nursing bra - what kind of bra? In the first place, of course, comfortable - if, after putting it on, you feel that you don't want to take it off because nothing is pinching, pressing or scratching, then there is no better proof that you are wearing the right bra. To make sure everything is definitely right, you can make a few movements. If you raise your arms and move them around and still the bra is in place, it means it is fine. Moreover, your breasts must be completely covered by the cups, and the circumference cannot be too small or too big - you should be able to insert two fingers at most. If you have a bra with underwires, they should reach to the armpit area. If it is otherwise, the bra may start to move, and as a consequence press on the milk ducts.
But that is not all. Because the bra is also supposed to be comfortable in use, that is during feeding - removing the cup should be easy, quick and doable with one hand. No less important is the material from which the bra is made - it should be made of certified fabrics, guaranteeing that they are fully safe for delicate skin. The bra should also be easy to clean and, on top of that, antibacterial, which will be ensured by a hygienic cup-filling insert. Finally, good nursing lingerie is tasteful lingerie - don't forget about aesthetics, because you should simply feel good in your bra, and you won't if you don't like it
Breastfeeding bra - with or without underwires?
It all depends on when you are going to wear a nursing bra. Many women choose bras without underwires for the beginning of lactation, because during this period the breasts often change their size and are very sensitive. Underwires make the bra stiffer. This is not conducive to comfort during the first weeks after childbirth.
A bra with underwires, on the other hand, will work well 4-6 weeks after childbirth, when the size of breasts stabilizes, and it will be easier for you to choose the right size of bra. Remember that the bra must be selected so that it does not compress the breasts. This could lead to serious blockages. If you have chosen the right size and the underwires are properly fitted to your chest around your breasts, there is no reason why you should opt for this model. What's more, a bra with underwires may even be a better option. Thanks to the underwires, the breasts are better supported, which is especially important when the breasts are larger and heavier.
Night nursing bra
A bra for feeding your baby at night does not have to be the same bra you use during the day. An underwire-free bra will work much better during night feedings. During this time many women feed babies lying down, because their baby lies next to them, for example on a convenient co-sleeper cot (in our offer you will find three models: NESTE AIR, UNO UP and NESTE UP). The mother doesn't even have to take the baby in her arms, just cuddle and breastfeed them. Unfortunately, sleeping and lying on the side is not comfortable in a bra with underwires, so it is better to choose the softer models, without seams and hooks and eyes. Additionally, a night nursing bra should have wider straps, better supporting breasts, as well as a soft band under the bosom. However, it should not have any fasteners, which may irritate during sleep. Also pay attention to the material of the bra - it is good for the fabric to have extra absorbent properties, to ensure thermal comfort, and to be natural and breathable, so that the skin can breathe. It is very likely that you will be using sanitary breast inserts at night - a good night bra should have space for them.
A breastfeeding bra is comfort, convenience and reassurance. It will provide you with discretion when breastfeeding away from home, properly care for your breasts, so that they do not lose their firmness, and in addition will provide them with relief and rest during this unusually intensive time for you and for the baby.