Pregnancy brings all the changes you can imagine. One minute you can fit into your jeans and bras. The next thing you know, you are struggling to find something you can wear outside the house. Pants can be switched to yoga pants, skirts, or low-waisted jeans. However, brassieres need to support your developing breasts and protect the milk ducts. Therefore, it is important to know the basics of maternity and nursing bras.

Maternity Vs Nursing: What’s the Difference?

There is very little difference between a maternity and nursing bra. However, a true maternity bra offers support and offer breasts the ability to swell during the gestation period. A nursing bra allows the mother access to breastfeeding her child post-birth. Most specialty stores selling brassieres for pregnant women meet both needs, such as Comfy maternity bra.

When to Buy

Your pre-pregnancy bra will likely fit you until 12-16 weeks when you start to notice you are spilling out. It is suggested to shop for maternity bras during the second trimester and buy ones for nursing towards the end of the pregnancy. If at all possible, consider waiting until your cup size begins to stabilize before shopping. The second shopping trip is because your colostrum begins to come in, and your breasts swell again.

Fitting the Bras

Ideally, you have a professional maternity bra fitter assist you with your purchasing of bras. If you are unable to obtain an appointment or do not have any specialty stores in your area, you can use the following method to find a safe measurement.

Maternity Bras:

  1. Start with your pre-pregnancy bra size.
  2. Go up one cup size and one band size (32C changes to 34D).

Nursing Bras:

  1. Start with your maternity bra size.
  2. Go up one cup size and reduce one band size (34D changes to 32DD).

You want the maternity bra to feel the most comfortable on the tightest setting, so you can loosen as you grow. The nursing bra should feel most comfortable in the loosest setting, allowing you to tighten as your body returns to pre-pregnancy size.

Which Bra Styles to Buy

  • Day – is soft, breathable, and offers support during your daily activities.
  • Night – minimal clips and frills, cup slides to the side for nighttime feedings
  • Exercise – nursing sports bras are available.
  • Romantic – lacy but supportive always works on a romantic night.

Anytime you struggle with shopping for maternity bras, it pays to make a trip to a specialty store. They have heard all kinds of questions, so you can feel comfortable discussing your needs. Having a proper fitting performed will ensure your bra fits longer and meets the demands of your lifestyle. The purchasing process is important for your comfort and your breast’s health. Once you have found the perfect one, it is recommended to purchase two or three. Owning several brassieres allows you to wash them regularly, maintaining the structure of the fabric. With that said, you might consider owning a couple of each style, so you always have something to wear.