You can boost your comfort and confidence, especially after undergoing a mastectomy if you can find the right bra. As many women who have had a mastectomy can attest, an ill-fitting bra usually causes some discomfort that can easily impair your mobility and even self-esteem which is something you don’t want to be dealing with when self-care should be your priority. 

In this post, we discuss mastectomy bras from the perspective of an expert helping you choose the best fit and support if you have undergone breast surgery recently.  Choosing a mastectomy bra is a little different from shopping for normal bras so you may find this useful. Let’s get started!

What is a Mastectomy Bra?

A mastectomy bra in its simplest form is a specifically designed breast prosthesis made to accommodate the very specific needs of women who have undergone breast cancer surgery or lumpectomy. Wearing one over a normal bra is the best thing you can do for yourself as it sets you on a path to regaining your sense of normalcy and self-confidence. 

A well-designed and properly fit mastectomy bra should be able to provide you with a comfortable fit while still accommodating your prosthesis or breast form. Mastectomy bras are different from regular bras in that they have in-built pouches or pockets designed to hold artificial breast shapes firmly. 

You have a variety of mastectomy bras to choose from in the market to suit your needs and recommendations from your doctor. The following are the most common types of mastectomy bras in the market today:

  • Camisole-style mastectomy bras- These provide full coverage and support in your breast area
  • Front closure mastectomy bras- These are designed for easy dressing
  • Soft leisure mastectomy bras- These are designed to provide you additional comfort while sleeping
  • Seamed cup mastectomy bras- These have an enhanced shape design for aesthetics

You can choose from any of these mastectomy bras or buy one of each type because they all have different functions. For instance, get at least five pairs of camisole-style mastectomy bras for everyday wear, seven soft-leisure bras for every day of the week for sleeping and a few seamed cup mastectomy bras for special occasions or going out.    

A quality-fitting mastectomy bra has several advantages but there are two take make it worth every penny and time you spend getting the right fit. Firstly, having one makes you feel more feminine and self-assured in a usually emotional and vulnerable time after your surgery. Secondly, the well-fitting protects your breast area from skin irritation, and chaffing while preventing neck strain.

How to Measure and Fit a Mastectomy Bra

To find the perfect mastectomy bra, start measuring your underbust while holding your measuring tape parallel to the floor. To get the correct band size, add at least 4.5 inches to the measurement you get if it is an even number and 5 inches if it is an odd number.

After the underburst, measure the fullest part of your chest area/wall while wearing any lightweight shirt or t-shirt. This measurement will help you determine your cup volume. You can then proceed to match the two measurements (under burst and cup volume) to standard bra sizes in the market. 

To get the perfect for your mastectomy bra, you may need to take into account other factors like tissue redistribution patterns, breast shape asymmetry, the surgical technique used and any residual swelling you might have later. If you are in doubt, we recommend consulting a mastectomy bra fitter to make sure you get the perfect fit. 

You may also need to do in-person fitting to make sure your cradle accommodates your breast form without leaving any gaps, or being too tight. Also, take time to understand the correct strap adjustment method to get an optimal weight distribution for a smooth look under your clothes. 

Choose the Right Mastectomy Bra Material and Style

After finding the right fit, you may want to find a mastectomy bra that best suits your stylistic preferences and lifestyle. As stated, earlier, there are mastectomy bras for every occasion just like normal bras. As for material, you can choose from a variety including soft microfiber or cotton. Go for a smooth tag-less design if you are dealing with sensory issues as well. 

A good and well-fitting will satisfy your desire to feel whole, supported, and cared for. Find a mastectomy bra that was designed for your specific needs and your body will thank you. All the best!