As a new mom, nursing bras were sometimes the best and worst experiences. I needed something that was comfortable that was easy to use when I needed to nurse quickly, and would provide support. Honestly, I never really cared about style when I was nursing, but I know it’s nice to have. And, cost has always been a factor.
While nursing bras often look very similar to “regular” everyday bras you might find in the women’s section online or in a store, the nursing bra has the added benefit of featuring a snap or closure of some kind. It’s intended to allow you to easily nurse or pump when you need to, without requiring that you take the whole bra off or stretch it out so it no longer really offers any support.
The Best Nursing Bras
If this is your first pregnancy, or if you’re buying a nursing bra for someone else, it’s tough to know which ones to buy. Before I started wearing a nursing bra AND nursing, I didn’t have a good sense of what the features were even for, or why they’d come in handy in the middle of the night or after many sleepless nights.
The best nursing bras are really the ones that do what you need them to do without getting in the way. They have to be comfortable and they also have to make it easy to feed your kid. There are enough other things to think about when you’ve got a newborn — you don’t want to worry about whether your bra is going to stay on, whether it will cover what it needs to cover, whether the snaps will break, or whether it will be a complete and utter frustration to just get the bra fastener undone, so you can FEED your kid.
The Bravado! Seamless Bra is designed to be wire-free, with 4-way stretch fabric that’s seamless. The bra comes standard with molded foam cups that come in handy more than you might think. I love how comfortable this bra is, but it’s also got some style and function as it smooths your look.
Speaking of function, there’s more to the flexible fit than just the 4-way stretch. It’s a combo of 88% nylon and 12% spandex, with adjustable straps and easy-to-use snaps for nursing and pumping. The shape and flex are also perfect for the changing needs and curves of your body through maternity, nursing, and beyond.
The Leakproof Nursing Bra is another nursing bra that I love, with removable padding and comfortable, breathable, adaptive fabric. It’s perfect to support your changing body, with the durability that helps to make the price tag a bit more bearable.
This bra is also Oeko-Tex certified, which means it’s free from harmful substances. If your skin is sensitive, this bra goes out of its way to nurture your skin with its mesh formula of 92% nylon and 8% Spandex.
The Hofish Seamless Bra has that basic V-neck design with comfortable fabric and bra extenders for maximum comfort. While the bra doesn’t offer a ton of support, it is seamless with removable foam cups, and soft fabric that accommodates your changing shape.
The Hofish nursing bra is made with 92% nylon and 8% spandex. I found it easy to size, and it was easy to use, with one-hand access for nursing. It’s breathable and comfortable, so it has what counts the most when I’m nursing.
Auden’s Seamless Nursing Bra is one of the most affordable options, which is what I LOVE. At $16.99, it’s the logical choice if you’re still not sure which bra will meet your needs, but it’s also a great idea to have a few spare nursing bras on hand for those unexpected nursing emergencies when you’re at home or out and about.
I also love the six-clasp sizing feature, which offers support without being too tight and confining throughout pregnancy and postpartum. I know some women still swear by the under-wire bra, but this wireless support is so much more comfortable than some of the other bras I’ve tried.
The Seamless Rib Knit Maternity And Nursing Bra is made from 75% polyamide and 25% spandex. It’s comfortable to wear, with removable cup inserts and adjustable straps. It’s breathable and light, with a price point that makes this bra a great one to test.
While this bra is designed to accommodate your changing body, you should be prepared to go a bit larger in your bra size. Still, the bra is a great option to deliver the ease of use and functional reliability you need for your nursing bra.
The Kindred Bravely Racerback Nursing Bra is a great solution if you’re looking to exercise. It’s got the moisture-wicking fabric that you’ve probably come to count on and expect. The wide elastic chest band offers support for yoga stretches, weight lifting, cycling, or any of your other activities.
As a nursing mom, a good bra must have nursing access, and this bra delivers in that area too. It’s easy to unclip in a pinch for pumping or breastfeeding. You should have at least a few sports-type bras in your arsenal as a new nursing mom. They’re great even if you’re looking to get out of the house for a walk around the neighborhood with your stroller or baby carrier.
The Playtex Women’s Nursing Shaping Foam Wirefree Bra says hand-wash only, which normally could be enough to make me switch to a different option, but the ComfortFlex Fit is flexible and comfortable and the 4-way TruSupport design offers 360-degree support.
I’m not saying that this bra is the only nursing solution, but it’s one you might want to try, particularly if you’re nursing during the heat of the summer. It helps to keep you cool and comfortable, with that flex that just adjusts to accommodate your body changes.
The Simple Wishes Hands-Free Bra might look a bit strange, but bras like this can be a life-saver if you’re looking for options that allow you to nurse and pump. The hands-free construction stays in place while you’re pumping.
Of course, the trade-off is that the bra is not the most comfortable one I’ve tried. Still the bra works great with the top breast pumps: Bellema, Evenflo, Lansinoh, Medela, Philips Avent, and Spectra. It also comes with a 10-inch adjustable Velcro back panel for a guaranteed fit.
Top Tips For Selecting The Best Nursing Bra
By now, you’ve probably been scrolling through pages upon pages of bras and other baby stuff for you and your newborn. Even with the best of intentions, buying a nursing bra is complicated and often difficult. Particularly when you’re first starting out with nursing, it’s not always easy. And, you might not find the right nursing bra the first time around. Here are a few tips to help you get through the process.
Don’t Settle On Just One Bra
If you’re not sure which nursing bra to get for yourself or another woman, it’s usually a safe idea to get a couple of different options. While many new moms start off with lots of ideas about how nursing will go, it’s just one of the many challenges you’ll face as a new mom. Give yourself a selection of bras to try out once you have your baby in your arms, and also feel free to get rid of the ones that just do not work for your needs. This should not be a torture experience. If the bra just doesn’t fit or is not accessible enough, there are plenty of other options to try.
A Bra Is Not The Only Answer
If you’ve never nursed before and/or if this nursing bra is a gift, you may not know about all the wonderful nursing care items that are absolute must-haves as you begin your nursing adventure. Include lanolin, nursing pads, smoothies, and maybe even a nursing pillow. If it’s a gift, it’s so nice to include at least a few essentials in your New Mom Survival Kit that you can assemble or buy as a basket deal. (There are a ton of options on Etsy that you can build on.)
Give Yourself A Break
Yes, your bra could very well be part of the frustration you’re finding in nursing your newborn. Whether you bought the bra for yourself or it was a gift, feel free to NOT use it if it’s not working for you. There are so many options available that you have every right to keep trying bras until you find the one that works better for your needs.
Ask For Help!
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I’ll say that again: ask for help!! You’ll get lots of unsolicited advice when you don’t need it, and you might be nervous about asking for advice when you REALLY do need it. If you don’t have a friend who can offer insight into the challenges of finding the right nursing bra, reach out to a nursing coach. It could be that there’s a fix that would make the bra work for you, or it might be time to try a few others.
Which nursing bra is the best? Any tips for first-time moms? Share with us in the comments!
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