A Guide to Post-Breastfeeding Bra Shopping
Post-breastfeeding moms are some of our most cheerful customers. After months of stretchy nursing bralettes and pull-over sports bras, it’s a milestone to finally put yourself first – and get back to pretty bras. Here we’ve put together a DIY bra fitting guide and included some recommendations based on post-breastfeeding customers we fitted.
STEP 1: GET YOUR MEASURING TAPE OUT
Once your size and shape have stabilized, it’s time to remeasure yourself. Most of our customers tell us they dip their toes back in 3-6 months after weaning.
To get your size, we need 3 measurements:
- Your underbust, where your bra band sits. Pull the tape as tightly as you want your bra to fit.
- Your standing bust. Wrap the tape loosely around the fullest part of your bust while standing.
- You’re leaning bust. Lean forward about 45 degrees, and wrap the tape loosely around the fullest part of your bust.
Now put those numbers into our size calculator. If you are just transitioning from nursing bralettes, and there’s a less than 4’’ difference between your underbust and standing bust, choose “RELAXED FIT.” If you want maximum lift and there is a 4’’ or more difference between your underbust and standing bust, choose “FIRM FIT.”
STEP 2: CHECK YOUR SHAPE
At Understance, “saggy” is not a shape. Not because we don’t like the word, but because it doesn’t actually give us much information. When we talk about breast shape, we talk about the shapes of supported breasts.
First, check your roots. Lift up your breasts, and look at the line where your breasts are attached to your torso. Are they narrow or wide? If the line ends directly under your armpit or closer to your back, your roots are wider. If they end in front of your arms, your roots are narrower. (Root width is an important factor in determining underwire shape.)
Second, check your vertical fullness – this is whether most of your breast tissue lies above or below your nipples. When you lean forward close to 90 degrees, where do your nipples point? If they point toward your belly, you are fuller on top. If they point toward your chin, you are fuller on bottom. If they point straight down, you have even vertical fullness. (Vertical fullness is important for determining cup shape.)
STEP 3: FIND YOUR MATCH
Know your size and shape? Check out the following recommendations:
IVY & HARPER
If leaking is a concern, try Ivy or Harper. They are lightly padded bras with natural cotton cups. Ivy’s underwire skews narrow, and the higher coverage works best for full-on-top breasts. Harper’s underwire is regular width, and works best for full-on-bottom breasts.
ZOE & SALMA
If lightness and lift are your top priorities, we recommend Zoe or Salma. They are unpadded underwire bras. Compared to padded bras, they can accommodate a larger variety of shapes.
Zoe’s underwire is regular width, and works best for full-on-bottom or evenly full breasts. Zoe offers good lift in its smaller size range (30-38 D-DDD). If you are in a larger size range, Salma will offer better lift.
Salma’s underwire is wider and flatter on the bottom, and works best for full-on-top or evenly full breasts. Salma offers good lift in its mid size range (30-34 DDD-I, 36-40 DD-H, 42-48 D-G), a more natural shape in its larger sizes, and is very firm in its smaller sizes.
And finally, if you are looking for underwear that’ll make you look snatched – we have something for that, too. We specialize in contouring underwear, which is somewhere between regular underwear and shaping underwear. Contouring won’t make you look a size smaller, but it’ll smooth out some lines and bumps – amazing for days when you can’t deal with the discomfort of shaping underwear, but still want a look oomph.
This collection is all high-rise, and comes in 4 shapes – bikini, thong, bike shorts 4’’ inseam and bike shorts 7’’ inseam. It’s made of natural fibers, which will keep you cool. The leg openings are all free-cut, meaning they won’t show under leggings. The bike shorts are perfect for wearing under dresses.
This collection comes in three shapes – a mid-rise thong, a high-rise brief, and a high-rise boyshort. It’s made of Pima cotton, the very best in class for breathability and comfort. The waistband is ultra wide and will smooth out muffin tops. If the underwear staying put is a priority, these are your pick.
The Dandelion collection has two shapes – a high-rise brief, and an over-the-belly, ultra high-rise brief. The fold-over waistband will smooth out lines, while the free-cut leg openings won’t dig in. Perfect for days when you feel lacey.
Good luck, and we are so happy to be on this journey with you!