If you’re planning to breastfeed you might want to invest in some nursing bras. Nursing bras are convenient but not essential. In the early days of breastfeeding your newborn you may want to just go without a bra or just wear crop top style bras or nursing vests (vest tops with nursing clips and built in support such as the Emma-Jane Maternity nursing top available here). Alternatively, you can wear your normal bra (possibly with a bra extender if you need extra breathing space) or, if you’re handy with a needle and thread, convert your normal bras (check out www.suckle-store.co.uk).
You should aim to have your nursing bras fitted at around 36 weeks pregnant. Your breasts will get bigger once your milk comes in and your rib cage will get smaller, so you need a bra that has enough room in the cup to allow for expansion and enough spare hooks on the back so that you can tighten it as your ribs get smaller. Dependent on your budget you will probably want at least 2 or 3 daytime bras and 1 or 2 night-time bras. This should see you through several months of breastfeeding. Night-time bras are not essential but are useful for holding your breast pads in (if you need to use them) and offer light support which can help you feel more comfortable.
It is recommended that you wait until your milk supply has settled (4-6months) before wearing underwired bras. You should also make sure that the bra is a correct fit so that the wires do not sit against any breast tissue as this can cause blocked milk ducts and mastitis.
Bournemouth BraLady offers a home bra fitting service specialising in maternity and nursing bras including sleep bras, flexi-wire bras and nursing sports bras. I also stock nursing vests and reusable breast pads. Want to find out more? Get in touch today to book an appointment.