There are three types of nursing bras you need during pregnancy & breastfeeding that will help you feel comfortable & today I am sharing what they are!
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Why You Need Different Types of Nursing Bras
I have breastfed my babies for almost 1300 days. One thousand, two hundred and seventy nine days to be exact. Give or take a few random dry nursing days here and there.
What does this mean? In almost 4 years of breastfeeding, I’ve learned a little somethin’ somethin’ about breastfeeding and nursing bras. What you need, what you dont need. How to find the best nursing bras. How to pick the right nursing bra for YOU. And so much more. So today I thought I’d share a few tips I’ve learned along the way to ensure you get the right nursing bra for you and explain what the best types of nursing bras are.
There are three nursing bra styles that I always recommend to new moms: sleep, seamless, contour. And I personally always have a few nursing tanks as well. Let’s talk about the benefits to each nursing bra style, and why you need these types of nursing bras.
Types of Nursing Bras and Why You Need Them
Sleeping Nursing Bras
I’m not going to lie to you. At first, I thought sleep nursing bras were a little… unnecessary. However, if you’ve had a baby you know that feeling of your milk coming in. And typically, it’s overnight. Sleep bras usually come in XS-XXL and are meant to provide gentle support and easy breastfeeding access. Easily the most one-handed option, sleep bras are typically in a cross over style. Meaning even when you’re brain is fried from all the non sleep and you can barely form words, you can easily slip a breast out for quick nursing.
These were instrumental in my cosleeping and breastfeeding. Sleep nursing bras allow for me to use breast pads to help with leak prevention, which was huge for us. Slip a sleep nursing bra on under pajamas, or you can do what I did – wear just the sleep bra and pajama bottoms. That way there’s no worrying about buttons or lifting up a top. Again, just easy nursing access, which is exactly what these sleep bras are meant for.
What to look for in a sleep nursing bra:
The biggest suggestion I have for finding the best nursing bras for sleep? Fabric is HUGE. You want something breathable, especially in the warm summer months. You’ll also want natural fabrics like cotton or bamboo! Stay away from any sleep-related bras that have hook and eye closures, underwire, or tight elastics. Remember, you’ll be sleeping in this, so you want the softest and smoothest nursing bra possible.
My recommendation for the best sleep nursing bra:
I have two favorites that I’ve used with the boys that I LOVE, both from Kindred Bravely. The first is Kindred Bravely’s French Terry Racerback Nursing & Sleep Bra, and the second is the Organic Cotton Crossover Nursing & Sleep Bra, also by KB. They are just everything you could want in a nursing bra for sleep! And I’m not the only one that feels this way. In fact, the French Terry Racerback Nursing & Sleep Bra won a “Mom’s Choice Awards Gold” and the Organic Cotton was a 2017 Eco-Excellence Award Winner! They’re soft, ridiculously soft and so so so comfortable. Did I mention soft?
Find the best sleep nursing bras at Kindred Bravely and make sure to use code SHYNNZ20 to save on ALL your purchases at KB!
Seamless Nursing Bras
In my experience, seamless nursing bras are my most used for everyday. Seamless nursing bras are great for women who don’t want to add anything to their bust, and are just looking for support. While pregnant and breastfeeding, my boobs just felt SO huge and so uncomfortable. And I was looking for the best and easiest way to find support, without making me look any more like Dolly Parton than I had to. Because of the way they’re made, seamless nursing bras are just that.
Seamless nursing bras provide an uber-soft fit, comfort and the much needed support you’ll need while pregnant or breastfeeding. One thing that might be my favorite about seamless nursing bras is the fact that they can normally accommodate a growing and shrinking bust. Which makes them perfect for both pregnancy and breastfeeding. I usually order my normal size and one size up – so even though I may change sizes 500 times before and after baby is born, I’m covered. Literally.
What to look for in a seamless nursing bra:
There are a few key things to look for to find the best seamless nursing bra for you. You’ll want to make sure the straps are adjustable, the fabric is stretchy yet sturdy, and that the clip down cups are easy enough to mauve while one handed. Because let’s be real – most of the time we’ve only got one hand, at most, available.
My recommendation for the best seamless nursing bra:
Hands down, the Simply Sublime Nursing Bra from Kindred Bravely. I have worn my fair share of seamless nursing bras, and there’s just so much to love about Kindred Bravely’s Simply Sublime Nursing Bra. Like their sleep bras, the Simply Sublime is incredibly soft against my skin. So I can wear it all day, in any weather, and it’s super comfortable while also providing me with the support I so desperately need. The clip down cups are easy enough for me to undo in a second, which J loves because then there’s no waiting for his milk, ha. If you’re looking for removable triangle pads, stick with the Simply Sublime. But if you’re wanting fixed triangle padding, the new Simply Sublime Full Coverage Nursing Bra is your best bet!
Contour Nursing Bras
Contour nursing bras are going to be the most similar to those once-sexy bras you used to rock. It’s ideal for women that are wanting a smoother look under their clothes, in either a pull-over or clasp-back style. I prefer contour nursing bras when I’m dressing up or going out, as opposed to just laying around the house. A large majority of women LOVE contour nursing bras. Just like your favorite T shirt bra, contour nursing bras definitely help make you look lifted, rounded and perky (the latter of which I desperately need, ha). As you wear your contour nursing bras, the cups will actually mold to your body to give you an even better fit!
What to look for in a contour nursing bra:
First things first – contour nursing bras definitely aren’t a one sized fits all. A benefit of contour nursing bras is the option for a wire or non-wired style. I prefer the non-wire style, even with my larger chest, as I find that I already have enough support. However, wired may be a great option for you if you’re looking for extra extra lift and support for the girls. Friends that I’ve spoken to have said contour is great for wearing to the office! The more-bulky foam cup can sometimes make for a little more awkward of a one-handed fold down, purely because the fabric isn’t as thin as the seamless or sleep. So I’d suggest trying out a few different styles to find a good, fold down cup that still lays beautifully and is supportive.
My recommendation for the best contour nursing bra:
I am OBSESSED with the Luxe Maternity & Nursing Underwire Free Bra from Kindred Bravely. It legitimately feels like silky soft heaven on. And is so ridiculously comfortable! I love how sexy it makes me feel, even if I’m covered in spit up or other gross baby stuff. All the while keeping me supported and comfortable in my skin. It’s like the best of my pre-mom and post-mom bras put together in one! Plus, the o-ring in the back allows me to change from a traditional two strap back to racerback!
My very close second favorite is Kindred Bravely’s Classic Maternity & Nursing Underwire Free T-shirt Bra. The only differences between the two are the Classic is a pullover design, while the Luxe is a clasp-back with the option to go from traditional to racerback straps. Both bras have won awards, like Lucie’s List Best Nursing Bra and awards from The Cribsie Awards!
How many nursing bras do I need?
A question that I get asked a lot is how many nursing bras to buy when preparing for baby and breastfeeding. I think 3 is the magic number. You have one to wear, one in your drawer ready to go, and most likely one in the wash. If you can, I might stretch that number to 4 and add 1-2 nursing tanks as well. That way, no matter how much baby pukes / poops / etc on you, you’re covered!
What about a nursing tank? Do I really need one?
My answer? YES! A nursing tank was a MUST HAVE for me postpartum. Those first few weeks, comfort and survival are the goal everyday. You’re healing, you’re exhausted, and you’re adjusting to life with a new human. I’ll be honest. I don’t think I put on pants for at least two weeks. At least! I have almost 9lb babies with hugenormous heads. Pants and real clothes don’t even become a thing I think about for probably the first month. We’re all sleeping on and off all day, and my main goal is keeping baby fed, happy, and getting them to sleep.
Nursing tanks are a must have in my world. I can throw one on in the morning when I wake up, put on a new pair of granny panties or giant, loose shorts, and I’m good to go. Baby and I have super easy and quick access for breastfeeding at a moment’s notice. And since I don’t have any other layers to move or unbutton or fight with, nursing tanks just make life so much easier.
What to look for in a nursing tank:
There are a few things I look for when it comes to finding the best nursing tank for breastfeeding. I prefer seamless. Like the seamless bras I mentioned above, I just like the comfort and smoothness of the seamless tanks. Plus, they tend to have a little more compression, which I always feel like helps with healing and my body going back to “normal” – whatever that is. I always double check the built in nursing bra – I want them to have the same components I look for in my nursing bras – easy to unclip, soft and breathable fabric, and invisible under clothing.
My recommendation for the best nursing tank:
The Simply Sublime Nursing Tank from Kindred Bravely has all the features I love about my Sublime Nursing Bra, but with the added benefit of being a full coverage top. I probably shouldn’t admit how many days in a row I’ve gone wearing the same Simply Sublime Nursing Tank… but let’s just say it was more than one and less than seven. And even five days into wearing the same shirt, the fit was perfection. There was NO stretching out, just a super comfortable yet secure fit! Plus, they wash wonderfully, which is probably the number one requirement when it comes to being around newborns and breastmilk!
Don’t forget to use code SHYNNZ20 when shopping for the best pregnancy and maternity nursing wear at Kindred Bravely!
I hope this post helped you learn what the best types of nursing bras are and why you need them!
For more on breastfeeding, check out these posts: